Biography and family record of Lorenzo Snow/Chapter XXV
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Onward. No bounds to Brother Snow's mission. He looks towards India and shapes his plans. Writes to F. D. Richards. Expresses his views. Brother Woodard writes from Italy. Brother Stenhouse from Switzer- land. Lorenzo visits Wales. Untimely plaudit. A Bedlamite night encounter. Ultimate fate of the hotel and its Landlord.
N and still onward! Although Brother Snow felt that thus far, through the blessings of God and the assist- ance of the Saints in Europe, he had succeeded in his efforts beyond his most sanguine anticipations, he knew there was more to do. He realized that the brotherhood of human origin circumscribes all the nations of the earth; that the glad tidings of salvation must be proclaimed to all people; that to his present mission the Priesthood of God had set no bound, and where should he stop? Not on the continent of Europe. He fixes his far-reaching gaze on the idolatrous nations of the east, and with no common daring contem- plates establishing a mission in India.
Prompt to the idea, his plan is soon shaped to introduce the unadulterated doctrines of Jesus Christ on the Asiatic continent. But this cannot be accomplished without means, and from whence the means? His confidence in the over- ruling hand of God, and in the liberality and zeal of the Saints, was more to him than a bank investment, and, with no disposition to confer with impediments, he moved for- ward. The following letter, which I transcribe from the Star of August 1, more fully explains the object he had in view:
President F. D. ^Richards:
I take the present opportunity to communicate through the Star a few items of information to the Saints generally in reference to the progress of the Italian and Swiss missions,
and other matters connected with the growing interests of Messiah's Kingdom.
Elder Stenhouse, with his wife and little daughter, will leave here this week, to resume his labors in Switzerland. I have nearly completed the translation of "Divine Authority," and given Elder Stenhouse instructions to publish it immedi- ately, together with the second edition of the "Voice of Joseph." We hope, ere long, to be able to issue a periodical from Geneva, adapted to our readers both in Switzerland and Italy.
The mission in Italy still moves forward under the cautious, prudent, faithful and persevering labors and man- agement of Elder Woodard. The two publications which I issued in Turin are now circulated quite extensively in the north of Italy. Elder Toronto has returned from Sicily, and is now laboring very successfully with Elder Woodard. Sev- eral intelligent and influential Italians have lately been ordained to the Priesthood, and are now engaged in. propa- gating the principles of life and salvation.
getting forward very well with the translation of the
Book of Mormon. I shall commence with the printing shortly, and will soon be able to present it to the people of Italy in their own language.
Lately my mind has been much impressed with the idea of introducing the Gospel to India. I have counseled with my brethren of the Twelve on the subject, and we all feel alike the importance of such a step, and the ultimate benefits to the Kingdom of God. Upon the Twelve devolves the responsibility of introducing the Gospel to the nations. As the time approaches when we anticipate the privilege of returning to the body of the Church, I feel reluctant indeed to suffer any favorable opportunity to pass for opening the door of the Gospel in India. Although the duties for Italy and Switzerland, and long absence from my family, press with weight upon me, I am nevertheless ready in the name of the Lord to take upon me this work also.
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I contemplate sending immediately around by sea to Calcutta one or two good and faithful Elders, and follow on myself as soon as I shall have completed the translation and publication of the Book of Mormon. I intend passing through by way of Switzerland and Italy, visiting the Saints in those countries, and promoting the interests of those missions in every way in my power.
Circumstances seem to be working favorably. A short time since I met with a brother who had resided seven years in India, and is conversant with the native language, and will immediately enter upon the translation of some of my works, which I intend getting published there, together with the "Voice of Joseph," in English, soon after my arrival.
Brethren who have plenty of means, and wish to employ them for the glory of God in the salvation of souls, I trust will not be backward in liberality; that while I willingly and freely sacrifice the pleasures and endearments of home and friends, they may be equally ready and willing to devote their means, and thus fulfil the Scriptures in making to themselves friends with the "mammon of unrighteousness."
If any of the Saints have friends in that country, to whom the brethren may be introduced, let them send unsealed letters of recommendation, properly addressed, enclosed in an envelope addressed to me, at 35 Jewin Street, London. Yours affectionately,
In order to keep the connection of the progress of the work in Italy and Switzerland, I extract from a letter published in the Star from Elder Woodard, dated Italy, August 1, 1851, and copy one from Elder Stenhouse:
Dear Brother Snow:
A tract of forty-six pages has been issued against us in Switzerland, and a plentiful supply has arrived here. It con-
tains the "Spaulding story" and nothing else except the com- mon cant of sectarianism and some quotations from "The A r oice of Joseph" and "The Only Way to be Saved," for which I am very thankful. I am happy to say that we now muster thirty-one members. I feel courage in the thought that you have taken the Presidency of the Indian Empire, and that if there be royal blood within my veins it will roll with renewed vigor through every fibre of my frame, that with stimulated energies I may carry out your counsel; and if I know what honor, and friendship, and gratitude require at my hands, you shall be in Italy at the same time you are in India, or else- where. I confess that when I found you had laid upon me the solemn charge to gather Israel from among these nations, I felt the weight of the office, and at the same time new courage and new patience. My e^yes are not closed to the diffi- culties of the situation, but I know where my strength lies. I feel as if I must fast and pray for every one of these king- doms separately; and I see that I must pass through many strange scenes, but by the help of the Lord I hope to over- come. I strive to acquire a knowledge of languages and customs, laws and regulations. If it were possible, I would wish to disburthen your mind of all future anxieties concern- ing this mission.
