By Robert A. Wright
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Extra resources for A World Mission: Canadian Protestantism and the Quest for a New International Order, 1918-1939
Communist movements had appeared not only in western Europe and the United States; less than a month after the armistice anonymous pamphlets advising people to "arise and seize what is rightfully yours" were discovered to be circulating in Toronto. "19 It was even said in early 1919 that Trotsky himself had 42 A World Mission toured mining camps in northern Ontario disguised as a railroad worker. W. 21 Reacting to the Red Scare, the Canadian government outlawed radical labour organizations, socialist parties, and newspapers in 1918.
In Protestant circles throughout the English-speaking West, advocacy of the League of Nations was a ritual which few dared to reject. Canadian churchmen felt this pressure, too. League advocates in the churches were themselves aware that apathy and doubt about the efficacy of the organization was widespread in Canada and especially within the Protestant community. Local congregations and readers of the Protestant papers were admonished repeatedly for their lack of enthusiasm; national councils and regional conventions regularly spoke to the issue of Canadians' indifference to the league.
The former bespoke resignation and the latter naivety, and neither seemed to provide Christians with an agenda for their daily lives. Virtually all Protestant church leaders in Canada agreed that the destiny of the postwar world was consigned by God to fallible men and women. They also agreed that the application of these principles in the lives of men and nations was essentially a pragmatic matter that required enlightened leadership, particularly from the Christian church. "94 It is apparent as well that internationalism was for most Canadian churchmen less a concrete objective, as in, for example, a league of nations, than an evolutionary process.
A World Mission: Canadian Protestantism and the Quest for a New International Order, 1918-1939 by Robert A. Wright