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Prince’s Research Excerpts: Priesthood & Mormonism – Healing, 1902-1909

Below you will find Prince’s research excerpts titled, “Priesthood Healing, 1902-1909.” You can view other years here.

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1902:  15 Jan.:  Consumed a bottle of consecrated oil each day.

“Father had just finished administering to me when mother returned to the room. . . .

From that time they used nothing but consecrated oil, consuming a bottle every twenty-four hours.  The erysipelas traveled up my back and then gathered under my arm and broke there, and the disease entirely left me.”  (Joseph Clegg, JI 37(2):42-43, 15 Jan., 1902)

15 Jan.:  Don’t abuse gift of healing.

“Returning to the thought expressed in our opening paragraph, we recognize that there is a side to the question that must not be lost sight of, as to ignore that view would be to encourage a condition in the midst of the Saints pregnant with confusion.  We have found occasionally that men blessed with some peculiar gift of the Spirit have exercised it in an unwise, shall we say, improper manner.  For instance, brethren strongly gifted with the power of healing have visited far and near amongst the Saints (to the neglect sometimes of other duties,) until it has almost become a business with them, and their visits to the homes of the Saints have assumed somewhat the character of those of a physician, and the people have come to regard the power so manifested as though coming from the man, and he himself has sometimes grown to so feel, and not that he was simply an instrument in the hands of God of bringing blessings to their house.  This view is exceedingly unfortunate when indulged in, and is apt to result in the displeasure of the Lord.  It has sometimes ended in the brother possessing this gift, if he encouraged such a feeling, losing his power to bless and heal.  Departures from the recognized order and discipline of the Church should therefore be discountenanced and discouraged.  Not, however, from any feeling on the part of the presiding officer that his domain is being invaded, or that his individual authority is imperilled because a stranger brother administers by invitation therein; but because nothing should be done that would bring discredit on the cause of truth or dishonor on the name of our God, for the honor and the glory are His and must ever be accorded to Him.”  (Joseph F. Smith, JI 37(2):50-51, 15 Jan., 1902)

1 Mar.:  Administered to by mother.

“My papa is a doctor and my mama has to go with him lots of times.  A little girl was left here who has no mother, and was very ill; one night when papa was gone, mama administered to her; no body thought she would live but she is now well.”  (Doloras Rucker, JI 37(5):157, 1 Mar., 1902)

7 Apr.:  Can sisters administer to other sisters?

“Priesthood meeting of General Authorities, stake and ward authorities, &c., was held this morning in the Assembly Hall. . . .

Question:  If a sick sister desire to be administered to, would it be right for another sister to anoint her, and call upon an elder to seal the anointing?

Answer:  It would depend how much the sick sister was anointed; if she were to be anointed all over, I [Joseph F. Smith] would want a sister to anoint her, and then I would confirm the anointing; but if it was an ordinary administration, then the sister would have no business in taking any hand in it all in connection with the brethren.”  (JH 7 Apr., 1902)

1 May:  Administered to in fast meeting.

“Something over two years ago one of my sisters had scarlet fever, and following that she had an abscess behind her ear, which the doctors said would have to be cut and a piece of bone taken out before she would get well.  She was very weak, but we all had faith that she would get well.  Papa and mama took her to fast-meeting and she was administered to by a number of the brethren.  She began to get better and was soon well.”  (Lucy Ann Phillip, JI 37(9):287, 1 May, 1902)

15 May:  Can a sister anoint, and an Elder seal anointing?

“Question:  If a sister is sick and desires to be administered to, is it right for another sister to anoint her and call on an Elder who may be present to seal and confirm the anointing?

Answer:  If it is an ordinary anointing of the head, according to the established ordinances of the Church, it should be done by one holding the Priesthood; not by a sister when an Elder is present.  It is clearly out of order to do so.  The Scripture says: ‘Is any sick among you, let him call for the elders of the church; and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord; and the prayer of faith shall save the sick.’ James 5:14, 15.

There may be occasions of disease or accident when it is desirable that other parts of the body be anointed.  It would be obviously improper for any but a sister to attend to such an anointing; but when this had been done, it is quite consistent for the Elders to anoint the head in the usual form, and then to seal the anointing.”  (JI 37(10):307, 15 May, 1902)

1902:  History of early Mormonism/B of M/Attempted miracles.

“A short History of the Foundation of the Mormon Church, based on personal memories and facts collected by Hartwell Ryder, Hiram, Ohio, at the age of 80 years.

Joseph Smith, author and proprietor of the Book of Mormon, was born in Sharon, Vermont, on the 23rd of December, 1805.  When Joseph was 10 years of age his father moved to Palmyra, N.Y. , where he lived 4 years.  From thence he moved to Manchester Township, Ontario County, N.Y., where Joseph lived and worked with his father on the farm until he was 21 years of age.

He is said to have been a very religious boy, often found in his father’s grove in meditation and prayer.  When he was 10 years old, one day while engaged in prayer he claimed a light shone round about him above the brightness of the noonday sun, and that an angel of the Lord appeared unto him and told him that he was to be an instrument in the hands of the Lord to make known the new institutions which God was about to establish in the world, and that he would find golden plates hidden in the hills of Manchester.

