Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 2 (1869 - 1875)


Lt 64, 1874

Brethren and Sisters in Allegan and Monterey

Battle Creek, Michigan

December 24, 1874

Previously unpublished.

Dear Brethren and Sisters in Allegan and Monterey:

I tried while among you to labor for your good, and those who would report my labors to Brother Littlejohn in an unfavorable light, to stir up his feelings, and leave a wrong impression upon his mind, are doing the very work that Satan is pleased to have them engage in. I have said or done nothing in Monterey or Allegan that I dare retract. I have done my duty in the fear of God. 2LtMs, Lt 64, 1874, par. 1

I have no union with the spirit or course pursued by Brother Littlejohn in the Allegan meetinghouse. I have no union with the spirit or sentiments of his letters to me. I am confident that Brother Littlejohn is not led by the Spirit of God in some of his moves and positions. He is in a similar position to that which others have taken and we have had to meet time and again. 2LtMs, Lt 64, 1874, par. 2

Brother Littlejohn is a man for whom I have the tenderest regard. I have too much love for his soul to sanction for one moment the thought that he of all men in the body is led of God while the body is in darkness. Brother Littlejohn is fallible, an erring mortal like other men, and I cannot for a moment sanction the course he has taken in regard to the matter of “Leadership.” It bears not the special marks of a divine hand. 2LtMs, Lt 64, 1874, par. 3

Great fears were expressed that the churches in Monterey and Allegan would be endangered, and perhaps ruined, if Brother Littlejohn should leave the body, that he would have the sympathy of a large portion. We wanted to save the church and save Brother Littlejohn, but our fears and anxiety shall not force us to take one wrong step or make a move in the dark. 2LtMs, Lt 64, 1874, par. 4

Brethren and Sisters, this move of Brother Littlejohn’s will serve to develop character. There are those who have had no harmony with the spirit of reproof in the testimonies, and now they have so good and influential a man as Brother Littlejohn to make a move in the direction which meets their minds that they will feel excusable to talk and act their unbelief. Let the crisis come. The sooner that characters are developed the better it will be for all. Our fears are now laid at the feet of the Master whom we love and whom we serve. The Lord can do without Brother Littlejohn, or my husband or me, and His work move on all the same, but Brother Littlejohn, my husband or myself, cannot do without God. God is not dependent upon us to carry forward His work. 2LtMs, Lt 64, 1874, par. 5

If our work is not wrought in God, it will not stand the test but come to naught. If God is indeed working with us, then beware what course you pursue, lest ye be found fighting against God. In arraying yourselves against us, you may be found arraying yourselves against God who has given us our work. 2LtMs, Lt 64, 1874, par. 6

My burden was not to claim for my husband a leadership like that of Moses. While I was at Monterey and Allegan, my burden was that I thought I saw Brother Littlejohn following a wrong track and taking positions which would bring confusion into the ranks of Sabbathkeepers. 2LtMs, Lt 64, 1874, par. 7

I said nothing to injure Brother Littlejohn as a man, but his strong talk, his position [in] setting his stakes and requiring us to come to his terms or he would leave the body, is not consistent, neither does it bear the marks of the work of God. 2LtMs, Lt 64, 1874, par. 8

Should I be convinced that I had done the least injustice to my afflicted brother, I would make the most humble acknowledgment. To err is human, but I do not see that I have done him the least injustice. I felt the most tender feelings toward him and the deepest sympathy for him. But I am disappointed in my brother. He has not those fine and noble traits of character, in all respects, that I thought he possessed. I am more disappointed in this than I can express. 2LtMs, Lt 64, 1874, par. 9

I do not feel any further duty to place myself, in conversation or by letter, where my words will be turned against me or misconstrued. My work has not been of that character that I should quality myself to submit it to be criticized by a cool, experienced lawyer mind. 2LtMs, Lt 64, 1874, par. 10

When Brother Littlejohn took the course he did in Allegan meetinghouse, I thought if all were not satisfied that his voice was not as the voice of God, they would be left to have still further evidence of the fact. I felt like making every apology for Brother Littlejohn. But when he coolly writes me to retract my statements in regard to him, and set him right before his brethren in Allegan and Monterey, I plainly state that I have done nothing I should not have done. 2LtMs, Lt 64, 1874, par. 11

I leave this matter now in the hands of God. I am as yet clear from all condemnation or conviction of error. Had I moved as I thought at times I should have done in Monterey and Allegan, in speaking out my entire convictions in regard to Brother Littlejohn’s feelings and views, as expressed in letters to me, I should not be as much surprised as I now am at his last letter to me. 2LtMs, Lt 64, 1874, par. 12