Brooks, Edgar (1886–1957)

By Eugenio Di Dionisio

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Eugenio Di Dionisio

Edgar Brooks was an editor, pastor, and teacher of English origin who served in England, Peru, and Argentina.

Early Years and Experience in Peru

Edgar was born in Plymouth, Devon County, England, on September 8, 1886.1 He accepted Adventism in his teenage years. In 1903 he worked as a bellboy in Caterham Sanitarium. He studied in the Adventist academy in Holloway, England, and later in Watford, when the academy moved to that location. He graduated from high school. He was an important instrument for the conversion of his parents.

From February 1904 to May 1908 Brooks was a typographer and proofreader at the International Tract Society (later the Stanborough Press). From June 1908 to June 1911 he served as editorial assistant in Watford, England. In 1912 he moved to the city of Arequipa, Peru, where he worked for four years as a private tutor and self-supporting missionary, working as an English teacher.2 Three months after moving to Arequipa he organized a Sabbath School and in the sixth month he preached his first sermon in Castillan.3 He went back to England in 1915, and in the same year he moved to Buenos Aires to work in the editorial office at Buenos Aires Publishing House. Brooks was one of the first English-speaking missionaries who managed to master Spanish and was able to perform efficiently in editorial tasks.4

Ministry in Argentina

Brooks was married on October 26, 1920, to Dora Waterhouse, who was born in London, England, on December 29, 1888. Their children were Gwendoline Frances (de Biaggi) and Roy Enrique, both Adventist missionaries.5 Dora studied a year in London Adventist Academy, where she met Edgar Brooks. She graduated from Cambridge University and taught in primary school. After her wedding with Brooks, for many years she taught in the River Plate Adventist Academy (Entre Ríos, Argentina) and in Florida Adventist Academy (Buenos Aires, Argentina).6 Dora was admired as a person and as a teacher. She raised her grandchildren when her daughter Gwendoline became a widow of Carlos Biaggi. Meanwhile, Roy Brooks graduated in theology in the River Plate Junior College, Entre Ríos, Argentina, in 1944. He was the treasurer of South American Division.

In 1917 and 1918 Brooks was editor of La Revista Adventista [Adventist Review], and from 1917 to 1929 of El Atalaya [The Watchtower], in Buenos Aires Publishing House.7 Later he was chaplain of the River Plate Sanitarium and Bible teacher at the River Plate Junior College until the end of 1931.8 In 1932 he was appointed as pastor of the church of La Plata, capital of Buenos Aires’ province, where he worked until February 1934, when he was again sent as teacher to River Plate Junior College.

In 1937 he was appointed as editor in chief of Buenos Aires Publishing House, and from 1945 to 1946 he was finally nominated as acting manager of the same institution.9 In 1946 he retired after 35 years of service.10

Edgar Brooks had a strong desire to make known the Scriptures through his publishings, classes, and preaching. He was always willing to praise the name of God with his books and his life.11 He died in River Plate Sanitarium, Entre Ríos, Argentina, on January 11, 1957. Dora spent her final years with her daughter, Gwendoline B. de Biaggi, in Libertador San Martín, Entre Ríos, where she died on March 30, 1979.

Sources

Ampuero Matta, Víctor E. “Necrología” [Obituary]. La Revista Adventista [Adventist Review] 57, no. 4 (April 1957).

ARH, July 27, 1911.

Brooks, Edgar. “Arequipa, Perú.” La Revista Adventista [Adventist Review], February 1914.

———. “Siete razones por que El Atalaya debe ocupar el primer lugar en la actividad misionera” [Seven reasons The Watchtower Must Hold First Place in the Missionary Activity]. La Revista Adventista [Adventist Review], January 21, 1935.

———. “The South American Publishing House.” South American Publishing House 10 (October 1938).

———. “Una luz encendida” [A Kindled Light]. La Revista Adventista [Adventist Review], April 1914.

———. “Un saludo del Director” [Greetings From the Director]. La Revista Adventista [Adventist Review] 46, no. 9 (May 20, 1946).