He commenced digging in the hills, working for three years, but failed to find the plates.  When 21 years of age, while engaged in prayer the Angel of the Lord brought to him the golden plates written over with Egyptian hieroglyphics and with them a pair of stone spectacles which were called Urim Shumnim.  By looking through these the Angel told him he would be able to translate the inscriptions into the English language.  Before he began the translations, he chose eleven men as witnesses that is[he] had the plates; of these, three were divine witnesses – Oliver Cowdery, David Whitmer, and Martin Harris.  They claimed that while engaged in prayer the Angel of the Lord brought them the plates and they saw them, hefted them and saw the inscriptions, and God told them they were to be true witnesses of these things.  The other eight witnesses all belonged to the two families of Whitmers and Smiths.  They testified that Joe Smith delivered them into their hands and that they saw them, hefted them, and knew they were true gold plates.  These plates were 6 by 8 and made a book 6 inches thick, held together by 3 rings.

We are indebted to David Whitmer for the manner of translation.  He says it was in a small house of two rooms of which Smith occupied one, and Whitmer, Cowdery and Harris the other.  There was a curtain hung at the door between the two rooms so that they could not see Smith.  He would read off a sentence by looking through the spectacles, translate it and read it to Cowdery who wrote it down.  In this way they spent three years writing the Book of Mormons.  It was delivered at the printer’s office at Palmyra, N.Y., sometime in the winter of 1830, so that in February the first copy of the Book of Mormons was issued.

The forgoing ins the Mormon side of the story.  There is another which is perhaps the more correct one.  In Pennsylvania there lived a certain educated Presbyterian minister, Solomon Spaulding by name, who wrote a novel in which he attempted to show where the Moundbuilders of this country and South America and the Indians of the West came from.  He laid the scene at the confounding of the language at the Tower of Babel, from which time a tribe started on a journey through Asia, and falling in with the Ten Tribes of Israel they traveled together for 1020 years, crossing to this country through Behring Straits.  The first named tribe was the origin of the Moundbuilders and the Indians the descendants of the Ten Tribes.

After the work was completed he sent it to a printing house in Pittsburgh and died before the book was published.  At that time Sidney Rigdon was an employee in the Pittsburgh publishing house.  After reading the book he got possession of it, [page 2] and with Joe Smith formulated the Book of Mormon.

On April 12, 1830, the first church was organized in Manchester, N.Y.  Soon others were formed in that community.  Notice went out that a new religion was being given and churches sprang up all over the country.  In the fall of 1830 two young men, their saddle bags full of Mormon Bibles, came to the house of Sidney Rigdon, a Disciple minister at Kirtland.  Soon they began preaching the Mormon doctrine at Kirtland, and by winter had a large number of converts.  The same fall Joe Smith came to Kirtland with all the witnesses to the Book of Mormons.  A little later in the fall, Joe Smith and others came to Hiram and began to preach in the south school house, gaining several converts.  Mr. Johnson and wife, living in what is now the Stephens homestead, and Mrs. Booth with her husband Ezra Booth, a Methodist preacher of great influence in the community, at this time became members.  In the winter a notice of a great convention to be held at Kirtland, identical with the Pentecost recorded in the Book of Acts.  Mr. Johnson and wife, of Hiram, Mr. Booth and wife of Mantua, Dr. Bright of Windham, and Symonds Ryder of Hiram, went to Kirtland to attend the meeting.  I am indebted to my father, Symon Ryder, for the account of what took place there.

The meeting began by the baptism of the Holy Spirit.  Its effects were different on different persons.  Some fell down in a stupor; some spoke in strange tongues; one became paralyzed and was in such great pain that they became alarmed until Joe Smith came to the rescue by a revelation that the paralytic was not under the influence of the Holy Spirit but the spirit of the Devil and that they must cast it out.  So by prayer and the laying on of hands he was restored.  One arose and spoke in a language none could understand.  Thinking this to be the Indian tongue they passed him by.  Then they began to cure the sick and afflicted.  Mrs. Johnson, of Hiram, was afflicted with rheumatism so she could not raise her hands to her head.  Some one therefore proposed that she go forward to be cured, but before we had decided to go Joe Smith came around through the crowd and taking her by the hand said, “In the name of Jesus Christ  I pronounce you whole”, and sure enough her arms were limbured and returning home was able to do her own work for some time thereafter.

The reason for mentioning this is because I find it to be one of the greatest miracles of the Mormon Church.

Miracles. They claimed to receive power to perform miracles by the laying on of hands, and young men often went out to preach who claimed to have performed miracles but none of these could ever be found.  Once a young Mormon went from  Hiram to preach at a small town on the Lake Shore, and upon returning to Hiram told of a wonderful miracle he had performed there.  Jason Ryder, doubting this, went on horseback to the place and found that the people knew nothing about it.  They often tried to perform miracles which failed.  A noted instance of this is the attempt by Joe Smith to walk on the water.

(A friend reminded me of this instance while in conversation a short time ago.)  At Chagrin Falls, having given out notice that he would walk on the water on a certain day, he had some chestnut slabs, supported on long legs, laid across the Chagrin River just a few inches under the water.  On the night before the miracle was to be performed, some boys who knew about the slabs removed one in the middle of the stream.  When Smith fell in, they went in after him but told him that if the [page 3] Angel of the Lord was helping him they would leave him alone, but if it was Joe Smith alone they would help him.  He said it was he alone and begged of them to help him.  When he began to walk, the people became excited and he began to walk faster, and when he came to the end of the slabs, in he went, and when he arose to the top he called for help.

