Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing (epiphany) of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ;  Titus 2:13

CHAPTER IV.

 

OTHER EARLIER DOINGS OF THE

SHIMITE GERSHONITES.

 

P.B.I. REVOLUTIONISMS AGAINST GOD'S ARRANGEMENTS, SALIENT POINTS OF P.B.I. HISTORY.

 

SINCE that Servant's death there have been worldwide siftings among the Truth people. These siftings, so far as they concern the separation of the Little Flock and the Great Company, have, generally speaking, been along the lines of what may be called Clericalism, for which a near Biblical term is Nicolaitanism. By this term the theory and conduct of certain leaders among the Lord's people are meant, whose peculiar activities are grasping for power and lording it over God's heritage. There would perhaps not have been such marked siftings, if the clericalists (the Nicolaitanes, Rev. 2: 6, 15), had not attacked those who, standing for the Lord's arrangements as given through that Servant, resisted the former's revolutionism against these arrangements. After the Revolutionists had violated a number of these, certain brethren, taking note of it, meekly and lovingly sought to win them from their wrong course. Instead of the latter appreciating these loving efforts, and amending their ways, they with deeper schemes, sad to think and say, conspired to attain or retain their ambitious purposes, among other ways by misrepresenting first through a private, then later through a public political campaign, the former as ambitious and power-seeking persons, who must be resisted by all the brethren, it being claimed that the latter's liberty was being subverted by those whom the Revolutionists were pleased to call conspirators. In this the Clericalists acted somewhat after the manner of the fleeing thief, who, pursued down a busy street by a crowd that was crying

 

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out to the people ahead, "Stop the thief!" also joined in their cry, pointing toward and beyond the crowd ahead who were about to intercept him, and who, thus deceived, immediately turned and started in pursuit of the imaginary culprit, while the real culprit hid himself among the deluded crowd until it was wearied and gave up the chase. Tactics somewhat similar to these were pursued by the English managers, by "the present management" in the Society, and by the Group in the P.B.I. Only after the wrong-doers by such tactics had made matters public in a misleading but plausible light, did those who were faithful to the Lord's arrangements speak of the conditions with appropriate expostulations, and then only as they actually existed.

 

The clericalists have been active as Revolutionists, grasping for power and lording it over God's heritage through violating the Lord's arrangements as given by that Servant in two spheres of activity: (1) in the general work as conducted from headquarters, and (2) in the local work as conducted in the local Ecclesias. In Britain all three British managers as counselors (not directors) of the I.B.S.A., which is a purely British, not an American, corporation, and in America the "present management" of the W.T.B.&T.S., and the Group of the P.B.I., we are grieved to be compelled to say, are among the clericalists who have by usurpation and trickery gotten control of the general work. It will be noticed that these three groups, as far as concerns their conflicts with one another, are divided into two groups. J. Hemery in British matters stands with "the present management" as against H.J. Shearn and W. Crawford, and in world-wide matters with "the present management" as against the so-called "opposition" among the old Board's members, whose successors are the P.B.I.

 

That there is a growing sympathetic oneness between the P.B.I. and H.J. Shearn and W. Crawford

 

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and their supporters, is evidenced, among other things, from F.G. Guard's letter in the Feb. 1, 1919, "Herald," page 48. This will become manifest from the following remark:

F.G. Guard, the leading elder of the Forest Gate Church, which 22 years ago was the second largest of our English Churches, and which is now in violent opposition to the Society's policies, especially as administered by J. Hemery against H.J. Shearn and W. Crawford, is the leading British Brother supporting H.J. Shearn and W. Crawford, and is the latter's father-in-law. As a step in the controversy the Forest Gate Church as such has withdrawn its support from the Society, which fact has caused a number of its members to join the London Tabernacle congregation. Thus, on the one hand, there is world-wide conflict between the two groups of corporationists among the Lord's people. These two groups, which have symbolic wagons (Num. 7: 1-8), seem to antitype the Gershonite and Merarite divisions of the Levites. Therefore we need not be surprised to see a world-wide drawing together of the "opposition" corporationists, as against "the channel" corporationists. On the other hand, since Levites are more sympathetic with one another than they are with Priests, we need not be surprised to see both groups of corporationists drawn together against the author and those who see eye to eye with him, even as Herod and Pilate on a certain fateful day became friends against Jesus, though previously they had been enemies.

