Ellen G. White Writings

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Manuscript Releases, vol. 15 [Nos. 1136-1185], Page 250

MR No. 1168—More Souls May Be Won by Camp Meetings Than by Gospel Wagons; The Importance of Providing Church Buildings for New Converts

(Written December 18, 1898, from Sunnyside, Cooranbong, N.S.W., to Dr. John Harvey Kellogg.)

Some good will result from equipping Gospel Wagons in America, and thousands of dollars will be consumed in this way. When the season is ended, some sheaves may be gathered, but not many. The money could be used in lines that would have a more lasting influence. Camp meetings should be more abundant, but not large. Gospel Wagons will not accomplish the work of these meetings. They will not have the very best influence over those who work in connection with them. They will have a sort of infatuation for many who will think, “That is just the kind of work I would like to do—to ride through the country, and sing, and listen to instrumental music.” But this kind of labor does not make the best impression on minds.

In the place of having one mammoth camp meeting, have several small camp meetings. And when companies are raised up in the places where these meetings are held, let a place of worship be built for them. We cannot do otherwise here, so that labor shall not be lost. To do otherwise is too much like carrying a torch through a district in the night. The places where the torchbearer goes are light, but there are not many tapers kindled from his torch, to become true workers in giving light to others.

People have been called to the Gospel Wagon to listen to the music and the speeches that are made. But after they are gone little is left on the mind that will ripen into fruit. Many are enchanted with these outward performances; but the life and work of Christ was not after this order. God

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