Two young Mormon missionaries called on me last summer (1901) with whom I spent some time in conversation.  The subject turned on miracles and I asked them if they could raise the dead.  They said that they could and could cure the blind and heal all manner of diseases.  Saying also, “You ought to know for there was a noted miracle performed here”, and cited the case of Mrs. Johnson.  I told them I remembered of a greater miracle than that which took place here, and told them of my grandmother, a woman of 80 years, who lived just across the street and who had been confined to her bed for some time with rheumatism.  One day upon hearing that my mother was sick, jumped out of bed, dressed and was half way across the street before she thought of her rheumatism. She felt for it but it was gone.

In April of the spring of 1831, by the invitation of Messrs. Johnston and Booth, the Mormons came to Hiram.  The object of their coming was to make Hiram their “New Jerusalem”.  Mr. Johnston owned several log house which he offered to them to occupy.  Joe Smith and wife settled in part of what is now the Stevens home.  Sidney Rigdon and family settled just across the street in a small log house, the Whitmers, Smiths, Cowderys and Poomans occupied another house.  They soon began preaching and gained many converts.  They built a dam across the creek on the property now owned by Mr. Vaughn, and thither they went to baptize converts, sometimes to the number of 15 or 20.

Their manner of baptism was by immersion, after which they knelt on the banks of the stream, when the Administrator laid his hands on their heads and they received supernatural powers, except the power of prophecy which could only come by the use of the Sear’s Stone or Urim Snumnim.  As an example of the sue of the Sear’s Stone to foretell the future, the following instance might be cited.  Oliver Cowdery, one of the witnesses, had one of these which after his death went to his daughter.  During the Rebellion, on the eve of a skirmish between the Regulars and Bushwhackers, in Missouri, after looking through the Seer’s Stone, she predicted that her cousin, John Page, would be killed on the following day by the Bushwhackers.

In the fall of 1831 the church in Hiram became very large.  In June, preceding, my father, Symonds Ryder, united with them, and soon Smith had another revelation, that he was to act as Elder of the Hiram Church, but in spelling his name the Lord made a mistake and he began to doubt.  A little later in the fall, Smith had a revelation that 12 men must go from Hiram to Independence, Jackson Co., Missouri, to lay the foundation of the Mormon Temple.  These men were to go in twos, to take nothing with them but to get their living as they went.  When they reached Missouri, Mr. Booth said that were anything but honest men and he began to doubt.  Besides the laying of the corner stone was so foolish that he lost all faith and returned.  While they were gone, those left behind found the papers of the church and among them was a revelation that all who had property should give it over into the hands of Smith for the good of the Hiram Church.  When Mr. Booth returned from Missouri, he called on my father and after talking together they began to undo what they had done in the way of influencing people to join the Mormons.  In a short time there were only a few professed followers of the Mormon religion left in Hiram.  These, however, still continued their meetings at the Johnston house.

They had already had notice that they would be mobbed.  Accordingly in a [page 4] meeting held at the Johnson house on the 27th of February, 1832, to arrange for a great day in the following spring, Smith dared anyone to touch a Mormon saying that that anyone who should do so would be stricken by the Lord.  But the people did not believe this, for on the night of the 4th of March, 1832, a band of 60 men met in the brickyard belonging to Benjamin Hinkley, and on the property now owned by Cyrus Moore.  Dividing into two parties they quietly marched to the Johnston house where they found Smith sleeping in the back room with his two children who were sick.  Smith was thrown out to those waiting outside who took him into a lot back from the struct where he was introduced to tar and feathers.  The others in like manner took Sidney Rigdon up the street where the “Old Oak” now stands and administered the same remedy to him.  This had the desired effect, for they left Hiram, going to Kirtland where they remained for a number of years.

The next morning after the leaders were tarred and feathered, my father went past the Johnston house from which the Mormons came out like bees from a hive and accused him of being the leader of the mob.  At the jubilee Convention at Hiram in 1900, L. A. Chapman told me that when going to California two years before he had stopped at Salt Lake City and had attended a meeting at the Tabernacle on Sunday, they had been very kind to him and had shown him the Book of Records.  In looking down the index he saw the account of the Tar and Feathering of Joseph Smith and Sidney Rigdon, at Hiram.  In that account Symonds Ryder, a Cambellite preacher, is given as the leader of the mob and says further that he preached on the following Sunday in the south school-house and glorified in the fact that he had been an instrument in the hands of the Lord in driving the Mormons out of the country.  But this account is incorrect, for I can well remember that my father was sick in bed that night and that from early in the evening he did not leave his bed until late the next morning.

At Kirtland they established a bank and went into the common stock business, but all who went into it failed.  They became so obnoxious to the people at Kirtland that they were compelled to leave the place, going to Independence, Jackson Co., Mo., where by Divine revelation they were to build a magnificent temple, the plan of which was to be revealed from on High.  The foundation of this temple had been laid long before.  They were evidently soon driven from the State by an armed mob.

At this time there was a great defection in the Mormon church.  The witnesses of the Book of Mormons left them and formed the Whitmer branch of the Church of Jesus Christ.