 

F.H. McGee's language is pregnant with a different thought from what he understood when in a "Brief Review," p. 1, col. 2, par. 4, he wrote the following words: "The friends are requested in considering these accusations of Brother Johnson [in Another Harvest Siftings Reviewed'] to bear in mind how many points are made of similarity, as to accusations against himself and his conduct. In so far as these parallels may be correct, is it not singular that these

 

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brethren who are now accused, and who formerly sympathized with Brother Johnson and supported him, should be guilty of these same offenses? [It is singular to those only who, failing to realize that all the Great Company leaders, as graspers for power and lords over God's heritage, have the same spirit, and, like their kindred-spirited brethren, prominent in the nominal Church (Lot seated at Sodom's gate, place of prominence, Gen. 19: 1) all through the Gospel Age, when their power was threatened, have found fault with the faithful shepherds of God's flock (Abraham's shepherds found fault with by Lot's shepherds, Gen. 13: 5-13), and persecuted them because of their interfering with their selfish plans and works against God's Little Flock]. Is it not singular that they should have the same impression of him as others have had with whom he dealt in the past? [when he sought to keep them from violating the Lord's arrangements given through that Servant. No, not strange! it is to be expected of kindred spirits.] The brethren throughout the world will be called upon to decide these matters, not only from what has happened in the past [e.g., the Committee's course at Asbury Park, their August Bulletin and connected matters], but also by what they are now experiencing and by their future experiences as time shall reveal them," e.g., F.H. McGee's "Brief Review," "Letter of Importance," and his Charter, so grossly violative of that Servant's. Yea, verily! And when all the brethren have definitely taken their stand on the matters of controversy among the Lord's people since that Servant's death, until the controversy shall be over, it will no doubt have been found that all the Great Company will have been separated from the Little Flock; that the former's leaders will have been reproved by the Lord in his displeasure; and that the brother and those who see eye to eye with him whom they have persecuted and misrepresented the world over will stand vindicated by the Lord be

 

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fore the brethren, and will, when the former have repented, with a loving and forgiving heart and with willing hands bless them in the name of the Lord! Amen! "The zeal of the Lord of Hosts," we believe, "shall accomplish this!"

 

In Vol. VI, Chap. I and Chapters I, II and III of this volume, and in Harvest Siftings Reviewed, we exposed some of the violations of that Servant's charter and will arrangements, as well as some violations of office and field-working arrangements committed by the three British managers, the present management and the Group in the P.B.I. In charity, until it became necessary to publish them, we held back details of the British managers' offenses, giving details on the scheme only in which all three of them co-operated to overthrow almost entirely that Servant's office and field arrangements. When the necessity arose we gave added proof that they are revolutionists against that Servant's other office and field arrangements from the very full evidence on these matters in our possession.

 

That the Board of Directors of the P.B.I. have the same spirit as the three British managers and the Present Management we stated above, giving as proof, under twelve heads, 150 particulars, every one of which is thoroughly true. The Aug. "Bulletin" and F.H. McGee's answers, i.e., "A Brief Review," "A Letter of Importance," and his printed letter to J.D. Wright accompanying his "Letter of Importance," have the same spirit and use the same methods as J.F.R.'s "Harvest Siftings," i.e., on matters of fact they omit essential things that, if told, would give a wholly different setting to things from what they give. They change things so as to give them a false setting and they invent things to make their theory of things seem plausible, even as they grossly misrepresent our doctrinal views, as was proven in The Present Truth, No. 1, etc. Sad to say, their thorough Rutherfordism

 

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was proven in the 150 particulars above. In that paper we intimated, with a sad heart and a hesitating hand, that the guilt of the Group was even greater than that of J.F.R., because despite his warning example against which they made a world-wide protest in the various papers they published, they in an amazingly short time (one year to the day) imitated his course. And now the charter that they themselves have published as that of their Institute changes that Servant's charter arrangements in more and worse ways than J.F.R. did, and makes at least one of his will arrangements a dead letter, as can readily be seen. And these charter changes are not among the least of their acts of revolutionism, we are sorry to say.

