Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 5 (1887-1888)


Lt 2, 1887

Rice, Brother; Gibbs, Brother; Loughborough, J. N.

Basel, Switzerland

March 16, 1887

Previously unpublished.

Dear Brethren Rice, Gibbs, and Loughborough:

I had written to Dr. Kellogg in regard to Brother and Sister Maxson going to unite with our rural health retreat institution. I have sent you copies of letters sent to Dr. Maxson and wife, and I think I sent you a copy of one sent to Dr. Kellogg. Now I did not wish to give the least occasion for the doctor to be tempted that we were getting Dr. Maxson and wife to unite with the institution in California unless I could have the evidence that he would be in perfect harmony with the plan. If I frankly laid open the matter before him, I thought he would not feel that we wished to take any underhanded course. I laid the matter plainly open before him that we meant to make a success of the retreat. By the letter of which I sent you a copy, you will see what I said. Yesterday a telegram was received which I enclose with this. 5LtMs, Lt 2, 1887, par. 1

Now I do not want Dr. Maxson to go to Ohio. First, it would be just one sore difficulty between the two institutions. Second, we need just the help that Dr. Maxson and his wife can be to the institution. Should Dr. Gibbs at any time be unable to work, he can take his place, and then the care and burdens can be divided. There will be an opportunity for one physician to go when called for outside the institution. Dr. Gibbs has had to do considerable of this labor, and he may have more to do of such. Now it can be arranged between them so one or the other can do this kind of work. A lady physician we need, and it must be a man and his wife. Dr. Gibbs must not carry heavy loads alone. 5LtMs, Lt 2, 1887, par. 2

I received a letter from Dr. Maxson written in a very humble, Christian spirit, asking my counsel. He states that he is offered a position in the Ohio Institute, and that he is expected to come at fartherest in May; so I want this matter thoroughly and prayerfully considered, and then you write or negotiate and make your terms with Dr. Maxson and wife at once, without delay. Brother Butler does not want Dr. Maxson and wife to go to Ohio. What you do must be done without delay. I think I have said enough on this point, and I hope you will be led to work in wisdom. Dr. Maxson is a good helper spiritually, and will be, if he keeps humble, a blessing as far as the religious interest is concerned at the retreat. I think the two men will labor well together. 5LtMs, Lt 2, 1887, par. 3

Another point. Had you not better purchase my Prince, that Kit and Prince may be a safe team for the women to drive? They will make a good span. You may give me what the horse is worth in your estimation. I think about fifty dollars would be right. But if you think he would be of use to you for this purpose you can have him. I always dislike to separate them; they look so nice together. 5LtMs, Lt 2, 1887, par. 4

In regard to Dr. Burke. I fear you will have trouble with him as long as he remains with you unless he is converted. He has a valuable experience in some respects, and in others he is a novice; and the trouble is, he does not know it. He thinks himself perfectly sufficient for all things. I have written some things which I send with this. 5LtMs, Lt 2, 1887, par. 5

I feel a deep interest for you all. I felt very sad over the disclosures in the last letter. I hope that Satan will not, like the serpent, wind his way into your institution. Be careful whom you get as helpers, and strictly watch everything in regard to the intimacy between men and women. Society is rotten, and the revelations in regard to our own people are perfectly astonishing. Well, this is the shaking time. Look at Testimony Numbers 31, 32. The Lord will sift His people as with a sieve. Brethren, the end is near. Men and women are showing their true character, taking sides either with Satan or with Christ. Licentiousness is rearing its horrid head, and we must cry to God most earnestly. 5LtMs, Lt 2, 1887, par. 6

We have now come to the close of our meetings. They have continued since February 17, and yet there is the finishing up to be done. You know what that comprehends. Our family for weeks has numbered 17. I have been wonderfully sustained. Spoken 46 times, written nearly 500 pages of note paper like this, and have done much labor besides. Our conference was good every way. Improved since last year. I never saw a people who needed labor more than these in Europe and who seemed to appreciate the labor more than here. We have had meetings nearly every hour in the day the past four weeks, and we had early meeting every day for two weeks prior to the conference for the workers here in the missions. All has moved off harmoniously. But it has been most difficult to manage the wages of the workers, for the treasury is so destitute of means. But God has blessed the labors that we as His servants have tried to do in His name, and He has given me strength, for which I praise Him. 5LtMs, Lt 2, 1887, par. 7

I understand that Elders Olsen and Matteson expect me to attend the Norway camp-meeting and the two conferences to be held directly after the camp-meeting, one in Stockholm, Sweden, and the other in Copenhagen, Denmark. I do not know what to say about this. I promised them that I would attend their camp-meeting in Norway, not at all supposing that they would have one. They now hold me to my promise. The meeting will be held in June, and if I attend the other meetings, it will take all of June. So here I am. The Lord do with me as seemeth good in His sight. I want to see you all in California, and I may sooner than I now fear; but I have no will of my own. It is altogether too late in the day to place ourselves as we are inclined to do. If we lie passive and let the Lord place us, then we will be doing His pleasure. 5LtMs, Lt 2, 1887, par. 8

I want more spiritual power. I plead for it. I want the love of Jesus. I want a pure, perfect character. I want to stand before the throne of God without guile in my mouth. I am so tired I can hardly trace these lines. 5LtMs, Lt 2, 1887, par. 9

Yours with respect. 5LtMs, Lt 2, 1887, par. 10