Manuscript Releases, vol. 13 [Nos. 1000-1080]

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MR No. 1055—Evangelism in Australia; the Importance of Church Buildings

(Written November 18, 1895, from Armadale, Melbourne, Australia, to Edson White)

The Tasmania people did not see how it was possible for them to go through the expense of a camp meeting, and I agreed to appropriate several pounds if as much more could be raised by those in Tasmania; and it was accepted and preparations are being made for the tents from here to be transferred to Hobart, and to hold our first camp meeting in that locality. 13MR 307.1

But here the whole community seems to be stirred where we have been at work the last five weeks. The decision has been made to continue the meetings evenings through the week and on Sabbath and Sunday. Our forces must here be divided. Elders Daniells and Prescott will remain here to continue the work while we go to Tasmania. There is work being done in this place in different families, giving Bible readings, and they are getting hold of a nice class of people. Professor Prescott may be able to attend the meetings at Tasmania during the last week. If the interest in Hobart demands it, we can extend the meeting another week. 13MR 307.2

The harvest truly is great; the laborers are few. We feel to voice the words of our Saviour, “Say not ye, There are yet four months, and then cometh harvest? behold, I say unto you, Lift up your eyes, and look on the fields; for they are white already to a harvest. And he that reapeth receiveth wages, and gathereth fruit unto life eternal: that both he that soweth and he that reapeth may rejoice together” [John 4:35, 36]. The people in the suburbs of Melbourne are calling, “Set up your tents in our locality, and let the people hear the things that you have preached in Armadale. We all need the words that you have spoken to us here.” 13MR 307.3

If we only had workers and a supply of money to carry forward the work, we could keep several tents working in the different localities of Melbourne. I must get my books published as soon as possible, that the people shall have the light which God has given me; and I want to use the royalties on these books to sustain the work in new fields. The last message of mercy is to be proclaimed in our large cities and in the byways as well. 13MR 308.1

There are already inquiries being made, If we embrace the truth, where is the place to worship in? We see and feel the necessity—as soon as a company shall leave the churches, there must be prepared for the sheep and lambs an humble place where they can be called to the fold. Meetinghouses must be built. There is in contemplation a meetinghouse to be erected in Hawthorn. It will not answer to leave the people without a place where they can assemble to worship God. There must be erected simple and neat churches which will give character to the important truths that we are advocating. Tasmania also must have a church built for the people to assemble in. 13MR 308.2

Edson, we see so many places to be worked, and where are the means? I have appropriated $19 a week to sustain workers in the field, and if I dared to express my desire I would say I will sustain still others. Every shilling seems precious; there are so many ways that shillings can be invested. There is enough to be done to employ 20 workers at this very time right here in Melbourne and suburbs. And here are the cities of Adelaide and Ballarrat. 13MR 308.3

The promise had been made to hold the camp meeting in Ballarrat this season, but when the brethren came to see me while I was at Brother Israel's last April to plan about this meeting, I told them I had something to say. From the light God had graciously given me, this season the camp meeting should be in Melbourne. I said, I know what you will say, brethren, We are short of means and cannot bear such expense. But I presented my reasons and everyone say that they were sound, and the matter was settled right then and there.—Letter 83, 1895, pp. 3, 4. 13MR 309.1

White Estate

Washington, D. C.,

April 12, 1984.