Grace Livingston Hill Short Stories & Collections

Katherine's YesterdayBefore she became famous as a novelist, Grace Livingston Hill wrote short stories for many publications. Over the years, many of these stories have been collected and published in book form. The earliest of these, "Katherine's Yesterday", was one of the first Grace Livingston Hill books ever published.

In the 1930's, J. B. Lippincott published a series of small Grace Livingston Hill books they called "pamphlets". These short stories were published in addition to Grace's regular novels in both hardback and paperback editions and are very rare. We list them as books in our GLH book lists, since they were produced individually. However, these short stories appear in many of the short story collections published in later years. Since they were published during the Great Depression, we suspect they were meant for readers whose budget was tight. Inside the jacket of one of these treasures (a hardback edition) is the price of the book—50¢.

After Grace's death in 1947, her daughters published a collection entitled, "Miss Lavinia's Call".  Since then, many of those stories and quite a few others have been collected, published, and re-published for eager Grace Livingston Hill readers to enjoy. 

1916 • The Congregational Christmas Offering Committee.

This short story was published as a paper pamphlet and came with a beautiful full-color, fold-out, die-cut bank. This is an unusual example of Grace's work used to promote a missionary campaign. The bank was to be filled with a Christmas Offering. We're happy that someone kept the bank as a keepsake, but hope they turned in their offering, too.

The text inside the front cover of the pamphlet tells about the campaign: 

The Six Congregational Missionary Societies have united in a campaign to secure a free-will offering from the Christian Church during the coming Christmas season. Christmas Gift Boxes, artistically lithographed in colors and gold, will be provided for family gifts.

During the weeks immediately preceding Christmas, as presents are being purchased for friends and relatives, this Christmas box, having been placed in the home, will be a reminder of the debt of gratitude owed to the truest and best of Friends, and the question will come,

"What offering can we make that will be most pleasing to Him who gave Himself for a lost world?"

The hearty, personal co-operation of all members of Congregational Churches will guarantee a missionary gift that will greatly honor Him who said: "As my Father hath sent me into the world even so send I you into the world."

The Forgotten FriendThe booklet tells the tale of Gordon Pierce, a young man who stepped into a church to get out of the storm and found himself in the midst of a missionary meeting.

He was greatly moved, especially by the hymn: "I gave my life for thee, My precious blood I shed
That thou might'st ransomed be and quickened from the dead.
I gave my life for thee, What hast thou given for me?"

Later at home, he begins to open the packages he'd bought that day.

"He sat down bewildered, and all the pretty prideful gifts he had arrayed stared back reproachfully at him. He sat ashamed before the pictured Christ...a chair on the other side of the room also [was] piled high with packages.

 That great pile! And fifty cents in the collection basket the only thing he had shown as a Christmas gift ·to the Saviour of the world—his Saviour, for so in his heart he counted Christ."

The Forgotten Friend Bank
What Gordon does with "that pile" follows. The final paragraph says it all.

Reverently he bowed his head as he realized that even then all gifts of his would never requite the great gift God had given to him that night.

 

The message printed on the Christmas Boxes:

A CHRISTMAS OFFERING TO CHRIST

It is estimated that the people of Christian lands spend no less than one hundred million dollars annually for Christmas gifts to one another. Other estimates place the sum at three hundred million or more.

The Forgotten Friend Bank

A number of the leading Missionary Boards believing that it would be pleasing to Him whose birth at Christmas time we celebrate, have asked their friends to unite in making a CHRISTMAS OFFERING TO CHRIST, this offering to be used in the proclamation of His Gospel on Mission fields.

Such money as may be deposited in this box during the Christmas shopping season or on Christmas morning should be forwarded to the Congregational Christmas Offering Committee, New York City.

 


 

 The Forgotten Friend also appeared in short story collections in later years, including "Miss Lavinia's Call" (1949, J.B. Lippincott) and a paperback short story collection called "The Forgotten Friend" (Tyndale House, 1994 • ISBN 0-8423-1391-5)

2017 GLH "M" Reading List

We're reading all of the books beginning with "M" this year, arranged in chronological order with our usual "bonus books" for the winter.

January:
1908 - Marcia Schuyler (Bonus: read the next book in the trilogy - Phoebe Deane)

February:
1912 - The Mystery of Mary (Bonus: for a GLH similar in style, read 1914's The Best "M"an)

March:
1914 - The Man of the Desert (Bonus: read the connected book, A Voice in the Wilderness)

April:
1915 - Miranda (final book in the Marcia Schuyler trilogy)

May:
1933 - Matched Pearls

June:
1936 - Mystery Flowers

July:
1938 - Marigold

August:
1938 - Maris

September:
1938 - The Minister's Son - (look for it in the paperback "The Honeymoon House" published by Tyndale/Living Books in 1984 -  ISBN 0-8423-1366-4, and read the rest of the 1930's short stories, if you like)

October:
1944 - More Than Conqueror (Bonus: read the connected book, By Way of the Silverthorns)

November:
1948 - Mary Arden

December:
1949 Miss Lavinia's Call (which happens to include four Christmas stories!)