Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 20 (1905)


Lt 295, 1905

Baldwin, J. H.

“Elmshaven,” St. Helena, California

October 18, 1905

Portions of this letter are published in SpTB #18 22-26. +Note

Mr. J. H. Baldwin

Dear Brother,—

I have received and read your letter. I should have answered it before, but it was mislaid. On reading it, I laid it away in a special place. At the time I was very busy answering letters that called for immediate attention. A little later when I looked for your letter, I could not find it, and supposed that I must have given it to my son. He told me that he did not have it, and yesterday a diligent search among my papers disclosed your letter. 20LtMs, Lt 295, 1905, par. 1

I will now try to answer your questions. You state that you are holding yourself in readiness to unite with the Nashville Sanitarium, but that you wish to see your way clear before beginning operations. You ask if I have any counsel to offer as to the exact site on which the sanitarium should be established. 20LtMs, Lt 295, 1905, par. 2

I am very much pleased, Brother Baldwin, to know that you are planning to connect with the Nashville Sanitarium. I believe that the Lord is in this matter, and I pray that He will bless you in taking up this responsibility. If you can help Dr. Hayward and those connected with him in designing and putting up the sanitarium building, we shall indeed be very grateful. I know that as soon as possible a sanitarium should be established near Nashville. Medical Missionary is indeed the helping hand of the gospel ministry and opens the way for the entrance of the truth. The importance of this line of work cannot be overestimated. 20LtMs, Lt 295, 1905, par. 3

I have written several times regarding the necessity of our sanitariums being established in suitable places, where there is an abundance of land, so that the patients can spend as much time as possible out of doors. If possible, the buildings should be surrounded with pleasant grounds, beautified with flowers and shade trees, under which, in wheel-chairs, on their cots, or on comfortable seats, the patients can listen to the music of the birds. Those who are well enough should be encouraged to cultivate flowers and to engage in other outdoor exercise that will take their minds off themselves. 20LtMs, Lt 295, 1905, par. 4

At one time I hoped that our brethren connected with our medical work in Nashville could see their way clear to establish a sanitarium on a part of the Madison School farm. Instruction has been given me that with our large schools there should be connected small sanitariums, that the students may have opportunity to gain a knowledge of medical missionary work. This line of work is to be brought into our schools as a part of the regular instruction. 20LtMs, Lt 295, 1905, par. 5

The Madison School should have a small sanitarium of its own, that the students may have opportunity to learn how to give the simple treatments. This is the plan that we have been directed to follow. And if the brethren connected with the medical work in Nashville could have seen their way clear to locate the sanitarium on the school farm near enough the school for there to be co-operation between the two institutions and far enough from it to prevent one interfering with the work of the other, I should have been glad. I have thought much of these things in connection with the Nashville Sanitarium and of the advantages to be gained if the school and the sanitarium could be near enough together to blend in their work. But I have received no positive instruction regarding the exact location of the Nashville Sanitarium, and in this particular case I cannot speak in decided terms. I dare not take the responsibility of saying anything to change the present arrangements. 20LtMs, Lt 295, 1905, par. 6

In order for the best results to be secured by the establishment of a sanitarium on the school farm, there would need to be perfect harmony between the workers of the institutions. But this might be difficult to secure, for Dr. Hayward is self-centered in his way of carrying things forward, and so also are brethren Magan and Sutherland. All of these men have decided ideas of their own; and were the sanitarium placed on the school farm, great annoyance might result were all determined to carry out their own plans, refusing to make concessions to one another. Both those at the head of the sanitarium and those at the head of the school will need to guard against clinging tenaciously to ideas of their own regarding things that are really nonessentials. 20LtMs, Lt 295, 1905, par. 7

These thoughts came forcibly to my mind, and I knew that I dare not take the responsibility of saying that the Nashville Sanitarium should be located on the school farm. But I wish it to be clearly understood that I have by no means changed my views regarding the advisability of our schools and sanitariums being established near enough each other to harmonize in their work. 20LtMs, Lt 295, 1905, par. 8

The property that has recently been purchased is regarded by the brethren as an ideal spot for a sanitarium. I have not seen it and therefore cannot speak personally in reference to it. It possesses a great advantage in having on it a fine spring. This is a treasure that cannot be too highly prized. The streetcar line that runs near the place is also of great advantage. As soon as possible, a sanitarium building should be erected on this property. I shall be so thankful to our heavenly Father if the Nashville Sanitarium can be established in a desirable place and quickly set in running order. 20LtMs, Lt 295, 1905, par. 9

Let the brethren counsel together and ask the Lord for wisdom, and then follow the light He sends. We shall ask our heavenly Father, who has called you to this work, to bless you in your efforts to build up the Nashville Sanitarium; and we shall co-operate with our brethren in carrying out whatever plans are accepted by the sanitarium board and the union conference committee to be for the best good of the work. 20LtMs, Lt 295, 1905, par. 10

It is now five o’clock a.m., and I have been at work since two o’clock this morning writing to different ones. There is one thing more about which I wish to speak before I close. We have no need to hesitate in regard to soliciting means for the Lord’s work. And no object is of greater importance or interest than the establishment of a sanitarium. I hope that you will lay your plans before those who have money, and obtain gifts from them. 20LtMs, Lt 295, 1905, par. 11

Several years ago it was presented to me that the Gentile world should be called upon to make donations to our work in the southern field. Let discreet, God-fearing men go to worldly men that have means, and lay before them a plan of what they desire to do for the colored people. Let them tell about the Huntsville School, about the orphanage that we desire to build there, and about the colored mission schools that are needed all over the southern states. Let the needs of this work be presented by men who understand how to reach the hearts of men of means. Many of these men, if approached in the right way, would make gifts to the work. 20LtMs, Lt 295, 1905, par. 12

Let the plans for a sanitarium for the whites be brought to their attention also. Tell them what is needed to place this in running order. Tell them that there are many sick ones who need to be cared for, not in a hospital, but in a home. 20LtMs, Lt 295, 1905, par. 13

There is aggressive work to be done. In the past too much dependence has been placed on the General Conference. There has been too much looking to it to support the work financially. The General Conference has heavy burdens to bear in sustaining foreign mission work, which must constantly be extended. 20LtMs, Lt 295, 1905, par. 14

Why not ask the Gentiles for assistance? I have received instruction that there are men and women in the world who have sympathetic hearts, and who will be touched with compassion as the needs of suffering humanity are presented before them. Let men who have the ability to tell what a sanitarium should be, and the need that there is for such institutions, go to the Gentiles for financial aid. Our missionaries are fully authorized to do this in all the large cities of the South. There are men of the world who will give of their means for schools and for sanitariums. 20LtMs, Lt 295, 1905, par. 15

The matter has been presented to me in this light. Our work is to be aggressive. The money is the Lord’s; and if wealthy men are approached in the right way, the Lord will touch their hearts and impress them to give of their means. God’s money is in the hands of these men, and some of them will heed the request for help. 20LtMs, Lt 295, 1905, par. 16

Talk this over, and do all in your power to secure gifts. We are not to feel that it would not be the thing to ask men of the world for means; for it is just the thing to do. This plan was opened before me as a way of coming in touch with wealthy men of the world. Through this means, not a few will become interested and may hear and believe the truth for this time. 20LtMs, Lt 295, 1905, par. 17

May the Lord bless you in your work is my prayer. 20LtMs, Lt 295, 1905, par. 18