||Chosen no: R-4861 a, from: 1911 Year.
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Denver To Portland And Homeward Conventions
GOD'S BLESSING has surely been richly with us on
this second division of our Convention Tour. The Bible Students in the various
stopping places had been working hard for success, and they were full of
enthusiasm. The touring party, nearly two hundred in number, are full of
fervor, adding to the spirit of the various occasions. We rejoiced together as
we rehearsed Divine providences, blessings, favors, and united in praise and
testimony, and in public presentations of the Truth. The profit and interest of
the Conventions were augmented by occasional symposiums, participated in by
nearly all of the brethren of the party. Some of these had been accustomed to
public speaking and some had not, but all were quite conversant with the Truth.
These impromptu addresses seemed to encourage the speakers and their audiences.
Sunday, June 18, at 3 o'clock, we gave a public
discourse on the "Hereafter" in the Auditorium at Denver. The attendance was estimated at four
thousand, of which about four hundred (men) were on the platform. We had
excellent attention, and feel sure that many left the place with very changed
conceptions of the "Hereafter" and of our Heavenly Father and His
great Plan of the Ages.
The evening subject, "Zionism, the Hope of
the World," had not been so widely advertised, and, as was expected, the
audience was considerably less--less than one-half. A considerable number of
Jews attended. We had closest attention, and at the close many expressions of
appreciation were made.
The following day we took an excursion into the
mountain wilds, where we had very enjoyable services, in the nature of praise,
prayer and testimony. The evening meeting was held in the auditorium of the
Woman's Club, where an excellent address was given by Brother Barton.
The following day was spent in the mountains of Colorado and Utah, journeying
to Salt Lake City over the Denver and Rio Grande Railway. The scenery
was very beautiful, picturesque and interesting. The convulsions of nature
which threw up those great mountain ranges spoke to us of a Power Divine, while
beautiful mountain flowers told of the same Divine Power exercised in a more
pacific manner. It was a day of rest from oral preaching, affording us an
opportunity for preparing sermons for future use. Our faithful stenographer,
Brother Rutherford, Jr., materially assisted in the work.
LAKE CITY, UTAH
Our one-day stop here, Wednesday, June 21, was
an interesting and profitable one. The city is very beautiful and prosperous
looking. Our morning services (a rally and testimony meeting) adjourned in time
for us to attend the organ recital in the Mormon Tabernacle, an immense
structure with a seating capacity of five thousand. The organ and recital
interested us greatly; the music was very fine.
Our afternoon meeting was a symposium on the
fruits and graces of the Holy Spirit. Several participated, our own part being
the conclusion. The evening meeting at Salt Lake Theater was crowded, nearly
two thousand being present. The interest was great. Close attention was given
by the mixed audience of all denominations. It is our opinion that Mormons are
as honest as others-- more honest than many. We understand that their
institution, while financially strong, is theologically weakened; that is to
say, the original doctrine of Mormonism is being called in question by newer
elements, differently educated than their fathers. We trust that some good
fruitage may result from the meetings. The class of Bible Students there is
AT LOS ANGELES, CAL.
Here the class of Truth friends number about one
hundred and twenty-five. It is a zealous class in many respects. They had all
worked hard for the convention, and the Divine blessing made it a great
success. Those in attendance at the meetings of the interested numbered nearly
six hundred, and included friends from nearby places as well as our touring
party. The forenoon was given to testimonies, our own being the concluding one
of about half an hour. In the afternoon, by request, we had a meeting for the
consecration of children; about thirty-five children were presented. A Question
meeting followed. The questions were good and were answered to the best of our
The evening meeting for the public was in the
Auditorium, our topic being "The Great Hereafter." About three
thousand people were present, including those on the platform. An overflow
meeting was held in another room in the same building. It was addressed by
Brother Sexton. At the conclusion of our discourse in the main auditorium, we
gave a further half-hour talk to the overflow meeting, the conclusion of the
service being at nearly 11 o'clock. Here again the people heard with great
earnestness, as though they were hungry. Again we had proof of the Word of the
Lord to the effect that there is a famine in the land; not a famine for bread
nor for water, but a famine for the hearing of the Word of the Lord.
