Reports of Gospel Work and Other Assembly Activities
C. H. Darch, Taunton, England
" They declared all things that God had done with them." Acts 15.4
Because of the Christmas holiday our copy had to be prepared rather earlier than usual and this may account for the fact that we have received less than the normal number of reports. When readers hear of any activity suitable for recording in these pages we hope they will bring it to the notice of our Correspondent without delay, so that he may obtain details in good time for publication in the next Number.
Concerning 1950 " the recording angel " may well say, " What I have written I have written," and w« must turn from the record, whether of victory or defeat, and face the new year. Few will expect the work of the Lord to become easier, so we must exploit each opportunity to the full, and make sure that no effort fails through lack of something we could have contributed.
There is one avenue of service which is open to us all. It is sometimes called Personal Evangelism. It does not require that people shall be induced to attend meetings. It does not call for special buildings, special speakers, or special collections. It does need courage, discernment, and tact, and it demands above all the background of a consistent life. May we all seek the spiritual equipment for this vital service.
N. M. B.
LONDON & HOME COUNTIES
Stanley H. Sayers, 33 Crieff Road, Wandsworth, S.W. l&
A. C. Payne, 39 Solent Road, Drayton, Portsmouth
G. II. Maxwell, " Leigh Beck," 6 Birchy Barton Hill, Exeter
P. P. Chamings, '3 Birch Road, Rubery, Mr. Birmingham
T. G. Smith, " Charis," St. David's Drive. Broxbourne. Herts
J. H. Hall, 12 Thorough Road, J arrow -on -Tyne, Co. Durham
A. Mulholland, 6 Commerce Road, Elgin
CENTRAL & SOUTHERN SCOTLAND
A. McNeish, M.A.," Eastcraig," 9 Jerviston Street, Motherwell
Walter A. Norris, 3 Mortals Street, Cardiff, or Harold Thomas, 269 Caerphilly Road, Cardiff
John Ferguson, M.A., 13 Parkmount Road, Belfast
T, Ernest J. Archer, " Dunran," Avoca Avenue, Blackrock, Co. Dublin
THE GOSPEL FOR OLD AND YOUNG
During September and October two missions were held at St. Thomas, Exeter. Chas. McEwen (Exeter) and J. Hutchinson (Belfast) made use of a large tent, where clear and challenging gospel messages were delivered to old and young. Tom Moore (Devizes) conducted a children's mission in Buller Road Hall. The hall was well filled on each of the ten evenings, and a number of children professed conversion.
MANY ACTIVITIES AT TIVERTON
In addition to the usual meetings for breaking of bread, gospel, prayer, ministry, and two Sunday schools, the believers at
Tiverton, Devon, are busily engaged in other aspects of service. On separate evenings each week, young men and women meet for handicrafts and to listen to the " old, old story." Between GO and 70 women gather on another week-day, whilst later on the same clay over 100 children meet during the winter months for their own " Bright Hour." The witness is carried outside the hall. Once a month a visit is paid to the Belmont Hospital, where the infirmed are told again and again the sweet stories of the gospel. Both the town itself and the surrounding districts receive the benefit of open-air witness. A new venture is the proposal to hold after-church rallies in a large public hall in the town centre. Fortnightly " squashes " (which are literally so) at St. Aubyns School and the monthly distribution of from 1200 to 1500 tracts into houses, are two further methods employed by the assembly in getting the gospel across to the people of Tiverton,
BY PERSONAL INVITATION
In the market-town of Tavistock (Devon) the first gospel mission for several years was conducted in the Gospel Hall by Aneurin Ward (Wales). Invitations were received with apathy rather than opposition, but attendances increased as the mission went on, and at the end of three weeks there was considerable interest. It was generally agreed that another mission should be held in the not-too-distant future. Publicity was widespread and many houses were visited, but most of those who came did so on the personal invitation of their Mends and neighbours. One Sunday-school boy confessed (Jurist, and for this alone the mission was worth while, but others were deeply impressed. During the mission period the annual Goose Fail' was held in the town, and an open-air witness throughout the day was supported by friends from other parts of Devon and Cornwall.
Many will look back to the visit of Edgar Jackman to Ugborough in October with happy memories of spiritual refreshment, A good attendance with interest was maintained throughout the mission, some young children were very regular, and one young man confessed Christ. Children expressed keen interest, and blessing was seen. A special feature was the after-church service held in the village ball on each of the three Sunday evenings, between SO and 100 being present.
