Box 12-626 TO REV. CALVIN MCQUESTEN, B.A. from his mother, Mary Baker McQuesten
Jun 4 1910
To: Calvin McQuesten Glenhurst, Saskatchewan
My dear Calvin,
I shall begin my letter to-night, but will not send it off till Monday in case I hear again from Hilda, tho' from your letter of the 24th I see that you received one posted on Tuesday the 14th that day; yours of the 24th reached me yesterday, a letter written on a Monday seems to reach me the following Monday. We are making ready to start off on Thursday to Gravenhurst, so when this reaches you, we shall all be there D. V. I feel very badly leaving Tom all by himself here for so many months; it is such a trial having to leave one's home and it is terrible for poor Ruby to be thus exiled for years, indeed it does not do for me to think of it and I have to pray for grace to submit and leave it in God's hands.1 You mention that young Mr. E. who has gone to Brampton. Of course, I have never heard him preach, but he seems a very young man to me. Young people like young ministers but they do not satisfy me, and I feel starving. Whether it is that no one worth having is offering, do not know, but any kind of a preacher seems to find a place, and the Congregations will soon be perfectly ignorant of the Bible, when the old people have died out. All they seem able to do is to start off the people building big churches which gives them something to interest them. I see a new costly church is to be built in Woodstock.
Dear! dear, isn't this a cold season? I am so anxious for the heat for Ruby's sake and it is the coldest I ever remember. Edna is getting along nicely. Tom is still struggling with his exam papers, but hopes to be through with them on Tuesday. We saw the comet quite well several nights but it was always a misty one.
So Prof. McFadyen is going. It is very hard on the students to be continually changing. Dr. Lyle's sermon at Assembly was truly characteristic, I do not believe he can preach a topical doctrinal sermon. To-morrow is our communion. You must have been pretty cold up there. With much love from all.
Your loving mother
M. B. McQuesten
1 In this letter Ruby's mother refers to Ruby as being "exiled": "it is such a trial having to leave one's home and it is terrible for poor Ruby to be thus exiled for years, indeed it does not do for me to think of it and I have to pray for grace to submit and leave it in God's hands." In W-MCP2-4.090 Ruby makes a comment about being a "black sheep" and a "remittance man." These two comments provide a deeper insight into the family dynamics. Ruby is feeling like a black sheep and her mother is feeling guilty at Ruby being exiled. Ruby is referring to herself (darkly facetious) as the "black sheep" and a "remittance man": a person who is sent away from home and family (usually in disgrace) and kept there with a remittance as long as he/she stays away. Many sons were sent off to the New World from England as remittance men.