Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 7

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Ms 39, 1892

Diary, December 1892

Ballarat, Melbourne, Australia

December 1-31, 1892

Portions of this manuscript are copied from Ms 17, 1892, and portions are published in 8MR 51-55; 14MR 8.

Thursday, December 1, 1892

Ballarat, Australia

The rain is gone but it is cloudy and cold and unpleasant. The sun came out a short time but veiled itself in shadows and clouds. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 1

Sister James was my companion, to drive the horse, and we visited Sister Innis and Sister Pierce. Here we found a home of deep affliction. The son of Sister Innis had been in poor health some time, with lung difficulty. He made a visit to Melbourne and seemed to improve in health. He returned to Ballarat and had much pleasure in anticipating the visit Sister White was to make, and he said he would drive the horse which would be furnished so that she could ride out, and it would be a great pleasure to him to wait on her. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 2

We arrived Tuesday morning. Wednesday there was a social prayer meeting, and Brother Innis was called upon to pray. He did so, and immediately after commenced bleeding at the lungs. Thursday morning we heard the news. Sister James drove the horse, and she and I called on the sick. He could not talk, but was grateful to see us. I prayed with him and then went into another room where Lizzie, his sister, had been confined for seven months. She was very much afflicted, but cheerful, trying to do something with her hands, and to write letters—missionary letters. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 3

We felt so sad for the mother who was nursing her son. He is married and has a little child a few weeks old. The wife and young mother could wait on her husband some, but she was compelled to care for the little one that required much attention; therefore this increase of a family of three is a tax upon the mother, and the burden of nurse taxes her sorely. We prayed with and for the afflicted sister, and the poor burdened mother, that the Lord would give her strength and grace to bear up under the weight of care and affliction that are pressing her so severely. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 4

We then called at the store where the other members of the family were at work at millinery and dressmaking business. All looked so worn and anxious, but this family have been sound in the faith from the first, unselfish, working for others, trying to do good in every way they possibly can, and we believe the Lord will bear them through the furnace of trial. The gold will be purified. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 5

We rode round the lake, then called on Sister Parkinson. She was so glad to see us. She embraced the Sabbath under strong convictions, through reading her Bible. She was surprised as the light flashed upon her. She talked with her hired girl and told her her convictions, and she saw that they were keeping Sunday, which was not the day the Lord had sanctified and blessed. They immediately commenced keeping the Sabbath, although they had never heard a discourse or read anything of our peculiar faith. She has several sons, but not one is with her in the faith, although she has held firmly and unwaveringly the truth which she knows was taught her by the Holy Spirit of God. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 6

We then called upon the dentist. My teeth were troubling me. He thought the filling would have to be drilled out and the nerve killed. I have an appointment for next Tuesday afternoon. I was pleased with the words and appearance of this stranger dentist. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 7

Friday, December 2, 1892

Ballarat

I have been very busy writing. Elder Daniells came about noon. Willie came on the next train, and I did not see him that night. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 8

We had a small meeting in the dining room, and I spoke with much freedom. Most of those who attended were not of our faith. They seemed much pleased with the meeting and said they would come and hear me on Sunday. The blessing of the Lord was in our midst. I opened the meeting with prayer and closed it with prayer. Elder Daniells and Willie were at the meeting in Ballarat. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 9

Sabbath, December 3, 1892

Ballarat

I did not rest well during the night, but I do not regret speaking to the few, for I hope this is a seed sown that may spring up and bear fruit to the glory of God. Sabbath I spoke to the church, to our people. A number of outsiders were present. I had freedom in speaking from John 14. We then had a social meeting. Quite a number bore testimony for the truth. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 10

Sunday, December 4, 1892

Ballarat

Sunday I spoke in the hired hall, to a good congregation, from (1 John 3:1): “Behold what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God.” All listened with the deepest interest. I was gratified to see so large a number present, apparently of the best class of society. The Lord gave me strength to preach the gospel of Christ. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 11

