Life Sketches of Ellen G. White


Chapter 53—At the Nation's Capital

The destruction in one year, by fire, of the main buildings of two of the leading Seventh-day Adventist institutions at Battle Creek, Mich., led to a study of the advantages that might accrue to the cause of God through a removal of the denominational headquarters and of the Review and Herald printing office to some other place. LS 388.1

This problem was spread before the delegates assembled at the 1903 General Conference. The brethren were urged to express freely their convictions as to the proper course to pursue. While they had the matter under advisement, Mrs. White, who was in attendance as one of the delegates, bore a decided testimony in favor of adopting a policy that would result in a widespread dissemination of the truths of the third angel's message. She called attention to oft repeated counsels to establish centers of influence at strategic points, and to arrange for a wise distribution of the working forces, rather than to follow plans tending toward centralization. The stakes were to be strengthened, but only that the cords might be lengthened. From established centers the influence of present truth was to be extended into all the world. Mrs. White said, in part: LS 388.2

“Will those who have collected in Battle Creek hear the Voice speaking to them, and understand that they are to scatter out into different places, where they can spread abroad a knowledge of the truth, and where they can gain an experience different from the experience that they have been gaining? LS 388.3

“In reply to the question that has been asked in regard to settling somewhere else, I answer, Yes. Let the General Conference offices and the publishing work be moved from Battle Creek. I know not where the place will be, whether on the Atlantic coast or elsewhere; but this I will say: Never lay a stone or a brick in Battle Creek to rebuild the Review Office there. God has a better place for it.” The General Conference Bulletin, April 6, 1903. LS 389.1