“Labors in the Vineyard,” published in 1884 and just released on PG, is the twelfth book of the Juvenile Instructor Office’s Faith-Promoting Series. The Faith-Promoting Series was designed to teach young Latter-day Saints gospel principles and share experiences of other Latter-day Saints. “Labors in the Vineyard” specifically shares the missionary experiences of six Latter-day Saint elders who went on missions to the eastern states, Arizona, England, Switzerland, and Australia.
Throughout this book one can not only read about interesting missionary experiences, including several where God was able to help and protect the missionaries, but also learn about the thoughts and feelings of the missionaries. Among others, it shares Harrison Burgess’ early life story of living in Kirtland, Ohio and being a part of Zion’s Camp, and discusses C. V. Spencer’s mission to England, after which he testified:
“I am satisfied and paid for the very little and feeble labors that I performed. I returned bright and zealous in the love of the truth. God has never yet forsaken me by His Spirit, and I do not believe that any man will ever be trusted to walk in the footsteps of his Elder Brother, Jesus, as a Savior of a world, or ever be seated with honor on the right hand of His Father, until he has learned to wade through deep and troubled waters, up stream and against the current without earthly props or stays.”
If you enjoy early Latter-day Saint history and reading about different missionary experiences, this book will be a fun, inspiring read.
Shawnee Hawkes, an MTP summer intern from the BYU American Studies program, proofed and produced Labors in the Vineyard and contributed to this post—our thanks to her!