 

[The charters of the Society and the Institute, the former in the first column, with the order of the Institute's charter changed to parallel its sections with corresponding sections of the Society's Charter, are herewith given side by side to facilitate comparison, additions to and omissions from the Society's Charter being indicated by blanks in brackets in the opposite column, and non-essential and essential changes from the Society's Charter being respectively indicated by italics and by capitals.]

 

Be it known, That the subscribers, having associated themselves together for the purpose of dissemination of Bible Truths in various languages and being desirous of becoming incorporated agreeably to the provisions of the Act of the General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania entitled "An Act to Provide for the Incorporation and Regulation of certain Corporations," approved

 

"We, the undersigned, of full age, being desirous of associating ourselves together for the purpose hereinafter mentioned, pursuant to and in conformity with Article III of the Membership Corporation Law, do hereby certify [] and declare that we are all of full age, two-thirds of us are citizens of the United States, and three of us residents of the State of New York.

 

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the twenty-ninth day of April, Anno Domini, one thousand and eight hundred and seventy-four, and its supplements, do hereby declare, set forth and certify that the following are the purposes, objects, articles and conditions of their said association for and upon which they desire to be incorporated:

 

1. The name of the Corporation shall be Zion's Watch Tower Tract Society. [In 1896 the name was changed to W.T.B.&T.S.]

 

2. The purpose for which the Corporation is formed is the dissemination of Bible Truths in various languages by means of the publication of tracts, pamphlets, papers and other religious docu-ments, and by the use of all other lawful means which its BOARD OF DIRECTORS, duly constituted shall deem expedient for the furtherance of the purposes stated.

 

3. The place where the business of the said Corporation is to be transacted is the City of Allegheny, in the County of Allegheny, and State of Pennsylvania.

 

We do further certify and declare as follows:

"Second: That the name of said corporation shall be Pastoral Bible Institute, Inc.

 

"First: The purpose for which the corporation is formed is the dissemination of Bible Truths in various languages by means of the publication of tracts, pamphlets, papers and other religious documents, and by the use of all other lawful means which its Board of Directors, duly constituted, shall deem expedient for the furtherance of the purposes stated.

 

"Fourth: That the principal office of said corporation will be located in the Borough of Brooklyn, County of Kings.

 

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4. The Corporation is to exist perpetually.

 

5. The names and residences of the subscribers are as follows: [Names omitted here; they are the same as those under section 6].

 

The Corporation has no capital stock. Each donation of Ten Dollars to the funds of said Corporation shall entitle the contributor, or his assigns, to one non-forfeitable, non-assessable and non-dividend-bearing share, and to one vote for every such share in said Corporation. Certificates of membership, so acquired, shall be issued by the Secretary, countersigned by the President, to the persons entitled thereto.

 

6. The Corporation is to

 

"Third: That the territory in which the operations of said corporations are to be principally conducted is New York City; but it may conduct its operations elsewhere in the United States and various countries of the world.

 

"Fifth: That the corporation has no Capital Stock EACH CONTRIBUTOR to the funds of the [ ] corporation to the extent of Five Dollars ($5.00) OR MORE WHEN SUCH CONTRIBUTION SHALL HAVE BEEN ACCEPTED BY THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS FOR THE PURPOSE OF ADMISSION TO MEMBER-SHIP AS PROVIDED IN THE BY-LAWS shall entitle the said contributor [ ] to one [ ] non-assessable and non-dividend-bearing CERTIFICATE OF MEMBERSHIP, AND TO ONE VOTE. Certificates of membership, so acquired, will be issued by the Secretary [ ] to the persons entitled thereto.

 

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be MANAGED BY A BOARD OF DIRECTORS consisting of seven members, and the names and residences of those already chosen Directors are as follows:

President—Charles T. Russell, Allegheny City, Penna.,

Vice President—William I. Mann, Benwood, W. Va.,

Secretary and Treasurer— Maria F. Russell, Allegheny City, Penna., William C. McMillan, Latrobe, Penna., Simon O. Blunden, New York City, N.Y., J.B. Adamson, Allegheny City, Penna., Joseph F. Smith, Pittsburgh, Penna.

