December 4, 1944

December 4, 1944

Sarah, My Beloved Darling Sweetheart:

We had a very pleasant surprise this evening and that was the arrival of mail. I had three more of your letters, they were for November 22nd, 23rd and 25th. I am still missing a letter for November 20th, and as you will note, I am now also missing your letter from November 24th. I am always very grateful for the arrival of your letters but I would rather receive them in order because you often refer to something that has happened before and it is rather hard to know what is meant, and then I also know you are going to do certain things and I am interested in them also. I suppose the missing letters will arrive sometime later, at least I hope so. Darling, your letters were a blessing to my heart and how happy I was to read them. I have read them twice already and will probably read them many more times before some more letters come from you.

Besides the letters I received from you, I heard from the following people: Elizabeth Riley, Marguerite Simonian (the fine Christian girl from Tremont Temple), Doug Powell, two letters from the Red Cross concerning problems and two letters from the Chief of Chaplains for the Central Pacific. The letter from Betty Riley was very nice and the necklaces had just arrived that I sent to them and they seemed to enjoy them very much. She said so many people asked her if she would ask me to try and get a necklace for them. I never realized that people would like them so much, but I guess they are different. Marguerite was telling me about their work in the Service Men’s Center at Tremont Temple, it truly sounds interesting and she is one of the hostesses and a wonderful Christian. From what she told me, they may have the opportunity to lead a good many young people to Christ, that is, I mean men who are in the Armed Forces.

Doug Paul’s letter was not so very long but it was good to hear from him and know that all things are going along well with him. He is in the Alaskan theater of operations with the Navy. He is with the communications. He said he was very glad to have my letter and hoped I would write to him again. As much as I have to do, I will try to find enough time to write to him. Perhaps it will help him, for I have been in the service long enough to know that his temptations are manifold.

 Orville Wilson had today off so Raymond and I made arrangements to drive him around to the various places so he would get a chance to see what the island is like. We had to deliver the Red Cross papers which came in last Friday, so that way we killed two birds with one stone. Orville’s barracks Buddy was off today so we took him along with us. He had been on the island 10 months and had not seen much area outside of the Air Base. Orville showed me his wife’s picture and their baby is really a fine looking baby. I don’t blame them for being so proud of him. Of course, when I brought them down to my quarters I showed them your latest picture and they thought it was very good. I also showed them the picture you took while at Lake Geneva and especially those with Maurice and Edith. He is very quiet sort of fellow, but he did seem to enjoy himself for he thanked me several times for showing him around the island. We had dinner at the farm and it gave me an opportunity to introduce them to the men down there. Carl walked around with us as I showed them the various things of interest. Have you seen Violet, Carl’s wife lately? 

Willis’ friend on the island. 1944.

After we were through with dinner I had to come back because I had several things to do. I had just arrived at my place when I was informed that a certain officer at the Air Base wanted to see me. I called him and found that he wanted me to sign a paper so a certain soldier could get an emergency furlough. I hurried up there and signed the paper right away. While we were up there, we left Orville and his friend at their barracks. When you see Edith you can tell her for me that I think she has a fine brother. I have heard several of the men make remarks about him and all of them are nothing but the best. I only wish we could’ve known one another longer. Right now I am really on the spot, as soon as I know more things I will definitely let you know. I have orders now, but don’t worry, I will give you writing instructions as soon as I can. I’m not sure but I may stay here until my Christmas services are over and then leave. At any rate, I’ll keep you informed from day to day and will advise you how to address my mail. Remember, I will tell you what I can and will only tell you that which I deem wise. I know you will understand, won’t you, Dear? 

About 3 o’clock I returned to my quarters and washed out some socks and cleaned what shells I have been able to find for the Chief. I hope I’ll be able to get some more for him before I leave here. Anyhow, I will do my best for him. 

So Dr. Stiansen pulled a fast one on you in the history exam? Well Sweetheart, knowing you as I do, I’m not worrying in the least about your final grade. I have a feeling that it will be right up there at the top. I was surprised to hear that you have to take another course in evangelism by correspondence, you can do it I know. I think you are just about as well off for you know what kind of teacher Dr. Whitesell is. By the way, I got a quite a laugh out of the way you described Dr. Fouts when you registered. In spite of all his different ways, I have learned to think a lot of him and I enjoy his friendship. For some reason or other he was always very nice to me.

Darling, don’t worry about your thesis. I feel confident that you will be able to get it out of the way this next quarter. And as I have always said, you will come through with flying colors. I assure you that I will pray for you as you work on it this quarter and I believe sincerely you will get it out of the way. And if you do, you’ll be able to enjoy the last quarter of school so much more if you don’t have the thesis to worry about. All I ask is please don’t tax your strength to the breaking point. Because after all, your health is more important than a degree. Perhaps you will be able to get a good start during your Christmas vacation. 

So Mac is already in the chaplaincy. I was surprised to learn that Eleanor and the baby are going to live in the same house. Yes, I do remember Helen LeFevre. As you say, she is a mighty fine girl. So Freeman Schmitt is going to take care of the church.  He is a mighty fine fellow.

I was very much surprised to hear that Brushwyler has become the Secretary Treasurer of the new Mission Board. You know that is one of the biggest mixups in my mind. I don’t know what to think. As you know, I believe in standing by the faith, but it does seem to me that this is no time to be pulling apart. I wish I could find out something concrete on the whole affair. Personally, I think more of Christ is needed in all of these denominational problems. Sometimes it seems to me that we become so involved in our petty differences and problems that we never get to Christ. Actually, one of the great obstacles in leading men to Christ I have found is this one, how come there are so many Protestant denominations and how come there are so many brands or groups within some of the larger groups? It is something to think about. I believe sincerely if all of us, and I mean all denominations, would spend more time on their likenesses and less on their differences, we would be able to do more in reaching man. Jesus, I note from studying the New Testament, didn’t devote His time to teaching, “now these are the differences in my teaching and the old law.” He presented His message and then let the spirit convict a man of their need of salvation. We need Christ as denominations. One of the greatest attributes of a leader is the fact that he must have a sympathetic understanding. Our heart cry as the Baptist denomination ought to be the words Paul uttered in Philippians 3:9-10. What do you think, my Dear?

I am certainly glad to hear that so many came forward and took their stand for Christ at the church in East Moline. I only hope they will be able to reach many more. Thank you for sending the cartoons, they were very good and I did enjoy looking at them. I’m not as bald as that minister was in the picture, that is as yet.

Dear, I find that my Greek is really slipping away from me, perhaps if you like when we are together again we can study it together and that will help both of us. I’m not such a good teacher, especially in that field, but it would be fun to study with you. Today I fixed up a box of books I am going to mail on to you. There are several I have purchased since being overseas, I will mail you a list of those I send so you will know what they are. Two of them which are very interesting are the Genealogy of Sex and the Psychology of Sex. Which makes me think, I’m going to enclose in this letter a page out of the A.M.A. Magazine about two books which will be of interest to us, that is if the Lord wills us to have our own family. I’m going to mail this to you for keeping. I only hope it won’t be too much longer before we can be together and working side by side in the work we love so much, Dear. I am most grateful to God for such a wonderful wife as you are to me. I would be very happy if I could make you just as happy and thankful to the Lord as I am for you, Darling.

It has grown very late so I will have to close for tonight. God bless you in all things and may the beauty of Christ Jesus comfort and bless you in all things. We do have a wonderful Savior, don’t we Dear?

Yours forever in the Love of Christ,


Colossians 3:3

P.S. Betty Riley sent me a clipping. I sent it on to you.

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