In 1838 or 1839 they went to Illinois where on the banks of the Mississippi they built the flourishing city of Noveau.  In this city Smith was mayor, president of the the church, and commander of the military organizations.  In 1843 Smith had a revelation from God that all who could support more wives than one could have as many as they could support.  This caused a division in the Mormon ranks.  In the exposition of Smith and Rigdon, 16 women went before a magistrate and took oath that they had been approached by the leaders of the Mormon church to become their spiritual wives.  Foster and La[   ], who printed the affidavits of these women, were mobbed and their printing houses destroyed.  They were forced to flee to Carthage, Ill., where they obtained warrants for the arrest of Joe and Hiram Smith and several others.  On the evening of June 7, 1844, a mob attached the jail and both Joe and Hiram Smith were shot dead.  The excitement became so great that in 1844-5 they found that they could no longer remain in Noveau, and accordingly in a solemn council it was decided to abandon their homes and to seek some sot in the wilds of the west, where they could worship according to the principles of their religion.  Accordingly, in February, 1845, after exchanging such property as they could for animals, wagons and provisions, a large number of them crossed the Mississippi and started on a journey for Council [page 5] Bluffs.  Here they remained for two years.  Before they crossed into Iowa, however, an officer of the state presented himself with a requisite for 500 men to serve in the Mexican war.  This demand, though sudden and unexpected, was promptly complied with, but the expedition was broken up for that season.  Those that remained were principally old men, women and children, and they prepared to pass the winter in the wilds of Indian country.  By cutting hay, erecting log and sod huts, and digging as many caves as time and strength permitted, they were able to pass the winter; but on account of the severity of the weather and the scant provisions, many died.  Besides, the Indians stole many of their cattle, so that they were reduced to a very poor condition.  In the following April, 1847, the company consisted of 143 men, 72 wagons, 175 head of horses, oxen and mules, with rations for six months, agricultural implements and seed grain.

In this condition they once more set out for a home beyond the Rockies.  On the 24th of June they reached the Salt Lake Valley.  They consecrated a part of this, broke it up and planted it.  Thus was formed the nucleus of the of the Territory of utah.  A short time after the arrival of this company, Salt Lake City was laid out under the direction of Brigham Young who was accepted as President of the Mormon Church in 1848.

In the following October a company of three or four thousand, led by Pres. Young was added to their number.  They worked diligently and in a short time nearly 6000 acres were laid down in crops.  They established a provisional state called “State of the Desert”, of which Brigham Young was appointed Governor.  He held this office for three years, at which time this territory was ceded to the United States, and continued as such from 1850 to 1857.

Copied by Minnie M. Ryder in 1903-4 from the manuscript written by her uncle, Hartwell Ryder.”  (Hiram College Library, Hiram Ohio, ca. 1902)

1903:  1 Jan.:  Avoid repeated administrations to the sick.

“In the matter of administering to the sick, according to the order and practice established in the Church, care should be taken to avoid unwarranted repetitions.  When an administration is made, and when the blessing pronounced upon the afflicted one has been received, the ordinance should not be repeated, rather let the time be given to prayer and thanksgiving for the manifestation of divine power already granted and realized.  No limit should be or can be set to the offering of prayer and the rendering of praise to the Giver of good, for we are specially told to pray without ceasing, and no special authority of the Priesthood or standing in the Church is essential to the offering of prayer; but the actual administration by anointing with oil and by the imposition of hands by those who hold the proper office in the Priesthood is an authoritative ordinance, too sacred in its nature to be performed lightly, or to be repeated loosely when the blessing has been gained.”  (Joseph F. Smith, JI 38(1):19, 1 Jan., 1903)

1 Feb.:  Be sure to use plenty of oil.

“[Summit Stake Conference]  Pres. Smith spoke upon healing and anointing with oil.  Deprecated the use of too little oil.  Compared it to sprinkling.”  (Anthon H. Lund diary, 1 Feb., 1903)

18 Feb.:  Can non-MP administer to sick?

“. . . it was the sense of the Council [of the 1st Presidency and the Twelve] . . . that the practice {of administering} be confined to the elders; but in the case of absolute necessity, that is where an elder finds himself in the situation that he cannot avail himself of the company of another elder, he may, if opportunity affords, avail himself of the company of a member of the Aaronic Priesthood, or even a lay member, but for the purpose only of being supported by the faith of such member or members, the elder alone to officiate in the ordinance of administration; or the elder may administer alone without such assistance of a lay member or one holding the Aaronic Priesthood.  (Journal History, 18 Feb., 1903; in IE 58(8):559, Aug., 1955)

“A meeting of the First Presidency and Apostles was held in the Temple.

Brother James Sharp, while attending the meeting of the Y.M.M.I.A. at Rexburg on the 25th of last month, was informed that it was the practice in the Fremont Stake to send a brother holding the lesser priesthood with an elder to administer to the sick, and he was asked this question:  Is it proper for an elder to take with him a brother holding the Aaronic Priesthood to assist in administering to the sick?

After general remarks, it was the sense of the Council, expressed in a motion by Bro. John Henry Smith, that the practice be confined to the elders; but in case of absolute necessity, that is where an elder finds himself in the situation that he cannot avail himself of the company of another elder, he may, if opportunity affords, avail himself of the company of a member of the Aaronic priesthood, or even a lay member, but for the purpose only of being supported by the faith of such member or members, the elder alone to officiate in the ordinance of administration; or the elder may administer alone without such assistance of a lay member or one holding the Aaronic priesthood.”  (JH 18 Feb., 1903)

19 Feb.:  Can Lesser Priesthood administer to sick?

“[Meeting in the Temple]  Certain questions that had come to the General Board of the Y.M.M.I.A. from the Fremont Stake, were now referred to the Council by Thos. Hull, Sec.:  1st.  Would it be proper for members of the Lesser Priesthood to assist in administering to the sick.  Answer:  In cases where necessary, they might assist, but could not offici[a]te by annointing or sealing the annointing.

They could lay their hands on the sick in connection with the Elder.

2nd.  Would it be necessary for a Seventy who had been called to be an Alternate High Councillor to be ordained a High Priest.  Answer:  Yes.

