Lt 75, 1899

1899

Lt 75, 1899

Kellogg, J. H.

“Sunnyside,” Cooranbong, New South Wales, Australia

April 20, 1899

Portions of this letter are published in 11MR 96-97; 4Bio 423.

My Dear Brother:

We have just returned from the school buildings, where several of us met to discuss the plans for the hospital. We had a long council, and decided that the prospect for building a sanitarium was favorable. A few miles out from Sydney, toward Cooranbong, there is a healthful location, Hawkesbury and Hornsby Junction. This latter is situated on a high elevation. If a regular sanitarium could be established there, away from the din and noise of trams and the constant rattling of carriages, this would remove the necessity of a large building being erected in Cooranbong. Lt75-1899.1

We learned also that we must not call our building a hospital. If we do this, we shall come under the supervision of the medical authorities, shall be forced to observe special laws, and employ a physician, perhaps of their own choice. We shall call it a Health Home, and shall not make it as large as we had planned. We shall try to build it within one thousand pounds. This will not include the furnishing, which perhaps will be an extra expense. We shall not appropriate more than we can possibly help, for we must have something to establish the work in Western Australia. This is a new field, and is now being worked. There are thousands of people in that part of Australia who must hear the message. The Lord means that they shall have it. When our numbers are increased, there will be means enough to sustain the work. Then a school must be established and a church built, and workers sent to this field. You can judge how we feel as we see so many places calling for workers and have none to send. Lt75-1899.2

After dinner W. C. White sent me word from the school, which we had left only a short time before, that a company of twenty grandees, men of responsibility, had come to the school in a boat from the lake, and W. C. White asked if I could spare all our carriages and horses to show them round. One man was brother to the Premier of New South Wales. They are now being accommodated with the best we have. I am so glad that the main school building is up and furnished. This was done in a cheap way, but it looks nice. We treat all who come with deference and respect. We desire to make a good impression. We have had bankers and men of high repute call upon us to see what was going on here in Cooranbong. This place has been regarded as so insignificant, and the inhabitants so poor and degraded, as to be unworthy of notice. But all are surprised at that which is being done here. Lt75-1899.3

People keep coming, and we shall soon be known. We are anxious to make as favorable an impression as possible. Of late we have had so little margin in the bank that we have not been able to borrow money. The bankers do not think we are safe. But if the Lord stirs up the minds of the brethren in America, as I know He has done and will continue to do, the work will advance. The money is the Lord’s, and we shall use it as a sacred trust upon which to trade. Lt75-1899.4

We are helping families to settle on the school ground on the other side of the road from the school buildings. A few acres are now being secured for our much-esteemed Brother Pocock. He is the pattern of a Christian gentleman. I tell the school board that I will consent to trust him and let him pay as he can. In our family all who are able will unite in helping him to put up a house, which will be built cheaply, costing about forty pounds. He has suffered much poverty. He has a good trade and is an excellent workman. Lt75-1899.5

We encouraged him to leave his little house among the rocks on a high mountain. No carriage could reach this place. He carried up on his back to this place all the lumber needed to build a little shanty. But the family were often hungry. Once or twice a year our family sent them a box of clothing, and this is all they have had. Lt75-1899.6

One of the little children died a week after they moved to this place. He was poisoned by eating a cooked parakeet. Everything was done for him that could be done. Sara was with him day and night, but the poison had taken hold too deeply. The night before they left their home, the parents sent the children to their grandparents, while their goods were carried to the boat to be brought to this place. No doubt the neighbor thought that she had done a very neighborly action in giving this boy this kind of food, but it cost him his life. Lt75-1899.7

No sooner was Sara released from this family than she was sent for from down the river. She went in the carriage for about three miles, and then eight or ten miles in the boat. She found the children apparently sick unto death. They live close by the waters of the lake, and they had gathered crabs, cooked them, and eaten them. Sara and Sister Robb did all they could to save the children. For two nights they watched over them and gave them treatment. But one of the children died. Sara was so used up by the terribly offensive effluvia that we were afraid for her. But she has been improving. I do not know what the state of the two other children is now. The children threw up half digested crabs. The mother did not know what had made them sick until the contents of their stomachs were discharged. Lt75-1899.8

If our building had been up, we could have taken these children from their home and given them treatment, and perhaps saved them all. But we fear the other children will die, if they are not now dead. They were beautiful children, as handsome as a picture. But the people need to be instructed in regard to what to eat and how to cook it. The love the children expressed for their father and mother, and the parents for their children, was very marked. O, I see so much to do, and yet can do so little. Our Health Home must be erected, and then we shall be able to do something for the sick. I try not to feel too strongly about this, but I cannot prevent an intensity of desire and earnest zeal, try as I will. Lt75-1899.9

