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Historical Sketches of the Foreign Missions of the Seventh-day Adventists

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    The Waldenses

    Our visit to the Waldensian Valleys was one of special interest on account of the close connection which this locality has with the history of the people of God in past ages. It was in the friendly shelter of the surrounding rocky peaks that they found protection when the fierce persecutions of the Roman church drove them from the fertile plains of Northern Italy. In these plains they had succeeded in maintaining their independence of Rome many years after others had yielded to her power. Indeed, up to the eleventh century, the diocese of Milan is said to have greatly exceeded in extent that of Rome. But the very fact that her authority was disregarded on what might be called her own territory, was very humiliating to a power to whom all the world was then bowing down; and, after repeated unsuccessful attempts to induce the bishops of Milan to yield their independence, they were finally forced to submit.HS 239.1

    The submission, however, was by no means universal. Many refused to yield their rights, and fled, some to one country, some to another, while many retired to the Piedmontese Alps. “Behind this rampart of mountains, which Providence, foreseeing the approach of evil days, would seem to have reared on purpose, did this remnant of the early apostolic church of Italy kindle their lamp, and here did that lamp continue to burn all through the long night which descended upon Christendom.”HS 239.2

    Every rock upon which we gazed seemed to speak in solemn silence of the wonderful scenes it had witnessed. One place of interest which we visited, was a spot just back of the town of Bobbio, seven miles up the valley from Torre Pellice. We had a beautiful day for our trip. The air was clear, the sky as blue as only an Italian sky can be. Our party numbered seven besides the two drivers. The ride was delightful. After going as far as the carriages could carry us, we took our blankets and lunch-baskets, and prepared to ascend the mountain.HS 239.3

    By a zigzag course our path made its way up the hillside, sometimes winding in and out among the rocks that line the banks of a mountain brook, sometimes crossing a little patch of grain which was supported by a great stone wall and thus kept from being washed down the mountain side, sometimes following along the very edge of these great walls which hold in place the mountain terraces, on which are small vineyards, pasture lands, and grain fields; then it would turn suddenly and ascend by rocky steps to the heights above. Now and then we would stop to rest, or to allow to pass us a solemn-looking flock of sheep and goats which some little girl or boy was driving to the small patches of pasture land above.HS 239.4

    A climb of three-quarters of an hour brought us to a large open plat of ground. Here we halted, and under the friendly shade of a huge chestnut-tree spread our lunch. A few rods from us was a large house, built of stone, and plastered on the outside. Although about eight hundred years old, it was still occupied. Here it was that many of the Waldenses found shelter when driven by their persecutors from the valley below; but spies soon found them here, and soldiers were sent to exterminate them. The battle was fought on the very spot where we were seated. Although the Waldenses were few in number, they held their ground for some time, and then, attempting to escape, most of them were brutally massacred. Two who were wounded fled to the rocks a few rods above us, where they dragged their wounded bodies through a narrow passage into a cave which extended thirty feet underground.HS 239.5

    But a Satanic spirit drove humanity from the hearts of their pursuers, and led them to devise a means of killing these wounded men whom they could not capture. Wood and leaves were piled at the various crevices of the rock, and set on fire, and the prisoners soon perished from suffocation. After partaking of our simple lunch, we climbed up to this cave, and explored it as far as we could. Then one of our number crawled, feet first, between the rocks, and dropped himself into the inner cave where the poor martyrs miserably perished.HS 240.1

    History tells us of several occasions when the same means of extermination was resorted to and that, too, on a much larger scale. The valley of Loyse was the scene of one of the most horrible of these tragedies. The inhabitants were quietly pursuing their vocations, when they were surprised by seeing an armed force twenty times their own number enter their valley. “Despairing of being able to resist them, they at once prepared for flight. Placing their old people and children in rustic carts, together with their domestic utensils, and such store of victuals as the urgency of the occasion permitted them to collect, and driving their herds before them, they began to climb the rugged slopes of the mountains, which rise some six thousand feet over the level of the valley.” “About half way up, there is an immense cavern. In front of the cavern is a platform of rock, where the spectator sees beneath him only fearful precipices, which must be clambered over before one can reach the entrance to the grotto. The roof of the cave forms a magnificent arch, which gradually subsides and contracts into a narrow passage, or throat, and then widens once more and forms a roomy hall of irregular form. Into this grotto, as into an impregnable castle, did the Vaudois enter. Their women, infants, and old men, they placed in the inner hall; their cattle and sheep they distributed along the lateral cavities of the grotto. The able-bodied men posted themselves at the entrance. Having barricaded with huge stones both the doorway of the cave and the path that led to it, they deemed themselves secure.” “It would cost them little effort to hurl headlong down the precipices any one who should attempt to scale them in order to reach the entrance of the cavern.HS 240.2