About sixty Los Angeles
friends journeyed with us to Santa Cruz, and the
following day to San Francisco; some even
accompanied us as far as Sacramento,
contributing to our pleasure and to the success of the meetings.
Our train was delayed in reaching Santa Cruz, where there
is but a small class of Bible Students. We had a very enjoyable time, however.
Our afternoon meeting was held in the Casino Theater, at the beach, where the
friends rested meanwhile. At the hour appointed for the public service, we
discussed "The Hereafter" to a very intelligent audience, numbering
about a thousand. Close attention was given for two hours, and we hope the
interest will prove abiding. Following the service, the speaker was escorted by
some local friends in an automobile to a park of big trees, where some pictures
were taken and a bountiful supper enjoyed. A delightful ride returned us to Santa Cruz, where we had
a meeting for the interested, which concluded the day.
Sunday, June 25, was an interesting day for the
Truth friends at San Francisco.
The Bible Students here are very energetic and surely worked hard for the
attainment of the good results achieved. The afternoon service for the public
at 3 o'clock was splendidly attended by about four thousand, our topic being
"Hereafter." We had close attention. The evening service on
"Zionism, the Hope of the World," was less advertised, but there was
a good attendance also, about one-half that of the afternoon service. Those
present in the afternoon (kept late and filled full) had little time or
inclination to hear further the same day.
At the evening meeting it was estimated that
about five hundred Jews were present. They heard very coldly and cautiously until
we were about half through, when their interest seemed to grow. When they heard
things respecting their nation and its history, and the outworking [R4862 : page 231] of prophetic promises, they
were apparently greatly interested. We feel here like reminding our readers
afresh that we are not to expect any considerable number of Jews to manifest
interest in Present Truth now. We hope for them that the message they are now
hearing will direct their hearts and minds and prayers toward God and the Holy Scriptures,
and thus prepare them for further glorious experiences in the midst of troubles
in the near future. We remind you afresh that it is our expectation that the
interest of the Jews will really come in the midst of the time of trouble, and
that the Great Company will have the opportunity and honor of leading them to a
fuller appreciation of the Divine Program, with the Messianic Seed of Abraham
on the spirit plane, and the Jews in conjunction with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob
and the Prophets on the earthly plane, to bless the world of mankind.
AT OAKLAND, CAL.
Monday was given to Oakland,
which lies just across the bay from San
Francisco. In many respects, the two classes are
one--their interests at least co-operated happily with our program for the day.
Our first meeting was with the Elders and Deacons of the two classes, numbering
about thirty. It was a pleasant experience and lasted for nearly two hours. We
talked of the local interests of the work and the best methods of promoting
them. At 10 o'clock there was a general rally and testimony meeting which we
could not attend. The First
was at our disposal for the entire day. Its capacity is estimated at fifteen
At 2 p.m. we gave a talk on the propriety of
parents consecrating their children to the Lord. We reminded our hearers of how
the Jewish parents had a custom of consecrating their male children to the Lord
by a circumcision ceremony. We reminded them that many Christian denominations
practice infant sprinkling with really the significance of consecration. We
pointed out the unscripturalness of infant sprinkling, because it is understood
to mean baptism and to be performed instead of it, baptism being prescribed in
the Bible only for the consecrated believers. We reminded our hearers of how
the parents of Samuel had specially presented him to the Lord for service. We
called their attention to how Jewish mothers brought their children to our
Lord, desiring them to be blessed.
We explained that there is nothing in the nature
of a command in connection with such consecration of children --at very most it
is a privilege, an opportunity to such as may desire to avail themselves of it
without the slightest reflection against those who might think and act
differently. We recommended that it be considered applicable only to children
who have not reached maturity of judgment so as to have a will of their own in
such a matter. We suggested that, later in life, children coming to know that
they have been devoted to the Lord in infancy might to some extent gain a
measure of blessing in this connection. We suggested to the parents that we
hoped that the consecration of their children formally to the Lord would help
to impress upon them their responsibility toward their children and toward the
Lord--furthermore, from this standpoint they might be helped to a fuller
acknowledgment of the Divine will in respect to the child--for sickness or
health, for life or death, for interests great and small. Approximately
forty-two participated in the Consecration and its prayer for Divine blessing.