Casella, Aldo S., and Carlos A. Steger. Cien años de bendiciones [A Hundred Years of Blessings]. Buenos Aires: South American Spanish Publishing House, 2004.

“In Remembrance.” ARH, February 28, 1957.

“La revista estudianti” [Student Review]. La Voz del Colegio [Voice of the Academy], November 1, 1931.

“Necrología” [Obituary]. Revista Adventista [Adventist Review] 79, no. 7 (July 1979).

Pereyra, Elbio. Eduardo Francisco Forga: el pionero casi olvidado del continente descuidado [Eduardo Francisco Forga: the Nearly Forgotten Pioneer of the Neglected Continent]. Buenos Aires: South American Spanish Publishing House, 2004.

Notes

  1. Austral Union Conference Archive, Employee Missionary Record, Edgar Brooks, September 20, 1939; “In Remembrance,” ARH, February 28, 1957, 26; Víctor E. Ampuero Matta, “Necrología” [Obituary], La Revista Adventista [Adventist Review] 57, no. 4 (April 1957): 15; “La revista estudiantil” [Student Review], La Voz del Colegio [Voice of the Academy], November 1, 1931, from River Plate Junior College, which gave an overview of a few teachers, including Edgar Brooks.

  2. ARH, July 27, 1911, 24. Elbio Pereyra states that Brooks moved to Peru to be a mentor and instructor of Eduardo Francisco Forga’s children for four years. In this country he studied Spanish with a Peruvian attorney and, at the same time, taught him English. See: Elbio Pereyra, Eduardo Francisco Forga: el pionero casi olvidado del continente descuidado [Eduardo Francisco Forga: the Nearly Forgotten Pioneer of the Neglected Continent] (Buenos Aires: South American Spanish Publishing House, 2004), 61.

  3. Edgar Brooks, “Arequipa, Perú,” La Revista Adventista [Adventist Review], February 1914, 12; Edgar Brooks, “Una luz encendida” [A Kindled Light], La Revista Adventista [Adventist Review], April 1914, 11.

  4. Pereyra.

  5. His grandchildren are Guillermo Biaggi Brooks, Roberto Biaggi Brooks, Margarita Biaggi, Oscar Wainz’s wife, and Carlos Biaggi Brooks.

  6. “Necrología” [Obituary], La Revista Adventista [Adventist Review] 79, no. 7 (July 1979): 19.

  7. See: Edgar Brooks, “Siete razones por que El Atalaya debe ocupar el primer lugar en la actividad misionera” [Seven Reasons The Watchtower Must Hold First Place in Missionary Activity], La Revista Adventista [Adventist Review], January 21, 1935, 4, 5.

  8. As Bible teacher in the River Plate Junior College, he taught Bible Doctrines, Daniel and Revelation, Art of Public Speaking, Pastoral Instruction, and Testimonies.

  9. Edgar Brooks, “The South American Publishing House,” South American Publishing House 10 (October 1938): 8.

  10. Aldo S. Casella and Carlos A. Steger, Cien años de bendiciones [A Hundred Years of Blessings] (Buenos Aires: South America Spanish Publishing House, 2004), 41, 42. Edgar Brooks, “Un saludo del Director” [Greetings From the Director], La Revista Adventista [Adventist Review] 46, no. 9 (May 20, 1946): 3.

  11. “Necrología” [Obituary].

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Dionisio, Eugenio Di. "Brooks, Edgar (1886–1957)." Encyclopedia of Seventh-day Adventists. April 28, 2021. Accessed January 19, 2022. https://encyclopedia.adventist.org/article?id=AI6W.

Dionisio, Eugenio Di. "Brooks, Edgar (1886–1957)." Encyclopedia of Seventh-day Adventists. April 28, 2021. Date of access January 19, 2022, https://encyclopedia.adventist.org/article?id=AI6W.

Dionisio, Eugenio Di (2021, April 28). Brooks, Edgar (1886–1957). Encyclopedia of Seventh-day Adventists. Retrieved January 19, 2022, https://encyclopedia.adventist.org/article?id=AI6W.