Monday, December 5, 1892

Ballarat

In the afternoon Sister James went with me to ride, and [she] drove the horse. We visited at Brother Hoskins’ home. His wife is sister of Sister Innis. Sister Hoskins has an aged mother living with her, who is eighty-nine years old. She was very glad to see me. Her eyesight is good. She reads considerably. She said, “Oh, I am so happy to see you. I have read your books, and they have been a great blessing to me.” She is hard of hearing. I prayed with them, and the sweet Spirit of the Lord was in our midst. Brother Hoskins came in season to bow with us in prayer. We then parted with them. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 12

After I was in the carriage, the aged mother came on the piazza to see us leave. I waved my handkerchief to her. She waved her hand in response, as promptly as if she were a young girl. We rode partially around the lake. We stepped into the Botanical Gardens, but I found my limbs too weak to walk or stand upon them much, and was glad to get into the carriage and take our course homeward. I lay down as soon as I returned. In the evening we met Willie, Emily, and May, and learned they had visited the Botanical Garden, coming there soon after we left. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 13

Tuesday, December 6, 1892

Ballarat

I had a good sleep last night, for which I thank the Lord. I am grateful the Lord is healing my tooth. The terrible operation I dreaded so much, of drilling out the filling and killing the nerve, will not have to be borne. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 14

Willie, Emily, and May visited the mine, and went down into he bowels of the earth. Emily and May came back. Willie found he had time to get to the cars and he took his satchel from Brother King’s and took the cars for Melbourne, thinking he could in thus doing save half a day. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 15

Sister Parkinson came in the afternoon to visit me. We had a pleasant interview. She related her experience in coming into the truth, and in her being cut off from the church because she kept the Sabbath. Through her influence Brother and Sister James came into the truth, and all are steadfast in the truth. At about half past seven we were much surprised to meet Lizzie James. She heard her mother was not well, and she came from the school home. We were all glad to see her. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 16

Wednesday, December 7, 1892

Ballarat

My rest was not as good as Tuesday night’s, but thank the Lord I slept quite well. Before it was scarcely light I arose and after offering up my prayer to the Lord commenced to write, and wrote very diligently until noon. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 17

In the early morning there was a rainbow in the west, amid the clouds. It has been stormy, with thunder and lightning and short showers. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 18

I have written almost constantly today. I expected to ride out after dinner, but the changeable weather forbade this. One moment the sun is shining, and in a very short time the clouds cover the sun and there is a downpour of large, heavy drops of rain. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 19

Sister James, Emily, and May Walling went out to the Sisters Pierce and Innis to see about their hats. The showers continued at intervals all afternoon. May gave Sister James a treatment—massage—and she is trying to educate Lizzie how to treat her mother. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 20

Thursday, December 8, 1892

Ballarat, Australia

I rose from my bed just before five o’clock and after a season of prayer attended to my writing. I have written two articles for the Instructor. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 21

The family calculated I would go out to the lake this afternoon and see the Botanical Garden, but I could not walk about without great taxation. My limbs are weak, because I have been able to use them but very little for the past ten months. I am improving and can walk very well a little, but if I presume to walk more than a little, it is very taxing. Sister James, her two daughters, May Walling, and Emily have gone to the Botanical Gardens. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 22

A sister, poor in this world’s goods but rich in faith, came to Brother James’ with expectation there was to be a meeting, but it was to be Friday at the commencing of the Sabbath. She had, although in ill health, walked nearly three miles. I left my writing and visited with her, and we had a praying season. The Lord blessed us. This sister is unable to sleep; has been thus twenty-five years. It is a great affliction. She sleeps a little, but very little. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 23

Friday, December 9, 1892

Ballarat

I am thankful for rest in sleep. I arose at five o’clock, dressed, and sought the Lord in prayer, and then commenced my writing. It is a cold, windy, disagreeable day. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 24

The sun shines occasionally. We are expecting Elder Daniells today, and have hope that he will bring from Melbourne our mail from America. I am anxious to hear from our friends. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 25

