Manuscript Releases, vol. 5 [Nos. 260-346]


MR No. 328—Ellen White's First Visit to France

Men were pushing and crowding one another, screeching at the top of their voices. Many were hoarse, and yet they shrieked on louder than ever. Hundreds were there, and men were coming and going, wrestling, crowding one another like madmen. And what was this all for? Trading in stocks. Some would gain, others lose. And it was all for a little of the inheritance in this life. Should we press in the value of the gift of eternal life, should we present the heavenly treasures, they would not be attracted for one moment. I thought of the scene when the day of judgment should take place. What confusion would come to all who have not made God their dependence and were not prepared for the great day of final decision. Let us make our calling and election sure.... 5MR 317.1

These paintings might have been seen through other eyes than mine and be adored as evidences or specimens of wonderful taste and skill. But I have had my mind so completely satisfied and at rest with the works of God brought to our senses in nature, and have been so fully satisfied in viewing the glory of the heavens, the works of God's creation, that these things in imitation of the natural seemed to fall so far below the works of the great Master Artist who made our world and everything beautiful in it, that these pictures could not charm my senses and meet my ideal.... 5MR 317.2

The best part and the most interesting part to us was the relation of the fact that this grand building was presented to the government for a hospital or asylum for old soldiers who served in Napoleon's armies. Their families and their children and grandchildren were to be taken care of. There have been as many as five hundred sick and disabled soldiers in this building at one time. Their preparation for cooking is very extensive. These soldiers are supported by the government.... 5MR 317.3

We looked upon the bust of Pius VI. The marble statue beneath the bust contained the heart of the pope. This is the pope specified in prophecy, which received the deadly wound. He was carried captive to Valence, and we looked upon the tower where he was confined and where he died. From this tower he could look upon the beautiful waters of the Rhone, and this gave him much delight. It was a gratification to look upon this representation of the pope which prophecy has so faithfully described. We looked upon a black cloth stretched across the walls of the portion of the building where the people were worshiping the second day of November. This black cloth was adorned with ghastly death-heads and bones in white, which looked frightful. But they were observing the feast for the dead. These vestments of the priests symbolically adorned with large figures of the cross and with a variety of colors, bore no resemblance to the simplicity of worship. But priestly ceremonies burdened with pompous display, processions, and art to produce effect are abundant. Lighted tapers and outward display are very poor substitutes for spiritual vitality, which was wanting.... 5MR 318.1

There was a young man of excellent capabilities—a bookbinder. He had been learning the trade for nearly three years, and for his labor he was paid only three dollars per week and boarded himself. His keeping the Sabbath threw him out of two days. His sister has a good education, but keeping the Sabbath places her where she labors daily for twenty cents per day in doing common serving. She would make a good missionary worker if she only had the chance. Her mother engages in working in the field, receiving twenty cents when she can obtain work. We must seek to connect them with the office in Basel.—Manuscript 70, 1886, pp. 1-3, 7, 8. (Diary, “First Visit to France,” October 14 to November 2, 1886.) 5MR 318.2

Souls are being added to the church in Chaux-de-Fonds, showing that, notwithstanding the unfavorable situation, yet souls have courage to decide for the truth, to keep the Sabbath because it is truth. And if all do what they can, hoping and believing that God will pity them and help them in their great need, they will surely see His promises verified in this matter. If all will be united, counsel together, pray together, and live out their faith, the Lord will work for their good and His own name's glory.... 5MR 319.1

I have donated my horse, for which I paid $175; my carriage, for which I paid $110; my harness, for which I paid thirty dollars. I have had these in use a little more than one year. They may sell them and get what they can to invest in the house of worship. I pledged also $100 towards a meetinghouse in Bienne. We can see no other way to do than to build houses of worship, and our brethren must begin to work themselves into houses under their control as tenement houses.—Manuscript 31, 1887, pp. 3-5. (Diary, “Second Visit to France,” May 13-22, 1887.) 5MR 319.2

Released July, 1973.