Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 8 (1893)


Lt 131, 1893

White, W. C.

Wellington, New Zealand

June 15, 1893

Portions of this letter are published in 3SM 116; 4Bio 94.

Dear Son Willie:

Three weeks since you left us, and the Stanton matter and American mail have kept us very busy. We sent off a large mail yesterday and we, Emily and I, were very busy, but we did not get confused. Everything went off nicely. Sister Brown is not well. She has a severe cold on her lungs. Wants to go home for a few days and be treated at home, but we thought that was not the best thing to do. 8LtMs, Lt 131, 1893, par. 1

Friday, June 16

Emily gave Sister Brown treatment this morning and I rode out, the first time for one week. I was quite ill for a few days, but I am better now. The wind was so strong, the storm of dust so disagreeable, I thought indoors the happiest place I could be in. We have had considerable steady rain. It has been quite an unpleasant week. One week ago last Tuesday Brother and Sister Wilson went to Blenheim. They think they had a profitable season with the little few in that place. They returned Wednesday morning. He is much improved in health. Elder Israel has been, for several days, considerably crippled with rheumatism. He cannot stand erect, feels easier when he is keeping still. 8LtMs, Lt 131, 1893, par. 2

There is nothing of special importance to write. We see by the papers that the boat from San Francisco was at Auckland the 14th. Mail will be at Wellington Friday night at ten o’clock p.m. If our mail comes direct, we will receive it tomorrow. If it goes to Melbourne, we must wait its return. 8LtMs, Lt 131, 1893, par. 3

Last night we had an earthquake shock at about twelve o’clock. It shook our beds. This morning was cold, quite cold. We rode out at eleven a.m., and it was sunshiny and warm as summer. We rode to Bay Lake and we enjoyed the ride very much. I have not ventured to walk much since my experiment. I am feeling very much better; appetite good, and my head is now rested and the confusion and tired feeling is all gone. I am moving now more cautiously. 8LtMs, Lt 131, 1893, par. 4

We feel very anxious to learn something of your history since you reached Sydney and Melbourne. But we must learn patience. We pray most earnestly that the Lord will give you wisdom and His rich grace, that Jesus may preside in all your councils and deliberations. We pray much for those who are officiating at the Echo office, and those bearing responsibilities in the school. Heaven is full of blessings, and the rich gifts of heaven are waiting our demand by asking in faith for them. And shall we be negligent in asking that we may receive? God forbid! We must press our petitions to the throne of grace. Ask and ye shall receive. Seek and ye shall find. Knock and it shall be opened unto you. 8LtMs, Lt 131, 1893, par. 5

I think at least once a day we should have a special season of prayer for one object—that is for wisdom from heaven that we shall have counsel from One who never makes mistakes. Unless we have more than human wisdom, we will repeat the mistakes of the past, and may do worse than they. God must be our wisdom, our stronghold, our present help. We need now, as never before, special guidance. I have my decided convictions that there is danger of uprooting too much in the Echo office. I am not so thoroughly satisfied with such a rapid going out of the little end of the horn. But you will see and better understand the situation when on the ground than when at a distance. May the Lord anoint your eyes with the grace of spiritual discernment. I long to see building up and not a continuation of tearing down. May the Lord give His Holy Spirit to every individual that is connected with the Echo office. 8LtMs, Lt 131, 1893, par. 6

Now, another subject. I want to employ Eliza. I want her to help me. There should be a testimony gotten out at once. I have to keep repeating and working over things easily forgotten and passed out of mind; in a testimony all is secure, and these warnings in regard to physicians, and in reference to false messages, and in regard to canvassers, and in regard to ministers, should be speaking to the churches and should be in shape to be easily referred to. I feel burdened over this matter. Eliza Burnham could place these testimonies in shape, with Marian’s counsel, and get out matter which is much needed. Now I will ask for Eliza, who was taken from me. As to her being placed as teacher in our school, I see no light in this. 8LtMs, Lt 131, 1893, par. 7

