Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 10 (1895)


Lt 23, 1895

Daniells, A. G.

Norfolk Villa, Granville, New South Wales, Australia

March 5, 1895

Previously unpublished.

A. G. Daniells:

We received your letters and were glad to hear from you. Last Sunday I was invited to attend a baptism at Ashfield. The ordinance was to be administered in a nice little lake of pure, flowing water. We turned off the road to the left just before we came to the campground. We drove through the grounds of the gentleman who owns the land in which is the lake, one mile from the main road. May drove Jessie and Maggie. O how much more restful to me to go right along without the urging that is necessary when one horse has to draw the phaeton. Brother McCullagh met us, and guided us through the paddocks to the water. More than two hundred persons were gathered at the lake-side. After several hymns were sung, prayer was offered by Bro. Hare, then I spoke for about forty minutes, and the Lord helped me. I spoke from the words, “If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth at the right hand of God.” [Colossians 3:1.] Nineteen precious souls were baptized. Everything was done decently and in order; there was not the least confusion or struggling. 10LtMs, Lt 23, 1895, par. 1

After the baptism three weeks ago, when seventeen went forward, the Baptists told our brethren they might have the use of the baptistry on certain days of the week at any time they asked for it. But when they asked on this occasion, the Baptists refused, saying we could not use it any more, for some of the members of their church were to be rebaptized. I was more glad than I can express, for if this refusal had not come, our brethren would not have found this beautiful lake, and it is worth while to make special efforts in finding a pure stream or a lake or to go the seaside, to the great fountain of waters, in order to celebrate the ordinance of baptism. I would go many miles to be baptized in an open stream, rather than receive the ordinance in a little box. I think I would wait for months before consenting to be baptized in a baptistry. 10LtMs, Lt 23, 1895, par. 2

Well, that scene at the lakeside was an advertisement, and it will have an influence. Only twelve had expected to go forward in the ordinance at this time, but several who had been halting between two opinions made their decisions to keep their first [Sabbath], next seventh day, March 9. Several kept last Sabbath as the first, and six more are now ready to go forward in baptism at the next opportunity. 10LtMs, Lt 23, 1895, par. 3

It was as pleasant a baptism as I have witnessed for years. Bro. McCullagh administered the ordinance to the whole number. It was a picture, his pale face, his solemn, earnest words and manner. The whole scene was a victory for the truth. 10LtMs, Lt 23, 1895, par. 4

The interest is deepening both in Ashfield and in Petersham. I speak in Ashfield next Sabbath. Brother Byron Belden and Sarah accompany me. Last Sabbath Byron reviewed the Sabbath School at Ashfield and at Petersham, and the report is that he did excellently. He is solicited to go again. I am so thankful for this good work. 10LtMs, Lt 23, 1895, par. 5

There are some persons of the more prominent in society attending the meetings at Ashfield. The managers at the beautiful grounds of an institute which our people went to see when looking for land, have invited Elder McCullagh to visit and speak to them next Thursday. They will have a company collected, and will give him a good hearing. This is something to be thankful for. We are feeling the deepest interest in the work, and we pray that the Lord will give grace to the speaker and to the hearers. I cannot recall the name of the place to be visited. Brother McCullagh has another invitation, to go about six miles out to speak upon temperance, repeating a discourse one heard him give about three weeks ago in Ashfield. The sound seems to be going out in every direction, and calls are made for the tent to come to other suburbs. The Lord is working, and many precious souls are accepting the truth. 10LtMs, Lt 23, 1895, par. 6

Last Sunday night there were not as many out as usual, either in Ashfield, or Petersham. The baptism was a great event, and many walked a long way to get to it, while carriages were crowded. Standing for the space of two hours made some of the people so weary that they did not come to the meetings in the evening. Four dollars was taken in the collection at Ashfield, and five dollars at Petersham. The meetings are reported as excellent. New ones are coming to the services in both places. O, we feel like humbling our souls before God, and pleading in the name of Jesus for His Holy Spirit to move upon the hearts of the people. 10LtMs, Lt 23, 1895, par. 7

In relating the incident of the baptism, the deacon of the Baptist church that refused to accommodate us was present, and said he was in harmony with all the remarks made by Mrs. White, that the thoughts presented were new and very instructive. He said he was not in favor of refusing us their baptistry, but others urged it, and he felt it necessary to be in harmony with them, but in this case it is decidedly demonstrated, “Ye can do nothing against the truth, but for the truth.” [2 Corinthians 13:8.] There is created a feeling of sympathy, and an interest awakened that would not have been if we had not been driven to the lake for a place to baptize. 10LtMs, Lt 23, 1895, par. 8

The Lord is at work by His providence. If we walk humbly with God, trusting in Him alone, we shall see of His salvation. I shall now devote my thoughts, strength, and interests in Ashfield and Petersham. All seem to receive the words the Lord gives me to speak. I am so thankful to my heavenly Father that truth is bearing away the victory. They say that two excellent persons have decided for the truth, proprietors of a soap factory. A family of high repute in society are deeply interested, and are attending the meetings, and Brother McCullagh is giving some of the family Bible readings. 10LtMs, Lt 23, 1895, par. 9