    “But a device of their pursuers rendered all these precautions and defenses vain. Ascending the mountain on the other side, and approaching the cave from above, the soldiers were let down by ropes from the precipice overhanging the entrance to the grotto. The platform in front was thus secured. The Vaudois might have cut the ropes, and dispatched their foes as they were being lowered one by one; but the boldness of the maneuver would seem to have paralyzed them. They retreated into the cavern to find in it their grave. Seeing the danger of permitting his men to follow them into the depths of their hiding-place, the general adopted the easier and safer method of piling up at its entrance all the wood he could collect and setting fire to it. A huge volume of black smoke began to roll into the cave, leaving to the unhappy inmates the miserable alternative of rushing out and falling by the sword that waited for them, or of remaining in the interior to be stifled by the murky vapor. Some rushed out, and were massacred; but the greater part remained until death slowly approached them by suffocation. When the cavern was afterward examined, there were found in it four hundred infants, suffocated in their cradles or in the arms of their dead mothers. Altogether there perished in this cavern more than three thousand Vaudois, including the entire population of the valley of Loyse.”HS 240.3

    This one circumstance out of many of a similar character will give something of an idea of what the Waldenses endured for the truth's sake. Terror, mourning, and death everywhere followed in the footsteps of their persecutors. Whole villages were given to the flames. Nor could the caves, as we have seen, afford any protection to the multitudes who sought refuge in them. When the fire kindled at the mouth of these retreats was extinguished, “all was silent within.”HS 241.1

    One can hardly imagine the indescribable feelings with which, after contemplating such scenes, we looked upon the cave now before us. After exploring it quite thoroughly, we climbed still higher, upon the rocks above it, and there bowed in a season of prayer. Jesus seemed very near while we pleaded with him to imbue us with more of the spirit of true devotion and firm adherence to principle that had led so many in these valleys in times past to lay down their lives for the truth's sake.HS 241.2

    It is beyond my power to describe the picture which opened before us from this high elevation. That its beauty has attracted the attention of others, appears from the glowing description which we here give from the pen of another:—HS 241.3

    “At this point the grandeur of the valley Lucerna attains its height.” “Immediately behind Bobbio shoots up the ‘Barion,’ symmetrical as an Egyptian obelisk, but far taller and more massive. Its summit rises three thousand feet above the roofs of the little town. Compared with this majestic monolith, the proudest monument of Europe's proudest capital is a mere toy. Yet even the ‘Barion’ is but one item in this assemblage of glories. Overtopping it behind, and sweeping round the extremity of the valley, is a glorious amphitheater of crags and precipices, inclosed by a background of great mountains, some rounded like domes, others sharp as needles.” “In this unrivaled amphitheater sits Bobbio, in summer buried in blossoms and fruit, and in winter wrapped in the shadows of its great mountains, and the mist of their tempests.” “A carpet of rich meadows clothes the valley from side to side; fruit-trees fleck it with their shadows; the Pellice waters it; and on either hand is a wall of mountains.” “Over these are hung stupendous battlements of rocks; and above all, towering high in the air, are the everlasting peaks in their robes of ice and snow.”HS 241.4

    As far as the eye could reach up the mountain sides we could see dwellings, cultivated lands, and even villages, while from many of these rocky eminences white church towers reared their heads, as if pointing the people heavenward. Here, among the rugged rocks, in places seemingly inaccessible, they sought refuge from the fury of their oppressors. Here they thought to worship God without molestation, making the mountains echo with their prayers and songs of praise to their Redeemer.HS 241.5

    Most of those who have been born and brought up in the seclusion of these mountain homes choose to remain there. Far up on the mountain side we saw a man and woman sowing wheat under the friendly shelter of the overhanging rocks. By these people conveniences and luxuries are not thought of. If they can secure a sufficient harvest from the little patches of land among the crags to feed themselves and their children, they are content. As for clothing, they are quite independent. Near the spot where we ate our lunch, a young peasant girl was tending a small flock of sheep, and at the same time diligently plying the distaff. As we came near, she kindly showed us how the work was done, and also some of the cloth that had been made from yarn thus prepared.HS 241.6

