Ellen G. White: The Early Years: 1827-1862 (vol. 1)


Chapter 27—(1860) The Opening of the Year of Little Joy

As He and Ellen returned home in late November, 1859, James White wrote in generalities for the Review of the three-month trip east, reporting that both health and courage were at a high point. Perhaps he was thinking more of the advancement of the work in the States they had been visiting and what they were hearing of the work in Iowa, Wisconsin, and Ohio than what they faced in Battle Creek. During the last two or three weeks of the long journey, Ellen had frequently been quite ill. By the turn of the year she was pregnant. 1BIO 410.1

James faced financial problems as the business agent of the publishing house—a concern that had no more in the way of organization than a publishing committee. Steps had been taken in 1855 to transfer the business from the shoulders of James to the church, but the church was without name or organization and, from a business standpoint, was illusive. This left White to carry full business, financial, and administrative responsibility personally. 1BIO 410.2

The new year was but one day old when, before dawn, James and Ellen White underwent a heart-rending experience. She wrote of it: 1BIO 410.3

Early this morning we were called up to go to Brother Loughborough's. They think their child [Teresa] is dying. Dress hastily and go to the afflicted family. The little one was dying. 1BIO 410.4

Oh, how sad the sight, a mother witnessing the last agonies of her loved one, her only child. We prayed for sustaining grace for the father and mother, that they might be perfectly reconciled to the will of God, that the little one's name was enrolled in the Lamb's book of life, to be called forth immortal at the resurrection of the just. 1BIO 410.5

We witness the dying struggle. The little eyes are closed, no more to look on earthly things. The little prattling tongue has ceased. Her troubles are ended. Quietly will she rest until the Life-giver calls her from her dusty bed. 1BIO 411.1

This is a dark, dreary world. The whole human family are subject to disease, sorrow, and death.—Manuscript 1, 1860. 1BIO 411.2

John and Mary Loughborough were particularly close to James and Ellen White. For nearly two years they had been residing in Battle Creek, and usually the two ministers went out together to hold meetings in the churches. Frequently Mary was in the White home for a visit with Ellen. In January, 1859, Ellen had spent most of the month traveling by carriage and sleigh with John and Mary and little Teresa as they journeyed in Michigan as far north as the new church in Wright, Michigan. Teresa was then 10 months old. 1BIO 411.3