A Social Reformer On Joy

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Joy Belong to All

 

Henry Ward Beecher was a charismatic clergyman, reformer, abolitionist and speaker.  Born into a family that was famous for producing social crusaders, he was especially close to his sister, Harriet Beecher Stowe, the writer of “Uncle Tom’s Cabin.” His other well-known siblings included educators, Catherine Beecher and Reverend Thomas Beecher, and activists Charles Beecher and Isabella Beecher. Henry Ward Beecher was notorious for his preaching style. He campaigned for Women’s suffrage, temperance and Darwin’s theory of evolution.  He hated slavery and eschewed bigotry of any kind whether religious, racial or social. Everyone, not only the select few, was entitled to freedom, hope and joy!

“The sun does not shine for a few trees and flowers, but for the wide world’s joy.”

Henry Ward Beecher

The social reformer has spoken: Joy belongs to the entire world.

A Humble Spirit

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I was visiting Henrietta’s Hippo and was inspired by her thoughts on humbleness.  I have heard of eating humble pie, which seems as if someone is going through some type of penance.  I have heard of a humble home, which has the connotation that someone is living in gentile poverty. The word “humble” seems to imply weakness, even though we all would be quick to deny that definition.  But I don’t see anyone going out to buy a humble car, a humble coat, a humble bike.  This week will celebrate humbleness.

“Pride slays thanksgiving, but a humble mind is the soil out of which thanks naturally grow.  A proud man is seldom a grateful man, for he never thinks he gets as much as he deserves.”

Henry Ward Beecher

Henry Ward Beecher (1813 -1887) was a prominent Congregationalist clergyman, social reformer, abolitionist, and an advocate of Women’s suffrage, temperance and Darwin’s theory of evolution. Even today, some would consider him too liberal.  To me, he would continue to challenge the status quo…