 

7. The said Corporation by its Board of Directors, a majority of whom shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business, shall have full power and authority to make and enact by-laws, rules and ordinances, which shall be deemed and taken to be the law of said Corporation, and do any and everything useful for the good government and support of the affairs of said Corporation; provided that the said by-laws, rules and ordinances, or any of them, shall not be repugnant to this charter, to the constitution

 

"Sixth: That the number of Directors of said corporation shall be seven (7).

 

"Seventh: That the names and places of residence of the persons to be the Directors of said Corporation UNTIL ITS FIRST ANNUAL MEETING ARE:

J.D. Wright, 972 Broadway, Bayonne, N. J

Ingram L. Margeson, Westwood, Mass.

P. L. Greiner, 874 Sedgwick Ave., Brooklyn, N.Y.

H. Clay Rockwell, 13 Middagh St., Brooklyn, N.Y.

I.F. Hoskins, 119 Schemerhorn St., Brooklyn, N.Y.

F.H. McGee, 107 Broad St., Freehold, N. J.

E.J. Pritchard, 29 Morton St., Andover, Mass.

 

"Eighth: The said corporation, by its Board of Directors, a majority of whom shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business, shall have full power and authority to make and enact by-laws, rules and ordinances which shall be deemed and taken to be the law of said corporation, and do any and everything useful for the good government and support of the affairs of said corporation; provided,

 

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and laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, and to the Constitution of the United States.

 

8. The said Corporation shall have as officers a President, who shall preside at the meeting of the Board of Directors, a Vice President, who shall preside in the absence of the President, and a Secretary, who shall also be Treasurer; and these officers shall be chosen from among the members of the Board of Directors annually on the first Saturday of each year, by an election by ballot to be held at the principal office of the Corporation in Allegheny City, Pennsylvania. The members of the Board of Directors shall hold their respective offices for life, unless removed by a two-thirds vote of the shareholders, and vacancies in the Board occasioned by death, resignation or removal, shall be filled by

 

THAT THE SAID BY-LAWS, RULES AND ORDINANCES OR ANY OF THEM MAY BE AMENDED OR REPEALED BY A MAJORITY VOTE OF THE MEMBERS OF THE CORPORATION.

 

The said corporation shall have as officers and AGENTS OF THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS, a chairman who shall preside at all meetings of the Board of Directors, a Vice Chairman who shall preside in the absence of the Chairman, a Secretary AND A Treasurer, and these shall be chosen from the members of the Board of Directors by THEM, ANNUALLY AT A DIRECTORS' MEETING TO BE CALLED AND HELD IMMEDIATELY AFTER THE ANNUAL ELECTION OF DIRECTORS AS MAY BE PROVIDED IN THE BY-LAWS. The members of the Board of Directors shall hold their respective offices FOR ONE YEAR [ ] and vacancies in the Board occasioned by death, resignation, or removal, shall be filled by vote of a majority of the remaining directors.

 

 

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vote of the majority of the remaining members of the Board, who shall meet for that purpose within twenty days from the time that such vacancy, or vacancies, shall occur, and in the event of a failure to fill such vacancy or vacancies, in the manner aforesaid, within thirty days from the time when such vacancy, or vacancies, shall occur, then the said vacancy, or vacancies, shall be filled by the appointment of the President, and the person, or persons, so appointed shall hold his, or their, office, or offices, until the next annual election of officers of the Corporation, when such vacancy, or vacancies, shall be filled by election, in the same manner as the President, Vice President, and Secretary and Treasurer are elected.

 

"Ninth: That annually on the first Saturday of the MONTH OF JUNE, provided that should such first Saturday be a legal holiday, then on the next succeeding business day, the meeting for the purpose of the election of directors shall be held at the principal office of the Institute in the City of Brooklyn, N.Y., or at other suitable nearby building, as provided in the

 

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The persons entitled to vote at annual elections of the Corporation shall be those who hold certificates of membership acquired in the manner aforesaid.

 

9. The said Corporation, under the name, style and title aforesaid, shall have full power and authority to make, have and use a common seal, with such device and inscription as they may deem proper, and the same to alter and renew at their pleasure; and by the name, style and title aforesaid, shall be able in law and equity to sue and be sued, plead and be impleaded in any Court or Courts, before any Judge or Justice of the Peace, in all manner of suits and complaints, pleas, causes, matters and demands whatsoever, and all and every matter or thing therein to do in as full and complete a manner, and as effectually, as any other person, or persons, bodies politic, or corporate within the Commonwealth of Penn-sylvania, may or can do.

