Manuscript Releases, vol. 9 [Nos. 664-770]


Mr No. 717—The Question of Influence on Ellen White As Revealed in an Interview

J. A. Burden: Now this is the position that is taken by a great many, concerning the communications that you have recently sent to southern california, that the communications were written with reference to a situation that had been set before you by brother W. C. White—that you had written communications to meet the situation, as it was represented to you by him. Now this thing has gone all through southern california. Many brethren have taken the same position.... 9MR 188.1

The brethren that have met this agree on a certain line, namely, that a situation is laid before you by brother white, and you, from your knowledge, write on that representation, and not because you have received light apart from that. 9MR 188.2

Sister White: He [W. C. White] will tell you himself that it is I that present the situation to him....He does not seem to want to tell me anything about the Southern California meeting. Scarcely anything has he told me—only some points that he knows would not trouble my mind. He does not feel like opening things to me, but I come to him with manuscripts, and I tell him, This must be copied, and sent out just as quickly as it can be. Now I have light, mostly in the night season, just as if the whole thing were transacting, and I viewing it, and as I am listening to the conversation, I am moved to get up and meet it. This is the way it is; and then in the morning I tell him about it. Often he doesn't say a word—not a word; but after a while, when I have written and written, then he acknowledges that it is so. He is quite sure that it is so, because he was there, but he did not tell me.—Manuscript 105, 1907, pp. 1-3. (“The Responsibilities of a Conference President,” Interview, October 5, 1907.) 9MR 188.3

[Interview Continued on October 6.] Sister White: There is one other point that I want Brother _____ to keep in his mind, perhaps he does not understand it fully. He has thought that Willie tells me. Now I am up in the morning, you know, before anyone else is up—at one o'clock, two o'clock, three o'clock, and seldom ever after four, more often by three. Recently, for nights and nights and nights, I have seldom been able to sleep after two o'clock, but have been up, writing. I write out the presentations that the Lord has given me in the night season, and when, later on in the morning, Willie comes in to see me, I have already written many pages. Often the manuscript has been placed in the hands of one of my copyists, and is being written out, before he knows that I have written anything, or what I have written. After it is typewritten, a copy is often placed in his hands. It is not he that comes with things to me, but I give to him the light that I have received. 9MR 189.1

W. C. White: Sometimes, you know, you propose to read to me what you have written. Sometimes you tell me a little about it, but there is not more than one-twentieth part that I really know anything about before it is passed on by you into the hands of the copyist, to be typewritten. 9MR 189.2

Sister White: Yes, I know that. 9MR 189.3

W. C. White: But the real point in the minds of the brethren is: Do I—after seeing how things are going in the field—do I come to you with my representations of how things look to me, and keep presenting them so as to stir you up to write out principles which are good, true principles, but principles which may not be needed at that time, and which do not exactly apply at that time, but which you think apply at that time because of the representations I have made to you of the conditions in the field? 9MR 189.4

Sister White: I have not been able to get from Willie full particulars regarding perplexing matters. He is careful to tell me only of victories gained, or anything that will encourage me. When he attends meetings, he does not make it a point to tell me of the difficulties that he encounters in these meetings. Instead of going into particulars regarding the matters that perplex the brethren, he presents those things that he thinks will not disturb my mind. Sometimes letters come, giving me information that I should never gain from him, because he won't tell me.—Manuscript 109, 1907, pp. 4, 5. (“The Management of Conference Affairs,” Interview, October 6, 1907.) 9MR 190.1

White Estate

Washington, D. C.,

April 2, 1979.