In Cambridge for a weekend 'rest", theologian Reinhold Niebuhr yesterday conducted Sunday morning services at the College and later told a packed audience in the First Congregational Church that "Christianity extends beyond both law and relativism."
Niebuhr, a professor at New York's Union Technological Seminary, was a guest to Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr, '38, associate professor of History.
"No law can define the ultimate goodness of man," Niebuhr told his Congregational Church listeners. He cited one preacher whose wife brought a tape measure to church to test whether girls' skirts were within moral limits.
People still like to be legalistic in their religion, Niebuhr said. "If you can define what is good and then do it, you can supposedly set your conscience at ease."
"Law can never compel a man to do good," he concluded.