I know by my own experience, something of what you must have felt since the moment you were named for the President of such a stupendous undertaking. What thoughts have oft crowded your mind from morning to midnight! What weariness by land and sea! And now a still loftier enterprise engages your attention, or at least, one which gives a wider sphere of action. But what can I say that will leave your mind at rest concerning Italy?
Perhaps, now you are absent, it would ill become me to boast of my goodness, still I hope I advance a little. If ever a firm resolve has taken possession of my soul, it is now engraven there, and registered in heaven, that by the grace of
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God, I am determined to tread all things beneath my feet that would militate against the accomplishment of the glorious work in which I am engaged. Yes, I would like to conquer, but not for myself alone. I would render unto you that which is due from myself, and make thousands more to
feel that which they owe.
Elder Toronto joins with me in love to you and all the Saints.
CHEZ MONS. DUPRAZ, A LA SERVETTE, 429 GENEVE,
August 26, 1851. Dear President Snow: *
Knowing your continued anxiety and interest over these nations, I take a few minutes before retiring to rest, to say how we have been and how we are.
Since I wrote you, I paid a visit to Signor Reta, the trans- lator he was happy to see me inquired after your health, and sent his compliments. I expect a visit from him in a day or two. I hope to make a more intimate acquaintance with him. I have had a violent cold, which confined me to bed two days. After being restored, Sister Stenhouse was taken badly, much the same as myself, but much worse. We are now, thank the Lord, better. In the midst of all, we have done our best.
Elder Roulet brought an intelligent man to see us, who was connected with the Church where the lecture was deliv- ered against us. We had several interesting conversations with him; at length, on Friday night last, I baptized him. Yesterday we held our Sunday meeting, at which he was con- firmed. We prayed, read, talked and felt well. To-night he brought his daughter to have some conversation. She has gone home to reflect.
To-day I have received a very interesting letter from the brother I baptized at Lausanne. He says his wife wants to be baptized, and several others feel interested in the history of the Church, by reading our publications. I feel as if the Lord had commenced to work among the people. I get on with the language pretty well. I hope when you pass through, we will be thrilled with your own voice in this lan- guage.
Accept our united love.
As ever yours, very affectionately,
T. B. H. STENHOUSE.
Now to Lorenzo's journal: In the autumn of 1851, I visited some of the Welsh conferences, having received a very kind invitation from Elder William Phillips, who then pre- sided over that section. The visit afforded me inexpressible satisfaction the Saints in their national characteristic, w'arm- hearted friendship, kindness and hospitality, extended to me the warmest welcome; and also gave proof of the sincerity of their feelings of liberality by prompt, gratuitous assistance towards the interests of the great missionary work under my supervision.
During my stay in Wales, I attended a number of very interesting meetings. On the evening of the fourth of Novem- ber, I addressed a very large assembly, convened in a hall in Tredegar, in Monmouthshire. In the course of the meeting, Elder J. S. Davies arose, unanticipated by me, and read a poem composed by him, in which he alluded to my visit in Wales as an Apostle, as a very remarkable and wonderful event. I gave him full credit for his good motive and generous feel- ings, but at the same time felt not a little annoyed that he should have chosen such an unseasonable occasion in the presence of a large congregation, nine-tenths of which were Gentiles, to read an article of that character.
At the close of the meeting, President Phillips and my-
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self were conducted to a hotel, where, after supper, we were shown to lodgings in an upper room. As we passed into the bedchamber, while closing the door, I noticed that, owing to some defect in the lock, it could not be fastened. We soon retired to rest, then about 11 o'clock; thinking ourselves safe from harm, we slept soundly, until probably about 2 o'clock a.m., I was suddenly awakened by a savage looking fellow standing close to my bedside, ordering me and my companion to leave our bed forthwith or suffer the consequences; at the same time using the most blasphemous language, and uttering the most hideous oaths imaginable, while fiendishly striking his huge fists in close proximity to my face. Two of his com- rades, stout, fierce looking fellows, were standing by, evi- dently prepared for an encounter. Brother Phillips was soundly sleeping, and it was with some difficulty that I awakened him sufficiently to comprehend our situation. Of course, we could do but little towards defending ourselves against a trio of ruffians, desperately bent on mishief ; and as we afterwards learned, had been hired to mob us, and that the landlord was secretly conniving with the actors in the hellish raid.
In the contest, the light which one of them held, was by some means, suddenly extinguished, which caused an alarm, resulting in their retreat forthwith from the room; upon which I suggested to Elder Phillips that we immediately do our best to secure ourselves by barricading the door, for I felt assured the
insurgents would make another attack. We
placed a chair at the door, with the top directly under the knob of the door lock, and there I assumed the responsibility of holding it, while Brother Phillips performed the duty of pressing his large and stately person against the door.
No sooner had these protective arrangements been com- pleted, than the mobocrats, with considerable reinforcements, came rushing forward to renew the attack. They persistently endeavored to force the door open, but failing, they placed
themselves against it, Sampson like, but, owing to the position of things inside, without avail; then, with a volley of oaths, they commenced pounding and kicking the door, and con- tinued until the noise and uproar was so great that the land- lord did not dare any longer to ignore the situation, and coming to our relief, he quelled the disturbance by requesting the ruffians to retire.
Some years after the date of this occurrence, I was informed that the hotel in which the foregoing disgraceful scenes were enacted was being used as a common stable for the accommodation of horses; and that the landlord had been signally reduced to beggary, and was a vagabond upon the earth.