Friday morning, April 21

I cannot sleep past one o’clock. There are families all through the forests who have taken up their residence there. Among these are some most excellent people, and we are reaching them. They have no shepherd to visit them, and they are hungering for truth. We must send our hunters and fishers all through this country, that we may by the help of the Lord find lost sheep and gather them in to the marriage supper of the Lamb. Our work is to go forward to victory. This morning I have had light. The whole of yesterday afternoon was devoted by responsible men, Sister Peck, Sister Sara McEnterfer, and myself to considering the plans of the Health Home. We decided that as money was so short, we would cut four feet from the plan. Lt75-1899.10

But in the night season light came to me. We must not diminish. All the room which the plan specifies will be needed. Then we shall enlarge if necessary. The building would not be symmetrical if four feet were cut away from it. Better invest the necessary money now than spend double the amount in making additions. I am now fully settled in regard to this matter. A two-story building must be proportionate, or it will look objectionable and show to disadvantage. In all our houses we have yet built we have no place to accommodate those who visit us. We have to make room by turning our own family into any position, however disagreeable. If there are unoccupied rooms in the Health Home, we can make it a home for the comers and goers, who will continue to come and go as they have done in the past. Lt75-1899.11

Doctors, ministers, over-worked women from different departments of the work, have come to Cooranbong for change and rest, and my house and W. C. White’s have had to receive them. I am glad we shall have, not a hospital, but a health home. Elder Haskell and his wife are worn out by constant labor, and they must have rest, away from the school where the bell is heard every few hours. All I can offer them is a small room which we use for parlor and reception room. If the Health Home were only ready for them, they could find rest for soul and body. Lt75-1899.12

The first plan for our Health Home will cost £350. The £50 we planned to save, but we dare not do it. Light has come, and we shall accept it and walk in it. This is an important center, and we must devise liberal things. Thus the lesson is given us. Lt75-1899.13

Another point was presented to me. We should not solicit money from unbelievers. All about here are poor, and one dollar given will be looked upon as a large thing. They will think that they should be treated free because they have given this. The feeling will be created in their minds that the building was erected by the contributions of the people, and therefore they have a claim on it, as if it were wholly a charitable institution. None of the needy poor will be turned away, but it would not do to say anything of the kind in this place. We must build, but we must not solicit money from the poor families, or from those outside our faith. If the Lord moves upon hearts to give, we shall accept the donations gratefully. Some have given a few days of labor in clearing the land. Others have promised to do the plastering. This we accept, because it is the promise of a man who will soon unite with us in the faith. All these minor points mean very much to us here in Cooranbong. Lt75-1899.14

When we came to this place, it was full of lazy, shiftless families, who lived by begging and stealing. But the community has changed wonderfully, and it is remarked by all who know the place. There are here worthy people who will receive the truth and obey it. We hear on every side, “You can never know what your coming to Cooranbong has done for this place. It is like the garden of Eden in comparison to what it was before you came.” We have helped those who were poor and shiftless to have respect for themselves, to be diligent, and to place themselves in a more favorable position. We have done all that we could for them. Land is now being cultivated. Families are tilling the soil. Our labor has been an object lesson to all around us, and has brought its result. Lt75-1899.15

We shall trust God and go forward. We are in a place where above all places I have ever visited there is a most decided work to be done. We see things that make us very sad. Everywhere we go we see imbruted souls, bodies weak and ill-formed through hereditary degeneration, through wrong habits in eating and drinking, through the use of tobacco and liquor. How can we reach the beclouded and almost eclipsed mind? How can we awaken in them a desire to be purified and strengthened by hygienic food and proper exercise? Lt75-1899.16

The body needs attention, before the mental powers can be quickened for moral improvement. They must be educated from the A B C, for they are deplorably ignorant. They had led shiftless, idle, corrupt lives, and need to be trained, yes, drilled into orderly habits. They need to be taught to rise above their wretchedness. We have a work to do—and the Lord will help us to do it—in every place, in the cities and in the byways of life. The Lord Jesus is the great Physician of the soul. He comes to heal. It was not the purpose of Christ, in coming to the world and giving His life a ransom for its sin, to destroy the pure and holy law of God, the standard of human character. He did not come to save man in his sin, but to take away the sin of the world. Lt75-1899.17