 

by-laws. Special meetings of the members or of the directors for the purpose of transacting any necessary business may be called and held as shall be provided in the by-laws.

 

"The persons entitled to vote at annual elections of the corporation shall be those who hold certificates of membership acquired in the manner aforesaid.

 

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10. The said Corporation, by the name, style and title aforesaid, shall have the right, power and authority to take, receive and hold in fee simple, or any less estate, all such messages, lots, lands, buildings, tenements, rents, annuities, franchises and hereditaments as may be necessary and proper for its purposes; and sell, lease, mortgage, or otherwise dispose of the same or any part thereof; and it shall have the same right, power and authority to take, receive and hold, and to sell, lease or dispose of any and all kinds of personal property and money.

 

Witness our hands and seals this 12th day of November A. D. 1884: (Above seven names follow.)

 

"In testimony whereof, we have made and signed this Certificate in duplicate this 20th day of November, one thousand nine hundred and eighteen."

(Above seven names follow.)

 

As indicated above, there are four classes of changes in the P.B.I.'s charter from that of the W.T.B.&T.S.; i.e., omissions, additions, merely verbal substitutions and material alterations. We submit some remarks on these:

 

(1) If the provisions of the Charter of the W.T.B.&T.S., as the P.B.I. claims in various publications, e.g., the August "Bulletin," page 6, were the Divine arrangement for controlling corporational work among the Truth people, then we should agree that beyond the change of the name and address of the corporation and of the law and State under which the charter would be granted, no change, even in the wording of the charter, should have been made, unless there was

 

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a refusal by the authorities of many States to grant them a charter exactly like that of the W.T.B.&T.S., apart from the above exceptions. Such a refusal was not at all likely to be made; because, and nobody knows that better than F.H. McGee, the examination of corporation charters, especially of non-profit business corporations doing a religious work, is more or less superficial. For this reason the illegal clause of the P.P.A.'s charter giving its first President his office and the controllership of the P.P.A. for life, passed the examiner uncorrected. In some of the P.B.I. Committee discussions on this phase of the subject, this condition was pointed out by us; but it bore no fruit, because of arbitrariness and of disloyalty to that Servant on the part of the Group. Had these presented such a charter to the proper authorities, if necessary in various States, and then failed to secure its legal sanction, alterations might have been considered. But F.H. McGee's advocacy of certain changes at Asbury Park and in his "Letter of Importance" proves that they did not want a charter with all its provisions exactly like those of the W.T.B.&T.S. F.H. McGee's plea in his "Letter of Importance" that the clause giving the Directors office for life caused the trouble in the Society is as untrue as his charging the trouble in the Committee on us. That clause did not have any bearing whatever on the trouble in the Society; rather the ambition of J.F.R. found hindrance to its gratification in that clause; and therefore he declared that clause illegal, to get rid of the Board's majority for resisting his unjustified aspirations and usurpations; just as the Group succeeded in getting rid of R.H. Hirsh, R.G. Jolly and ourself for the same reason. Nor can F.H. McGee's advice in his "Letter of Importance," that another lawyer should be consulted, so that his word alone should not be followed, remove from him the responsibility of instigating and carrying through the Group's plan as to

 

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changes in the charter. Their course in claiming that that Servant's arrangements, will and charter were the Divine will for controllership of the work, and their claims that they were seeking to carry these out, while at the same time they were conspiring to change in certain vital respects various provisions of the charter, arouse such distrust of their sincerity as calls on God's people to repudiate their leadership. To follow such leaders can result only in evil to the leaders and the led (Isa. 30: 1-3; 31: 1-3; Matt. 15: 14). But those who insist on having such leaders may have them.

 

(2) Some of these charter changes are merely verbal, making no difference in the sense. However, proper reverence for God, and a wholesome respect for that Servant, it seems to us, would have forbidden even such changes as unbecoming.