Please consider my proposition. She can help me, and I am not willing to give her up to the school. You know I have pled for Eliza a long time. She has an experience in my work, and I know not where I could find help as I know I shall need. Marian, you know, cannot be closely confined. She is all enthused with hospital work. I am anxious to get out the life of Christ. Marian specifies chapters and subjects for me to write upon that I do not see really need to be written upon. I may see more light in them. These I shall not enter upon without the Lord’s Spirit seems to lead me. The building [of] a tower, the war of kings, these things do not burden my mind, but the subjects of the life of Christ, His character representing the Father, the parables essential for us all to understand and practice the lessons contained in them, I shall dwell upon. 8LtMs, Lt 131, 1893, par. 8

But I want Eliza. She and Marian will be able to work together and compose me. Both are physically weak, but I would not know how to supply their place in my special work. To leave all my work in Marian’s hands is a terrible drawback. She is up and down, on the mountaintop and in the lowest valley. I want to secure Eliza. I can pay her well if she will help me. 8LtMs, Lt 131, 1893, par. 9

The temperance question is to be considered and a new edition of the Temperance book edited and she can help me in this. I am not satisfied with it as it is, and it needs to be enlarged for a popular edition, to be rigorously worked and go broadcast. A department is needed with additions on medical missionary work. Will you please to consider this question? 8LtMs, Lt 131, 1893, par. 10

I see there are things to divert the time and attention of Marian, and I do not flatter myself that very much progress can be made on the life of Christ. I am writing on it as fast as I possibly can, but Stanton’s work and Caldwell’s work combined, has taken much time and I hope that matter will be put in shape to be sent out wherever his book is liable to be sent. Now I am putting myself into the work most earnestly. The days are short and are gone before we really know it. I am glad that before this reaches you, the shortest days will have passed and they will begin minute by minute to lengthen. 8LtMs, Lt 131, 1893, par. 11

And here is a letter from Edson. I know not what to say. You must take up the matter as you see best and give such satisfaction as you feel is wisdom. I do not discern how much this involves. I have no comments to make on his letter. I leave his case in the hands of God. It is certainly a very cool-blooded letter, but if you can comply with his requests without involving me more, do so, and I will approve your decision. 8LtMs, Lt 131, 1893, par. 12

Another matter: Brother and Sister Anderson sent for a German sister, nearly blind, who lives with her son and two daughters who are unbelievers. She wrote Brother Anderson a letter stating she wanted to live with Sabbathkeepers. He had been reading Dr. Kellogg’s appeals for persons to take some old person or some child into their homes, and they would receive a great blessing in so doing. They thought this case was made for them, and they sent for her to come to them the next morning. I heard about the affair and it was like this: she is a women very set and determined in her way, and wants to carry out her own ideas. Her son has a little home and he is unmarried. He earns three pounds per week as a tailor. He has hens and chickens that he keeps; the mother feeds these, and he does not want her to leave now. He did at one point of time, but her children, I think, do not respect their mother as they should and told her they would not give her a home with them. Brother Mountain took her into his family, but he says he had quite a severe trial of it, and when he found her children were abundantly able to support her, he took her back to them and let them have the burden, placing it where it belongs. Brother Mountain did not feel that Brother Anderson understood what he was entering into. The mother has sixty pounds of her own and this, Brother Anderson said, would pay her expenses when she traveled from place to place with them. What a calculation! Attaching to themselves a blind woman to impose this additional burden upon those who entertain them! 8LtMs, Lt 131, 1893, par. 13

Brother Mountain said the son declared if the mother went now, he would never receive her into his home again. She could at least feed the poultry and be some little help in that line, but if she went, he should have to break up his home, for there was no one to see to the hens and chickens. We took the responsibility of advising her to remain. We shall now see if we can ascertain more particulars of this matter. I shall write to Brother and Sister Anderson. A letter written to Brother Wilson came from Brother Anderson, stating that he had taken six baths only, and the effect was marvelous upon him. He speaks in the highest enthusiasm. He says he shall be able to go to work in six weeks. But I hope he will make a thorough matter of it now he is there. I am glad to hear this. 8LtMs, Lt 131, 1893, par. 14

Brother and Sister Wilson have been to Blenheim and stayed one week; returned Wednesday morning. He is much better healthwise. He left last Friday for Palmerston en route to Napier and intends making his home in Hastings. They need help in these two places very much. I think Brother McCullagh made a mistake in leaving these places without labor to go to Ormondville. He is having a close, hard time there. Opposition—blind, bitter and stubborn—from ministers hedges up his way. He is of good courage; he sent for Brother Wilson, but we advised Brother Wilson to go at once to Napier and Hastings and work in these places. I had a long talk with him in regard to cultivating voice power. 8LtMs, Lt 131, 1893, par. 15

