Gospel Work and Other Assembly Activities – November-December 1978

“All thy works shall praise thee, 0 Lord; and thy saints shall bless thee”, Psa. 145. 10

It is good when Christians, amid the. gloom and despondency of this age, can lift their voices in enthusiastic praise to their God. There is enough of pessimism and hopelessness about the world’s business, and it is sad when such a spirit infects those of us who are engaged in labour for the Lord. The Psalmist here has caught the true inspiration to praise. This Psalm is full of it. The works of God in their character and beauty, whether in the material or spiritual realm, tell out loud His praise. It is fitting that saints should join with those silent ministers to His praise and rise to bless their Lord. The aim of these reports is to inspire both praise and prayer. This issue tells mostly of the summer outreach work. The misfortune of reports in a “bi-monthly” is that all is history by the time these are read. But in retrospect, it is good to learn of what God has done, to catch the joy of those who see His hand at work, and most fervently to pray that His work will continue to abound.

Southern Ireland

The usual summer -activities have been carried on in PORTARLINGTON. In three weeks’ outreach work in July, between five and six thousand homes were visited in the surrounding district, and literature was distributed freely. Well-attended children’s meetings were held, and also open-air meetings. A few children requested Postal Sunday School lessons, and also adults asked for Bible courses. A good number of contacts were made during door-to-door work. David Prosser reports that it was encouraging to see between 30 and 40 Catholic children sitting on the grass singing choruses and listening to Bible stories. At WEXFORD during July, a number of young people joined together under the direction of F. Kelling from Scotland.

Door-to-door work was done, and children’s meetings were held on the beach together with some open-air meetings. During July and August the work at PARKLANDS Caravan site was carried on. Two Bible Clubs were held daily with about 50 children there each time. To an encouraging number of parents who gathered each day a clear gospel message was given. Two weeks of P.S.S. Camp were encouraging and the children were involved in Bible studies, Bible Clubs and various camp activities. A number of young people were won for Christ. Prayer is much needed that they will grow in spiritual things.

Open-air meetings were held in various towns in County CORK during the summer months. Excellent interest was shown; tracts and Bibles were freely taken and many contacts were made with very little opposition. A group of young Christians from the North came to work in CORK during August. They were based in the Gospel Hall, and encouraging open-air meetings were held especially with the children in the public parks. Queues outside cinemas and places of amusement were tracted in the evenings, and some interesting contacts were made.

Northern Ireland

Seven weeks well attended gospel meetings were held by Albert Aiken in a tent pitched in a country district near CROSSKEYS assembly in Co. Antrim. God gave help in the preaching, and a number professed faith in Christ. Sadly, some who have been the subject of many prayers did not turn to the Lord. Prayer is sought for them. For several years in succession A. Aiken, with the help of some local and visiting brethren, has conducted open-air meetings, in the seaside village of CARNLOUGH in Co. Antrim during the “twelfth fortnight”. Meetings were held at the harbour and main streets.

Good numbers of visitors stopped to listen to the preaching. We can pray for eventual blessing. The “Old Lamas Fair” at BALLYCASTLE provided opportunity for evangelism. Held for two days, many people visit with their wares, including many local farmers. Evangelists and local brethren held two meetings each day, and many gathered round to listen to the Word. Again prayer for follow-up work is asked.


Camp work features in the reports from across the border. About 90 young people between 11 and 18 years of age joined the HEBRON HALL youth camp at BEATH Academy, COWDENBEATH. The guest speaker was A. Courtney, Belfast. A few of the campers were saved, while others also asked to obey the Lord in baptism. Two were baptized and received into fellowship at Hebron Hall PORT GLASGOW, and one young sister at BISHOPTON. We can pray that these young folk will go on with the Lord. At the South of Scotland Camp at CALLANDER, efforts were made to strengthen and build up the young people in their faith as John Clunas gave teaching of the Word. Work was done at the Galloway Agricultural Show, DUMFRIES, through a Bible and tract booth. The enemy was at work, the Mormons as usual being very active with their efforts. At one special seaside camp a little girl was saved. The tracting of the town of DUMFRIES is now complete, and there is an exercise with the workers that all those areas visited should hear the message preached. Local Authority permission has been granted. “Preach the word!”.

