Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 20 (1905)

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Lt 271, 1905

Burden, Brother and Sister [J. A.]

“Elmshaven,” St. Helena, California

September 27, 1905

This letter is published in entirety in PC 187-189. +Note

Dear Brother and Sister Burden,—

I cannot express the relief that your recent letter has brought to us. I thank the Lord that you are able to secure the services of Dr. Julia White. I believe she will do well. I think it well for you to ask Dr. Abbott to connect with the Loma Linda Sanitarium for the present. 20LtMs, Lt 271, 1905, par. 1

While I was in Los Angeles, I spoke to you of inviting Dr. Gibbs to connect with the work in our sanitariums. What I said should not lead you to understand that he is to act as chief physician, but he can come in on trial. I hardly feel clear before God in giving him no further opportunity to be proved. 20LtMs, Lt 271, 1905, par. 2

Have you learned how much Dr. Holden proposes to charge for his services? If a physician does his work skilfully, his talent should be recognized, but there is danger of our being brought into perplexity. If we introduce a new system of paying our surgeons high wages, there may be a hard problem to settle after a time. Other physicians will demand high wages, and our ministers will require consideration also. 20LtMs, Lt 271, 1905, par. 3

I very much wish that Brother and Sister Haskell might be with the family at Loma Linda and inaugurate in Redlands, Riverside, and San Bernadino a work similar to the work they conducted in Avondale and in Nashville. 20LtMs, Lt 271, 1905, par. 4

I am glad that you are taking steps to have the water supply at Loma Linda pure and good. Very much depends upon having good water. We must be sure that the representations given in the books descriptive of this place are true in every sense of the word. 20LtMs, Lt 271, 1905, par. 5

Last week we had an important gathering at the sanitarium here of our health food workers. I spoke to them on Sabbath, and on Sunday I addressed them for about an hour upon the subject of our restaurant work. I told them that there must be a thorough reformation in the health food business. It is not to be regarded so much as a commercial enterprise. At present but little is seen as the result of this work to lead us to recommend the establishment of more places to be conducted as our restaurants have been in the past. But few have been converted by this work in Los Angeles and in San Francisco. Many of the workers have lost the science of soul-saving. 20LtMs, Lt 271, 1905, par. 6

Please read carefully what is published in Testimonies, volume 7, regarding the health food work and the evangelical work. I feel more and more impressed that we must make diligent efforts to present the truth. I need not now write much regarding these lines of work, for the light has been in print for some time. But since these testimonies were published, circumstances have arisen that reveal the necessity for the cautions that have been given. Health reform needs a reformation before it shall stand as God designs it should. We need to practice true godliness in every undertaking. In all the restaurants in our cities, there is danger that the combination of many foods in the dishes served shall be carried too far. The stomach suffers when so many kinds of food are placed in it at one meal. Simplicity is a part of health reform. There is danger that our work shall cease to merit the name which it has borne. 20LtMs, Lt 271, 1905, par. 7

If we would work for the restoration of health, it is necessary to restrain the appetite, to eat slowly, and only a limited variety at one time. This instruction needs to be repeated frequently. It is not in harmony with the principles of health reform to have so many different dishes at one meal. We must never forget that it is the religious part of the work, the work of providing food for the soul, that is more essential than anything else. 20LtMs, Lt 271, 1905, par. 8

Our young men and young women should be encouraged to attend schools away from the cities, that under intelligent teachers, they may receive a training that will fit them to stand on vantage ground. How can our young people advance spiritually, while working as servants simply to prepare food for and serve worldlings. They often do unnecessary work in the preparation of foods that are not even wholesome. Shall our youth be encouraged to rest satisfied with such an education? 20LtMs, Lt 271, 1905, par. 9

The Lord does not design that His denominated people shall exhaust their strength to carry on restaurants in the manner in which they are now conducted. The many complicated combinations of food that are not wholesome tend to make of the health reform a health deform. 20LtMs, Lt 271, 1905, par. 10

There is great necessity for decided reforms to be made in regard to our dealings with the workers in our sanitariums. Faithful, conscientious workers should be employed; and when they have performed a reasonable amount of work in a day, they should be relieved that they may secure needed rest. 20LtMs, Lt 271, 1905, par. 11

Only a reasonable amount of labor should be required, and for this the worker should receive a reasonable wage. If helpers are not given proper periods for rest from their taxing labor, they will lose their strength and vitality. They cannot possibly do justice to the work, nor can they represent what a sanitarium employee should be. More helpers should be employed if necessary, and the work should be so arranged that when one has performed a day’s labor, he may be freed to take the rest necessary to the maintenance of his strength. 20LtMs, Lt 271, 1905, par. 12

Let no man consider it his place to judge of the amount of labor a woman should perform. A competent woman should be employed as matron, and if any one does not perform her work faithfully, the matron should deal with the matter. Just wages should be paid, and every woman should be treated kindly and courteously, without reproach. 20LtMs, Lt 271, 1905, par. 13

And let those who have charge of the men’s work be careful lest they be too exacting. The men should have regular hours for service; and when they have worked full time, they are not to be begrudged their periods of rest. A sanitarium is to be all that the name indicates. 20LtMs, Lt 271, 1905, par. 14

Every worker should seek to educate himself to perform his work expeditiously. The matron should teach those under her charge how to make quick, careful movements. Train the young to perform the work with tact and thoroughness. Then when the hours of work are over, all will feel that the time has been faithfully spent, and the workers are rightfully entitled to a period of rest. 20LtMs, Lt 271, 1905, par. 15

Educational advantages should be provided for the workers in every sanitarium. The workers should be given every possible advantage consistent with the work assigned them. 20LtMs, Lt 271, 1905, par. 16