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18 August 1875


Salt Lake City Nineteenth Ward Relief Society; Nineteenth Ward Meetinghouse, Salt Lake City, Utah Territory

[. . .] Pres. Mrs. A. A. [Ann Agatha] Pratt then arose and said [. . .] I will now leave the meeting in the hands of our Bishop and the sisters who are with us today. [. . .] [p. 10] [. . .]

Mrs E. R. Snow said, by request of your President I ar[o]se to say a few words. The Bishop [Alonzo H. Raleigh] has told us of a great many of our failings, we are weak and frail and as an ancient Apostle said we are made subject to vanity. We should be [p. 11] thankful to have our shortcomings held out before us or we might forget the source of <all> our blessings But sisters don’t let us be discouraged. I don’t sometimes wonder that our Bishops have as much patience with us as they do and I also wonder That our Father has as much patience with the Bishops and with us. The Lord gave us commandments years ago and we have not kept them and today we are slaves, slaves as a people, we are anything but a free and independent people. All Zion has been asleep and the adversary has taken advantage of our lethargy. The Apostle has said that the fruits of the Gospel are long suffering, charity, joy, peace, but other spirits have crept into our homes. Our indulgent Father accepts of no compromise. He gives us laws and we must live up to them. When the Children of Israel were led out of bondage they went after other Gods, and Joshua said “Choose ye this day whom ye will serve” if God serve him” It is just so today. If Baal serve him” It is just so today but God is merciful he has given us another chance. Let Babylon go. We are not called to be Judges in Israel but to stand as Saviors on Mt Zion. Let us rouse up and put on the armor of God and get our hearts filled with His Spirit and be mothers in Israel. I don’t mean mothers of children alone but to be helpmeets to do good. God still holds out the sceptre of mercy. Have we walked in the straight and narrow path, I think not. We do not know each other by our dress or looks from those of Babylon. In Kirtland we could tell a stranger or an apostate, but now we cannot tell the difference. We have got to lay off Babylon. I ask myself is there anything I have that can stand between me and the fulness of the Gospel? or my obedience to the United Order I am for the Kingdom of God and am determined to do search myself. I know that the priesthood rules and I am willing to submit to its ruling. When I joined the church I made the exclamation that I would not let anything come between me and my God, and that I was called upon to do I would do it or try to. We should seek to cultivate the spirit of joy and peace in our bosoms. Pres [Brigham] Young was saying to me that he was going to organize the U. O. [United Order] right here in Salt Lake city but did not want his family to join it unless they could dispense with superfluities. Now the priesthood is not going to say what we shall do. It is a day of choosing and we will [p. 12] do the choosing ourselves. All good and moral women should belong to the Relief Society. The sisters in Zion are called upon to sustain home manufacture. Let each sister think what she has on here today that is made here in Zion. My bonnet was made here the flowers also. In Brigham City they have 30 different branches of the U.O. The silk business has been very successful. We have machinery <coming> to manufacture the silk. A sister is coming from England who can spin. Women and children can do the work. We must be watchful and prayerful that we may not lose our blessings and inheritances. It is better to humble ourselves than to have the Lord humble us. be ready to do the bidding of the priesthood and have our feelings absorbed in the work before. God bless you and help you to put on the whole armor of Christ like the women of old, not the putting on of entword [untoward] apparel but a meek and quiet spirit. I hope that each one present may live so that they may be numbered with those who have oil in their lamps and be ready to meet the bridegroom and attain to a fulness in the Eternal world.

Mrs M. I. [Mary Isabella] Horne said [. . .] let us arouse ourselves and prepare for those things that are coming upon us for if we have not oil in our lamps we will not hear the voice of the bridegroom. Four or five years ago President Young called upon us to establish retrenchment and organize our meetings and I believe that we are better prepared to enter into the U. O. [. . .] There is a great labor before us to prepare clothing for the Lamenites and while we are engaged in our home duties we should reflect upon spiritual things. [. . .] [p. 13]

[. . .]

Sister Snow then asked if any of the sisters would donate a towel to the Indians as she was getting a donation for that purpose

Pres A. A. Pratt said [. . .] We have had much good instruction and hope it may sink deep into our hearts, and profit by what we have heard. [. . .] [p. 14]

Source Note

Nineteenth Ward, Salt Lake Stake, Relief Society Minutes and Records (1868–1971), vol. 3 (1875–1897), pp. 10–14, CHL (LR 6092 14); Maria W. Wilcox, Secretary.

See also A. E. Neal, “R. S. Reports,” Woman’s Exponent 4, no. 9 (1 Oct. 1875): 67.