 

(3) Some of these changes are unnecessary additions and omissions. A meek spirit would have refrained from such officiousness, changing what they claim were the Divine arrangements.

 

(4) The fact that in some clauses they adopt the exact wording of the W.T.B.&T.S. Charter and in others change the sense proves that the changes were deliberately and wilfully made.

 

(5) The fact that in some clauses they change the wording without changing the sense, and in others change the wording and the sense, may prove that they were practicing known trickery to hide from the unwary amid the multiplicity of changes gross violations of the provisions of that Servant's charter.

 

(6) Some of these changes violate the spirit and purpose of that Servant's charter, as well as a number of its necessary provisions.

 

(a) While the fifth clause of the Society's charter gives any contributor whomsoever of ten dollars voting membership in that corporation, the fifth clause of the P.B.I.'s Charter gives only such contributors of five dollars, or more, membership in the Institute as

 

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the Directors see fit to admit to membership. The clause in which the P.B.I.'s Charter gives this power is ungrammatical; and it seems that this mistake in grammar was caused by their changing the thought and yet trying to keep the expression of the Society's charter as much as possible: They make it say that "each contributor … shall entitle said contributor," etc. This change in this clause makes the Board of the P.B.I. sole judges as to who shall, and who shall not be members of the P.B.I. They can be depended upon to keep out all whom they do not want as members; and they will want none as members on whose support for themselves they could not depend. Logically the power to admit into, implies the power to expel from membership. This shows that they are founding an institution in which they will control, however much they have sought to give the friends the thought that they and not the P.B.I. Board would control the corporation's affairs. This also proves that their institution is not a business corporation financing a religious work, as that Servant formed the Society to be, but is a religious body, which is contrary to that Servant's purpose in forming the Society. (See the next volume, Chap. II.) This feature of their charter evidences grasping for power and lordship on the part of the P.B.I.

 

(b) Whereas $10 were the minimum contribution entitling its giver to voting powers in the Society, $5 contributions will insure their donors of voting powers, if the P.B.I. Board should decide to accept them as members. The higher amount is little enough for such membership, though in that Servant's time all of it needed not to be given at one time; any contributions given within a year's time and totaling $10 entitled their donor to voting powers. J.F.R. changed this (Z '17, 329, col. 1, par. 3).

 

(c) Whereas each additional $10 would entitle the contributor to one additional vote in the Society, no

 

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matter how much more than $5 one might contribute, he could have but one vote in the P.B.I. At least three evils flow from this change: (1) This makes the P. B. L, not a business corporation, but a religious body; i.e., an Antichrist. While it would be wrong for us to give voting powers, and much more so varying voting powers in a religious body such as an Ecclesia, a Convention, a Church committee, etc., for any financial consideration, in a business corporation people should be limited or enlarged in their voting powers in proportion to the amount of their financial contributions. This is a matter of such elementary justice that even worldlings recognize its propriety. The P.B.I.'s course in giving all contributors the same voting powers shows that their institution, unlike the Society, as that Servant intended it to be, is a religious body, controlled as to membership admission and dismission by its Board of Directors. (2) This provision makes a Sister's Committee as created by that Servant's will a powerless thing; for it would give but one vote to such a committee, whereas that Servant arranged by this provision to bequeath all his voting powers to such as he reasonably felt sure would vote his shares according to his desires, and thus perpetuate his voting powers in the Society. The provision of a Sister's Committee should be arranged for in the P.B.I., by its Board of Directors and Editorial Committee, as provided in the will, electing such a committee as we suggested above, if they have not yet elected one. (3) Since the P.B.I. Directors have the power of admission into, and dismission from the P.B.I., this provision is dangerous, for it gives them controllership powers beyond anything that that Servant intended the Directors of the Society to have and that also with few votes to object to their course. A few voters could be more easily manipulated than a larger number, against having which the P.B.I. could use its powers of admitting into and dismissing from

 

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the corporation. Further, usually the larger contributors, by reason of larger business experience, can see through manipulatory methods better than the average small contributor; but having no more power than the latter, could not use their understanding of official trickery to checkmate it with more effectiveness in votes than those who were not so likely to see such trickery. The fifth clause of the P.B.I.'s Charter is a marked evidence of the spirit of grasping for power and lording it over God's heritage, with which unhappily its Board of Directors is contaminated.

