Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 7 (1891-1892)


Ms 28, 1892

Diary, January 1892

Melbourne, Australia

January 1-11, 1892

Portions of this manuscript are published in 8MR 44; 4Bio 29.

January 1, 1892

North Fitzroy, Melbourne, Victoria

I attended the early morning meeting and bore a testimony. I greeted all with a “Happy new year” and sought to call their minds to the infinite love of God expressed to us. 7LtMs, Ms 28, 1892, par. 1

In the afternoon again attended meeting. After I had spoken to the people there was a social meeting of interest. 7LtMs, Ms 28, 1892, par. 2

Sabbath, January 2, 1892

I spoke Sabbath forenoon some very plain truths upon practical godliness. The people seemed to appreciate the work done. 7LtMs, Ms 28, 1892, par. 3

I spoke in a larger hall than the one in the Echo office and it was crowded full. I had a very plain testimony to bear. I have never spoken more plainly and decidedly in America. There was deep feeling in the congregation. I could not call them forward. It was too crowded to do this. 7LtMs, Ms 28, 1892, par. 4

We closed the meeting and assembled again at half past two o’clock p.m. Then I had some remarks to make in regard to confession and what the Lord required of them individually. I spoke in regard to the spirit of independence that had prevailed in the office—the feeling that the Americans should not compose their councils for then they would have to do just as they said, and they were fully competent to run matters themselves. I asked them if they had anything to say in reference to these things. The Lord had sent His messengers to bear them a message and to help them with their counsel from their many years of experience. However much ability they possessed, if they treated lightly these benefits, chose to have their own way and to walk in the sparks of their own kindling, the result would be that they would be separated from the work and others would be raised up who were willing to be educated as to the best methods of working for the advancement and success of the cause of God. 7LtMs, Ms 28, 1892, par. 5

I told them that they had felt at liberty to criticize and pronounce their opinion and judgment upon their American brethren whom the Lord had sent to help them, to be a blessing to them. I reminded them that they were only the Lord’s employed instruments. They did not originate the work. It was not their work but the Lord’s work, and He would send by whom He would His delegated servants to work according to their several ability in the various branches of work to be done in His vineyard. The Lord had entrusted talents to those in Australia who had been converted to the truth, but they needed to learn every day in the school of Christ and reach a much higher standard in efficiency than they had then gained. Sanctified talent will be realized only by those who walk humbly with God and who will receive any help the Lord sends them without dictating to the Lord from whom that help shall come. 7LtMs, Ms 28, 1892, par. 6

We had a most precious testimony meeting. Sometimes there were twelve upon their feet at once. Confessions were made with weeping, by those working in the office and by many in the church. 7LtMs, Ms 28, 1892, par. 7

Sunday, January 3, 1892

[North Fitzroy, Melbourne]

We rode out with Stephen Belden about five miles to find a location in the country, but we found no suitable home. By riding two miles on cross roads we came to Preston, where Brother Bell lives. Here we found in the suburbs a cottage that we thought would suit us, and we were invited in. We found it convenient but not large enough for us all—Brother and Sister Starr and my workers. However, we were inclined to secure the place. We rode again into Melbourne, and I spoke in the large city hall which was well filled with believers and unbelievers. They listened with deep interest. 7LtMs, Ms 28, 1892, par. 8

Monday, January 4, 1892

We rode in the cars twenty-five miles in the country, by request of Brother and Sister Ebdall, to see land which they owned, five acres of which they wished to donate for a site for the sanitarium. We found a very healthful place and the atmosphere was good, but we could not make any decision in regard to the matter. The Lord will direct our course in such important matters. We walked over the grounds at some expense to myself, for I was crippled with rheumatism. We took our dinner under the Australian blue gum tree called eucalyptus. There is a natural growth of very handsome evergreens. Now is the dry season of the year, but these trees are a living green, very beautiful. We remained all day, until five o’clock p.m., and then rode two miles down the hill—much more quickly than we ascended it—to the depot. We stepped into the second-class car and rode the twenty-five miles in one hour and a half. Went rather slowly. 7LtMs, Ms 28, 1892, par. 9

