Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 2 (1869 - 1875)


Lt 4, 1873

White, W. C.

San Francisco, California

January 25, 1873

Previously unpublished.

Dear Son Willie:

We came to this city last Friday to hold meetings Sabbath and first day with the church. After dinner we walked two miles. Then we walked four miles to the Presbyterian church in company with Brother Chittenden to witness an examination and exercises of the mission school of the Chinese. It was not time lost. The exercises were very interesting. There were very intelligent Chinese and some very smart boys who performed their parts well. I will enclose a program of the exercises. The man who has had the principal burden in this work made a statement that the mission school was held nights for the benefit of the Chinese who could not attend school in the day time. After the boys had worked hard all day, they came from one to three miles, frequently running all the way to and from their schools. Many were obliged to rise as early as four o’clock in the morning and could get no time to study out of school hours. 2LtMs, Lt 4, 1873, par. 1

One whom they had educated left on the last steamer for China as a missionary to his countrymen, to turn them from their idolatry to Christianity. Some of these Chinese could speak very good English. Some had gained such proficiency they were teachers of the classes. We were deeply interested in the good work. We could but wish Americans would follow the example of perseverance and industry of these poor benighted Chinese. We should see young men devoting themselves to the Lord, to do His bidding. They would not consult their ease or pleasure, but with the faith we have would have corresponding works. Oh, how many are doing nothing, when they might be zealous workers in the Master’s cause and be laying up treasures imperishable in heaven. 2LtMs, Lt 4, 1873, par. 2

My dear Willie, I rejoice to tell you the Lord has indeed heard our prayers and healed your dear father. He is like a new man. He can exercise without painful weariness. His food does not distress him. He is cheerful and happy. He has thrown off the cares of Battle Creek to a great degree, and there is now some chance for his life. Brother Grayson is recovering. He will not lose his foot. We visited at Brother Bond’s last Monday. Brother Bond’s brother-in-law, Mr. Bailey, invited us to make his convenient house our home. Said he would fish and hunt with your father, and would go with him to the geysers. This seems like the providence of God. 2LtMs, Lt 4, 1873, par. 3

Monday, January 27

Dear Willie: The above was written by candlelight. My eyes became so painful I could not finish it. Sunday I was quite sick in the morning. Drank a quart of water to have an emetic; but it did not operate, but settled my stomach. 2LtMs, Lt 4, 1873, par. 4

Brother Chittenden prevailed upon us to go out in the boat with him. We did so and enjoyed it very much. Brother Vineet was with us to help Brother Chittenden row. We examined the place for baptism. Found a very favorable spot. After we returned, we went to Sister Rowland’s. Sister Hall took dinner with us. Sister Rowland has been very sick with erysipelas in the eye. We have had several seasons of prayer with her. She is much better now. Sister Hall, or Mother Hall, has been obliged to leave her husband because of his drunken brutality. She has been making her home with Brother Littlejohn’s family. She is in a good state of mind and we appreciate her more and more upon acquaintance. 2LtMs, Lt 4, 1873, par. 5

Last evening we had the hall full. Very many strangers were out and seemed interested. Your father and I both spoke. Governor Holden accompanied Sister Moore to the meeting. Sabbath your father spoke with great freedom. I spoke with pointedness in regard to the necessity of those who believe the truth being in working order. 2LtMs, Lt 4, 1873, par. 6

While we were at Sister Rowland’s, Brother Stickney came in. He seemed very glad to see us. Your father had a long talk with him. He attended meeting in the evening. He is very desirous for us to come and see them. We shall visit them in March. 2LtMs, Lt 4, 1873, par. 7

Brother William Young has been talking to us in regard to his fitting himself as a speaker. We gave him what advice we thought best for him, that he should at present do what he can in study until conference, then go to Battle Creek. Brother Stickney and his wife, and wife’s sister, will accompany us east, we think, when we return. They are desirous of visiting in Maine, and go about the time of the conference to attend that on their way. 2LtMs, Lt 4, 1873, par. 8

There is a great work to be done here, and we fear those who profess to believe the truth are not half awake to their duty. My dear Willie, I am glad you feel like being thorough. In no case would we have you any less thorough. But do not neglect prayer, and do not pray a heartless, careless prayer. Serve God just as devotedly and with as deep an interest as you give to your studies. Yes, my son, your spiritual and eternal interest requires your first consideration. You will meet with great loss if you neglect your soul. It is your privilege to know daily that Christ is yours and you are His by experimental knowledge. Seek for high attainments in the divine life. Christ will be to you a wellspring of joy, comfort, and happiness, if you will make Him your only dependence, your only hope. The blessing of God we should prize above any earthly treasure. 2LtMs, Lt 4, 1873, par. 9

We prize your letters and Edson’s and Emma’s highly. Write as often as you can conveniently. Much love to you and to your brother Edson, 2LtMs, Lt 4, 1873, par. 10

Your Mother. 2LtMs, Lt 4, 1873, par. 11