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Church History Vol. 4 Chapter 4 Page 56




THE year 1874 opened with activity in all parts of the mission field. In order to prepare for a more extended missionary effort it was desirable that the Quorum of Seventy, upon whom the great burden of missionary work must rest, should be placed in as good condition as possible. On January 17, Elder C. G. Lanphear, president of the quorum, wrote an urgent appeal to the members of the quorum to report to him before the General Conference, stating if they were ready for duty; and on the 24th, the president of the Twelve issued the following letter:

Dear Brethren: In view of the wide, and every-day extending field inviting laborers, together with the increasing desire to hear on the part of all classes, and the activity of the enemies of truth, we feel prompted to address you, and bring to your consideration the present want of a more numerous and active traveling ministry. The world is ripening; creeds and theories changing; new questions arising; and new issues forced upon the religiously inclined, as well as upon the religious teachers. The spirit of irreligion is rampant, and Christianity is attacked at all points. The Iconoclasts (breakers of images) of to-day, are seeking to break down the temple and altar of God-the pillars of gospel truth, and obliterate (what sectarians have obscured) the foundation of hope.

At this juncture an unusual disposition is manifested to lend an ear to the words of life; the church feels this increased weight of responsibility to furnish an increase of laborers corresponding to this increased

(page 56)

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