Ellen G. White: The Australian Years: 1891-1900 (vol. 4)


Testimony Concerning the Echo Publishing House

That Tuesday morning she picked up her pen and began to write concerning the publishing house and its problems. The eight-page testimony opened: 4BIO 26.5

In connection with our publishing work in Australia, there has been a combination of circumstances that have not resulted favorably to the interests of the work.—Manuscript 13, 1891. 4BIO 26.6

Later she wrote more, elaborating on the problems as she saw them in the publishing house. 4BIO 26.7

I attended two committee meetings, and presented the true condition of things in the Echo office. This institution had been gathering up branches of work which it was not able to carry, and this was hampering, entangling, and impeding its forces. 4BIO 26.8

Too many lines of work were carried on, which were merely dead weights. Seemingly a labored effort was being made to keep up appearances for the sake of appearances.

The publication of the Echo was being made at continual loss. Jobs were secured at altogether too low a price, and loss was the result. Funds were being sunk in nearly all lines that were being carried forward. There was not sufficient business ability in the office or wise generalship to bind up the work in a way that would save expense. 4BIO 27.1

I was shown that this was not the way to do business. It is not the will of our heavenly Father that His work should be so conducted as to be a continual embarrassment. The office should not be eaten up by its own expenses. Work that could not be done without this cost should be abandoned.—DF 28a, “Experiences in Australia,” pp. 26, 27. 4BIO 27.2

In this latter statement, as well as in the eight-page testimony, Ellen White specified a major factor that contributed to difficulties among the workers: their failure to exchange among themselves knowledge in the carrying through of certain processes in the plant. She wrote: 4BIO 27.3

Some of the workers were not willing to help and instruct their fellow workmen. Those who were inexperienced did not wish their ignorance to be known. They made many mistakes at a cost of much time and material, because they were too proud or too self-willed to seek instruction. This ignorance could have been avoided if those at the work had shown kindness and love toward each other. The workers in the Echo office had very little insight into the right methods of obtaining success. They were working at cross purposes with each other. The office was sick, throughout all its departments.— Ibid. 4BIO 27.4

In the heart of the testimony she read to the committee meeting, she revealed the source of the information and counsel she was passing on to them: 4BIO 27.5

Brethren and sisters connected with the work of the Echo office, these words I have written were spoken to you by my guide.—Manuscript 13, 1891. 4BIO 27.6