A JOINT EFFORT
A nine-day mission has been held at the Green Lane Gospel Hall, Small Heath, Birmingham. Several brethren joined together to help this small assembly. As a result several children in the Sunday school and one married man made a profession, and the latter continues to attend the meetings.
CHILDREN SAVED AT BEARWOOD
D. MacKenzie Miller has had a happy time with Children's Meetings at the Bearwood assembly (Birmingham), and about 20 of them have written to him to say that they have definitely accepted Christ as Saviour.
MASS MEETING FOR MINISTRY
Over 1,000 were present at the Saturday-evening session of the United Conference for Ministry held in Birmingham in October, and the co-ordinating power of the Holy Spirit was very evident in guiding our brethren H. Lacey (Cardiff), G. Harpur (Bristol), D. Brealey (Blackdown Hills) and A. Payne (Portsmouth), There were afternoon and evening sessions on the Saturday and Monday.
THE GOSPEL IN THE BULL-RING
More than 20-mostly men-came forward and accepted Gospels of John at an open-air meeting held recently in the Bull Ring, Birmingham. These open-air meetings are held on Saturday and Sunday evenings. This is the " Hyde Park " of Birmingham, and prayer is asked that a more active interest may be taken in this unique opportunity of presenting the gospel to the masses in this city of 1.100,000 souls.
MANOR COURT ROOMS, NUNEATON
Seventy-two years ago the first brethren in Nuneaton met together in a cottage. Twelve years later, in 1890, the first Manor Court Rooms were opened and meetings continued there until 1942, when the building was destroyed by enemy action. A new hall was opened in September, however, by E. Sidwell, who has been in the Nuneaton assembly for 56 years. Special thanksgiving meetings were held, and the speakers were A. J. Townsend (Exeter) and L. G. Wareham (Birmingham).
SOULS SAVED IN WALES
Meetings held in the Evangelistic Hall, Llanelly, by A. E. Ward in October were well attended. Fforestfach, Swansea, had a fortnight's visit from W. E. Davies in November, when the saints were encouraged by seeing some unsaved ones listening to the gospel night by night. The assembly at Blackwood, Mon., though depleted in numbers, has maintained an active testimony toward old and young and has recently had visits for nightly meetings by W. G. Banfield, L. H. Tranter and W. A. Norris, when strangers came into the hall to hear the Word. Twenty-five years ago J. M. Bernard and W. A. Norris held tent-meetings in Pontnewynydd, Moo., and a temporary building was erected. This became, and still is, the home of an assembly of the Lord's people. Recently D. Jones (Caerleon) visited this hall for a number of Monday evenings, the Lord granting interest and bringing to Himself the husband of oils of the believers, who, with his son, has since been bapti7ed. The assemblies of Cardiff und district hold, annually, two days' meetings for ministry of the Word in a central building rented for the purpose. The gatherings this year on October 4th and 5th were well attended and profitable. Speakers were G. Harpur, E. W. Rogers, S. V. Scott-Mitchell and J. M. Shaw. A series of helpful addresses on the Tabernacle were given at Ebenezer Hall in September and were very well attended. Gospel meetings were conducted for a fortnight at Adamsdown Gospel Hall by T. Richardson, and some unsaved were brought under the sound of the gospel night by night: one man spoke of being saved. During the same period D. T. Morris (Patagonia) concluded gospel meetings at Minster Hall.
GOSPEL EFFORT IN MOTHERWELL
The recently-reconstructed Roman Road Hall in Motherwell was well filled nightly during the month of October, when very plain and pointed gospel messages were given by David Hynd (home on a visit from Australia), W. J. Brown and G. Murray. As the effort was not in charge of one preacher, the open-air work, visitation of homes, and sending out of special invitations by post. were all done entirely by members of the assembly. This meant much hard work, but it was very thoroughly done and proved most effective. It was gratifying to see a number of unsaved people present at the meetings each night. Many showed great interest; some even concern. Six people, all adults, professed conversion; of these, one was a young man who, though he arrived very late for the first meeting he attended, was so arrested by the closing part of Mr. Hynd’s message that he waited for conversation after the meeting. He' has given evidence since that he has been genuinely converted.