Next came a discourse on Baptism, which was
followed by the symbolical immersion of forty-three. We learned afterward that
three Baptist Ministers were in the audience and that one of them in particular
was very angry because we had intimated that water baptism was the door into
the Baptist church, so that none were permitted to partake of the Lord's Supper
or be classed as members of the Church of Christ
unless immersed in water. Thus we intimated also that their theory is that all
others, not immersed, not being members of the Church of Christ, cannot be
partakers of His blessings--one of which is the heavenly estate, and that all
unimmersed, therefore, are lost, by which Baptists in general must mean that Episcopalians,
Congregationalists, Methodists, Lutherans and others, not immersed, will spend
eternity in torment. We certainly had no unkind intentions, but on the contrary
endeavored to choose such words as would express the Truth in the least
offensive form. One member of the church thanked us, rejoicing that her
daughter had been led by the discourse to give her heart to the Lord.
The church was crowded for the night service,
and approximately two hundred of the friends of the Truth gave place to
strangers and constituted an overflow meeting, which was held in a Disciple Church nearby.
AT SACRAMENTO, CAL.
Tuesday, June 27, found our party at Sacramento, where the
class of Bible Students numbers about twenty. The first session of the morning
was a Testimony Meeting. This was followed by a talk on Baptism by Brother
Swingle, three being immersed later in the day. In the afternoon we had a
symposium, participated in by twelve brethren, our own talk in conclusion being
based upon a colloquy between Moses and the Lord: "If thou go not up with
us send us not up hence"; and the Lord's reply: "My presence shall go
with you, and I will give you peace." The evening meeting, topic
"Hereafter," was held in Clunie Theater. A splendid audience of about
a thousand was present, and the closeness of the attention could scarcely be
exceeded. We will hope for some good results and some encouraging reports. At
all events the dear friends at Sacramento, ourself and touring party may well
rest contented that, having done what we could, the matter is in the Lord's
hands, for His over-ruling according to His own will.
We are writing this report on the day following
the Sacramento meetings, as we are en route for Portland. Mt. Shasta
has been in sight for several hours, its snowy peak rising fourteen thousand
four hundred feet above the sea level. Our train stopped for a few minutes at
Shasta Springs, allowing us to drink of the effervescent waters. We anticipated
the pleasure of meeting a company of friends assembled on the railway platform
at Ashland, Oregon, but our special arrived nearly two
hours ahead of schedule, so we missed all but two. One dear brother met us at
another station. He had ridden nearly seven miles on a bicycle. We would have
had but a few minutes with them, but would have been glad to greet them and to
receive their greetings in return. We spelled our disappointment with an h instead of a d. How wonderful the Spirit of the Lord, in His people of
every nation, kindred, tongue and place--manifesting love for the Lord, the
Truth and the brethren!
PORTLAND AND HOMEWARD CONVENTIONS
We had a fine time at Portland. All along the Pacific coast the
weather was cool and bracing. The attendance at the meetings for the interested
in Portland averaged about four hundred, while the public service at the
Auditorium on Thursday night had about fifteen hundred in [R4862 : page 232] attendance. Friday night was
a question meeting with an attendance of about seven hundred. Their questions
were unusually good, and the entire audience seemed deeply interested in the
answers. The meeting lasted for two hours, some remaining with other questions.
Brother Bohnet was to follow us the following Sunday. We feel sure that the
work in Portland
is making considerable progress.
Saturday, July 1, was devoted to Tacoma. Nowhere have we
had more interesting meetings. The Tacoma Theatre was crowded, a remarkable
thing for a religious meeting on Saturday night. About two thousand were
present. The meetings for the interested were precious ones, and attended by
about three hundred and fifty. The city seemed to have been greatly stirred.
We were warmly welcomed here, also. About five
hundred attended the meetings for the interested. Some of these came with our
party from Portland and Tacoma. Others came to meet us from Victoria
and Vancouver. We had a splendid season of spiritual fellowship and
refreshment, which concluded Monday night with a love feast, although the
convention was carried over a day after our leaving. Two of our party remained
to give addresses. About twenty-five children were presented in consecration to
the Lord, and eighteen adults were immersed. Here again Brother Morton Edgar
gave a discourse on the Pyramid. Brother Swingle preached the baptism sermon,
and Brother Ritchie gave the address preceding the love feast.