I have an appointment tonight. I have but little strength in my limbs. Before I am aware of it, my limbs lose their power of walking. A few days ago I fell on my back. The ground was rough. I could not get up for some time. No one was with me to help me. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 26

Elder Daniells came about eight o’clock. We had a room full, and I spoke as long and earnestly to them as if there were thousands to hear. How could I do otherwise? The subject is the same, that of the plan of salvation—the sufferings of Christ to save fallen man, His resurrection and ascension, and His second appearing, coming in power and great glory. I dwelt upon the claims of the fourth commandment and the relation of the Old Testament to the New. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 27

Minister Porter preached against the Sabbath last Sunday evening, and stated we had nothing to do with the Old Testament Scriptures. He swept all by the board, stating the Old Testament was for the Jews alone. He proved nothing, but made assertions only, as if every statement he made was to be accepted as verity and truth, without one syllable of proof. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 28

Sabbath, December 10, 1892

Ballarat

I am feeling quite weak this morning. Suffered considerable pain with rheumatism in my limbs. We are having a very fine day, but I feel languid. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 29

Rode one mile to the hall. A goodly number were assembled. The house could not have been properly ventilated. My head was confused. I think I came near fainting. I called for air, but I was so very weak. I called May. She came to me, and I went into an adjoining room and wet my head and remained while they were singing the last hymn. I was so weak I could not at first stand straight, but after a little I was raise above my weakness. I felt such intense interest in the subject of (1 Peter 1) that I did not think of my weakness. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 30

Oh, how my heart was drawn out for love of souls, how I desired to see them walking in the light which was shining upon their pathway! I made special remarks upon (verses 10-12), showing the importance and sacredness of the prophecies, and that we were not prepared to cut out the Old Testament Scriptures, for Christ was speaking in the Old Testament as well as the New Testament. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 31

The Pierce and Innis family are wonderful, important helpers in the church. They are very much afflicted now with sickness. The young man Innis has been bleeding at the lungs. This is the third time. The doctor gives no encouragement that he will recover. His sister has been sick seven months. The carriage I have for my use took the sister to meeting last Sabbath, and she felt greatly blessed that she could hear Sister White in Ballarat. Her brother and Lizzie Innis were both brought in the phaeton to the hall, and the aged grandmother of these children was present at the meeting. She is 89 years old. There were four generations present—the grandmother, the daughter, the sick children, and Brother Innis and his little one. Brother Innis looked so white and pale we feared it was too much for him, but he and his sick sister enjoyed the ride to and from the meeting, remained all through the exercises, and say they enjoyed it and were greatly blessed. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 32

After the discourse I read the letter from Elder Olsen to those present. All seemed to feel they were much favored to hear the selections in reference to Lansing camp meeting. Certainly such good reports should be passed along to cheer the hearts of all who love God. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 33

Sunday, December 11, 1892

Ballarat

It is a very cloudy, stormy, windy morning. The rain has been coming down all night. At times it pours down. About nine o’clock the clouds rolled away and the sun shone upon us. The wind is strong. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 34

I rode into Ballarat to speak at three p.m. We had a good congregation. The people were just such a class as I am pleased to address. As I took out my glasses to put them on, one arm was broken, and I could do nothing with them, so I gave my text (John 3:16): “For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” The Lord strengthened me in body and in spirit, and through His grace I spoke in the power and demonstration of the Spirit. The congregation listened with profound attention and hearts were touched. Tears were oft wiped away. I was free in the Lord. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 35

As I ceased speaking Brother Hoskins started the doxology, and the whole congregation rose to their feet and poured out their voice in 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 36

“Praise God from whom all blessing flow,
Praise Him all creatures here below,
Praise Him above ye heavenly host,
Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.”
7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 37

It seemed a fitting response. I never listened to words in sacred song that came forth with more earnestness and power. I know that many were fed with rich morsels from the treasury of God. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 38