3rd.  In several instances young men had been ordained to the office of a Deacon without mentioning the church or sealing upon him the gifts, powers and authority of the office.  Would this be proper?  Answer:  No; considered by the Council a very foolish question to ask.”  (Rudger Clawson diary, 19 Feb., 1903)

1 Apr.:  Blessing of Brigham Young, Jr.

“Quarterly conference of the Twelve at the Temple. . . .

Having been lawfully detained, I was a little late to the meeting and Elder Jno. H. Smith was speaking–He alluded to the extremes to which some of the brethren go in their administration over the saints.  He understood that in one ward the bishop required the people to ask forgiveness for the most trivial offenses; in another ward the boys were forbidden to play marbles. . . .

[Geo. Teasdale] Referred to Elder Smoot’s election to the U.S. Senate, and said that he recognized the hand of the Lord in it.  He will be able to represent Utah affairs as they are. . . .

Remembered that Brother Brigham, who is sick was healed upon one occasion by the prayer of faith offered by Pres. Smith and his brethren, but the Lord at this time seems to have something else in view concerning him.

At this point Elder Woodruff who had just come from the bedside of Brother Brigham, said that he bore a message from him, which, as hearly as he could get it by brief notes taken at the time, was as follows:

I do not know whether I shall pull through or not, but I firmly believe that I shall, and that a few more years will be added to my life.  I do not know how long it will take me to recover, but I have faith to that end.

. . . .

The following brethren then took a car to go to Brother Brigham’s: . . .

[Brigham Young] If I were well, there is a question I would like to bring to the attention of the Presidency.  And that is this, I feel that two or three members of our quorum should be appointed to visit every mission in the world for the purpose of regulating the affairs thereof.  This has been on my mind, and if I were well I should surely have talked the matter up.  There are people in our missions coming into the church who are not converted.  This is a growing evil and should, with other things, have proper attention.  I feel that the Twelve should look after matters in all the missions.”  (Rudger Clawson diary, 1 Apr., 1903)

13 Apr.:  Death of Brigham Young, Jr.

“I announced the death of Brigham Young, President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, which occurred Saturday night, April 11, 1903, at 10 p.m.”  (Rudger Clawson diary, 13 Apr., 1903)

1 Jun.:  Form of prayer in administering to sick.

“Question:  Are the words: ‘By virtue and authority of the Holy Priesthood vested in me,’ essential in administering to the sick?  They are almost invariably used, yet I have listened to confirmations by brethren high in authority, where they have been omitted.

Answer:  From the fact that all the Elders administer, if at all, by virtue of the authority of the Holy Priesthood vested in them, it does not seem necessary to use those words, and yet there can be no valid reason why they should not be used if an Elder feels like using them.”  (JI 38(11):327, 1 Jun., 1903)

9 Jul.:  Clawson’s son administered to in temple.

“[Meeting in the Temple]  Elder Smoot’s little boy, Harlow, commonly known as ‘Brownie’ being afflicted with an ear trouble, resulting from scarlet fever, was brought in and administered to.”  (Rudger Clawson diary, 9 Jul., 1903)

15 Jul.:  Woman anointed; man sealed anointing.

“When I was one year old I was taken very sick, and everyone thought I should die.  About two o’clock in the night, papa and mama say they could not feel my pulse beat in my wrist, and life was almost gone.  They called in some of the Elders and had a prayer circle, and then Aunt Irene of Mexico anointed me with oil and cousin Harvey Allred was spokesman in administering to me.  As soon as he had said ‘Amen,’ I raised up and reached my arms to go to mama.  In two or three hours they went to bed with me, and in the morning I was well again.  Eight or ten Elders were present at the time I was healed.”  (Archie Allred, age 11 years, JI 38(14):414-415, 15 Jul., 1903)

29 Aug.:  Consecrated oil not to be taken internally.

“[Juarez Stake Conference, Priesthood Session]  Bro. McMurrin addressed the meeting.  His remarks were timely and most appropriately delivered.  Long prayers not necessary.  Oil should not be given internally.  He who anoints should not at the same time confirm the anointing. . . . Apostle Clawson followed with remarks.”  (Anthony W. Ivins diary, 29 Aug., 1903)

31 Dec.:  Not much hope of its becoming well.

“At noon Samuel Williams and his daughter [and] her husband brought their child to be blessed. It had water on the brain.  I administered to it, but I fear there is not much hope of its becoming well.”  (Anthon H. Lund diary, 31 Dec., 1903; LDS Archives)

1904:  15 Feb.:  “It seemed they were not to live.”

“My father died on the 5th of September.  And on the last day of November my little sister died.  We had the Elders to administer to them, but it seemed they were not to live.”  (Jennie Brinkerhoff, age 11 years, JI 39(4):126, 15 Feb., 1904)

15 Feb.:  “Mama knelt by my bed and prayed.”

“I have been sick for two weeks.  One morning when I was sick, mama knelt by my bed and prayed, and all pain left me in one minute.”  (Rachel M. Suhrke, JI 39(4):127, 15 Feb., 1904)

23 Mar.:  Consecrating a large number of bottles of oil.

“I attended my circle. Decided that when a great number of bottles of oil were to [be] blessed to divide in two rather than handle more bottles than one could do with safety.”  (Anthon H. Lund diary, 23 Mar., 1904; LDS Archives)

2 Jul.:  Ask the Lord to release me.

“The Presidency and Apostles were invited to Edwin Bennion’s.  I had been specially invited as he looks upon me as his friend from his missionary days.  Bro. Lyman urged me to go but I told him my brother-in-law was dying, and I would rather stay with him.  I spent the afternoon watching Nelse’s symptoms.  He was suffering so much distress.  In the morning he said to [Sanie?]: ‘Sister will it be wrong to ask the brethren to come and ask the Lord to release me.’  Bro. Geo. A. Smith was sent for and I sealed his anointing and asked the Lord if his mission on earth was ended to release him from his sufferings.  At six P.M. seeing that he suffered much distress I asked Bro. Wright to gaive him a hyperdermic injection.  He did so, and Nels soon got under the influence of the morphine. . . .

