Ellen G. White: The Lonely Years: 1876-1891 (vol. 3)


Chapter 25—(1885) A Visit to Scandinavia

With the action in mind taken by the European Missionary Council that called for Ellen White and W. C. White “to visit Scandinavia, Great Britain, and other fields, and to remain sufficiently long in Europe to do the work Providence has assigned them” (Ibid., November 3, 1885), she slipped out and purchased a lightweight book with 194 blank pages, lightly ruled. On the flyleaf she wrote: 3BIO 316.1

Mrs. E. G. White, Bale, Switzerland. This book is to give incidents of my travel in Europe, 1885-1886. 3BIO 316.2

Her first entry bears the date of September 25, 1885, and picks up the story of the European Missionary Council in session. It is a valuable book, particularly to the biographer as he attempts to trace her journeys and experience in Europe. The account of her work there, in this present volume, can pick up only the high points of her fruitful labor. [A detailed account of Ellen White's two years in europe is presented in the volume Ellen G. White in europe, prepared in the White Estate offices by D. A. Delafield and published by the review and herald.] 3BIO 316.3

The summer months, rather than early winter, would have been far more favorable for her visit to the countries of northern Europe, where the work of the church was developing quite nicely. But there was some uncertainty as to how soon she would return to America. So at the close of the council the decision was reached calling for her to start on the rounds almost immediately. Of this she wrote: 3BIO 316.4

We felt that the safest course was to visit the leading churches in Scandinavia at the earliest opportunity. The condition of some of these churches had been presented to me in years past, with many things showing that Denmark, Norway, and Sweden were promising fields of labor. We knew that a great work lay before the missionaries in this field. They desired our counsel about the different branches of the work, and we felt that we could advise with them to much better advantage after making them a visit. It seemed unwise to postpone till another summer this part of the work which we had made the long journey from America to accomplish.—Historical Sketches of the Foreign Missions of the Seventh-day Adventists, 174. 3BIO 316.5

Consequently, on October 6, just one week after the council closed, the party of four left Basel—Ellen White, W. C. White, Sara McEnterfer, and Cecile Dahl. Cecile was from Christiania (Oslo), Norway, and would serve as guide and interpreter. It was an overnight trip to Frankfurt, Germany, then on to Hamburg. At Kiel, on the Baltic Sea, they took the ferry to Denmark. Ellen White found this trip through the northern countries an interesting experience. 3BIO 317.1