© John Denney 15 September 2005
is a true story. In 1884, a
shabbily-dressed little girl had come to the Sunday School of a tiny church in
Hattie and the Rev. Conwell developed a friendship, and Hattie committed her young life to Christ. One day, the minister was called to Hattie’s bedside, where he found her very ill. He prayed with her, and shortly afterwards Hattie died, aged seven. At Hattie’s funeral, her mother gave the minister a small purse containing 57 cents. It was money Hattie had been saving up to help build a new church.
The minister showed the money and told the story the next Sunday. One of the congregation offered to buy one of the cents, and in moments, every one of the cents had been bought for a total of $250. And 54 of those cents were given back. The $250 and 54 cents were turned into 25054 coins, and each one of those was sold ; and within a week, the church had $30,000. A businessman sold them a plot of land worth $30,000 – for 54 cents. He then donated those 54 cents to the church. A local newspaper printed the whole story, and donations from readers came flowing in. $250,000 was in the kitty, a vast sum in those days.
so was built the 3,300
The moral of this is that no one’s contribution is too small if it is inspired by God. Are there 57 pennies in your purse?
See http://library.temple.edu/collections/special_collections/hattie.htm for Rev Conwell’s sermon of 1 December 1912, from which the facts were gleaned