One aged Christian grasped my hand and said, “Oh, thank you and God for the blessed words you have spoken to us. That which I prized most highly was its simplicity from beginning to end. Everything was made so very plain. Oh, I shall never forget this feast—no high-sounding words but all simple, so that a child could understand.” And I felt surely this is the best commendation that could be given. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 39

“Why,” said the old gentleman, “it came right to my soul and made me tender. It broke my heart, and my soul is warmed up with the love of Jesus.” 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 40

I was very tired, but I returned to my home at Brother and Sister James’ thankful that the truth could be presented as it is in Jesus and the sheep and lambs could be fed. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 41

Monday, December 12, 1892

Ballarat

I did not sleep much the past night. We must be up as early as half past four and I awoke at quarter past three and aroused the family at half past four. We had steady work to complete the packing. All were busy. We found it a very cold morning, and dull and raining a little. We got off in good season and on the train in ample time, and at half past eight we were at Melbourne. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 42

Brother Wilson was waiting for us with my phaeton and we were not long in reaching George’s Terrace, St. Kilda Road. We were pleased to see our friends again in the school building. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 43

The day continued cold, cloudy, and unpleasant. We did not meet Willie until noon. We had been separated three months, with the exception of meeting him on Friday to leave the next Sunday, and we were glad to meet him at Ballarat a few days, but his work in the office is so confining he could not remain. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 44

We found the school near its close, and we were rejoiced to learn everything in regard to the school had moved off harmoniously, especially the religious exercises. Bible lessons were given, and there were prayers in the morning and at night, and in the morning a social meeting when all the students could speak if they chose. This was a part of the education, but not the least. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 45

December 13, 1892

This is the last day of school. The closing exercises take place today. The room for meetings where Bible exercises were carried on was in this room. Brother Rousseau, Brother Daniells, Brother Starr, W. C. White, and myself had something to say, then the students, quite a number of them, bore testimony. It was a good closing of the school. All had testimony to bear of the good they had received during their school time, and they were now going to work, some in the canvassing field and others in other branches of the work to earn money to attend the school the next term. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 46

In the evening I met Brother Faulkhead and told him I had something for him from the Lord. He said, “Why not let me have it now?” I was quite weak, but he lived in Preston, ten miles from the school building which was to be my home. So I arose and read to him fifty pages of letter pages in reference to the office, and also particular ones working in the office. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 47

I spoke in the letter plainly and in clear lines in reference to his past work and what a loss it had been to the office. His connection with Free Masonry had absorbed his time and blunted his spiritual perception. His mind, his thoughts had been upon this body, this association; and there were infidels, winebibbers, and every class. And he was bound up with these secret organizations. There was only one thing he could do, sever his connection with them and be wholly on the Lord’s side; for he could not possibly serve God and mammon. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 48

He said, “I receive the testimony; I shall heed its instruction.” 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 49

Wednesday, December 14, 1892

I was invited to go up to prayers, which was in the room above. I, for the first time, with Willie’s help, ascended the stairs since my long ten months’ sickness. We found the students all collected, and every one in the room bore testimony in regard to the advancement they had made in Bible knowledge. How precious was the light which they have received upon Bible truths. It was refreshing to hear their testimonies. I then spoke to them some words of counsel, warning, and encouragement. I was glad to be present in this meeting. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 50

Thursday, December 15, 1892

The weather was very unpleasant through the day, windy and rainy. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 51

Brother Faulkhead and his wife came to visit me, and I read twenty-eight pages in addition to the fifty I had already read. He spoke decidedly, and said he considered himself highly honored to be thus noticed of the Lord. He said that after the interview and my reading Tuesday night, he had to walk from North Fitzroy to Preston, five miles, but he felt relieved of a great burden, and he felt so free walking alone in the darkness he longed to meet some of the brethren [so] that he could tell them how happy he felt. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 52

