Bethlehem Diary - November 8, 1763
[Symbol for Tuesday] November 8
At noon, Br. and Sr. Grube arrived here from Nazareth with their exiled Gemeinlein [little congregation], which was comprised of 44 souls. They rested here several hours and were finally seen in the Saal by all of the Arbeiter [workers]; recommended to the Wounds of Jesus; and with the Kiss of Love and with the remarkable Daily Text: Make Your way straight before my face, (1) Let my soul be pulled step by step with your soul, (2) [they were] dismissed in the peace of Jesus Christ and accompanied over the Lehigh where they came together with the Indian brothers and sisters from Nain, totaling 77, and so under the protection of the sheriffs who had been named to the task by the authorities, who are concerned for them like fathers, they set forth in their flight.
The appearance of so many old fathers and mothers, sick and pregnant, nursing and suckling, who looked like lambs and went into exile with a pleased countenance, comforted spirit, and a satisfied heart, without knowing wither? was very moving, and brought inmost sympathy. In addition to Br. and Sr. Grube, a few other brothers went along to accompany these 121 little brown sheep to Philadelphia.
In the gathering of the Abendmahls brothers and sisters, Br. Petrus applied todays important Daily Text, Make Your way straight before my face, along with the words that come before and after: Lead me, O LORD, in Your righteousness because of my enemies For there is no faithfulness in their mouth; Their inward part is destruction; Their throat is an open tomb (3) to the extraordinary experiences of these two oft-mentioned Indian congregations, after which the Gemeine sent the heartfelt wish: Hold them tightYou have spilled Your blood for this heathen Gemeine, etc. Then, on their knees, under a rich flow of tears, [the Gemeine] commended them as the first fruit from the heathen herewhom He won through his bloody sweat and gathered with pure workto the watch and protection of Israel.
In a separate gathering of the Girls Choir, the Single Sister Mar. Magdalene was installed by Brother Peter as Oeconoma (4) of all the Single Sisters in America, Sister Seidliz as Deaconess and Vorsteherin of that Choir here, and Sister Sal. Steinmann as Pflegerin of the Big Girls, and it was made known at the same time that the Small Conference [Enge Conferenz] in Herrnhut has called its former faithful and blessed Pflegerin, Sister Anne Rose, back to Europe. In her place, however, in the position of Pflegerin in the Girls Choir here, [the Conference] has named Sister Susanne v. Gersdorf. The former will remain in her current activities until her departure, which is not yet determined.
The Singstunde of the Gemeine was held at 9 oclock.
1. Psalms, 5:8. English translation taken from the King James Version.
2. This line comes from the "Grosse Kirchen Litaney," 2397, p. 502, 1761.
3. Psalms, 5:8-9. English translation taken from the King James Version.
4. Administrator of economic matters
Transcription and translation by Katherine Carté Engel