"Discourse," Deseret News, 12 November 1856, 282.
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By President Brigham Young, Tabernacle, Nov. 2, 1856.
[REPORTED BY G. D. WATT]
. . . . Do you want to know the reason why I speak of our being so comfortably situated this morning, in so comfortable a meeting house? We can return home and sit down and warm our feet before the fire, and can eat our bread and butter, etc., but my mind is yonder in the snow, where those immigrating Saints are, and my mind was been with them ever since I had the report of their start from Winter Quarters (Florence) on the 3rd of September. I cannot talk about anything, I cannot go out or come in, but what in every minute or two minutes my mind reverts to them; and the questions whereabouts are my brethren and sisters who are on the plains, and what is their condition, force themselves upon me and annoy my feelings all the time. And were I to answer my own feelings, I should do so by undertaking to do what the conference voted I should not do, that is, I should be with them now in the snow, even though it should be up to the knees, up to the waist, or up to the neck. My mind is there, and my faith is there; I have a great many reflections about them.
Have any of you suffered while coming here? Yes. How many of you sisters present buried your husbands, or your fathers, or mothers, or children, on the plains? How many of you brethren buried your wives? Have you suffered, and been in peril and trouble? Yes, you had to endure anguish and pain from the effects of cholera, toil and weariness. Do you live your religion when you get here, after all the trouble, afflictions and pains you have passed through to come to Zion? and to a pretty Zion! Men and women start across the plains for this place, and are they willing to wade through the snow? Yes. To travel through snow storms? Yes. To wade rivers? Yes. What for? To get to Zion. And here we are in Zion, and what a Zion! where it is necessary for the cry of reformation to go through the land, both a spiritual and temporal reformation. God is more merciful than man can be, and it is well for us. Again, when I consider the backsliding of the people and their sins, I will not ask God to be more merciful and have more sympathy towards me, than I have for my brethren and sisters.
A good many teams have already gone out to meet the Saints who are struggling to gain this place; I can hardly keep from talking about them all the time, for while I am preaching they are uppermost in my mind. The brethren were liberal last Sunday in turning out to meet them with teams, still if any more feel desirous of going to their assistance, I will give them the privilege and advise them to take feed, not only for their own animals, but also for those of the brethren who have already gone but, for they will very likely be short. But I should be more particularly thankful if the minds of this community could be so impressed and stirred up, so wakened up, that when those poor brethren and sisters who are now on the plains do arrive they may be able to say of a truth and in very deed, 'God be thanked, we have got to Zion.' But fearfulness and forebodings of disappointment to them are in my feelings. How far they may be disappointed, I do not know. . . .