He said, “I am glad you did not send the communication to me before, for I was not prepared to receive it. The reading of it myself would not have helped me. Receiving the words from your own lips was the very thing that I needed. I receive every word of it. It applies to me, and I shall now go to work. I belong to five Free Mason lodges. I am beside this connected with three more which are under my sole control. I do all the business management. I shall attend no more of their meetings or suppers. I shall cut the cords to the three over which I preside as soon as possible.” 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 53

He told Brother Daniells and Brother Starr that Sister White gave the sign that only the highest order of the Masons knew anything about. He had just taken the highest order. He said, “She gave me the sign, but did not know it herself. It was a movement that she said her guide gave her.” 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 54

We then had a season of prayer. We all three prayed to the Lord for help and strength and grace. The Lord heard our prayers; I know He did. His wife has been praying over this matter for more than one year. He did not let anyone of our people know that he was a Free Mason, with the exception of a few who promised not to divulge it. The burden had rested with terrible weight on his wife. She was so much relieved, she could not express her gratitude to God. Her soul was so full of thankfulness for this testimony given to her husband in answer to the many prayers she had offered in his behalf. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 55

Friday, December 16, 1892

[George’s Terrace, Melbourne]

Today is a cold, windy, rainy day. I have nevertheless walked out, in early morning farther than I have been able to walk for the past eleven months. We have been trying a horse today to see if it will answer my purpose to use before my phaeton. We must pay forty dollars for it—eight pounds. It is all worn down and has not much courage or energy. With good feeding she may come up. We are to try her [for] two weeks and then, if we are not satisfied, the owner has given a written statement that he will refund the money. I have been for a few days suffering with my heart, much exhausted. I have had a gas stove for warming my room. I think it may be this. All is removed, and my stove out from California—open fireplace stove—is set up; but coal is all we can burn and the gas has some bad effect on my heart. Shall burn wood henceforth. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 56

Sabbath, December 17, 1892

George’s Terrace, Melbourne

I am much exhausted. I feel altogether too weak to attend meeting, but I shall go, trusting in the Lord. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 57

We rode to North Fitzroy and found Albert’s Hall full of people. Spoke at eleven o’clock. The Lord gave me freedom. I spoke decidedly in reference to their coldness and entreated them to walk in the light while they had the light. My text was from 1 John 3. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 58

We then had a social meeting and many bore testimony. Brother Bell spoke decidedly that he was determined to seek the Lord more earnestly. Brother Faulkhead said Sister White had given him a personal testimony, and he was going to do just what that testimony told him to do. Others made confession of their coldness and backsliding. The Spirit of the Lord came in. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 59

At the close of the Sabbath, I met with the family alone in the chamber, and we had a most precious season of prayer. The Lord’s Spirit indited prayer. Oh, how our hearts longed after a refreshing from the presence of the Lord! And He came very nigh unto us. The room was filled with light. Angels of God seemed to be around us, and our hearts were blessed and comforted. Joy and peace and the refreshing from the Lord were upon us. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 60

Oh, how much wisdom we need to do the work here in the colonies, to pick up the dropped stitches and bind off the edges of the work! There is much to set in order, and the Lord alone can do this. His Spirit operating on human hearts can bring in a spirit of confession and contrition in our midst, and His converting power can be among His people. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 61

December 18, 1892

George’s Terrace, Melbourne

I was thankful, with W. C. White’s help, to get up the stairs by walking, and was present at family prayers. We had a lengthy council with Brother and Sister Starr and Brother Daniells, W. C. White, and myself, in reference to the school—how to decrease the expenses during vacation. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 62

We rode out to Preston and took dinner with Byron Belden and his father. As we returned, we left Willie at North Fitzroy and took Brother and Sister Salisbury in our phaeton to the school building. We had a precious season of prayer with our friends in Preston. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 63

