Need for a Knoxville Hospital — Newspaper Editorial in 1895

The Need of a Hospital

It is as much a Christian duty to minister to the wants of the sick and to relieve as far as possible those who are in pian [sic] and distress, as it is to attend and praise.  But the conduct of Christians does not show that this fact is appreciated.  Take Knoxville for instance.  In this city there is invested in churches not less than a quarter of a million and not a dollar in a hospital, worthy of the name.

This is not said complainingly.  We are proud of the churches of Knoxville; they are an honor and a blessing to the city.  But in all candor are our people not lacking in that practical Christianity that counts in this world in the relief of poor suffering humanity?  We realize that if Knoxville is to have a hospital and it is a disgrace to the city and to Knox county that there is not such an institution it must come through the influence that goes out from the churches and through the generosity of church going people.  The only thing that we would suggest is that the Christian people of Knoxville and Knox county would show themselves more practical if their efforts were extended more to the service of God by serving their distressed fellow men and not confined exclusively to acts of worship.

Something has been said about building a hospital here such as is needed by the community.  We trust it will not end in talk.  We appeal to the readers of the Journal of all sexes, and conditions, and to the public generally, to think of these things.  To erect such a hospital as our necessities require, and as humanity demands, will cost a comparatively small amount of money.  It could be easily maintained, for if built and operated on the right principle, it will become self sustaining, or nearly so.  But it is a necessity and its accomplishment should not be prevented by any merely sordid consideration.  Think about it and see if the community can be helpless before God and humanity, unless something of this kind is done.

Source:  Knoxville Daily Journal and Tribune, November 2, 1895, page 2

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