Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 10

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Lt 143, 1895

White, W. C.

Norfolk Villa, Prospect St., Granville, N. S. W., Australia

February 28, 1895

Previously unpublished.

Dear Son Willie:

Your letter came to us last Monday and was read with much interest. 10LtMs, Lt 143, 1895, par. 1

Sabbath, I spoke in the hall at Ashfield, which was well filled with interested listeners. The call to the supper, (Luke 14), was the subject presented. We then had a social meeting, which was particularly interesting. Several were present who were in the valley of decision and large hope is entertained that they will have the courage to decide to be fully on the Lord’s side, keeping all the commandments of God. I was surprised to see the number of eighty-five present, and the children, or youth, listened with intense interest. The interest is steadily increasing at Ashfield. 10LtMs, Lt 143, 1895, par. 2

I had promised to speak in the tent at Petersham Sunday night. May Lacey and I went with Jessie, and the weather was excellent. I spoke from (1 John 3), and the tent was full, and as my voice was heard outside, a wall of listeners was formed outside. There were many new ones who came out to hear for the first time. Those present were intelligent, noble-looking people, and seemed to listen attentively. Before me, on the first seat, were a number of women who seemed to be of unusual intelligence and experience. I had much freedom in speaking. 10LtMs, Lt 143, 1895, par. 3

A collection was taken up, and Brother Pallant handed me a little package, only a small box in an envelope, and a letter also. In this box was a trifling offering of a pencil case to put our common lead pencils in, and two short pencils to be used in the same way. I will send you a copy of the letter. She, [the writer,] is a descendent of the Waldensians, genuine stock. I shall preserve this memento. Four women I mentioned on the front seat made themselves known to me and spoke very courteously of the subject to which they had listened. They said everything seemed to be presented as a living reality, so very simple and yet so beautiful and grand. It did not harm me to speak. The Lord was my Helper. Three other women met me outside the tent and said they were very much interested in the subject presented. They had heard me speak in the tent at Ashfield and were much interested. They asked, “When will you speak again, Mrs. White? Can we know when, for we wish to have our friends hear you?” 10LtMs, Lt 143, 1895, par. 4

One hundred and sixty were in the tent and quite a little congregation outside. Brother Hare spoke in the hall at Ashfield, and he reports that he had a good congregation. So you see that two good congregations only two miles apart are quite a circumstance. Brother Patchem and his wife are holding some meetings in their home. They did this before they embraced the truth, and they are encouraged, even by those who have not taken the truth, to continue the meetings. They were gathering in the outcasts, the drunkards and those who would come who needed help the most, and they now hold Bible Class readings. He says he feels that he must learn all he can and use that which he learns for a purpose, to instruct others in the neighborhood. 10LtMs, Lt 143, 1895, par. 5

I was requested to talk Monday morning to the workers. Brother Pallant could not be present, but we had a very pleasant season together; and the Lord blessed us while we tried to present the importance of most earnest, thorough work. Brother Pallant has not done anything but to look after and distribute the books and act as book agent. Brother Collins can now work in visiting, and had I understood the situation, it would have been arranged in this manner before. Sister Edwards will devote a portion of her time in visiting. Had there not been such a pressure for means, I think Sister Walker would not have been allowed to go to Queensland, for women workers are much needed. Brethren Starr and Hickox had their wives who could both visit; they have no children. We have now only Sister Edwards, and she has two children to support and care for. 10LtMs, Lt 143, 1895, par. 6

There is considerable desire expressed for Byron to hire a house in Sydney and to act in the work Pallant is doing, and there is considerable to be done. Brother Pallant says it takes all his time; he cannot do visiting. I wish he could, for he is trying to receive an education in that kind of work. I think he desires to enter the ministry. I am sure he will, if he is persevering, make progress in growth in this line, but he does not feel pleased to be broken up and doing the work he is now engaged in. Byron and Sarah went to Kellyville Sabbath. The meeting Sunday night was left for him, and he had about one dozen new ones out to hear. I have not heard him speak about it. Edith was telling me she heard Byron talking about it. I hope Byron will obtain an experience in this line that will be of advantage to him. He needs to be pushed out in this line. 10LtMs, Lt 143, 1895, par. 7

In regard to what you say of Dr. Kellogg, he says he is willing to do anything it is thought best for him to do. I agree with you in regard to Brother Kellogg and his medical missionary work. I thought one man, an American, might be able to help build much more savingly than the colonials, but I have not responsibilities in this direction. I leave that with the rest of you who are bearing the responsibilities. I have been talking with him last night, telling him if he could change his manner of labor and give Bible readings, he could work in the educating line, giving certain testimony in reference to health questions which concern everyday life, and not deal so largely in generalities which touch nowhere. Sermonizing is certainly not his forte. He does not put sufficient life and quickening power into his talks to interest and attract the people here in Parramatta, and if the people will not come out, his time is about lost. 10LtMs, Lt 143, 1895, par. 8

Brother McCullagh had a long talk with me. He read your letters to him, and Elder Daniells’ letters. He agrees with all you say and has been laboring in that very line, for he stated the same to me about two weeks ago. He did not approve at all of Elder Corliss’ plan of using the contributions his individual self and no one knowing but himself how much was taken up and how expended. He said the Ashfield contributions will be used in Ashfield to pay for the expense of the meetings held there, and in Petersham for the meetings held there. Three meetings each week are held in Ashfield, and they are now soliciting for the fourth meeting, and there is meeting held in the tent every night in the week except Friday night. I have not heard how much was taken up in the tent last Sunday night. 10LtMs, Lt 143, 1895, par. 9

