God Almighty

During the First World War, The Loomis School, led by the powerful orator Mr. Batchelder, steadfastly  worked to prepare itself and the nation for this conflict. Whether the patriotic Loomis students “conserve[d] a great deal of food,” or “stayed to help work at the farm,” [1] the efforts of all were noticed.

These deeds of the Loomis boys to assist in the war effort, however, were not solely patriotic. They did it for God, their heavenly father. In describing life, Mr. Howe, a regular speaker at the Loomis Sunday Services, exclaimed, “We have a debt to pay to Him from whom all blessings come.” [2] Sunday Services, weekly occurrences at the school, provided opportunities for the Head of School and other influential voices to spread their messages to the entire Loomis community. God, whose being was preached and glorified, was a popular topic of conversation during these services. These young men, who would grow up to define the post war generation, were constantly reminded of the presence of God, and therefore, carried out their actions according to His desires.

Additionally, the idea of believing in the same omnipotent God provided the Loomis community with a sense of unity. A 1917 editorial in the Loomis Log, a prominent news source for the school, highlights this fact, stating, “in entering the Great War, [the nation] will need to bend every energy and gather together every resource.” [3] Absolutely no one could successfully go through this conflict  alone. By “show[ing] their greatness, not in war necessarily, but in the biggest movement, Christianity,” [4] the Loomis students were given an earnest plea: work to achieve not only a victory on the battlefield, but a victory through a thriving religious community boosted by the togetherness of the war effort as well.

Although the Loomis students diligently contributed to the war effort, there was an obvious hesitancy expressed by Headmaster Batchelder. During one of the Sunday Services, Mr. Batchelder stated that “the influential leader of the world, the kings, and the mighty states-men, are not truly Christians” [5]. This message resonated throughout the entire Loomis community, and was heard by all. Throughout his many speeches, The headmaster clearly expresses that strong Christian values are obviously not present in the belligerent leaders of the world, claiming that “If they were [Christians], this present conflict would be an impossibility.” [5] Mr. Batchelder offers a solution to the present conflict,  calling all Christians to join this movement of faith to end the brutal Great War. one who listened to this demand would almost feel obligated to display favorable and exemplary Christian values in all aspects of their lives.Through Christianity, peace would be found.

 

[1] The Loomis Cellany, 1918

[2] The Loomis Log Vol. 2, December 13, 1916, No. 9

[3] The Loomis Log Vol. 2, April 11, 1917, No. 22

[4] The Loomis Log, Vol. 2, March 14, 1917, No. 20

[5] The Loomis Log Vol. 1, April 12, 1916, No. 17

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