[The next day] I went down and prayed earnestly for Nels, and spoke these words [‘]if [he] is not able to rise above this sicnkess, may he be speedily released.[‘]  I lay down and it seemed but a few minutes till Sanie woke me and asked me to hurry up to Nels.  When I got up to his room he was lying so peacefully.  Rest had come at last.”  (Anthon H. Lund diary, 2 Jul., 1904; LDS Archives)

15 Jul.:  Administered to every night.

“I am a little Mormon girl ten years old.  I have been sick four months, but papa has taken to administering to me every night, and I am almost well.  I know it is by the power of the Lord that I am getting well.”  (Blanche Ferren, JI 39(14):447, 15 Jul., 1904)

25 Aug.:  Professional healer.

“[Meeting at the Temple] The Presidency of the Utah Stake wrote enclosing a letter from Bishop Brinkerhoff of the Emery ward, Emery Stake in which he made a complaint against Elder Jas. Hall who was going around in his ward administering to the sick.  His presence there without authority either from the general or local authorities and his manner of administering to those who are afflicted was creating a division among the saints.”  (Rudger Clawson diary, 25 Aug., 1904)

1 Sep.:  The gift of healing, by a woman.

“There are published from time to time the circumstances of remarkable cases of healing under the hands of the Elders.  These testimonies tend to strengthen our faith in the everlasting Gospel and in the promise of the Savior that certain signs should follow those that believe.  But the gift of healing is not confined to the Elders of the Church.  Many are the sisters who have enjoyed this gift and many are the mothers who have seen their loved ones made whole through their anointing with oil and prayer of faith when no other help was nigh.  I have been requested, by some of those who are acquainted with the circumstances, to relate the following incident which occurred about a year ago:

A poor old ‘squaw’ came to my home.  She was weeping over the fact as she stated that her little grandson lay sick and suffering with rheumatism; that he had not been able to walk a step for five months.  She wanted some medicine for him.  I took a bottle of consecrated oil in my hand and walked with her to her camp, some four or five blocks from my home.  Upon our arrival we found the little boy lying out of doors by a camp fire.  It was a pleasant day in early December.  Four Indians were lying upon blankets inside the tent near by.  The child’s body was thin and wasted almost to a skeleton, except at the knee joints which were almost as large as a small bowl.  His elbows were also very large in proportion to the thin, wasted arms.  In addition to this the poor little form was covered with sores.  My soul sank within me at the sight of his sufferings.  I gazed for a moment or so upon the emaciated limbs and swollen joints when suddenly I felt the Spirit of God resting mightily upon me.  I requested ‘Grandma,’ for this is what we called her, to bring me some warm water with which I bathed the child, who was about eight years of age at the time.  I then anointed him freely with the holy oil in the name of Jesus Christ and laid my hands upon his head and blest him, and many great promises were made unto him at that time, one of which was that ‘he should run as the roe upon the mountains.’  I left the camp and for two or three hours I was filled with joy and rejoicing and praising God, for I felt that my prayer was recorded in heaven.  The next day ‘Grandma’ came to my house, her face all beaming with smiles, saying that the boy was ‘wyno, wyno,’ and rubbing her knees to show that his knees were ‘wyno’ as well.  In a day or two he was able to come himself, and is now a faithful attendant at the Sunday School at Gras Valley where he resides.  They wanted me to accept some money as a token of their gratitude but I refused saying that it was not I but God who did the healing.”  (Annie G. Lauritzen, “The Gift of Healing,” JI 39(17):518-519, 1 Sep., 1904)

15 Sep.:  Administered twice in rapid succession.

“I wish to tell you something that happened tonight.  Papa was called away to administer to Sister Taylor.  She was very sick with heart trouble.  Papa said she had not moved for nearly an hour, and she looked just as though she was dead, but as soon as the Elders entered the house she opened her eyes.  They administered to her once and it didn’t seem to help her.  So they administered to her again and she was instantly healed.  Such things as this ought to strengthen our faith in the goodness and power of God.”  (Clara Guymon, JI 39(18):576, 15 Sep., 1904)

1905:  15 Apr.:  Anointing of head, jaws and neck.

“President Lewis offered prayer in her behalf, after which the Holy Ordinance was administered, Elder Goudy Hogan anointing the head, jaws and neck; President Lewis sealing the anointing.  In earnest supplication he asked the Lord to open her eyes, unlock her jaws, and unloose the paralyzed tongue.  As soon as the Amen was uttered, Sister Hendricks arose in her bed, leaned on her elbow and with tears of joy asked the brethren to pray again and thank the Lord for restoring her sight and giving her utterance, for she was healed and was perfectly well.”  (Fannie Stoddard, JI 40(8):242, 15 Apr., 1905)

May:  Can a priest administer to the sick?

“‘Has a priest the authority to administer to the sick in the absence of an elder?’

