Dreams About Coming Missionaries that Lead to Conversion: Elizabeth Buck Garlick, My Ancestor

Last year I posted some information from the life of my ancestor, Talitha Cumi Garlick Avery Cheney, a pioneer woman whose journal stands as a witness of the divinity of the Church and the prophetic callings of Joseph Smith and Brigham Young. Tonight for Family Home Evening I read to my family some information about her mother, Elizabeth Buck Garlick, as compiled by my mother, Mary Miles Lindsay:

Elizabeth Buck Garlick was born May 2, 1795 in Bedord County, Pennsylvania. She married David Garlick October 1, 1816 in Pennsylvania. They lived in Providence, PA. . . .

Elizabeth dreamed she saw two strange preachers and heard a voice say, “These are true messengers of God, hear and obey.” The next week, William Baisley and John Wakefield, two Mormon Elders, as they were called, came in that neighborhood and preached. As soon as she saw them, she said, “They were the men she saw in her dream and she knew they had the true Gospel.” She and her daughters joined the Church. Her husband was baptized one year later. That was in 1837 when she and the three oldest girls were baptized, although their family group sheet only lists Susanna [the second oldest] as being baptized then. The two others are listed as being baptized in 1839.

Within a few weeks of joining the Church, 20 others were baptized and then the mob spirit arose against them. Their friends and relatives turned against them. After two years they left and headed for Missouri, but the Saints had been driven out of there and so they headed to Commerce, later called Nauvoo. All the houses were full and so they had to live in a blacksmith shop. It had no floor, door, or chimney. . . .

Before tonight, I don’t remember hearing this storing about Elizabeth’s dream that led to her conversion. It seems to be a theme that many converts throughout history have experienced. My sister had a miraculous experience on her mission in Venezuela that led her to meet a woman who had also just had a similar dream. She and her companion were out looking for people to teach on a hot, sultry day, when a cool, refreshing breeze came out of nowhere. They followed the source of the breeze, seeking its comfort, and it led them several blocks until they came to a household where the breeze had seemed centered, as I recall her story. Then they felt like this was some kind of clue that they should approach this particular house. They did, and were amazed to find a woman who had dreamed of their arrival.

I am intrigued about the use of dreams to alert some people to the coming of messengers bringing the Restored Gospel. I am grateful to learn that one of my ancestors had this experience also.


Author: Jeff Lindsay

2 thoughts on “Dreams About Coming Missionaries that Lead to Conversion: Elizabeth Buck Garlick, My Ancestor

  1. The Lord chose to send me a dream as a means of converting me. I was 16 years old. I had prayed about the Book of Mormon and that night, I had a dream. I was standing on a flat, gray, empty, featureless plain. A mountain begain to rise from the plain. I could see that the mountain was covered with trees, bushes, birds, and animals. As the mountain rose, a voice quouted Isaiah 2:2, but changed it significantly.

    “And it has come to pass in the last days, that the mountain of the LORD’s house has been established in the top of the mountains, and is exalted above the hills; and all nations flow unto it.”

    One of my gifts of the spirit seems to be the gift of dreams. The spiritual dreams feel different than a regular dream. Similar to feeling the difference between my own desires in a matter and the will of the Lord. I have seen in a dream my dead son preaching the gospel to my ancestors and have had the chance to talk with him. He left on his mission to hell when he passed away at age 18. His letters home are infrequent, but charished.

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