Wilford Woodruff Sees a Sign in the Winter Skies

The following is an account recorded by Wilford Woodruff while on his missionary journeys in Bangor, Maine in 1838 with James Townsend.

“On the evening of the 21st of February, as we came out of the schoolhouse [where he had preached that day], a light appeared in the northeastern horizon, and spread to the west and soon rolled over our heads.  It had the appearance of fire, blood, and smoke, and at times resembled contending armies.  The heavens were illuminated for the space of half an hour.  It seemed at times as though the veil was about to rend in twain and the elements were contending with each other.

“We looked upon it as one of the signs in the heavens predicted by the prophets of old, as to appear in the last days.  We were wading through deep snowdrifts most of the time while witnessing this remarkable scene.”

Wilford Woodruff, Leaves from my Journal, p. 50

Is it possible that many signs of the times have already taken place, that we mistakenly still await?

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A Remarkable Sign in the Heavens Seen by Wilford Woodruff

This event took place on the North Fox Island off the coast of Maine on 21 February 1838:

“On the evening of the 21st of February, as we came out of the schoolhouse, a light appeared in the northeastern horizon, and spread to the west and soon rolled over our heads.  It had the appearance of fire, blood, and smoke, and at times resembled contending armies.  The heavens were illuminated for the space of half an hour.  It seemed at times as thought the veil was about to rend in twin and the elements were contending with each other.

We looked upon it as one of the signs in the heavens predicted by the prophets of old, as to appear in the last days.  We were wading through deep snowdrifts most of the time while witnessing this remarkable scen.”

Wilford Woodruff,  Leaves From My Journal,  p.50

Miracles in Canada with Wilford Woodruff

“I felt impressed by the Spirit of God to take a mission to the Fox Islands, situated east of the Maine shore, a country I knew nothing about.  I made my feelings known to the apostles, and they advised me to go.

We crossed Lake Ontario on the steamer Oneida, to Kingston, Upper Canada, and from there also by steamer along the canal to Jone’s Falls, whence we walked to a place called Bastard, Leeds County. [near present-day Smith’s Falls, Ontario]

Here we found a branch of the Church, presided over by John E. Page and James Blakesly.  We accompanied them to their place of meeting, and attended a conference with them at which three hundred members of the Church were represented.

We ordained seven Elders, nine Priests, eleven Teachers and five Deacons.

We spoke to the people several times during this conference, and at its close we were called upon to administer to a woman who was possessed of the devil.  At times she was dumb, and greatly afflicted with the evil spirits that dwelt in her.  She believed in Jesus and in us as His servants, and wished us to administer to her.  Four of us laid our hands upon her head and commanded the devil, in the name of Jesus Christ, to depart out of her.  It was immediately done, and the woman arose with great joy, and gave thanks and praise unto God; for, according to her faith, she was made whole from that hour.

A child, also, that was sick, was healed by the laying on of hands, according to the word of God.

We walked thirty miles to visit another branch of the Saints at Leeds, where we met with John Gordon and John Snyder.  Here we held a meeting and bore our testimony to the people.

A Sister Carns here came to us and requested to have the ordinance for the healing of the sick performed for two of her children who were afflicted.  One was a suckling child, which was lying at the point of death.  I took it in my arms and presented it before the Elders, who laid their hands upon it, and it was made whole immediately, and I handed it back to the mother entirely healed.

We afterwards laid hands upon the other, when it was also healed.  It was done by the power of God, in the name of Jesus Christ, and the parents praised God for His goodness.”

Wilford Woodruff, “Leaves From My Journal” pp. 33-34

Wilford Woodruff’s First Missionary Year

“This brings the year 1835 to a close – the first year of my mission, during which time I had traveled three thousand two hundred and forty eight miles, held one hundred and seventy meetings, baptized forty three persons, assisted Elder Parrish to baptize twenty more, confirmed 35, organized 3 branches, ordained two Teachers and one Deacon, procured 30 subscribers for the Messenger and Advocate, 173 signers to the petition to the governor of Missouri, had three mobs rise against me – but was not harmed, wrote eighteen letters, received ten, and finally closed the labors of the year 1835 by eating johnny-cake, butter, and honey at Brother A. O. Smoot’s.