1860 October 11 Letter to Jacob Gates


1860 October 11 Letter to Jacob Gates


The Church will provide for missionaries and their families so they can focus solely on preaching the gospel.




Brigham Young


Jacob Gates


1860 October 11


Great Salt Lake City
Liverpool, England

Number of Pages



Missionary Work
Financial Matters
General Conference

Item sets

G.S.L. City, Oct. 11, 1860.

Elder Jacob Gates,
42 Islington, Liverpool, England,

Dear Brother:-Yours from Cardiff, South Wales, is at hand, and it afforded me much gratification to learn of your health and good spirits, and of the prosperity of the work in the British Isles.

Elders Orson Pratt, senr., Erastus Snow, and George Q. Cannon, and Cap. W.H. Hooper, with others on business and missions, left here on the 27th ult., well fitted out and feeling well. As 'Mormonism' progresses and the capacity of the people increases, the Spirit of the Lord counsels new channels and modes for our operations, and the power of our God opens the way for their accomplishment. Previous to the departure of the Missionaries in September, careful reflection led us to conclude it in time to fit out our Missionaries from here, so far as they might need assistance, to sustain their families during their absence, so far as those families may be unable to sustain themselves, and to provide for their return home when released from their fields of labor. In addition to this, arrangements are made to purchase their wagons and animals on the frontiers at fair prices, by the Church, a plan mutually beneficial, and preventing the Elders being obliged to sacrifice their property. These arrangements enable us to send the gospel from here and materially assist in gathering the poor, and so free the minds of the Elders from care in relation to their families, &c., that they can efficiently attend to their sole duties, viz:-- preaching the gospel and gathering the poor, which is all the business they have while upon their missions.

When this plan was mentioned, the people at once fell in with it, and the Bishops in this City alone, in a few days, received subscriptions to the amount of $12,554. 96/100, of which $7,001 50/100 have been paid in, and $893 40/100 expended in outfitting Elders for their missions. The articles paid in consist of cash, store and homemade goods, wood, flour, wheat, &c. &c. There is a separate account kept for this business, and the articles will be disbursed according to the wants of the missionaries and their families. You will readily perceive, from the prompt and liberal response made to the call, that our Missionaries have not the least excuse to in any way oppress the poor, nor to be continually begging for money, but are entirely untrameled to expend all their powers and the means that may fall into their hands in preaching the gospel and gathering the poor. This plan will also tend to wean the Elders from considering the gospel a gospel of merchandize, and reconcile them to going laboring and returning without purse or scrip, as they should, imparting all surplus means, from time to time, and when released to return, for assisting and gathering the poor, that they may start for home with no more means in their possession than they had when they left, and if they wish to get rich, learn that this is the place for their doing so.

Preaching the gospel and gathering the poor being the duties devolved upon our missionaries, and requiring, as before stated, all their powers and the means that may fall into their hands, you will at once understand that "marrying and giving in marriage," like getting rich, can be properly engaged in by them only when they are at home. We
desire, and intend so far as in our power, to see our Missionaries return bringing the souls of men, instead of silks, satins, velvets, furbelows, carriages, wives, or even silver and gold. These few statements will enable you to better understand the counsel and teachings published in late numbers of the Deseret News.

I wish you to spread the main points of the foregoing information, as opportunity may offer, that the Saints may understand what is here being done to aid them, and that the Elders, especially those on missions, may not repeat the errors, follies, and covetous and oppressive acts of the past.

Our Conference was very numerously attended, and all whom I have heard express their feelings upon the subject, testify to the manifestation of a greater portion of the Spirit and power of God than has heretofore attended any of our Conferences, and to the obviously increased capacity of the Saints. You will see the "Minutes" of Conference in this weeks 'News,' and the remarks and sermons will appear in that paper as fast as space will permit.

Further than the two already designated by us, I am not aware that any other of the Elders from here sent on missions are needed to assist in next years emigration; but if there is any one of them that feels as though he could not stay any longer, perhaps he had better return; of it transpiring circumstances cause br. Cannon to appoint one or
more of them to assist yourself and br. N.V. Jones, it will probably be all right, though the necessity for so doing is not yet apparent.

Affairs are moving favorably to the cause of truth, and its enemies are at present rather busily occupied in attending to matters that more immediately concern them.

So far as I know, your family and friends are well, and the people enjoy a goodly degree of health and excellent spirits, as do your brethren here in the gospel.

P.S. Since writing the above, br. Budge has stepped into the office and states that he is willing to repay, as soon as he is able, the amount of assistance he received from br. White, if br White wishes him to do so; he also says that the cow he received on the order was of no benefit to him, as she was dry, and died on the plains.

Brigham Young