Ellen G. White Writings

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Historical Sketches of the Foreign Missions of the Seventh-day Adventists, Page 194

We saw in Stockholm many country-women in their provincial costumes. Those from one locality wore a cone-shaped cap fully a foot high, a red tunic, and a large checked or striped apron woven of coarse yarn as we weave striped carpets in America.

At Copperberg, where we spent the night after leaving Stockholm, we first had an opportunity to observe the Swedish table customs. In the dining-room of the hotel was a table having a large flower-pot in the center, and spread with bread, butter, cheese, cold salt meat, and various relishes and liquors. All are expected to patronize this table as an introduction to their regular meal,—a novel method of stimulating the appetite, which those unaccustomed to it are not likely to find successful. Men and women help themselves to what they wish, and walk about the room, talking and eating. After this they order whatever dishes they desire, seat themselves at one of the small tables, and eat at their leisure. But this first course, called “smorgas,” is always eaten first, and usually in the manner I have described.


Sabbath and Sunday, October 24 and 25, we spent at Grythyttehed, a village surrounded by forests, nearly a hundred and fifty miles north-west from Stockholm. Here we were kindly cared for at the hospitable home of Bro. and Sister Hedin. This brother had in former years been a man of dissipated habits; and as the result, he was poor in every sense. When the truth was preached here, he received it, and it began its work in his life and character. He became temperate and industrious, and began to prosper in his business, so that he now keeps several men in his employ. He desired to entertain the ministers that visited them; but his house was small, and his family large, and it was often necessary for the ministering brethren to find a place among strangers. Such was Bro. Hedin's love for the truth, that he hired money to build a good-sized two-story house where he could have room to receive the Lord's servants. Two large chambers, comfortably furnished, and provided with stoves and writing-tables, are kept for their use. This brother's history shows what Bible truth can do for a man. It elevates, ennobles, and refines him; it will fit him for the society of holy angels in the kingdom of God.

But worldly prosperity is not often the lot of those who receive the truth. Our brethren in America have but little idea of the difficulties to be met by those who keep the Sabbath in these countries. The laboring class is poorly paid, especially in the country. Many a man works for thirty-five cents a day in the summer, and fifteen in the winter. Most of our people are poor, and it is very difficult for them to obtain work, even at low prices. The elder of this church is employed in a store as general manager, and when he began to keep the Sabbath, his salary was cut down from 700 to 600 kroner, about $162, a year; on this small sum he supports a family of five. There are many who have to lift a heavy cross, and walk by faith, not by sight. Many suffer poverty and reproach; but this should not prevent them from obeying God's commandments. Their reward will be in accordance with their self-denial and sacrifice for the truth's sake.

At this place is one of the oldest companies of Sabbath-keepers in Sweden. They number about fifty. Here there

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