No; the lesser priesthood holds the keys of the ministering of angels and the preparatory gospel, which is of repentance and of baptism, and the remission of sins, and the law of carnal commandments.  Priests are to teach the principles of the gospel as directed by the Spirit, but when there are any sick, ‘the elders of the Church, two or more, shall be called, and shall pray for and lay their hands upon them in my name.’  (Doctrine and Covenants, sec. 42:44; also verses 12, 13, and James 5:14).  There is no objection to a priest assisting in this ordinance, when he is called upon by an elder, but nowhere is he given authority to do so in the absence of an elder.”

(“Editor’s Table–Questions and Answers,” [Joseph F. Smith and Edward H. Anderson, Editors] IE 8(7):547-548, May, 1905)

Jul.:  The Lord told me to give him oil internally.

“In July of the same year [1905] Eugene was taken down with typhoid fever.  I worked with him night and day–he would not let anyone do anything for him except me, not even give him a drink of water.  He was just able to sit up when Leo took the fever.  I felt so badly I went out in the cane field by the side of the house and knelt down and prayed to the Lord with all the fervor of my heart that he would inspire me to know what to do to save my boys.  A voice said to me, ‘give them consecrated oil.’  Oil was something the doctors had forbidden typhoid patients but the feeling was on me so strong I felt the Lord had inspired me to give it to them.  I went into the house with a very heavy heart.  I told Leo how I felt.  He said, ‘Mother, I won’t take anything but oil.’  So I gave him three tablespoons full of oil every day.  Everytime I gave him a spoonful I asked the Lord if I was doing right and it was made manifest unto me that I was.  After the fever had left it settled in his left leg.  Then I feared he would be a cripple.  The pain was so sever I hardly knew what to do but finally I made poultices of bran, hops and turpentine and applied it to his leg as hot as he could bear it.  As soon as it got cold I applied another hot one.  I kept this up for several days.  Finally the pain left.  While they were both so bad with the fever I bathed them and rolled them in wet sheets day after day.  I had all my own work to do as well as take care of the boys but I brought them through all right. . . . Leo recovered sufficiently so that he was able to go to the Academy that winter.”  (Hannah Hood Hill Romney autobiographical sketch; in Our Pioneer Heritage, 5:282, 1962)

1906:  1 Dec.:  In which hand should the oil bottle be held?

“Question:  When consecrating oil, in which hand should we hold the bottle?

Answer:  The oil is generally held in the right hand; but, we ask, would the holding of the oil in the left hand, by the Elder officiating, invalidate the consecration?  Certainly not.”  (JI 41(23):724, 1 Dec., 1906)

15 Dec.:  Professional healing.

“The healing of the sick was one of the incidents of Christ’s mission, one of the evidences of His divine calling, but it was not the end; it was merely a means for carrying out the great mission of His life–the redemption of the human family, the resurrection from the dead, the union of the spirit and the body.  Those whom he healed were chiefly those who sought His healing power, whose faith in His divine mission led them to seek relief from bodily ailments at His hands.

Healing was one of the signs which followed the believer, one of those evidences which confirmed the testimony of Jesus, but it was never an end to be sought for and never a conclusive evidence of divine favor.  Those who sought the exercise of magic powers in healing as well as in other remarkable and incomprehensible demonstrations were known as sorcerers.  With them that which appeared supernational was a profession, hence the anxiety of Simon, the sorcer, to purchase from the disciples the gifts of the Spirit which he witnessed in the early followers of Jesus.

In the Church today the gift of healing is one of the manifestations of the Spirit, a gift to be exercised with modesty and great humility; but it is to be feared that when some of our brethren feel within them the power of this gift that they imagine that its exercise is the special mission of their lives.  Now the gift of healing is not even the highest gift enumerated among the gifts of the Spirit; and the exercise of such a gift should never be made the business of life nor the daily occupation by those who enjoy the gift.  Such persons should rather be sought for, than be self-seeking in making known their gifts.  Christ generally responded to the faith of those who sought His healing power, but he came to heal the spirit rather than to make the body well.

Sickness and pain are among the universal conditions of humanity.  They are part of the educational life of man.  They educate man’s heart, enlarge his soul, and school him in patience and sympathy.  While those who suffer may manifest a special preference for those who possess the gift of healing, the latter should not be led into the mistake that the gift of the healing power is a divine favor in excess of other heavenly favors enjoyed by their fellowman.  It is to be feared that some of the brethren who experience the gift herein referred to imagine that they should make its exercise the chief occupation of their lives.  Let brethren who are thus endowed be modest and wait upon the promptings of the Spirit in those who may be led for relief to their hands.  As long as suffering and sorrow are an unavoidable part of man’s existence in this life, and a part of man’s existence which God permits for man’s own good, any thought or attempt to eradicate it is a vainglorious assumption by any Latter-day Saint.  The desire, therefore, which some brethren have manifested to travel about the cities of the Saints in the exercise of the healing power may be rightly questioned.

If Jesus had deemed it desirable that every human sufferer be alleviated from his bodily afflictions, He might have made His healing power the glory and purpose of his life and mission; but He did not do so; and we are not justified in our ministry as Latter-day Saints in regarding this single and peculiar gift as the one essential purpose of Christianity, nor even as the most important of the many gifts which are often more purely evidences of the Spirit than of the end or aim of life.”  (Editorial, JI 41(24):752-753, 15 Dec., 1906)

1907:  Feb.:  May wife assist husband in administering to sick?

“‘Does a wife hold the priesthood in connection with her husband? and may she lay hands on the sick with him, with authority?’

