Letters and Manuscripts — Volume 22 (1907)


Lt 363, 1907

Kress, Brother and Sister [D. H.]

Loma Linda, California

November 5, 1907

Portions of this letter are published in CD 321, 324, 466; 1MR 293-294; 2MR 187.

Dr. D. H. Kress
Takoma Park Station, Washington, D.C.

Dear Brother and Sister Kress:

I was awakened at one this morning and began to write. I have been instructed to bear a message to the president of the Southern California Conference. It is strange to me that men placed in positions of trust should become self-sufficient and feel that they can do their work without the strength of God. I am alarmed for the results of this spirit that is being manifested. Men need to put away their self-confidence and become humble in heart. 22LtMs, Lt 363, 1907, par. 1

I have received a letter from my granddaughter Mabel Workman. She writes that she was much pleased with her visit to the sanitarium. She speaks highly of the spiritual atmosphere of the home. I was very thankful that she could write thus. The presence of a Christian influence in the sanitarium family is just what should be. It is this that will make the sanitarium at Washington an example of what all our sanitariums should be. I sincerely believe that you are in the place where the Lord would have you be. In living the gospel of Christ before the sanitarium family, you are preaching a more powerful sermon than any words could give. 22LtMs, Lt 363, 1907, par. 2

When I lie awake in the night season, I often think of you and pray for you. Let us bring all the sunshine possible into our lives. I delight to dwell on the relation of God to us, as the Father of our Lord Jesus. It is through the Son that we can look to Him and call Him our Father. We cannot have too exalted views of our relationship with the Father of all the human family. 22LtMs, Lt 363, 1907, par. 3

I ask you, Dr. Kress, to speak a word of encouragement occasionally to Brother Baird. If you will, you can bind up the influence of this brother with your influence. Brother Baird is a sufferer and is often in pain as he works. If you will speak a kind word to him and to his wife, it will do them both great good. They will have the assurance that you take an interest in them. 22LtMs, Lt 363, 1907, par. 4

The Lord designs that our sanitariums shall educate the people how to cook healthfully and how to eat healthfully. It is a mistake to prepare a large number of foods for one meal; a few kinds, carefully prepared, and served in an appetizing way, is all that is needed. You need no flesh foods; flesh foods are not the best for the human stomach. Often the animals sold for the market are diseased. 22LtMs, Lt 363, 1907, par. 5

In a letter that came to me, the question was asked if it was true that Sister White ate chicken broth at the first camp-meeting held in Australia. It is true that I did so. I had been very sick with a severe attack of inflammatory rheumatism and was just recovering. I had no appetite for food of any kind. Some of our good sisters, thinking to do me a kindness, sent me a bowl of chicken broth. I took a few spoonfuls, but had no appetite for it, and sent it back to the one who had sent it to me, saying I did not wish any flesh meats prepared for me. When the second dish was brought to me, I returned it untasted. From this circumstance it was reported widely that I had eaten flesh foods at the time of the first camp-meeting in Australia. It was told me that the matter was reported in Washington. 22LtMs, Lt 363, 1907, par. 6

I will tell you how we dealt with this matter of meat eating in Australia: 22LtMs, Lt 363, 1907, par. 7

Sara McEnterfer, who had been my nurse up to the time of my sailing from America for Australia, did not accompany us, as she was taken sick. After she was somewhat recovered, she served in the sanitarium, getting a further experience in how to care for the sick. When, later, she joined us in Australia, in Cooranbong, where we settled, she had plenty of opportunity to exercise her skill in caring for the sick and injured. There was no physician nearer than Newcastle, and those who would come at the call of the sick would charge twenty-five dollars for their services at one visit. Many of the people died for want of needed assistance. When the people learned that Sara could treat the sick, they would send for her, and she always responded to their calls. She had a safe horse, and she would often go for miles in the night to visit some family that needed help. 22LtMs, Lt 363, 1907, par. 8

On one occasion Sara was called to a family at Dora Creek, where every member of the household was sick. The father belonged to a highly respectable family, but he had taken to drink, and his wife and children were in great want. At this time of sickness there was nothing in the house suitable to eat. And they refused to eat anything that we took them. They had been accustomed to having meat. We felt that something must be done. I said to Sara, Take chickens, from my place, and prepare them some broth. So Sara treated them for their illness and fed them with this broth. They soon recovered. 22LtMs, Lt 363, 1907, par. 9

Now this is the course we pursued. We did not say to the people, You must not eat meat, although we did not use flesh foods ourselves. When we thought it essential for that family in their time of sickness, we gave them what we felt they needed. There are occasions when we must meet the people where they are. 22LtMs, Lt 363, 1907, par. 10

The father of this family was an intelligent man. When the family was well again, we opened to them the Scriptures, and this man was converted and accepted the truth. He threw away his pipe and gave up the use of drink; and from that time as long as he lived, he neither smoked nor drank. As soon as it was possible, we took him on our farm and gave him work on the land. While we were away attending meetings in Newcastle, this man died. Thorough treatment was given him by some of our workers, but the long-abused body could not respond to their efforts. But he died a Christian and a commandment keeper. 22LtMs, Lt 363, 1907, par. 11

When we first went to Cooranbong, we were informed that it was a very wicked place, that the people would steal anything they could lay their hands on. But we replied that we were the Lord’s missionaries, that we had come to do the people good, and that we would treat them in such a way that they would learn not to appropriate our goods to themselves. Before, however, they learned that we were their friends, we suffered at their hands. At one time we received from the city a large bag of provisions for our family and workers. When in the morning we went to the shed where these were kept, we found the bag gone. At another time we went to get a large pan of rice which had been cooked for our dinner. Both pudding and dish were missing. But after we had had some experience with these people, and had cared for their sick and relieved their necessities, nothing on our premises was touched. 22LtMs, Lt 363, 1907, par. 12

We have neither meat nor butter on our table, and we have but two meals a day. If any of my workers desire a simple meal in the evening, I do not have anything to say against it. 22LtMs, Lt 363, 1907, par. 13

Our farm is cared for by Brother James, who labored for us in Australia. His family now numbers thirteen, including the parents. I do not think that one unpleasant word has ever passed between our two families in all our association together. Brother James has been quite successful in cultivating loganberries. Besides having all we needed for our own family, we sold last season one hundred dollars’ worth of these berries. Of corn and peas we have raised enough for ourselves and our neighbors. The sweet corn we dry for winter use; then when we need it we grind it in a mill and cook it. It makes most palatable soups and other dishes. 22LtMs, Lt 363, 1907, par. 14

We have a bakery close by, as you know; but we cook our own bread. Sweet breads and sweet cookies we seldom have on our table. The less of sweet foods that are eaten, the better; these cause disturbances in the stomach and produce impatience and irritability in those who accustom themselves to their use. 22LtMs, Lt 363, 1907, par. 15

In their season we have grapes in abundance, also prunes and apples, and some cherries, peaches, pears, and olives, which we prepare ourselves. We also grow a large quantity of tomatoes. I never make excuses for the food that is on my table. I do not think God is pleased to have us do so. Our visitors eat as we do and appear to enjoy our bill of fare. 22LtMs, Lt 363, 1907, par. 16

I am glad that in your location in Washington you are away from the city. I have seen the ground, but have not had the pleasure of seeing your nice building. I shall be very pleased to see you and hope that I may do so sometime. 22LtMs, Lt 363, 1907, par. 17