Workers, Friends, Home Church, The Truth, The Way, Meetings, Gospel, Cooneyites, Christian Conventions, Hymns Old & New
Preserving the Truth
The Church without a Name and its Founder, William Irvine

Introduction Index of Chapters
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A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O Bio Truth?

Appendix M

Posted February 5, 2018



Conscience in America-A Documentary History of Conscientious Objection in America 1757-1967; edited by Lillian Schlissel, E. P. Dutton, Pub., 1968, ISBN 052547210X

Conscription of Conscience – The American State and the Conscientious Objector 1940-1947; by Mulford Q. Sibley and Philip E. Jacob, Cornell University Press, Ithaca, NY, 1952, ASIN B007T3QPVO

War, Conscience, and Dissent by G. C. Zahn, Hawthorn Books, 1967, ASIN B001NHB3QE

The CPS Story by Albert N. Keim, Good Books, 1969, ISBN 1561480029

Conscientious Objectors and the Second World War by Cynthia Eller, Praeger Publishers, NY, 1991. ISBN 0275938050

Pacifism and Conscientious Objection by G. C. Field, Cambridge University Press, 1945, no ISBN

Selective Service System:

World War II Reunion - 1989 Memory Book - Camp Barkeley, Texas
World War II Reunion - 1992 Memory Book – Sioux Falls, South Dakota
World War II Reunion Memory Book; Charleston, South Carolina; April 19-21, 1995;
Pioneer Printing Co., 1712 Macklind Ave, St. Louis, Missouri 63110
World War II Reunion Memory Book; Sparks, Nevada; April 13-15, 1999
Ft. Sam Houston Army Reunion 1965-1972 Memory Book; San Antonio, Texas

Wm. Irvine's Beliefs about Exemption from Military Service are quite different from the pacifist stance observed by the Workers and Friends in WWI and thereafter. He wrote:

"I enclose a cutting from Auckland [New Zealand] showing their attitude towards military service.  Very far from all I taught.  The whole Old Testament shows that the Jesus of the New Testament was the Lord of Hosts who never failed to be with the Nations that used the sword against those who used the sword wickedly, and Pacifism is the worst form of delusion one could imagine, and proves them to be just as blind to who Jehovah of the Old Testament was and is, as are the Jews concerning the Jesus of the New Testament.  How can a man fear God and honor the King and refuse to pay his share in money and service in defence of his country and home?  It's just as unchristian to refuse to use the sword of the Lord of Hosts against the sword of the wicked one, as it would be to take the sword of the wicked aggression against others.

"Zech. 14:3 shows that the Lord will go forth and fight against those who take Jerusalem, as in days gone by, and that by the Christian nations in vengeance of God against the Moslem World...God not only made all men of one blood, but He also fixed the bounds of their habitations, making it a sacred duty of every man that wants to dwell in any part of the world to be willing to defend their frontiers and rights as he would defend his own family, blood, or home.  The method of doing this must be determined by his willingness and ability, but no man can escape the responsibility and have the Spirit of God in him.  Neither can a man have the Spirit of Christ or God and do violence to his neighbor's landmark consciously. Those who take the sword in defence of the Man of God shall perish by the sword, for God cannot honor or protect such, but will leave them to the consequences of their own.  Non-resistance is the way of bringing God to our deliverance.  To use this as an argument against warfare in defence of our Land and Home is to prostitute the words of Jesus(letter to Edwards, August 31, 1923).

Difficulties encountered in obtaining C.O. classifications in WWII:

Carl D. Smith of Laredo, TX:   "…had a rough time with the C.O. Classification, and spent many hours being grilled and questioned about it, but was finally cleared…At Hammer Field, I was honored by a two hour grilling by a Major, then was told that you have something no other C.O. had that he had talked with before…was grilled four different times, was glad that the Lord was the one who did the answering through me"  (World War II Reunion Memory Book; Charleston, SC; April 19-21, 1995; pp. 2, 67).

Carroll W. Leen of Auburn, CA: "Had trouble getting my C.O. so Jack Carroll made a special plea to the Draft Board for me" (World War II Reunion Memory Book; Charleston, SC; April 19-21, 1995;  p. 4, 47).

Irvin Wahlin of Afton, MN:  "…had difficulty getting C.O. status.  He was told that if he were in Germany they would shoot him.  His reply, “The wisdom of U.S. is to use rather than shoot a man.”…  “They ignored my C.O. papers and I was put in the Infantry.  I trained with men until the rifles were issued.  Then I was send to Ft. Lewis, VA and instead of the medics, they put me in the Engineers.  It was there I carried a crowbar for a couple of weeks while marching.  After that, I carried the flag!” (World War II Reunion Memory Book; Sparks, Nevada  April 13-15, 1999; p. 7, 88).

C. Burmeister of Walsh, IL:  “In 1941 I was inducted into the US Army at Des Moines, IO.  Tom Patterson, my father in the Gospel, helped me with my papers requesting non-combatant service.  In spite of that, I was assigned to Anti-tank Co. 1st Infantry 6th Armored Div and sent to Ft. Leonard Wood, MO.  I soon learned that they had no field medics at that date.  My request had ended up in File #13.  With Selective Service, the regular army hadn’t heard of such.  So I verbally asked for it.  The 1st Sgt sent me to the Company Commander and he ended up calling the Post Commander, an old General about to retire.  He spoke with authority, 'Yes the Constitution provides for this status!' He instructed them to transfer me to the medics or to the Station Hospital.  I served in the Station Hosp. Dental Clinic until the spring of 1942” (World War II Reunion Memory Book; Sparks, Nevada  April 13-15, 1999; p. 31).

Aubrey Oldham of Albuquerque, NM: "When guns were issued, I was issued a scrub brush and ordered to scrub the garbage can, while the other soldiers were on the drill field.  The temperature was 10 above zero and I was in light fatigues. Every swipe left a sheet of ice on the can.  Also had to clean guns, rake the yard and unload trash. I was eventually allowed to become Night Fireman where I kept the fire going through the bitter cold nights" (World War II Reunion Memory Book; Sparks, Nevada, April 13-15, 1999, p. 66).

Ken Pagington, UK:  "Then war broke out, and I did 4-1/2 years non-combatant service in the Army....Among regular soldiers, swearing and using God's name in vain is common place.  I remember when it came to bedtime the first night, I stood for a long time getting courage to kneel by my bed and pray, but I'm glad to say I got the victory. They soon respected me and would keep quiet while I prayed. Then at meal time, when I bowed my head to give thanks, they would tap me on the shoulder and say, 'Aren't you well?'  When I told them I was giving thanks for my food, they exclaimed, 'What, giving thanks for an Army meal?!' Then they would snatch away my plate, and I had to hold on to it when bowing my head.  It was a matter of 'watching and praying.'"  But after awhile, they gave me every respect" (Testimony of the late Ken Pagington, a UK Worker who pioneered Madagascar).

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