Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 16 (1901)


Lt 178, 1901

Sanderson, A. J.

Los Angeles, California

August, 1901

Portions of this letter are published in 1MR 71. +Note

Brother Sanderson,—

I should be much pleased, could I have the strength to write to you in reference to matters at the St. Helena Sanitarium. I do not think it is wise for me to attend the board meetings, and I have not felt equal to the task of having an interview with you. It would not be advisable for me to speak of all the matters concerning which my mind would be led out to converse. 16LtMs, Lt 178, 1901, par. 1

When one of our institutions misrepresents God as this one <in St. Helena has done>; when one of our institutions is regarded by many, even among the people of the world, as not properly managed; it is time to do something to set things in order. This is a most painful subject for me to touch, but I dare not keep silent. 16LtMs, Lt 178, 1901, par. 2

Since I spoke to you and to others in the Sanitarium, you have had nothing to say. I am sure that were I in your place, I should have had something to say. And I shall have something to say just as long as you remain in the Sanitarium; for unless there is in the institution a physician who is fitted to fully occupy the place of physician-in-chief, there will always be the same difficulties that now exist. 16LtMs, Lt 178, 1901, par. 3

When I heard read the resolutions in reference to inviting Dr. Mary Sanderson to connect with the institution, I well understood that there were some things which I must say. I could not refrain from speaking; for from the light that the Lord has given me, I know that she has not the qualifications of a Christian physician. She does not practice the truth. Her influence would be detrimental to the interests of the Sanitarium. <It has already been thus.> When in the past she occupied a position there, her influence was not fragrant with the spirit of truth. She needs to be converted. 16LtMs, Lt 178, 1901, par. 4

When Sister Mary Sanderson is living in conformity with the truth, <when she is thoroughly converted,> then it will be time to present a resolution in regard to her connecting with the Sanitarium; but until that time shall come, it is not wise to employ her in the institution. Those who are overbearing, those who assume an attitude of superiority, do not reveal the spirit of Christ, but the spirit of the world. There have been connected with the institution persons who have had phases of character that should never be manifested in so responsible a position. 16LtMs, Lt 178, 1901, par. 5

Christ has a right to our service. Our proficiency for a position should be apparent to all. If Dr. Sanderson does not understand himself, if he cannot realize that he himself is not a complete whole, if he is not becoming more and still more capable, then it is necessary to lay the situation faithfully before him in its true bearings. If he chose to do so, he could come into a proper state of mind by associating with a physician possessing a mold of character that would enable him to raise the institution to a far higher standard of spirituality. If possible, this must be brought about. 16LtMs, Lt 178, 1901, par. 6

For his own good, Dr. Sanderson <for a time> needs to be connected with proper influences in an institution like the Battle Creek Sanitarium, where a number of physicians differently organized are working together. From others he could learn many essential things <that he does not now see the necessity of learning>. He should understand that he is not to be the one advisor, the one to act as manager. He must see the importance of gaining an education <of greater height and breadth> that will place an altogether different mold on his character. 16LtMs, Lt 178, 1901, par. 7

Dr. Sanderson has revealed an astonishing lack of tact and genuine ability to carry forward and upward the work. In many things he has been continually retrograding, not advancing. This lack of wisdom is not in the order of God. If he would ask in faith and humility, he could obtain wisdom from heaven. 16LtMs, Lt 178, 1901, par. 8

Dr. Sanderson has perseveringly worked to hold everything under his control. No longer is he to be allowed to select men to fill official positions in the institution. Only in pretense have the younger men acted as directors or managers. Dr. Sanderson is not pleased to have as managers any others than those who will work under him. No longer is the Sanitarium to be thus managed. This order of things is hurting the reputation of the institution and must be changed. God cannot work through unconsecrated agencies. 16LtMs, Lt 178, 1901, par. 9

The responsibility of managing an institution established by the Lord is not to be placed wholly upon the head physician. He is not to have a controlling voice, except in his own department as physician-in-chief. The Sanitarium here needs the help of men who will understand what is expected of them, and who will do their duty, whether Dr. Sanderson is favorable or unfavorable. 16LtMs, Lt 178, 1901, par. 10

I have lost hope of a thorough reformation, unless we can obtain the <spiritual and intelligent> help that should have been in the St. Helena Sanitarium long ago. The institution is not accomplishing that for which it was established. The same management that has been controlling the institution should no longer be allowed to continue. 16LtMs, Lt 178, 1901, par. 11

The Lord will be with you, my brother <Sanderson>, if you will be with Him. I am very anxious that you shall indeed be a physician of the soul, as well as a physician of the body. We are laborers together with God. We have a most solemn, serious work to do. I am intensely desirous that you shall meet the royal standard. 16LtMs, Lt 178, 1901, par. 12