Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 13 (1898)


Lt 72, 1898

Smith, Uriah

“Sunnyside,” Cooranbong, New South Wales, Australia

September 5, 1898

Previously unpublished.

Dear Brother Smith:

I was very much pleased with the books and the exchanges you sent me. Especially do I appreciate the bound volume of Instructors. I did not receive these at Cooranbong, but from Melbourne a short time since. Please receive my sincere thanks, and also Brother Hoops who has acted upon your orders. 13LtMs, Lt 72, 1898, par. 1

The work here is still advancing. I am straining every power I possess to help different families to obtain a spot of land, where they can support themselves and obey the truth. I wish you could see some of these families. One is the Thomson family. The father and eldest son are mechanics, and excellent workmen. The father came to Cooranbong to help build the chapel. Afterward he united with him his two eldest boys. His wife is a stirring, hard-working woman, with ten living children. Through discouragement she gave up the truth, but I felt I must do something to help Brother Thomson’s family. He is an excellent man, a sincere believer of no mean capabilities. His wife frets, but he never complains. He is patient and kind. 13LtMs, Lt 72, 1898, par. 2

Well, I wish I could take you to the piece of land which the thirty pounds helped them to buy. There you would see a long building something like a bushman’s cabin. The storm side is composed of bark, and over the tent there is some iron roofing. Here Brother Thomson and his three sons live, with an old man who has lived with them many years. The mother and the remainder of the children are in Parramatta, some miles away out from Sydney, near Prospect Hill. They are waiting for a place to be prepared for them. 13LtMs, Lt 72, 1898, par. 3

One week ago the mother came up to Cooranbong, and helped the family with the mending and other things. A week ago last Sabbath she came to hear me speak. The Spirit of the Lord gave me a message that touched her heart. At the close of the meeting she came to the carriage, and with tears rolling down her face said, Sister White, won’t you ask the Lord to open the way so I can come up with my family to Cooranbong? 13LtMs, Lt 72, 1898, par. 4

The Sabbath previous to this, the eldest son was baptized, when twenty-one went forward in baptism. Most of these were students, but among the number were some who had recently embraced the truth. These people are poor, but of good intellect. Several from Dora Creek have been converted, and have united with the church. All these we are trying to educate to help themselves, for they are very poor. 13LtMs, Lt 72, 1898, par. 5

I would that we could have a hospital here, and I think before long we will have the way prepared. I am writing to America that something be done in this line. If the members of our American churches would give from one dime to one shilling each, these little sums would make quite an amount, and we could go ahead as the means would allow. I send you a copy of the appeal I make in the name of the Lord. Will you see that it comes out as a special matter that must not be set aside or overlooked? Give it all the influence you can. This is the only way we can do. 13LtMs, Lt 72, 1898, par. 6

Some time ago Sara was sent for to a family, every member of which, save the husband and father, was sick. This man, Mr. Hungerford, had at one time kept a livery stable, but the hard times broke him up, and for some years he and his wife have struggled along in great poverty. Then he was taken sick and lost his position which he held in a saw mill, and for some time all they had for the support of father, mother, and five or six children was that which a frail-looking woman could earn by going out washing. She said she felt that it was hard to have to hand to her husband, out of this little pittance, money for tobacco. 13LtMs, Lt 72, 1898, par. 7

Well, the husband and father next came down, and Sara McEnterfer, taking with her one of our family, put them all through a course of treatment. She employed a man to take care of the husband and give him treatment. Everything in the house was very unhandy. There was nothing with which to work. Two old chairs were the only seats of this kind in the house, and the covering for their beds in this cold winter weather was sacks sewn together. These they used for quilts and bed ticks. 13LtMs, Lt 72, 1898, par. 8

During this winter the influenza has taken a large number of people in hand, but while we have heard of frequent deaths in the cities, we have had but a few fatal cases in Cooranbong. I think all who died were brought in from other places. This family had to be attended to. They had nothing to eat in the house, and food was taken from our house to keep them alive. As soon as he had recovered, Willie and I found work for the man, paying him one dollar per day. Mr. Hungerford saw that his darling idol must be given up, and he threw his tobacco and pipe into the fire. He and his wife were baptized after a few weeks. 13LtMs, Lt 72, 1898, par. 9

Sara now has under her care the mother of two children. This woman is sick and discouraged. Sr. M. takes two of the students from the school with her, and teaches them how to give treatment. Much of her time is given to this kind of missionary work which must be done for suffering humanity. Her fame as a nurse and physician has gone far and near. She has been sent for to treat the sick in places where a carriage could not go, and she rides horseback in order to reach them. This is not the most pleasant work that can be done, but suffering humanity must have help. 13LtMs, Lt 72, 1898, par. 10

People come with different complaints—ankles sprained and fearfully injured—and she bravely takes the cases in hand. I give her up whenever she is called upon. She has had to give treatment to several of this class. Brother Thomson’s son was one of these. He brought his boy to Cooranbong with a swollen knee. The lad had fallen on a stone, and the knee was seriously injured and much enlarged. The doctors had attended him, but had done him no good, as he was then going about with a crutch. 13LtMs, Lt 72, 1898, par. 11

Sara took the case in hand, and worked with him in our own house twice a day. About one hour each day was occupied in giving him treatment. It was a stubborn affair, but for weeks most thorough treatment was given him with hot and cold applications, and pulverized charcoal dipped in hot water and used as a poultice. He is a very bright, promising lad, and this accident was a great affliction to his parents; but the swelling is now removed, and he is as active and healthy a child as you would wish to look upon. We had this lad sit at our table for three months, and we have a reward in seeing him restored to health. We thank the Lord for this. 13LtMs, Lt 72, 1898, par. 12

Another lad received a most terrible injury to his foot. While running to drive a calf from the garden, he stepped into a hole where a broken bottle had been thrown, and injured his foot very seriously. When the lad’s father saw the wound he came near fainting away. 13LtMs, Lt 72, 1898, par. 13

After ten days of terrible suffering without any relief, Sara was sent for. When she saw it, she thought blood poisoning would soon close up that case, but determined to do what she could. At first she worked over that poor foot for hours, until the appearance of gangrene was removed then brought the lad to Willie’s parlor, just across the road, and for ten days kept the boy and his aunt who had come to help care for him. The wound was healed by the same treatment given to the swollen knee—hot fomentations followed by cold applications, and occasionally the charcoal was used. The boy is now entirely recovered. 13LtMs, Lt 72, 1898, par. 14

Well, this is the work we have been doing. Sara has officiated in cases of every description. Indeed I cannot enumerate the work she has done and this without a penny return. I could write you of case after case, but this is enough. This work is preparing our way. It is removing prejudice, and the truth is being received into some hearts. Because of her faithful work, at the last conference at Melbourne Sara was honored with a life membership of the Medical Missionary and Benevolent Association. But she cannot attend to the cases that demand help all through the regions round about, and we must have help. 13LtMs, Lt 72, 1898, par. 15