Ellen G. White Writings

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Ellen White: Woman of Vision, Page 160

Chapter 11—California—Here We Come

Anyone for California?” asked James White. At the close of the General Conference session held in mid-May 1868, the ministers in attendance were given an opportunity to express their preferences as to the fields in which they would work during the coming year. California was as yet an unentered field as far as any denominational workers were concerned.

But eight years previously Merritt G. Kellogg had trekked with his family by ox team to California and worked in San Francisco as a carpenter. Then, as health reform was being promoted among Seventh-day Adventists, he returned to the East to take a medical course. He enrolled at Dr. Trall's Medical College, Florence Heights, New Jersey, where a few months later he was granted a diploma as a qualified physician and surgeon. He lingered in Michigan following his graduation, and at the General Conference session in mid-May made an earnest appeal for the General Conference to send a missionary to California to help him in his work in raising up a company of believers in San Francisco. The brethren agreed that in time such might be done.

But James was not ready to let it drop there. “Has no one had any impressions of duty with reference to the California field?” Up to this time J. N. Loughborough had remained silent; now he stood and spoke of his impressions and offered his services for work in the West.

Loughborough had come to the conference with the deep impression that he should go to California, but he had revealed this to no one. In no fewer than 20 dreams he seemed to be working there!

Loughborough reported on what followed:

Brother White then remarked, “When the Lord sent forth His servants, He sent them two and two, and it seems as though two ministers should go to that distant field.” ... Then Elder [D. T.] Bourdeau arose and stated how his mind had been exercised, and that he had come to the meetings with his companion and all his earthly substance ready to go where the conference might say (Pacific Union Recorder, July 3, 1913).

White counseled, “Will Brethren Bourdeau and Loughborough pray over this together and separately until the day the Review goes to press, that they

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