Letters to the Family of God

by Joe Franzone | July 14, 2022 | Pastor's Blog

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Fort Snelling, Minnesota 1830

July 14, 2022


What is it like to watch the small streams of your life empty into a larger more powerful flow of events? – Thomas Becknell

Dear Friends,


On June 18th, 1837, Phillip Prescott of Historic Fort Snelling, Minnesota, openly professed his faith in Jesus Christ.


As a young man, Phillip took an interest in a then eighteen-year-old woman named, Naginowenah. He would court her for years. In time and according to Indian custom, they married. Naginowenah gave birth to nine children, two of whom would die young. It was those deaths that brought a crisis moment into Phillip's life. He writes.

The two deaths, so close up on the other, made me reflect seriously. The longer I went the more I thought on the subject and commenced praying.

He soon attended the Presbyterian Church near Lake Harriet in June of 1837. It was there that he repented and placed his faith in Jesus Christ.

Repentance and faith had got a fast hold upon me, and I was determined to live by them. I never have seen the time yet but what I could say now is I wanted more of the love of God.

By God's grace Phillip and his wife lived a long, good life, model citizens, until it abruptly ended in the summer of 1862. In an all too familiar pattern of human history, people fighting for other people's land for gain, he was murdered.


Phillip's friend, Minnesota legislator John H. Stevens, details the story of his death.

Mr. Prescott had gone several miles along the West Bank of the Minnesota River when he was overtaken, his murderers came and talked with him.


He reasoned with them, saying:


“I am an old man. I've lived with you now for 45 years almost half a century. My wife and children are among you, of your own blood. I have never done you any harm, and have been your true friend in all your troubles why should you wish to kill me?”

At that moment, while continuing to talk with them and looking calmly into their eyes he was shot.


When Phillip said, I have never done you any harm and have been your true friend in all your troubles. The words Jesus spoke to the religious crowds who were ready to see His end come to mind.

“I have shown you many good works from the Father. For which of these do you stone me?” (John 10:32)

The time for Jesus’ death was not then. When the time did come, He made no reply. He entrusted Himself to Him, who judges justly. (1 Peter 2:23) The Son of the Almighty God willingly offered His life to die on the cross to pour out the merciful graces of God so that the sin of men and women would be atoned.


Here were two ordinary people from the state we call home living life in a broken world. Murdered by men, saved by grace, now safe in God's heaven.

‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.”


He who was seated on the throne said, “I am making everything new!” Then he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.”

Revelation 21:4-5

God bless you in many multisided ways as your week begins to end.

Pastor Joe