A wife does not hold the priesthood in connection with her husband, but she enjoys the benefits thereof with him; and if she is requested to lay hands on the sick with him, or with any other officer holding the Melchizedek priesthood, she may do so with perfect propriety.  It is no uncommon thing for a man and wife unitedly to administer to their children, and the husband being mouth, he may properly say out of courtesy, ‘By authority of the holy priesthood in us vested.'”  (“Editor’s Table–Questions and Answers,” [Joseph F. Smith and Edward H. Anderson, Editors] IE 10(4):308, Feb., 1907)

Feb.:  Can consecrated oil be sold in public stores?

“‘Is an officer of the Church–a bishop, for instance–justified in consecrating oil for anyone to sell–Jew, Gentile or Saint–in a public store?’

The brother who asks this question further says: ‘Of late years, it has been customary to have twenty or thirty bottles of oil consecrated at our fast meeting, and then taken to the stores to sell, as a convenience for the people.  This seems to me like trifling with sacred things.’  You are certainly correct; and if any such practice as consecrating oil by the wholesale to be retailed from any public store, is in vogue, the proper ward or stake authorities should see that such practice is immediately discontinued.  Consecrated oil may be obtained from the properly designated officers of the temples of the Latter-day Saints; or unconsecrated oil may be handed to the bishops of the wards for consecration.”  (“Editor’s Table–Questions and Answers,” [Joseph F. Smith and Edward H. Anderson, Editors] IE 10(4):309, Feb., 1907)

1 Mar.:  My mother anointed me night and morning.

“Two years ago this winter we all had the whooping cough, and it left me with epileptic fits.  My father and mother were very much alarmed and were anxious to do all they could for me, so they wrote to several eminent physicians stating my symptoms, and they verified the statements of the physician here, that it was epileptic fits, and that it would cost from $150 to $500 to cure me, if I could be cured.  At that time we were very careless about keeping fast day, and mother felt impressed that if we would keep the fast day that the Lord would make me well.  My mother also anointed me night and morning with consecrated oil, and she prayed for the Lord to make me well.  And I can bear my testimony that it was through the power and blessing of God that I was made whole.  It is one year ago today since I had a fit.”  (Cynthia B. Jones, age 8 years, JI 42(5):160, 1 Mar., 1907)

Aug.:  Anointed her wrists.

“August [1907].  I visited with my sister in Salt Lake City and I was very glad to find her feeling better than she had been for some time.  When I was at her home two weeks previous, she was afraid the disease from which she had been suffering on her hands was about to make its way into her arms.  At that time I anointed her wrists and asked the Lord that it might not go into her arms.”  (Thomas Briggs journal; in Our Pioneer Heritage, 3:327, 1960)

15 Sep.:  A child’s prayer answered.

“I thought I would write and tell how the Lord answered my prayer.  Our papa is dead.  One night, a year ago, our mama was sick, and I was afraid that the Lord would not answer our prayer.  I felt very sad and cried, and told mama how I felt.  Mama said that I must have more faith in the Lord and believe in Him.  So I knelt down and said, ‘Heavenly Father, bless my mama that she may live a long time.’  Just as I said that, a voice spoke in my ear and said, ‘Your mama will live a long time.’  This made me very happy for I know now that the Lord answers prayer, and I am not afraid any more.”  (Ruth Bates, age 9 years, JI 42(18):574-575, 15 Sep., 1907)

1908:  1 Mar.:  Should an Elder always pronounce life and health?

“‘Should an elder always pronounce life and health when administering to the sick?’

In a revelation to Joseph Smith the Lord says, ‘The elders of the Church, two or more, shall be called and shall pray for and lay their hands upon them in my name; and if they die they shall die unto me, and if they live they shall live unto me. . . . And again, it shall come to pass that he that hath faith in me to be healed, and is not appointed unto death, shall be healed.’

It appears from this revelation, that the elders are always to be guided by the inspiration of the Holy Ghost.  A man should not pronounce life and health merely because he has been called to perform a holy ordinance.  He should submit his spirit to the Spirit of God, and perform the ordinance according to its direction.  And when he feels himself divinely inspired to pronounce life and health, the elder may do so fearlessly.”  (JI 43(3):111-112, 1 Mar., 1908)

14 Jun.:  The elders should be vaccinated.

“When I was on missions I was called to administer to the sick, who were ill with almost every kind of disease.  It was not uncommon that we were called to administer to those who were sick with small pox.  For myself I dared not turn away from the call of the sick, and I administered to some of them, when, owing to their appearance, it was almost impossible to tell that they were human begins, for they had the disease in its worst form.  My guardians had taken the precaution, in my youth, to have me vaccinated.  I took the disease, buit had it in mild form, so that it did not leave even a mark upon my body.  I am as satisfied as I can be that had it not been for vaccination, I would have had the disease in a very bad form.  I believe that our elders ought to be vaccinated.  Now, I know that this will not be in accordance with some people’s views.  We receive word that many of our elders, who have failed to attend to this matter, are exposed to the disease and become affected with it; and recently a number of them have had to be taken to the pest-houses to be cared for.”  (Joseph F. Smith, address to the general MIA conference, 14 Jun., 1908; in IE 11(10):732-733, Aug., 1908)

1909:  12 Jan.:  No smallpox in homes which had been dedicated.

“Brother Judson Tolman and myself went to Centerville, and dedicated the home of Brother David Smith.  I was mouth, and I bore my testimony to them of the goodness of the Lord to me; and then Brother Randall bore his testimony and said that when the smallpox was very bad in Centerville, the disease never entered one of the homes that had been dedicated.”  (Thomas Briggs diary, 12 Jan., 1909; in Our Pioneer Heritage, 3:329, 1960)