Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 15 (1900)

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Lt 169, 1900

Irwin, G. A.; Haskell, S. N.

“Sunnyside,” Cooranbong, New South Wales, Australia

July 17, 1900

Portions of this letter are published in Ev 472-473; 7MR 89-90.

Dear Brethren Irwin and Haskell:

I sent a copy of a letter to Elder Haskell but did not give directions for him to present this matter before the Illinois Conference, asking them if they will return to me that one thousand dollars that was donated to help the Chicago mission. I should have asked you to see if they will not now return that money I invested in their mission, to be placed in our Australia work, which greatly needs the same. I understand that a donation has been made to the Chicago mission. Will they then favor us here in sending us the money to invest in the work that is now needed to be established before we shall visit you in America. I will only ask you to see if this cannot be. 15LtMs, Lt 169, 1900, par. 1

We must now see that a meetinghouse is built in Maitland. There are a goodly number of souls that have embraced the truth, and a church has been organized; but what bitter opposition is made by the ministers. It is pronounced and strong. Ministers who cannot evade the Bible argument for the Sabbath binding upon the people, talk in their pulpits that the Bible is not all the book it should be. (One said that Daniel should never be a part of the Bible; and other books he mentioned, and the same testimony was borne; and then he said he thought there would be a new Bible, and some of the books now in it would not appear.) Brethren Colcord and Goodheart were present. 15LtMs, Lt 169, 1900, par. 2

These ministers are visiting the people everywhere, wresting the Scriptures, and making of none effect the Word of God by their blasphemous statements. These strong, pronounced denunciations are removing the bitter opposition of some such men as Scobie and Lamotte. Both tobacco users and non-professors, they have left their tobacco and tea, and have taken a decided stand; and the evidence of what the belief of the truth can do has an influence upon the people. Now they see the work of the Spirit of God in the life and character, that it only makes the haters of truth mad. 15LtMs, Lt 169, 1900, par. 3

These brethren were at our camp meeting, and were convicted deeply; and the continuation of the work after the camp meeting has been effectual. Both left off their tobacco and their tea. They came down to our two-days’ meeting just closed, and both took part in the meeting. Brother Scobie has been in affliction some time with an injury of a fall. He said to me, “Sister White, do you not think my countenance has changed?” “Yes,” I said, “I see the impress of the image of Christ.” He said, “I weigh fourteen pounds more than when I was using tobacco and tea.” This man had not offered a prayer in his house during his lifetime. He said, “Brother Lamotte weighs fifteen pounds more since he gave up his tobacco.” He has daughters grown to womanhood. 15LtMs, Lt 169, 1900, par. 4

Mr. Lamont is the father of two very fine men, who think much of their parents, especially of the mother. They are in business for themselves. One has a family. Recently one of the sons sat at their table, and took dinner with them. The father humbly and reverentially asked a blessing. The son said to his mother, “What a change has come over Father! He never did such a thing as this before.” The father made answer, “Your mother is a Christian. She is going to heaven, and I can not be with your mother. I am trying to be a Christian and go to heaven with her; and we hope our sons will also become Christians and meet us there.” 15LtMs, Lt 169, 1900, par. 5

Their sons have not a practical testimony to the truth. Two or three came out, decided that they would keep the Sabbath. Mr. Lamotte has seemed to be unable to break away from the waterworks—a very important business. The managers have kept him, telling him they must find another man to take his place; but during this two-days’ meeting he says, “Now they will have to get along without me, for I shall keep the Sabbath.” He has great confidence in Sister White’s mission and work. 15LtMs, Lt 169, 1900, par. 6

Now is the time to arise and build in Maitland; and I could help them if I had that one thousand dollars, minus one hundred. I think I paid seven per cent interest on that money about two years. I leave this with you. 15LtMs, Lt 169, 1900, par. 7

A word more: Although Brother Lamotte is a sharp businessman, he did not know how to read until the tent was pitched in Maitland. He is learning. He is digging at it, until he reads. Now we must have a meetinghouse. The people are saying, “These people will soon go away and you have no church building, and then you will be scattered.” We want to see a building before we leave for America. I have carried the church in Maitland in my soul. 15LtMs, Lt 169, 1900, par. 8

You remember the dream of the two white clouds, as white as snow on our journey to Queensland. Well, I see the fulfillment of my dream. Every week tells its story; one soul or two souls receive the truth, and the wonderful change in their features and in their characters is so marked by their neighbors, that the conviction of the very life of their neighbors is leading others to the truth; and they are now searching the Scriptures diligently. Brother Colcord and Brother and Sister Hickox, and Brother and Sister James from Ballarat, and Sister Robinson, and Sister Wilson, are doing just as efficient work as the ministers; and some meetings, when the ministers are all called away, Sister Wilson takes the Bible and addresses the congregation, and Sister James says she does excellently. 15LtMs, Lt 169, 1900, par. 9

Well, I almost forgot to tell you, we have an excellent brother from Tasmania, who opens a church school at Hamilton; he [is] to settle in one portion of the sanitarium. There are five rooms for tenants. He will occupy those buildings and conduct meetings. He is a church school teacher, a refine gentleman, and is one who will be a great blessing, we believe, to the church. Sister Walker occupies the hired house at Wallsend, and is teaching a school of sixteen scholars; so the work is not at a standstill. Still, we see signified a great work to be done all through this locality of Maitland, Newcastle, and to extend to every station in Queensland. 15LtMs, Lt 169, 1900, par. 10

In much love. 15LtMs, Lt 169, 1900, par. 11

Sister Haskell, did I put in your charge a plush cloak? If nothing has been done to dispose of it, it is the very thing I will need this winter; for I expect, if I come to America, the winters will be severe on me. Will you please to respond; for we cannot find the cloak in the house. 15LtMs, Lt 169, 1900, par. 12