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By Roland Karlman

Ellen White’s personal letters to be published in summer 2014.

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ou probably haven’t ever read Ellen White’s personal correspondence. Although excerpts from her letters, even entire letters, can be found in some of her books, the bulk of White’s correspondence has remained unpublished. While the collection is available for study at Ellen G. White Seventh-day Adventist research centers worldwide, mostly scholars and researchers have perused this material. This is all about to change. As a first step the Ellen G. White Estate is publishing Ellen G. White Letters and Manuscripts With Annotations, Volume 1 (1845-1859). This volume contains all of White’s letters that have been preserved from 1845 to 1859. Included are her “manuscripts,” basically all of White’s documents that are not personal letters, including her first diary from 1859. Altogether, these total more than 150 documents. As an additional bonus, these letters and manuscripts have been carefully annotated, giving readers a wealth of information about persons and contextual backgrounds. Several general articles written by specialists in the field introduce the volume. A second volume, containing the annotated Ellen White letters and manuscripts for the period 1860 to 1863, is in production. In addition to these printed resources, the White Estate will make available online the entire collection of Ellen White’s letters and manuscripts from 1845 to 1915, with partial annotations, on July 16, 2015, the centennial of her death.*

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I have spent a number of years preparing the notes and biographical sketches for the first volume of Letters and Manuscripts, and people often ask me about my personal impressions of these documents. Here are some features that have impressed me most. Innermost Feelings Expressed

Very few people writing personal letters imagine that they will subsequently be published and read by thousands of “outsiders.” Hence, personal letters often make for candid reading, revealing the inner feelings of the writer. Frequent examples of this can be found in Ellen White’s letters. In a letter to Mary Loughborough in 1858 Ellen White confided, “I have looked back at a few past months and as I realize how little I have imitated Jesus’ self-sacrificing, devoted life, I am led almost to despair” (p. 557). Her longings for a deeper Christian experience are profoundly expressed in a letter to Reuben and Belinda Loveland in 1850: “I do love Jesus . . . with my whole soul, and I m a g e

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