    We would gladly have remained longer, climbed from height to height, entered the dwellings, and spoken with the people; but we had not time or strength to go farther. As we slowly made our way down the rocky path by the side of a rushing stream, we could but wonder how many pilgrim feet had trod this rugged path before us in the hope of finding an asylum from the wrath of their oppressors, and our hearts ascended to God in prayer that the precious light of present truth might reach the descendants of this long-persecuted people. We firmly believe that God will open the way, that he will remove the obstructions, which now shut the light from them.HS 242.1

    The next day after our trip to Bobbio we visited an ancient fortress, which is built on a height a short distance from Torre Pellice. Here we found a large open space inclosed by walls within walls, also extensive buildings which were formerly used as a monastery. Within the inclosure is a cave. This we entered, and found ourselves in a room about eight feet square. The walls of this room were covered with a thick, green moss, on which drops of water glistened like pearls. From this room there were openings into two underground tunnels. One of these led down to the village, into a building formerly used as a convent; the other to a Catholic church in another part of the town. Here the secret workings of the mystery of iniquity had been carried on. Here many precious souls had lost their lives, and left their bones to testify of their faith. But the history of their sufferings will be made known only when every secret thing shall be revealed. The Judgment alone will bring to light the cruelties practiced in connection with these fortified heights.HS 242.2

    There is no question as to whose banner those ranked under who thus persecuted the saints. Their master, Satan, alone could instigate men to inflict such terrible cruelties, such intense sufferings, such excruciating agony, upon their fellow-men. Those ages of cruel restriction of liberty of conscience are now in the past; but, we inquire, how long before Satan will, through his devices, again bring upon God's people a time of trouble? Satan is a deceiver, a murderer, and his power will be felt in the near future by those who love and fear God.HS 242.3

    If their voices could be heard, what a history the everlasting mountains surrounding these valleys could give of the sufferings of God's people because of their faith! What a history of the visits of angels unrecognized by these Christian fugitives! Again and again have angels talked with men, as man speaketh with a friend, and led them to places of security. Again and again have the encouraging words of angels renewed the drooping spirits of the faithful, and, carrying their minds above the tops of the highest mountains, caused them to behold by faith the white robes, the crowns, the palm branches of victory, which the overcomers will receive when they surround the great white throne.HS 242.4

    What valuable lessons these pilgrims and strangers must have learned in the friendly asylum of the rocks! As they climb the steep mountain paths, they have in mind, not the homes they have left, although they still hope to possess them again; but they are looking for a home so high that the highest peak of the Alps cannot reach it,—a home with their heavenly Father in the mansions that Jesus has gone to prepare for them, from which they will never be driven. The bitter venom of the dragon cannot reach them there. Therefore they can well afford to leave their earthly treasures, to grope their way among dark and crooked paths, and to be inclosed in rocky chambers, away from the light of day, if by this means they can attain that home among the blest,—a home not made with-hands, eternal in the heavens.HS 243.1

    In their lonely retreats they often met their Redeemer and conversed with him, as did the two disciples on the way to Emmaus. He would there open to them the sublime truths of his word, and strengthen them in their determination not to put confidence in false guides, but to obey and worship Him only who made and governs the world, “He sees and knows everything,” they continually repeated to themselves. “He will hear our prayers, and attend unto our wants. He who feedeth the ravens will not leave us to perish.” Thus their words of faith cheered themselves and others, and their trials and perplexities only drove them nearer to God and increased their faith.HS 243.2

    Such was the character, such the motives, of the Waldenses of the twelfth and thirteenth centuries. Alas, how changed are this people now! The spirit which animated their fathers, and led them to contend for pure Bible truth, seems to have slumbered; the light which shone from their ancestors no longer shines from them. Religious declension has marked the faith and practice of this once God-fearing people. Many dissembled to conceal their faith, and by thus compromising their religion have become corrupted. It is the old story repeated. Men forget the scenes of most hallowed interest which kept alive their lofty aspirations, and because of hardships they cease to grow in grace and in the knowledge of the Scriptures. When they should be advancing, they are retrograding.HS 243.3