Monday, December 19, 1892

George’s Terrace, Melbourne

I had an ill turn this morning. My heart troubles me. Rode with Willie and Brother and Sister Salisbury to Melbourne. Left Willie in Melbourne. We drove back through the park, which was a very pleasant ride. At half past six o’clock I had an appointment for meeting in the Echo office to read some things which I had written for the workers connected with the office. Brother Salisbury and Willie carried me up in armchair. I read for about one hour. All listened with deep interest, but did not make any expression. They wanted to hear more, but I thought it not best to read over one hour, for their good and my good. An appointment was made for them to meet me at George’s Terrace at eleven o’clock on Tuesday. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 64

Tuesday, December 20, 1892

George’s Terrace, Melbourne

May and Marian, Willie and I rode in to North Fitzroy and left Willie at the office. Then we rode home. It was a beautiful day. At eleven a.m. I was present with the board and read to them about two hours. They seemed interested to hear, but no expression was made. I left an appointment for Brother Brisbane to meet me at half past five a.m. Wednesday morning. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 65

December 21, 1892

I had an interview of two hours with Brother Brisbane, bearing to him a plain testimony which he took very kindly. May and Willie and I then rode to the Echo office at North Fitzroy, left Willie, and returned. Devoted the remainder of the day to writing in reference to organization. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 66

Thursday, December 22, 1892

George’s Terrace, Melbourne

I arose at half past four. Have rested well during the night. I am bending all my energies to prepare letters to go out in this mail which closes on the morrow. May and I accompanied Willie to the depot and saw him off for Sydney, New South Wales. Elder Starr leaves for Ballarat, and Elder Daniells for Adelaide. I am left to speak in North Fitzroy. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 67

Friday, December 23, 1892

George’s Terrace, Melbourne

This day has been a very hurrying, busy day. I had a large mail to get off and to apportion each a part was no small tax. I sent letters to Brother Lockwood, Brother Morrison, St. Helena Health Retreat, Sister Ings; to Brother Olsen on Organization; and to Brother Prescott, to read to the conference, upon the purchasing of a pipe organ for the church. I consider it a sin to spend money in this way when there is so great need of means to be used in foreign fields to obtain even a standing. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 68

Wrote letters to Edson, and to Addie Walling, also Ella May and Mabel White. Sent letters to Elder Reade to Tahiti [?]. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 69

Sabbath, December 24, 1892

George’s Terrace, Melbourne

I spoke to the congregation in North Fitzroy. The atmosphere was bad, and there as not vitality in the air. I felt the exhausting influence of the room. The congregation were many of them unable to keep awake, and they slept. I invited them to arise and sing, which they did, and this revived them; but I am fully conscious that it will not be best for me to be presumptuous and try to speak in Albert’s Hall. It is unsuitable in every way, and the preaching cannot accomplish much good. The people cannot be benefited in the vitiated atmosphere. Oh, what need there is of having a place of worship where the people can assemble and feel that it is a sacred, consecrated place! 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 70

Sunday, December 25, 1892

St. George’s Terrace, Melbourne

All day was devoted to writing to Brother P. in regard to the sin of his criticizing. He does not know what manner of spirit he is of. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 71

Sister Ebdall [?] called to see me and has many grievances. She made me a present of a purse, which I needed. That is all the gift I received. I have made no gifts, for I had no money to spend. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 72

Monday, December 26, 1892

St. George’s Terrace, Melbourne

Cloudy and windy. I did not sleep well during the night. May Walling leaves today for Fern Tree Gully to spend a week with others who are to camp out. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 73

Devoted the day to writing important matter. Rode out only one hour. This is Christmas holiday, and everybody seems to be astir to celebrate Christmas. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 74

Tuesday, December 27, 1892

St. George’s Terrace, Melbourne

I awoke in the morning with texts of Scripture impressed upon my mind. “Then Jesus said unto them, Yet a little while is the light with you. Walk while ye have the light, lest darkness come upon you: for he that walketh in darkness knoweth not whither he goeth. While ye have the light, believe in the light, that ye may be children of the light.” John 12:35, 36. I commenced my writing at five o’clock upon this subject. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 75

