Transcript adjusted to reflect correction sent by Rachael in comments
On December 11 this blog published a reproduction of a letter from Maria Russell that was being offered on eBay. Portions of the letter had been obscured so that it could not be read in its entirety. With grateful thanks to the generosity of the collector who purchased the “original” we are able reproduce below the contents in full.
It was written by Maria quite soon after she had traveled to congregations to defend CTR from accusations made by S D Rogers and others. (see: A Conspiracy Exposed and Harvest Siftings, extra number of ZWT for April 25, 1894, and subsequent correspondence in columns of ZWT). It was written from the home of Joseph L Russell his wife Emma, Maria’s sister, in Ashland, Virginia.
July 19th, 1894.
Mrs W N Fuller
Dear Sister in Christ
Your welcome letter of June 27th was duly received and the pamphlet requested was sent you and as I did not have time to reply before I left home I do so now from here where I am spending a short time with my sister for rest and change.
We appreciate very much the sentiments of your letter and feel very thankful that the storm has passed and that so little damage has been done. God has wonderfully overruled in it all and made the wrath of man to praise him; and all has worked together for good to his saints – the called according to his purpose who still love and serve him. What could more increase our love and confidence in him.
We do indeed feel sorry for the erring ones, but there is no sign of repentance on the part of any of them. Their only regret is that they have not succeeded in wrecking the work and ruining the reputation and influence of Bro. Russell. How sad and deplorable must be such a condition of mind and heart.
I am glad to know that your interest in the truth continues to grow and that your faith and hope increases. I hear from you occasionally through Sister Vero. Yes, how precious the truth is to us and what could we take in exchange for it? It is dearer to me every day and all my ambition is to attain that whereunto I am called. I can never for a moment feel that I could be satisfied unless I win the prize of our high calling; and yet I constantly realize my unworthiness. In Christ alone is my hope.
The good work both
h at home and abroad still goes forward,
and even though clouds and darkness are about how we blessedly realize that the
Lord is present and doing his strange and wonderful work. How fast events are
progressing toward the full establishment of his kingdom. Truly Zion hears and
is glad and the daughters of Judah rejoice. My heart is full of joy and praise
when I think of these things.
Give our love to your dear mother and family. My sister here – Mrs J.L. Russell – also sends greeting to you in the Lord. She and her husband and little daughter are also in the same faith and hope. She and I came into the truth together. Hoping to hear from you again, I am as ever
Yours in the Beloved
Mrs. C. T. Russell.