The Sunday service consisted of a rally and
testimony meeting, participated in by many. Then followed our Sunday morning
discourse, which already has been published in the newspapers, topic, "The
Two Babylons." The afternoon meeting for the public drew a crowded house,
estimated at twenty-two hundred. We had excellent attention for two hours. The
evening service in the same place was for questions, about a thousand being
present. Questions were good, the interest was excellent, many hearing for the
first time some of the things of the Word of the Lord explained.
Wednesday morning, July 4, we proceeded by
steamer to Victoria.
The ride was a very enjoyable one, cool and bracing, and our hearts were full
of love for the Lord [R4863 : page 232] and
for each other, and with a strong, sympathetic love for neighbors and enemies.
We were thus prepared to enjoy all the experiences which came to us in the
Our arrival at Victoria was in time to enjoy an afternoon
service with the interested, and to give an evening address to the public, on
"Hereafter." Our topic to the interested was, "We know that we
have passed from death unto life, because we love the brethren." (I John 3:14.) We pointed out that a true loyalty
to God includes a love for all those whom He has recognized by the begetting of
the Holy Spirit, and is a part of our loyalty to Him and to the Captain of our
Salvation. We pointed out, also, that the brethren are not always lovable, so
that the loving of them all implies a considerable growth in grace. We noticed
that such a growth in grace implies frequent polishings and much instruction in
the School of Christ, and in the fruits and graces of
the Holy Spirit. We noticed that it is more difficult, sometimes, to exercise
meekness, gentleness, patience, long-suffering, brotherly kindness, the fruits
and graces of the Holy Spirit, toward the brethren than toward others. We found
from our text that such a development of character, in the heart, at least in
the will, is essential, and that without it we lack a strong proof of our
acceptance of the Lord as New Creatures in Christ.
Meetings for the interested numbered about two
hundred and thirty-five. The address to the public was heard with deep interest
by about seven hundred and fifty.
A night's ride on the boat brought us to our
next convention stop. Here, also, we were warmly and cordially greeted by the
friends. The class here numbers about seventy; about a hundred were in
attendance from outlying districts, besides about one hundred and seventy of
our excursion party, making a total of about three hundred and fifty. We had a
blessed season of fellowship together, very interesting testimony meetings,
The service for the public in the evening had
been thoroughly advertised, and was held in the city's largest auditorium. The
numbers present were estimated at between three thousand and four thousand. The
interest was good, notwithstanding the slight interruption by a socialist, who
wanted his good things right away instead of waiting for the Lord's "times
of restitution." His disregard for the rights of others brought upon him
the police, who arrested him. We declined, however, to give any information
against him, so that probably he lost his liberty for the one night only. The
audience in general manifested deep interest in the "Hereafter," as
presented. We trust that much studying of the Bible and prayer will be the result.
ONE DAY AT CALGARY,
This is one of the new, booming cities of the
Northwest. Although nearly everybody there is overcharged with a love for money
and a desire to make it quickly, in real estate, we had an excellent meeting
with about a thousand in attendance--an excellent showing, under all
circumstances. We had a very attentive hearing, and we trust that good was
accomplished. The class here numbers about twenty. We had a very interesting,
and we trust profitable fellowship with the interested.
UNEXPECTEDLY AT REGINA, SASK., CAN.
Our train made an unexpected stop at Regina, the capital of the Province of Saskatchewan.
We arrived at 3 p.m. and left at 8:30. The brethren of our party were equal to
the emergency, and we had a public meeting, beginning at 6:45. They engaged the
City Hall, had bills printed and circulated them far and wide. The result was a
splendid audience for the little city, and under the circumstances. About four
hundred and fifty were in attendance. The editor of one of the local papers
introduced us and we had a splendid hearing, from which we trust some fruitage
will result. The entire matter seemed to be of Divine providence. A local
minister of the Presbyterian church was with us on the platform and expressed
himself as deeply interested; said that he was reading the sermons in the
newspapers, and that he had read four volumes of STUDIES IN THE SCRIPTURES. He
expressed great satisfaction with what he heard. One of our audience came to
the platform to shake hands, after the service. To our surprise it was the
pastor of one of the principal Baptist churches of London, England,
located near the London Tabernacle. It seems remarkable that we should meet as
we did five thousand miles distant from where we both sat on the platform at the
Guild Hall meeting, held by the Lord Mayor of London for the endorsement of
President Taft's suggestion of the [R4863 : page
233] peace pact between the United States and Great Britain.