I wrote two pages of letter paper and then I felt a burden pressing upon me in regard to the little effort made to bring our youth into working order. Here is talent that through education and training can be made a great blessing in our church. It can be drilled after Christ’s order, to do good service. It needs wise teachers who understand how to deal with human minds. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 76

I wrote six pages of letter paper, put it into Sister Davis’ hands, and she prepared it. Emily copied it, and we sent it with a letter written to E. J. Waggoner with an article on organization and a copy of letters written to Elder Morrison, to London. Wrote A. T. Robinson in South Africa. Sent copy of letter written him, to educate the children and youth to work for the Master. Sent copies of letters on organization, on purchasing a pipe organ in Battle Creek, and copy of letter to Dr. Kellogg. Sent a large package of matter to Elder Daniells, who is spending the Week of Prayer in Adelaide. Sent him copy of [article on] marshalling the youth into active working order. Wrote him a letter. Wrote a letter to Willie and sent copy of article I have written to improve the talents of the youth and set them in operation to do good in the church and cause of God. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 77

This has been a very busy day for us all. I am wearied some. I have written fifteen pages of letter paper. Received shorthand report of the talk I gave at the close of the school. Looked over a large amount of previously written articles. Rode out one hour with Brother and Sister Starr, taking the road by the beach. It was pleasant but very windy. The waves ran high. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 78

Wednesday, December 28, 1892

St. George’s Terrace, Melbourne

The Lord be praised for His goodness and love to me. I have had a precious night’s rest. It is pleasant this morning. The wind has gone down. I commenced writing at five a.m. Brother Starr came yesterday and brought us excellent reports from Ballarat, where he had gone to be with them through the Week of Prayer. There was the healing of old difficulties between Brother James and Brother King. The Lord broke their hearts, and they were united in love and fellowship. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 79

Thursday, December 29, 1892

St. George’s Terrace, Melbourne

Word came from the company that were encamped in Fern Tree Gully that they were desirous I should come—and as many others as could—to the valley, twenty-five miles. The cars go within two miles of their encampment. We had but a few minutes to make our decision. As my head ached and I feared I could not write, I decided to go. Marian Davis and Emily accompanied me. Sister Maggie Hare, Sisters Daniells and Rousseau, and Brother and Sister Salisbury went with us. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 80

We found the atmosphere was better than in Melbourne. All were much pleased to meet us, and we were well entertained. Our dining tent was under a canopy. Tablecloths were spread upon the ground, and the camp of more than thirty seated themselves upon the ground to enjoy their repast. Brother Prismall came while we were eating, and he enjoyed the dinner with us. All ate as if they relished the food. Excellent raspberries were obtained fresh from the vines, and they were so nice and fresh, I enjoyed them much. There were new potatoes and green peas and rice pudding. All ate with good appetites. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 81

Then preparations were made with determination that Sister White should be transported to Fern Tree Gully. I did not favor this, but they made their preparations. Brother Faulkhead walked two miles to find a chair before he could obtain one. They cut strong poles, fastened the poles with cords to the chair, and seated me in the chair. Brethren Faulkhead and Prismall were determined to be carriers. Brother Faulkhead was the taller. He led the way, and Brother Prismall followed, one taking hold of the poles before, the other behind; and they thus bore me along. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 82

After we left the trap [carriage], Brother Stephen Belden let the pony nearly one mile; then the carriage could go no farther, and I was seated in my chair with the human charioteers to take me over the road. We thus traveled two miles—I unwilling to burden them, but they determined to persevere—over logs, fallen trees, and narrow passages cut between trees by Byron Belden and his father. Sometimes it required four men to keep the chair conveyance in safety, as they had to climb fallen trees, sometimes one and two feet high. It was a marvelous passage, such as I never attempted to travel over before. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 83