 

(d) The fifth clause gives the Secretary too much power by giving him alone the power of issuing the certificates of membership without the chairman countersigning them. The present Secretary, both by his prejudices and his favoritisms, cannot in the judgment of many be trusted in every case to use this power aright. There are cases possible wherein, even if ordered by the Board to give a certificate of membership, he could and from past experiences we infer likely would evade the order, an evasion made more difficult, if the chairman, knowing of the order having been given, were expected to countersign the certificate. This possibility becomes apparent from the fact that the Secretary probably controls the incoming and the outgoing mails.

 

(e) Clause five, somewhat after the manner of J.F.R., omits the words "or his assigns." This is a further evidence that they do not consider the P.B.I. to be merely a business corporation doing a religious work, but a religious body. This same theory of J.F.R. moved him to do away with the voting power of the Sister's Committee, on the ground that it is illegal to bequeath voting powers in a religious body; and to introduce among his by-laws, recommended by I.L. Margeson, and passed at Pittsburgh, Jan. 6, 1917, one defining the expression "or his assigns" as meaning such persons for whom one contributed money to the

 

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Society and asked that the voting shares be made out in their names! This omission prevents one from willing his voting powers to others. This omission is another way in which the P.B.I. Directors can keep (to them) undesirable persons from membership in the P.B.I., after the manner of J.F.R.

 

(f) Clause five omits the word "non-forfeitable." By this omission they secure to themselves the power to dismiss from membership in their "religious body." These Directors seem "wise in their own generation"; "but He taketh the wise in their own craftiness!" Since they in hundreds of particulars have imitated J.F.R., they would doubtless in matters of dismission imitate him, if their necessities called for it, even as they secured the overthrow of the Fort Pitt Committee, because they wanted to rid themselves of three non-pliant Committee members. In Z '17, 329, col. 1, par. 4, J.F.R. sought to nullify the "non-forfeitable" feature of Society voting shares.

 

(g) Clause eight gives the members the right to amend or repeal the by-laws of the P.B.I. Directors. It leaves the right of initiating by-laws in the hands of the Directors. Therefore, what it offers with one, it can take away with the other hand; for the Directors could immediately afterward pass other by-laws for the amended or rescinded ones, slightly changed in form, and act on these for another year. And who would be the wiser, if they desired to keep it secret? Again, if they desire they can conceal the existence of their by-laws, which thus would escape the danger of being amended or rescinded. That they can be depended upon to circumvent an adverse decision of the members on by-laws, if it is to their interests so to do, is evident from the fact that the Asbury Park Convention tabled the matter of passing on the formation of a corporation for six months; yet within four months they not only had their convention (held against a former understanding, in a section of the

 

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country where their supporters were in a majority) authorize a corporation, but also had the charter signed in duplicate! Another fact will prove the same thing: The Asbury Park Convention ordered that the "Bulletin" contain only matters of news; they made it an organ of propaganda for a corporation, of misrepresentation of what occurred in the Committee and at Asbury Park, and a cloak to send out such misleading supplements authorized by the Committee (see September "Bulletin," p. 2, col. 2) as "A Brief Review," "Letter of Importance," etc. Persons who so acted would likely take away with one hand the gift of amending and repealing their by-laws which they give with the other. That Servant's way on this subject was honest and above board. Let none think that in pointing out these defects we are surmising evil: the past course of these Directors, sad to say, betrays such attributes to be characteristic of them. Under present conditions we would not be acting circumspectly if we ignored the existence of such characteristics in them, against which it is our duty to guard the Church.

 

(h) Clause six omits the provision that the Board of the P.B.I. should control its affairs. In express language nothing in their charter states who shall control these. Certain it is that it is impossible for the members as such to control them, as any person of experience well knows. The various powers that the charter gives the members of its Board, as well as the absence of mention of any one else having any powers in the P.B.I., except annually to elect the Directors and to amend and to repeal by-laws, shows very clearly that the Directors are to control. And as far as through that Servant's arrangements, charter and will such control is provided for, this is exactly what should be the case. Therefore our criticism of their course is not intended to undermine their controllership limited to the things of that Servant's charter and will, but to undermine (1) their extending their