June 19

It was thought best to have Sister Martha Brown go home to her mother and remain there until she recovers from her cold and gains strength. She is not inclined to take care of herself. Emily gave her very thorough treatment. Her cold, we ascertained, came from damp straw in her bed, and she thought it was musty. She and Sister Israel put it in her bed. They both thought it was crisp and dry, but a handful or two of wet must have slipped in, and the cold has brought her down so that she has done nothing for several days, and now Emily and Sister Tuxford have had a little experience of what it means to do the work of the house. Both think your counsel wise. Emily accompanied her home, for we feared to have her go alone. 8LtMs, Lt 131, 1893, par. 16

Yesterday was dark and cloudy and windy. It rained all night and is pouring down this morning, but the girls left a few minutes since, for the six o’clock train. I have a cold, but otherwise am doing well. Nothing of particular interest here. Brother Israel is suffering from rheumatism. We learn from Sister Tuxford that it has been a very cold, wet season in Napier. She was glad to return after a week’s stay with her mother. I think I could not be better situated this winter. The days are remarkably short, although I get up at three and four in the morning. 8LtMs, Lt 131, 1893, par. 17

We have read and reread your letter in regard to the land you went to see. We hope to hear more in reference to the matter by the next mail. We learn that Brother Harris and John Hare went to Melbourne on last Tuesday’s boat, but nothing was said in regard to his family. He should have received my letter, but if he did he made no response. I hope you will take good care of your health. I do not altogether approve of your going steerage passage to Sydney. You may do tolerably well one time and ill another time, but I am very thankful to our Heavenly Father that you did not have a rough sea voyage. 8LtMs, Lt 131, 1893, par. 18

Brother Faulkhead has written to me in regard to his going to America. Of course I cannot say anything, only I would be pleased indeed to have him go. I think it would be a great blessing to him. I suppose he takes his mother with him. Quite a little flock to transport. You will see Brother Faulkhead and talk with him. 8LtMs, Lt 131, 1893, par. 19

A letter has been received by me from the sister of the one who left Melbourne to enter the nurses’ training school in Battle Creek. This sister wants to go to Battle Creek and have a season in the hospital. She has internal difficulties, and she has only money to pay her way there. You had better see her and tell her to have the work done in Melbourne. I would not send her or advise her to go to America, depending, as others have done, on paying her expenses after she gets well. I will enclose a letter to Elder Starr. You may be so engaged you cannot give it attention. I think there may be some attraction or earnestness for her to go to Battle Creek because Brother Shannon is there. I understand there was some tender feelings between them. 8LtMs, Lt 131, 1893, par. 20

I think I should want very positive evidence in this case before I advised her to go to America. There are as good surgeons here in these countries as in America. Why she should write to me seems as mystery. Will you tell our good brethren and sisters, if they are anxious for me to get out the life of Christ, to advise no one to send to me for counsel in such matters, for are there not good counsellors close at hand? Did she suppose I would send her, on my advice? I cannot do this kind of business. I have done more of it in the past than I shall do in the future. I shall not take the responsibility of recommending her to Dr. Kellogg. Her sister is there, and if she can make any satisfactory terms with Dr. Kellogg, she can do so. I cannot fathom the matter, why she should write to me. I do not know the girl; let her seek counsel of those who do know her. 8LtMs, Lt 131, 1893, par. 21

I have written you a long letter, and next Thursday I shall have an opportunity to send again. Sister Tuxford and I compose the family today; we expect Emily back at one o’clock or later. 8LtMs, Lt 131, 1893, par. 22

Write as often as you can, for I shall be anxiously waiting some word from you. 8LtMs, Lt 131, 1893, par. 23

We had a most precious season of prayer for you this morning, that the Lord would guide you and strengthen and bless you, but I pray constantly that divine counsel shall be given to you and the workers of God, that no move shall be made without God guides and devises and plans. 8LtMs, Lt 131, 1893, par. 24


I sent a letter to Mary and my grandchildren last mail. 8LtMs, Lt 131, 1893, par. 25