Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 22 (1907)


Lt 322, 1907

Officers of the General Conference

St. Helena, California

October 2, 1907

This letter is published in entirety in 2MR 76-78.

To the officers of the General Conference:

Last night in my sleeping hours I seemed to be speaking to the workers at Takoma Park, Washington. I was speaking in regard to the buildings that it may be considered necessary to erect there. The beginning of work on every such building should be regarded as an occasion for seeking the special guidance of the Holy Spirit. Before you begin the work, ask that the Holy Spirit of God may give you a clear understanding of what should be done, and how to do it in the least expensive way. Our people have been drawn upon heavily for the work in Washington. Every dollar should be used to carry on the work in a way that will conform to the faith that we profess. 22LtMs, Lt 322, 1907, par. 1

Light has been given me that believers should now arouse themselves to make earnest efforts for the advance of the work in the southern states. Because of past neglect, the work in this field has been almost at a standstill; and we shall have no excuse to render for this neglect in the day when God shall call all our works into judgment. 22LtMs, Lt 322, 1907, par. 2

Means must now be gathered from the various churches for the help of the colored people in the South. This is a work that should have been done years ago. Let us now do all in our power to redeem the past neglect. Calls are coming in for schoolhouses to be built, and meetinghouses where the colored people can assemble for worship. It is right to solicit means for this purpose, and to erect buildings that are proportionate in size and equipment to the needs of the place where they are established. 22LtMs, Lt 322, 1907, par. 3

The book Christ’s Object Lessons might have had a wide circulation in the South for the benefit of the southern schools. But instead of this enterprise being energetically pushed, territorial rights have been contended for, and the field has been left unworked. It is true that organization and method must be maintained in the various lines of our work; but because undue importance has been attached to territorial claims, many have been deprived of the instruction that this precious book contains. My brethren, let these books be circulated in every possible place. “Faith without works is dead.” [James 2:26.] Who will now engage in this work with a true missionary spirit? Who will study to bring in ingenious methods by which this book may be brought before all classes? 22LtMs, Lt 322, 1907, par. 4

At our large gatherings, men of wisdom and experience should be chosen to present Christ’s Object Lessons and Ministry of Healing before the people, and to call for those who will take a part in circulating them. If this plan had been faithfully followed in the past, we might now have humble houses of worship and schools in many places, where the colored people would be receiving an education in the principles of present truth. These schools and meetinghouses are the Lord’s agencies for the promulgation of His truth in the South, and to prepare a people for the coming of Christ. The colored people themselves, with a wise planner at their head, will do much toward the erection of these buildings. 22LtMs, Lt 322, 1907, par. 5

The land at Huntsville was a donation from our people to the colored work. A much broader work would have been accomplished there had our people moved forward in faith and self-denial. It was God’s design that Huntsville should have convenient school buildings and a sanitarium for the colored people. This sanitarium building has become a positive necessity. Some of the brethren have been free to give their advice concerning this institution, saying that it should be “a small sanitarium.” The advice I have had to give has been that we should have a modest but roomy sanitarium where the sick can be taken in and treated. The colored race should have the benefits of such an institution as verily as should the white people. In this sanitarium colored nurses are to be trained for service in the field as gospel medical missionaries. 22LtMs, Lt 322, 1907, par. 6

The Lord is calling for converted workers who will act as faithful ministers and teachers to the colored people. We need less of commercial enterprises and more church buildings and missionaries. Let us be very guarded in the use of means, that money may not be used largely in a few places, when there are so many places that the missionary must enter with the last message of warning. 22LtMs, Lt 322, 1907, par. 7