Manuscript Releases, vol. 9 [Nos. 664-770]
MR No. 768—The Harris Family
Your course of action, I was shown, has done more to lower the standard in the Lancaster church of order and discipline and subjection to order than any other one. Your influence has been demoralizing—your example to encourage undue attachments and a courting spirit with the young. Your course is not at all in accordance with the will of God.—Letter 3, 1879, pp. 9, 10. (To Chapin Harris, September 9, 1880.) 9MR 384.1
What more shall I say to you? What can I say? I want you to be saved. I want you to stand perfect before God. But you must understand there is no excuse that will stand in your favor before God for the sorrow and the anxiety and discouragement you have brought upon the cause of God by your perverted course as though the carrying out of your plans were superior to every temporal or spiritual interest. Your course has been unchristian and you must see it thus before you will ever extricate yourself from the snare of Satan.—Letter 50, 1880. (To Chapin Harris, September 1880.) 9MR 384.2
Now Brother S, let me speak to you in regard to Sister Harris. She has been a woman who has seen much sorrow, and I know that God has worked for her. He has shown her favors and she has had a genuine experience in the things of God; and the suspicions expressed by yourself and others in reference to her some time ago, makes me feel very sad, because I do not think she deserves them.... You think she may not think everything her brethren in South Lancaster do is above criticism, and [her] not entering soul and spirit into every suggestion and plan has drawn upon her criticism and suspicion. I have great confidence in her for this, although she has made no complaints to me. Yet the words and the attitude of yourself, as well as others, toward her was, to say the least, not cordial. If there is a woman that loves and fears God, in South Lancaster, it is Sister Harris. If there is a woman I would fear to slight, or offend, because it would grieve the Spirit of God, it is Sister Harris. And those who would speak against her in any way to affect your feelings toward her, had better be on their knees before God, and get all that feeling out of their hearts, and not draw [away] from her, but come close to her, and show her sympathy and love. This changeable mood toward those who have been real pillars in the truth, I cannot see as bearing the divine stamp.—Letter 20, 1887, pp. 4, 5. (To Brother S, January 14, 1887.) 9MR 384.3
Sister Harris and I had a season of prayer with her [Mrs. S. N. Haskell] and we were all blessed. The Lord did draw nigh unto us according to His promise.—Manuscript 42, 1890, p. 3. (Diary, “Labors at South Lancaster, Mass.,” October 16, 1890.) 9MR 385.1
Washington, D. C.,
February 6, 1980.