Minutes and Discourses, 6–7 April 1844, as Published in Times and Seasons
General conference of the church, Minutes, and JS, Discourses, Nauvoo, Hancock Co., IL, 6–7 Apr. 1844; in “Conference Minutes, Times and Seasons, 1 May 1844, 5:522–524; 15 July 1844, 5:577–579; 1 Aug. 1844, 5:596–598; and 15 Aug. 1844, 5:612–617.
could answer yes; but no! no!! I cannot. They have robbed us, we are stripped of our possessions, many of our friends are slain, and our government says “your cause is just, but we can do nothing for you.” Hear it, ye great men, we are here in exile! Here are thousands of men in bondage, in a [l]and of liberty, of freedom!! If ye have any patriotism left, shake off your fetters, and come and proclaim us free, and give us our rights. I speak of this goyernment as being one of the best of governments, as one of the greatest, purest, and yet, what a melancholy picture. O ye venerable fathers who fought for your liberty, blush for your children, and mourn, mourn over your ’s shame. We are now talking about a government which sets herself up as a pattern for the nations of the earth, and yet, O what a picture. If this is the best, the most patriotic, the most free, what is the situation of the rest? Here we speak with national pride of a Washington, a La Fayette, a Monroe, and a Jefferson; who fought for their liberties, and achieved one of the greatest victories ever won, and scarcely has one generation passed away before 15000 citizens petition government for redress of their wrongs, and they turn a deaf ear to their cry. Let us compare this with the Church of Christ, fourteen years ago a few men assembled in a log cabin; they saw the visions of heaven and gazed upon the eternal world; they looked through the rent vista of futurity, and beheld the glories of eternity; they were planting those principles which were concocted in the bosom of Jehovah; they were laying a foundation for the salvation of the world, and those principles which they then planted, have not yet begun to dwindle, but the fire still burns in their bones; the principles are planted in different nations, and are wafted on every breeze. When I gaze upon this company of men, I see those who are actuated by patriotic and noble principles, who will stand up in defence of the oppressed, of whatever country, nation, color, or clime. I see it in their countenances; it is planted by the spirit of God, and they have received it from the great Eloheim, all the power or influence of mobs, priestcraft and corrupt men, cannot quench it, it will burn, it is comprehensive as the designs of God, and as expansive as the universe, and reaches to all the world, no matter whether it was an Indian, a negro or any other man, or set of men that are oppressed, you would stand forth in their defence. I say unto you, continue to cherish those principles; let them expand, and if the tree of liberty has been blasted in this nation; if it has been gnawed by worms, and already blight has overspread it, we will stand up in defence of our liberties, and proclaim ourselves free in time and in eternity.
The choir, by request sung ‘the red man,’ after prayer by Elder , the meeting was adjourned for one hour.
April 6th, 1844, afternoon.
The president arrived at the stand at 1-2 past 2 o’clock, P. M. The choir sung a hymn, after which prayer by Elder , when the choir sung another hymn. resumed his history of the Church of Christ.
(For the want of room we postpone s remarks for the present.) [p. 579]