Elder McCullagh says Brother Corliss wished all the collections to be used in the expenses incurred in the meetings. He told him that the conference paid their ministers and to the conference belonged all over and above actual expenses. I thought this was right. I cannot see where Elder McCullagh’s ideas are not in harmony with your ideas. He read me all that had been written on the subject. I was saying to him that Brother Corliss gave the board of Brother Pallant himself. He said so to me. He said, “No, Brother Corliss paid himself for the board of Brother Pallant out of the money used in contributions.” 10LtMs, Lt 143, 1895, par. 10

Brethren Hare and McCullagh feel that it was not the wise thing to make Brother Bray [?] a steward of means the congregations gave. He is himself young in the faith, weighed down under debt, careworn, and he feels distressed at his financial situation. He will probably lose all that he has. Under these circumstances, he thought it not advisable for this brother to have the care of funds. 10LtMs, Lt 143, 1895, par. 11

When the tithing was presented at Ashfield, they were surprised. They say Elder Corliss told them that the contributions in the box was their tithe and Brother McCullagh says he set it before them in the true light, that the tithe went to the conference to be handled by them and support the men working in the gospel field. This seemed to be a new phase of the matter to them, and they say they supposed they paid their proportion of tithes in their contributions. The past is according to their understanding, to go as it is, but the future must be understood and they work on a different basis. In regard to the ministers handling the contributions, a strict account should be kept and the ministers place the means in the hands of an experienced, faithful manager as treasurer. 10LtMs, Lt 143, 1895, par. 12

I am writing this letter in my morning hours before breakfast. I expect Brethren Rousseau and McKenzie down today. Then I suppose it will be known to a certainty if Brother McKenzie will get the position he has formerly held in Sydney in the lawyer’s office as previously. 10LtMs, Lt 143, 1895, par. 13

Sister Rousseau is still here. She works very slowly, for she is a very feeble woman. May is the same faithful, cheerful girl of sweet disposition. You have a treasure, Willie. She now has her clothing in very good condition, not all made, but sufficient for all present use. The dress is all finished and looks nice enough, I think. May would be pleased to go to Tasmania the middle of April if you do not come until the first of May. If you come the first of April, she will wish to go in March, long enough to make a visit. She is very much determined that I shall go with her. But if you do not come to the convention, I do not feel it would be advisable for me to go. I am getting hold, well, of the life of Christ, and I dare not break up if I can consistently avoid it. I shall make my time tell to the best advantage in this line, and as fast as I write, Fannie prepares it for papers and Caldwell copies it, so it lies before me, just what I have written. 10LtMs, Lt 143, 1895, par. 14

Now, in regard to that chapter Marian put in your hands, will you please to read it at once and send to Marian [so] that after reading it, she may send it to Echo office? I am sorry for this delay, but will you attend to it at once? Marian watches with intense interest every mail to see if the manuscript has come. 10LtMs, Lt 143, 1895, par. 15

I will now close this epistle and go over to see Byron and Sarah and then consider whether we will trust to the market for grapes or go to the vineyards in search of grapes. Two purchases of grapes have resulted in a very miserable, decaying mass, and I do not like these. Fresh grapes right from the vine are my preference, and then they are wholesome and good. 10LtMs, Lt 143, 1895, par. 16

May accompanies me as Emily used to, and I enjoy her company. She is learning to be quite a good driver. Once Maude and May were in the carriage in the main street near the tram lines, and the colt began to turn around and act scared. I was out of the phaeton in an instant and at her head; patted her and talked to her, and she quieted down in a minute. So May has no more fears when I am with her. She is assured I understand the management when I am suspicioning danger. 10LtMs, Lt 143, 1895, par. 17

Dr. Kellogg has brought a sample of the soil with him from the school grounds and has made two good brick out of the two kinds of clay. Sister Rousseau and Dr. Kellogg and Rousseau are anxious for me to go to the school grounds. The site they have chosen is, they say, exactly in accordance with your specifications. So says Brother Caldwell and Brother Kellogg—on Avondale Tract, and the ridge is the place they thought best to build. But I am in no hurry. Brother Rousseau would be much pleased to have me on the ground, and I am thinking I will have to go if I retain money enough to build me a house. Would be very well pleased, if you think best, to wait until you shall come yourself. 10LtMs, Lt 143, 1895, par. 18

We have had Maude down again with throat difficulty. Her mother and children go today to New Zealand and I think it the very best thing that can be done. I think we have served our time on the family of an able-bodied man. The sister says if they come to Auckland she can help them in many ways, but she cannot do anything for them here. Sister Camp says she can get work in Auckland, and it was about time for them to get another house if they remain here. All seemed so anxious to go, and Maude to have them go, and we thought it best for them to go. 10LtMs, Lt 143, 1895, par. 19

Now what will be the sum I will have to pay for ten acres of land for me, ten for you? Consider this matter, what you suppose will be right. 10LtMs, Lt 143, 1895, par. 20

Mother.