THE GOSPEL TAKEN TO “SQUATTERS”
In a rather isolated spot at Blantyreferme, near Blantyre, in Lanarkshire, some military huts have been taken over by some homeless people. They have been allowed to continue in residence and for some considerable time P. K. Ballantyne, of Glasgow, with the assistance of a few brethren in the district, has done a good work in bringing the gospel to this needy community. In one of the huts some gospel meetings have been held, and it has been possible to run a regular Sunday school. No fewer than 80 of these poor children have attended regularly, and Mr. Ballantyne reports that during the past year 12 have professed conversion.
PREACHING IN THE HIGHLANDS
R. J. Wilding (Newarthill) spent a profitable time in Inverness during the early part of November, and by the time this is published he will (D.V.) have been to Elgin for further meetings. The " pious " cities of Northern Scotland arc a test for any preacher, Joe Merson (Sandend) and T. W. Hickley (Greenwich) spent a week or more in Hopeman and district during October, with both indoor and open-air meetings. L. M. Randall recently completed a tour further south than normally, during which lie visited Kinlochleven, Fort William and Elgin.
A UNIVERSAL PROBLEM
There seems to have been a spontaneous exercise in parts of the North regarding the needs of boys between the ages of 12 and 16 years. Special week-night gatherings are being held to cater for these older boys in Nairn by A. Wyse, Elgin by A. Mulholland and Aberlour by C, Morrison. These a (most-adolescents demand our prayerful exercise and urgent attention.
BAPTISMS AT ABERDEEN
The Aberdeen Summer Convention was again held in the large tent, pitched in the heart of the city, near Schoolhill. The speakers were A. Fallaize, J. M. Shaw, Montague Goodman and George Grant. Over 100 believers came from England and the south of Scotland, and a party of 12 from the Faroe Isles. During the morning sessions, speakers dealt with 1 Cor. 1. 30: Wisdom; Righteousness; Sanctification; and Redemption. In the afternoons, outings were arranged and coaches took visitors to beauty-spots on the bedside and Donside. In the evenings, messages were given to large audiences in the tent. The Convention was followed by three weeks' gospel effort, when George Grant (Harrogate) was greatly helped and saw much blessing. In spite of the inclement weather, large companies of unsaved and Christians attended on Sunday evenings; over 600 gathered to hear the gospel. The tent was packed for a farewell meeting to George Grant (now gone to Canada) when he spoke on the responsibilities of the young Christian, and this has resulted in several being baptized and added to the local assemblies.
IN A BELFAST SUBURB
A successful gospel campaign was recently held in Glengormley, a growing suburb of North Belfast. An assembly was planted there just over 12 years ago but, prior to the campaign, the local brethren had encountered widespread apathy and indifference to spiritual things among the suburban population. After much prayer and exercise of soul, the leaders of the Glengormley assembly decided to have a special series of gospel meetings in mid-September and Harold Paisley himself a member of the local assembly was invited to preach. Special assembly prayer-meetings preceded the campaign and many hundreds of invitation cards were printed. To the course of the meetings the evangelist visited over 600 homes to give a personal invitation. For six weeks the gospel was preached faithfully every week-night (except Saturday) and every Sunday in a packed hall Many of the congregation consisted of people who had never before entered the Gospel Hall and were indeed complete strangers to God's grace and God's Word. The blessing of the Lord attended the preaching of the Word, for at the end of the sixth week no fewer than nine professed to be saved, one of whom was a retired police constable who had been a staunch member of the Church of Ireland. The gospel meetings were followed by a week of helpful Bible-readings, which were conducted by Tom Lyttle. Under his ministry and that of Harold Paisley, many of the young converts were instructed in" plain paths in days of departure." Thus at the close of seven weeks the assembly had been cheered, sinners saved, saints edified, and above all the Lord's Name glorified and exalted.
A NEW ASSEMBLY
We are glad to hear that an assembly has been formed in Waring Street Hall, Harryville, Northern Ireland. This venture has the full fellowship of the Wellington Street Hall assembly in Ballymena, and it is the result of 25 years of gospel testimony in the district.
O.A.P. ASSOCIATION INVITED
A gospel campaign was held in the Mountjoy Street Hall, Newport (Mon.) during October, and Fred Elliott was the evangelist. There was a good attendance from the outset, many attending the hall for the first lime, and when the evangelist gave an account of his conversion, the building was packed. The campaign was well supported by other assemblies in the area, and in Cardiff. At least eight Souls were led to the Saviour, including five young people, and many others received blessing. During the campaign the local Old Age Pensioners' Association was invited to a special meeting and supper. It was a great joy to be with the large company of old folks and to note the pleasure with which they realized that "someone" was concerned about them.