    In order now to keep the name of Protestantism alive in these valleys, Protestants of other countries have expended large sums to support the Vaudois preachers and College. Until within the last year, the ministers of the Vaudois churches have been almost entirely supported by foreign missionary societies. The people have not been educated to do anything for the support of the gospel; and it was stated to us as a fact that some are even hired indirectly to become church-members. We can believe this from an incident that occurred a few months ago. A lady became very much interested in the truth, and began to keep the Sabbath. As soon as this was known, she was visited by leading ones in the church, and told that there was some means in the mission treasury, and that if she would not unite with us they would appropriate a certain amount toward repairing her house; and more than this, they would give her a certain amount each month. This was somewhat tempting to one who was very poor and who had a large family to care for; but we are glad to say that she had courage to decide for the right.HS 243.4

    The pastors in many cases are ignorant of the Scriptures and of the power of God, and they feed themselves instead of feeding the flock. At one of their late synods it was proposed that each pastor should visit every member of his congregation at least once a year; but with almost unanimous voice they objected to the measure, some saying that if it was insisted upon they would resign their charge. With many of them religion is a mere form, and they are doing comparatively nothing to advance the temporal or spiritual interests of their flock. The people are perishing in ignorance, while those who claim to be religious teachers take from them the key of knowledge. They enter not in themselves, and those who would enter in they hinder.HS 244.1

    Eighteen hundred years ago the voice of Jesus, clear and distinct, like the peal of a trumpet, went forth to the weary, thirsty crowd in the temple courts: “If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink.” “Whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life.” Oh that the voice of Jesus could reach the dull senses of this people! Oh that they could feel their real need, and realize how much Jesus is willing and ready to do for them!HS 244.2

    As a rule, the people of these valleys are poor, unlearned, and superstitious, and their standard of religion and morality is low. One Sunday morning we walked out to the market-place. Here, as in all other European cities and villages, great account is made of market-days. At this time shop-keepers from all parts of the town bring their wares, and market women from the surrounding country bring, in carts drawn by mules, or in baskets on their heads or backs, vegetables, fruit, butter, eggs, chickens, and all kinds of farm produce, and display them in the streets. The principal market-days in this place are Sunday and Friday forenoons. It was to us a novel way of keeping Sunday. Men and women were crying their wares, and people were hurrying to and fro, many of them anxious to return home with their purchases in time to prepare for church. This shows the lax ideas that many, even of those who profess to be Christians, have in regard to Sunday observance. And when they accept the Sabbath, it is often quite difficult to impress them with the importance of observing it any more strictly.HS 244.3

    After urging our way through the narrow street, at this time almost blockaded with people and merchandise, we found ourselves looking upon quite another scene. A swift-flowing mountain stream crosses the main street at right angles, and in an open space we see a row of women kneeling on its banks. On coming a little nearer, we find that they are washing. Each one is kneeling in a small box with the cover and one side removed, and a little straw laid on the bottom. In front of each is a slanting slab of granite rock which she uses something as we would a rubbing board. However, instead of rubbing the clothes, they squeeze, and slap, and rinse them, using a stiff brush and soap on the dirtiest parts. Occasionally one would have a few live coals by her side with a little pail of hot water in which to dip her hands when they became too stiff and cold. Most of them seemed to take considerable pains to get their clothes clean, and after they had finished they put them across a stick and carried them home on their shoulders. We are told that in all well-to-do families washing is seldom done oftener than once in six weeks, and sometimes only once in three months. It is then done by hand, without the aid even of a rubbing-board. This is the common way of washing. In the cities, places are prepared in various parts for this work; while in the country, women may be seen far off in the fields, away from any house, washing in some stream from which they have perhaps broken the ice. There are those, of course, who have regular wash-rooms in their house or in a separate building. These are furnished with immense tubs, around which the entire family can gather, if need be, when wash week comes. One room is used exclusively for clean clothes, and one for dirty, and before the soiled ones are put away, they are sprinkled with a powder which prevents them from smelling bad or spoiling.HS 244.4

    The question with us is how these women can keep their hands in ice-cold water for hours at a time without injury to their health. Indeed, we are quite inclined to the opinion that this practice is one cause of the enlarged necks which we saw everywhere. This is, however, most commonly attributed to the water which they drink. Another thing which it seems reasonable to suppose would produce this unnatural swelling, is the heavy loads that many carry on their heads and backs. It is not uncommon to see a man or woman coming down the mountains, carrying a bundle of wood or hay much larger than himself. When we were in Italy, men, women, and children were out gathering chestnut leaves and burrs. These they use much as we do straw, and every spot was raked as carefully as though it had been to secure the most valuable crop.HS 245.1

