this, but have been twice anticipated by “A. E. D.” Besides, I have been deterred, observing the tendency to put these subjects in a rose-colored light. But, on the other hand, it is but proper for me to contribute my mite of experience, as I have certainly derived benefit from the letters of others. For instance, I had not made any attempt to stop the card-playing among the convalescents until I read what a brother chaplain had done. His success emboldened me. So, one day, approaching a group who were busily “throwing the spotted leaf,” but who desisted when they saw me, I did not content myself with proposing to give them some of my cards, but urged them to give up theirs. “We mean no harm, sir,” said a bright youth— “ we do not play for money, only for pastime. It is dull here.” “Yes,” I replied, “it must be dull, and I do not wonder you wish some recreation; but then you have books and papers in abundance, and I would not resort to cards.” “I do not think it is wrong, sir.” “The mere act of throwing cards may not be, but it is connected closely with gambling. Besides, it does seem an inappropriate employment in a room filled with sick and dying men, and for those who have just been raised up from death's door. But I will give you a simple argument. Have you a mother?” “I have.” “Do you think she would be willing for you to play cards, even for fun? ” “I know she would not.” “Well, at what age is a man justifiable in violating his mother's wishes?” The cards were thrown aside—I hope, permanently. The group scattered, and the youth who had been the principal speaker followed me, and sat by my side while I read and prayed with a dying Christian. Possibly this piece may strike the eye of some card-playing soldier. To such an one, I put the question, “Would your mother approve of it?” Encouraged by this success, I made a similar attempt in one other hospital, with like results; and subsequently coming into the same room, I asked an elderly, one-legged soldier what had become of the cards? He replied, “I have not seen them since you talked to the boys the other day.” I feel the more free to speak against cards because we have large and well-selected libraries of both religious and secular volumes, and because I am constantly distributing papers in abundance. I have also lately queried within myself whether we ought not to supply our convalescent soldiers with other innocent means of recreation. There are thousands in our hospitals, not able to go to camp, who are
This text is part of:
Table of Contents:
Chapter 1 : religious elements in the army.
Chapter 2 : influence of Christian officers.
Chapter 3 : influence of Christian officers—continued.
Chapter 4 : influence of Christian officers—concluded.
Chapter 5 : Bible and colportage work.
Chapter 6 : hospital work.
Chapter 7 : work of the chaplains and missionaries.
Chapter 8 : eagerness of the soldiers to hear the Gospel .
Chapter 9 : State of religion in 1861 - 62 .
Chapter 10 : revivals in the Lower Valley and around Fredericksburg .
Chapter 11 : the great revival along the Rapidan .
Chapter 12 : progress of the work in 1864 - 65 .
Chapter 13 : results of the work and proofs of its genuineness
Appendix: letters from our army workers.
Appendix no. 2 : the work of grace in other armies of the Confederacy .
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