We came into a level spot in Fern Tree Gully, and tarried a while. There were trees of every form and of various dimensions and heights, and the burden of nature was the perfect, beautiful ferns growing from the top of these fern trees. One tree stood out in distinctive beauty of perfection from all others. The formation of the ferns upon the top of this tree, about twenty feet in height, was more perfect that anything we afterwards had the privilege of seeing. I delight to carry in my mind this model of nature’s perfection in Fern Tree Gully. It is a beautiful specimen of the Lord’s work in its natural state. Surrounding it were fern trees of large growth, but this tree was a crown or circular in form, and in beautiful exactitude and order, so fresh in foliage of deep green that I was assured in my own mind it could not be excelled. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 84

Now we had not reached the dense growth and the question was, Should we go forward or return? Brethren Faulkhead and Prismall were for advancing. I was perfectly satisfied with what I had already seen. I could take the picture and preserve it in my mind—one fern tree so perfect in form amid a vast number that were of uncouth proportions and wanting in perfection in fern tree loveliness. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 85

The church may be compared to this growth of trees. Many of the fern trees grow in awkward, unlovely positions. Some gather to themselves the properties of the earth which they appropriate to fern tree life, in beauty and strength and perfection. Others were bending sideways, unable to stand erect. In others, the fern boughs were imperfect, irregular, wanting in perfection of form and maturity. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 86

Thus it is with the church members, in the formation of Christian character. Some do not appropriate to themselves the precious promises of God, and the provisions made at infinite cost to Heaven that divine power might combine with human effort, that all that is evil should be discarded and overcome, and through faith in Jesus Christ, through watchfulness and prayer, they might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 87

The brethren were not satisfied unless they took me the whole way, so on they went, in most inaccessible paths, until the journey was complete, and I stood under the shadow of the fern trees in the gully. There were the large trees covered with growing ferns, and it was very interesting to see the great height of these trees and their varied formation and manner of growth. There [it] was revealed that young saplings had fastened themselves to the trunk of the fern tree and become one with it, growing into the tree and presenting entirely a different tree than the fern. Both were growing together. It was impossible to separate the one from the other unless the fern were much cut to pieces. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 88

After viewing this wonderful production of nature as long as we thought safe, for it was quite damp in the forest of ferns, my bearers took up their burden, made their way to open ground, passed down the hill of thick, matted grass—a much shorter route than we came. We were not long descending the hill, and I gave my hearty thanks to those who were so full of perseverance to carry out the plans of their devising to have Sister White see Fern Tree Gully. I know they must be very tired, having carried me to the gully and back, no less than three miles. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 89

All partook of dinner, then it was time to prepare to go to the cars. We rode to the cars, women sitting in the back of the carriage on the floor and making considerable sport of their situation. Emily walked the two miles, and several other girls walked from choice. We found the cars crowded, but we would be only one hour and a half, which would be half past ten o’clock p.m. Elder Starr was waiting for us with horse and phaeton. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 90

Friday, December 30, 1892

St. George’s Terrace, Melbourne

I slept well during the night, and am not crippled this morning. In early morning rode in to North Fitzroy with Elder Starr and Brother Will Salisbury, to see where and how the tent was pitched. We found a small tent not able to accommodate a large number. It is low and yet a good tent. We returned about dinner time. Write until time to take my bath, about six. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 91

Sabbath, December 31, 1892

St. George’s Terrace, Melbourne

The last day of the year 1892 has come. Brother and Sister Starr went over to North Fitzroy in the morning, Brother Starr spoke in the forenoon. Emily and Marian and Carrie Dibble came in [the] afternoon. I spoke to the well-filled tent with much freedom from (Acts 10:1-8), giving the account of Cornelius’ vision, and the words of the angel, “Cornelius, ... thy prayers and thine alms are come up for a memorial before God.” [Verses 3, 4.] 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 92

The Lord gave me His Spirit to speak to the people. Quite a number of outsiders were in and listened with attention. Certainly the pitching of the tent will call attention, and our light may shine forth much better to others than if we were in a hall. 7LtMs, Ms 39, 1892, par. 93