    Life in Italy, with all except the wealthy, is a hard battle. Judging from the expression which we saw upon the countenances of many, the last ray of hope had died out of their souls, their ambition was gone, and as long as life should last they expected only hunger, toil, and misery. The children are taught to work almost from infancy. We met little ones not more than six years old walking and knitting as busily and intelligently as women of sixty. And many at the tender age of seven or eight are placed in factories, or set to work in stone quarries. This seemed at first almost cruel; but when we learned that the most experienced workmen in the factories received only fifty cents for sixteen hours’ work, and those less experienced only twenty-five cents, and that from this meager pittance some were obliged to support a family of from eight to twelve, we felt less like judging them harshly for allowing their children to work rather than to starve. As the result, however, of standing on their feet so many hours, and working so hard in childhood, many never attain their full growth. We saw many remarkably short men and women, also many who were bow-legged and crippled. And yet all who had had a fair chance for their lives looked healthy and rosy-cheeked.HS 245.2

    The manner in which the people live is of course the most inexpensive. Their principal articles of diet are bread and a cheap coffee. All patronize the bakeshops, as it would cost more to buy wood to bake with than to buy bread. The natural order of things seems to be somewhat reversed here. Wood sells by the pound, and bread, so the saying runs, by the yard. This, however, refers to bread that is baked in rolls a little larger than a pipe stem, and about a yard long. This is a kind of bread peculiar to the Piedmont valleys. Repeated efforts have been put forth to make it in other places, but without success. It is as light and sweet as it is possible for bread to be, but is too expensive for the poorer classes. These buy a cheap, black-looking quality, made in long loaves; and, whenever they can get money enough ahead to do so, they buy it in quantity, and stack it up to dry, so that it will “go farther.”HS 245.3

    The dress of the people is of the most substantial kind, and is made in the most simple style. Their shoes are mostly made of wood. The father is often the shoe-maker for the entire family; that is, he buys the leather tops at a trifling expense, and puts in the wooden bottoms himself. One pair of shoes costs from twenty to forty cents, and is expected to last about year. So far as hats and bonnets for the women and children are concerned, they either go bare-headed the year round or wear a little white muslin bonnet with a fluted frill around the face.HS 247.1

    The work of the women in the house, in cooking and sewing, being quite light, they spend much of their time in out-of-door labor. It is very common to see women digging in the ground, dressing vineyards, or hauling large loads of wood, hay, or the like, to market. The team they usually drive is cows. Horses are seldom used here except before carriages; mules, Sardinian ponies, donkeys, and oxen are quite common; but the animals most commonly used for ordinary farm labor are cows. These are usually driven by ropes attached to their horns, the driver walking by their side or going in front and guiding them by pulling them this way or that. Most other animals, except carriage horses, are taught to be driven without lines of any kind, as we drive oxen. Besides being thus used as beasts of burden, the cows are often milked regularly three times a day.HS 247.2

    How the milk from such animals can be healthy is a great question. But we notice that they are driven very slowly, and with only moderate loads, and they are given the very best of care. In winter they share the comforts of their owners, or, more correctly, the owners share the comforts of the cattle; for then the majority of families move into their stables, where men, women, children, sheep, goats, and cows live together in peace and harmony. This is purely an economical scheme, the heat from the animals being made to answer instead of fire. Fuel of all kinds is high. Coal can hardly be obtained. Coke costs from ten to twelve dollars a ton; and wood, which is simply limbs including the small twigs, costs a third of a cent a pound. Besides this, those who use it, have to pay a wood tax.HS 247.3

    Most people who use wood raise it as they do any other crop. It is done in this way: Rows of willows are planted along their fences or irrigating ditches, and are allowed to grow from six to ten feet high. Then they are cut back every second or third year to the same height, and the smallest twigs and branches are used for fuel. In view of these facts in regard to fuel and the exceedingly low prices paid for labor, it is not so surprising that people resort to almost any means to keep warm without fire.HS 247.4