We visited Winnipeg
a year and a half ago, and were pleased to re-visit it. The class there has
grown considerably, notwithstanding it has lost numerous of its members by
removal. It now numbers about thirty-five. Meetings for the interested were
attended by about four hundred, and we believe they were very profitable. About
thirty were baptized and about twenty-five children presented in consecration.
The evening meeting for the public was a success every way. A good theater had
been obtained; thorough advertising had been done; a large audience of about
two thousand was present, and we had closest attention to our discourse on
"Hereafter." In the evening we had a question meeting which had not
been previously announced. A thousand were in attendance. The questions were
excellent. At ten o'clock we left it to the audience to express themselves by
raising the hand whether or not they desired the service to be continued. About
six hundred hands went up, and we continued the service until about twenty
minutes to eleven, we trust with good results.
Tuesday, July 11, was spent in Duluth. We were hospitably entertained, as
usual. The class here numbers about twenty; about sixty were present from
various parts. We missed our trainload of helpers who stopped, instead, at Minneapolis, and went from thence to the conclusion of
their journey, Chicago.
At Duluth we
had a baptism service at which eighteen were immersed. Our subject for the
occasion was: "If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which
are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Set your affection on
things above, not on things on the earth."-- Col. 3:1 .
The meeting for the public was a success. The
advertising had been well and thoroughly done. The audience numbered about
seven hundred, which for a week night, in the summer time, was certainly
This stop was not scheduled, but we found that
we could make it and still be able to keep our appointment at Toronto--reaching there on Sunday morning.
Although the friends at Port Huron
had but a brief notice of our coming, we received a warm welcome.
A good crowd was in attendance, some coming from
Detroit. We had
an interesting session in the afternoon with the interested, considering the
text, "If ye, then, be risen with Christ seek those things which are
above." In the evening the public was fairly well represented-- about
three hundred being present. We considered this excellent for a Saturday night
meeting that had an unfavorable announcement.
Our last stop was at Toronto. The convention had already been in
session a day before we arrived. The attendance was nearly six hundred, from
all parts of Canada.
Some said it was the very best convention of their lives. The Sunday afternoon
session for the public had been thoroughly advertised, and the largest
auditorium in the city had been secured--Massey Hall. It was jammed with about
four thousand people, and they said that nearly two thousand were turned from
the doors. Unfortunately, the acoustics of the building are not the best, and
some, unable to hear satisfactorily, in going out disturbed others.
Nevertheless the meeting, we believe, was a grand success. Some testimonies
which reached our ears implied that the Truth had struck home in some
instances. The newspapers gave good reports also.
By special invitation we addressed some Jews at
their synagogue, where the birth of Dr. Herzl was commemorated with Zionist
speeches. We addressed them briefly along the lines of their meeting.
The evening meeting was largely Jewish, and the
attendance was estimated at nearly two thousand. We had excellent attention to
our subject, "Zionism, the Hope of the World." Some brethren,
circulating among the interested ones, took subscriptions for THE WATCH TOWER,
and orders for STUDIES IN THE SCRIPTURES from some who had heard for the first
Monday forenoon we gave an address on
"Baptism, and the New Life." Sixty-three symbolized their
consecration to the Lord, even unto death.
We arrived home early July 18. We met the Bethel family at noon.
Some special flowers had been arranged, and as we entered the room all arose
and joined in singing, "Blest be the tie that binds our hearts in
Christian love." We gave thanks to the Lord, related briefly our
experiences, and proceeded with dinner. We expressed ourselves as pleased with
the trip and also pleased to be back again at the Central Depot of the Harvest
W.T. R-4861a page 230 - 1911r