That it is possible for workers in our institutions to accomplish more in evangelism than that which comes to them in their daily routine, is being demonstrated by the Review and Herald family in their second evangelistic effort. The first was held about a year ago in Alexandria, a city of 24,000 inhabitants in Virginia, about six miles from Washington. The second is being conducted in Hyattsville, M.D., a town five miles from Takoma Park.
The entire burden of these efforts, both financial and otherwise, has been and is being carried by the Review and Herald family. Last year the publishing house workers contributed from their salaries $350 with which to carry on the Alexandria effort, and this year they have contributed $400 with which to handle the Hyattsville meetings. In each case the publishing house itself has met the expense of the hall rental.
The Washington Sanitarium staff has co-operated in this work to the fullest extent possible, the physicians and nurses giving health lectures and demonstrations, and the nurses visiting in the homes of the people and conducting home nursing classes. The combining of medical instruction with the evangelistic work has been a great strength to the meetings. In both cases the efforts have been arranged for and carried on under the direction of the local conference officers and committee, and the conference has provided a Bible worker.
It was the conviction that when God established our publishing houses, sanitariums, and colleges, He intended them to be life-saving stations in every sense of the word, that led the management of the Review office to give serious consideration and earnest support to the proposal to begin evangelistic work in this active way. It was felt that the Review family, with all the talent available, was well fitted for such an endeavor; and when the question was placed before the workers at chapel hour one Sunday morning, they were all enthusiastic. And their zeal has not slackened in the least during the weeks and months which have gone by since this special work began.
Each effort has been well organized. A committee of three gives attention to the general character of the meetings; a platform committee of six arranges platform support for the speaker; a committee on music provides the best to be had; four brethren attend to the ushering and collections; six sisters assist the conference Bible worker in the Bible readings and visiting; and a committee of three arranges transportation for speakers, musicians, and others who desire to attend. The art department staff is enlisted for chalk talks and the painting of signs.
The matter of advertising is carefully looked after. The territory is districted by a committee of three, and each Sabbath afternoon sections are assigned to about fifty persons, who distribute handbills and other advertising material from home to home. At first this work also included ringing doorbells, meeting the people at their doors, and extending to them a personal invitation to attend the lectures.
The newspaper advertising in two weekly papers, and news writings in each, have also been a factor in the success attending these meetings. Effective cuts, such as have appeared in The Ministry, have been used to good advantage in both the newspaper advertising and the handbills, but in no case in either the Alexandria or the Hyattsville effort has a photograph of the speaker, Elder F. D. Nichol of the Review staff, appeared in any advertising. In fact, throughout all this evangelistic work, the aim has been to feature the message rather than any individual. It is the sincere desire of the Review workers to win the souls of these dear people for whom they are laboring, not to make a name for themselves. And the object of this requested report is merely to acquaint our other institutional workers with the possibilities in store for them if they will but do likewise.
Washington, D. C.