    Long-established custom has made living in stables quite popular. Many people in prosperous circumstances adopt this way of living. While in Torre Pellice, we visited a stable, in the center of the town, which was occupied by a rich lady who owned and rented the whole building. In one end of the stable stood two noble-looking Jersey cows; in the other end, on a plank floor about six feet-square, stood a bench, two stools, and a table, with a few dishes. Here the woman of the house had taken up her winter quarters, and ate, cooked, and slept.HS 247.5

    At night when it is very cold, it is customary to take a bundle of straw or leaves, and lie as close to the cattle as possible. One small window furnishes light for the apartment, while the bodies and breath of the cattle and the stack of smoking manure, afford the only means of warmth. It is astonishing to see how little knowledge of the laws of life and health the people have. And yet if one should attempt to teach them, they would feel very much offended. We can only hope that the truth may take hold upon the hearts of some, and that they may be elevated and sanctified through it, “The entrance of Thy words,” says the psalmist, giveth light; it giveth understanding unto the simple.”HS 248.1

    Although the people show signs of having endured toil and hardship, many bear a noble, intelligent countenance. How my soul went out for these, that they might have the truth presented to them! But there are many difficulties to be met in doing this work, that our American laborers do not have to encounter. It is impossible to obtain either churches or school-houses in which the truth can be presented with any degree of freedom. Both are placed under the control of the resident minister. In many villages it is almost impossible to secure even a hall. The only alternative seems to be to visit the people at their homes, and hold meetings in private houses. Here another difficulty presents itself. In summer those who live near the foot of the mountains go much higher up, and are scattered where it is almost impossible to find them. In winter they descend and live in stables. Here is the only place where our colporteurs can find them with any degree of facility.HS 248.2

    During the past season, Bro. Geymet has been visiting and holding Bible readings with the people in these stables. At the time we were there, he was holding two meetings a week in a stable in the Angrogna valley, about seven miles from Torre Pellice. The interest was good, and the average attendance was from forty to fifty. There, on the dirt floor of the stable which was sometimes strewn with leaves or straw, or sitting on boards placed across boxes, these would sit and listen for an hour or two, and then would remain after the meeting closed, to talk over what had been said. Occasionally the meeting would be interrupted by the movements and noise of the quadrupeds; but the exercises were immediately resumed without any apparent disturbance. The people appreciate this kind of personal labor, and often make bitter complaints because their own ministers do not visit them oftener. Although not a very agreeable manner of working, it is, as we have seen, in many cases the only way of reaching the people, and we believe that the blessing of God will attend the labor thus put forth.HS 248.3

    It is a continual study to know how the work can best be advanced in these valleys. One thing is certain, that whatever is accomplished will be by the utmost diligence and perseverance. There must be a steady light shining in the darkness, notwithstanding this light for a time will not be comprehended. Then, again, we must have more books and pamphlets in the French and Italian languages. We are moving altogether too slowly in this respect. Time is passing. Workers who are willing to enter these foreign fields either as evangelists or translators should be selected and educated. May God grant the workers, now three in number, who are laboring in these valleys, the necessary courage and strength that they may prosecute their work with such zeal and earnestness that they may see abundant fruit of their labors in the kingdom of God.HS 248.4

    As we go from these valleys, it is with mingled feelings of joy and sorrow,—of joy because there ever existed a people who were not afraid, even many years before the first gleamings of the Reformation, to stand in defense of Bible truth; of sorrow because so few of their descendants manifest a desire to continue to walk in the light as it shines from the word of God. We feel confident, however, that the Lord will again work for this people, and restore to those who will come to the light, their former purity and fidelity to his service. The clear light of the third angel's message will yet be reflected from the honest-hearted in these valleys. The light in them which has grown dim will be brightened.HS 249.1

    The angel that joins the third angel is to lighten the earth with his glory. There will be many, even in these valleys, where the work seems to start with such difficulty, who will recognize the voice of God speaking to them through his word, and, coming out from under the influence of the clergy, will take their stand for God and the truth. This field is not an easy one in which to labor, nor is it one which will show immediate results; but there is an honest people here who will obey in time. The persecutions which their fathers endured have made them apathetic and closemouthed, and they look upon strangers and strange doctrines with suspicion. But the miracle of God's mercy, working with man's human effort, will yet cause the truth to triumph upon the very soil where so many have died to defend it. Knowledge will be increased, faith and courage will revive, and the truth will shine as the light of the morning all through these valleys. The old battle field will yet be the scene of victories now unseen, and the adoption of Bible truth will vindicate the past fidelity of their fathers.HS 249.2

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