Tuesday, January 5, 1892

North Fitzroy, Melbourne

Attended morning meetings and then rode out in the country to see if we could find a suitable location. We found a nice brick house with nine rooms which, with a little squeezing, would accommodate Elder Starr and his wife and our workers. There is a beautiful garden, but it has been neglected and is grown up to weeds. This occupied most of the day. 7LtMs, Ms 28, 1892, par. 10

The prospect here in the city is very bad. The authorities profess to clean the open drains once each day, but this is certainly not done and the smell is not only very offensive but you cannot avoid the thought that you are being poisoned. In this region there is the greatest difficulty to get away from drains. 7LtMs, Ms 28, 1892, par. 11

Wednesday, January 6, 1892

We rode out to Preston again, five miles, and made a proposition for the house which we had examined. We decided to take it for six months. This was a point we were compelled to urge, for we knew not where we might be at the end of six months. The answer was to be given us next day, but we did not receive it until near bedtime; then the arrangements were satisfactorily settled. We are to take possession Monday. 7LtMs, Ms 28, 1892, par. 12

Thursday, January 7, 1892

I walked some distance to select crockery and other things for commencing housekeeping. Was very tired and suffered much pain in my hip. 7LtMs, Ms 28, 1892, par. 13

Friday morning, January 8, 1892

We rode out to look for furniture and different articles, but they were exceedingly high, fully double and most articles treble what we would have to pay in America. Nevertheless these things must be had, and we could not get along without them. 7LtMs, Ms 28, 1892, par. 14

Sabbath, January 9, 1892

North Fitzroy, Melbourne

I have much suffering and feebleness, but I spoke to the people from (Acts 1), dwelling especially upon the commission of Christ to the disciples. The hall or chapel was crowded full and all listened with the deepest interest. May the Lord grant that the seed should have fallen into good soil and that the word may be a savor of life unto life. 7LtMs, Ms 28, 1892, par. 15

In the afternoon the Lord’s Supper and the ordinance of washing feet were administered. The sisters occupied one portion of the hall, the brethren the other portion. The meeting was well attended, and it was a precious season to all. 7LtMs, Ms 28, 1892, par. 16

Sunday, January 10, 1892

I arose early and although weak made preparation for moving, by packing my clothing. About ten a.m. we were moving, in the Echo wagon, Brother Belden driving the horse to Preston. We felt glad to leave the houses so thickly crowded together and go where houses were occupying a good space of ground; glad to leave behind the bad odor of open drains and poisonous, offensive smells. We felt so pleased to feel it our privilege to fill our lungs by inhaling good, pure, invigorating air, and to get into a house that had land adjoining it. There is a yard full of flowers of fine rich quality, but weeds are growing as I never thought it possible weeds could grow. There is a complete tangle of them. The ground is good, excellent soil. We have plenty of land around us, and we have the blessed privilege of breathing full and deep without fear of being poisoned. 7LtMs, Ms 28, 1892, par. 17

Preston, Melbourne, Victoria, Monday, January 11, 1892

We have slept very well in our new hired house. I look about the room, grateful that I have not the smell of poisonous gases. Yesterday we had four steamboat chairs. I brought mattresses for myself, meaning not to go back to Melbourne to sleep, if I had to make a bed upon the floor. Brother and Sister Faulkhead, accompanied by Sister Daniells and their children, called on us. They were also looking for a house in the country. If they move here it will be very pleasant to have evening meetings here in this locality and let our light shine forth in this part of Melbourne. 7LtMs, Ms 28, 1892, par. 18

Brother Belden went to Melbourne for another load of goods, and a wire-woven spring was brought up about nine o’clock p.m. and placed on two boxes, and my mattress placed on that. Willie visited us in the evening and he slept on the floor, a thin mattress under him. May Walling slept on a mattress on the floor in my room. So we are beginning our moving and occupation of the house. We had a season of prayer, committing ourselves to the guardianship of our heavenly Father. 7LtMs, Ms 28, 1892, par. 19