From LANARKS comes news of open-air activity. During the summer months many of the assemblies in the county conduct special open-air meetings. One young man, recently saved, said that an open-air meeting drew him and was the cause “of a deepening work of the Spirit within him”. Another lady said that for 15 years she had listened to open-air preaching in her street. Her longing to be saved was eventually fulfilled as she accepted the Saviour. On Saturday afternoons, 40 to 45 believers visited COATBRIDGE, CHAPELHALL, PLAINS, GLASSFORD and DOUGLAS, preaching the gospel and distributing literature. The “glad tidings” has been spread abroad.

The Highlands and Islands Postal Sunday School had another successful time with senior Scholars at NAIRN during July. Angus Swanson was responsible for the ministry and one boy and one girl were saved. It was encouraging to see the progress made by campers of previous years who had found Christ at camp. These children need much prayer as they come form isolated parts with no assembly connections. Frank Reid and George Meikie have seen a good response among adults and children as they moved their portable hall to the village of CANNON BRIDGE. This was encouraging after encountering apathy in neighbouring villages. Ian Munro continues with various features of work in and around INVERGORDON. He has found encouragement by the exercise of others who have moved into the area to live and work. This has been done to help with the spiritual needs there. Brethren responsible for prison work in INVERNESS have been encouraged as one of the prisoners professed faith in Christ. He is a young man in his twenties. Pray for him that he may go on with the Lord, and on his release prove the reality of his profession.


Some interesting contacts were made at the four main Agricultural Shows held in August. A Bible Stall was set up at each. At EAST MAINLAND the going was hard and the sales were small. A good number of children visited at ST MARGARET’S HOPE. At DOUNBY & WEST MAINLAND French and German girls received tracts in their languages. At the County Show, KIRKWALL, there was a royal visit; Testaments and Bibles were sold.

Isle of Man

Regarding an item in a previous magazine about a new venture at ONCHAN there have been delays with the structural work of the hall and it will be into 1979 before activity begins. Fellowship of the Lord’s people is appreciated and also an anonymous gift of £5 which has been received from Bath.

North-East England

At FELLING during August, the assembly conducted a two week campaign with the fellowship of North-East Assembly Outreach, and in the second week Rod Sharp gave help. Meetings during the first week were held with children and adults with a team of young people visiting homes during the afternoons. Access to two Old People’s Homes was gained, and in both cases there were invitations to return. During the second week extra meetings for teenagers were held. Several children professed faith in the Lord, a young lady who had backslidden was restored and another lady who is a Christian enquired regarding assembly fellowship. The interest aroused among the teenagers resulted in the commencement of a Young People’s meeting. The campaign has been a great encouragement to the small assembly which has been struggling for many years. Let us pray that a time of reviving will follow.


The North Staffordshire Tent Campaign was conducted this year by Stewart McKenzie of Furnace. The tent was pitched at HANFORD and support from Christians in the area was good. At the evening children’s meetings, about 60 attended and many of these came to all the meetings. At the weekly “Teenage Special” about 60 were present. These were lively folk and at times discipline was a problem but the interest was good. On four evenings of the week adult meetings were held, when usually there were unsaved in the tent. Some worthwhile contacts were made in door-to-door visitation, and two ladies from a nearby village attended. Three children and three teenagers trusted the Saviour. Follow up work will be done from assemblies in Butt Lane, STOKE and TRENT VALE. “It needs to be recognized that we cannot measure the total effect of a campaign like this, but we can rejoice that during the three weeks so many heard the gospel”.

The WORCESTER Camp-out visited MORTHOE, N. Devon, during the last week of August for their annual camp. Spiritual responsibility for the 72 campers was in the hands of Andrew Brandon of London. There were several clear decisions for the Lord, and others were exercised about baptism. 50% of the campers were Postal Sunday School scholars and need special prayer. Many of them go back to homes where they find no encouragement in spiritual things. Being denied Christian fellowship, they find the way difficult. We can help them through our prayers.

London and South-East

News of the work of two Evangelistic Mobile Units: The London and Home Counties Unit reports on the second Trafalgar Square Rally in LONDON. Weather was fine and the square was crowded with people of different nationalities for the whole two hours activity. Many useful contacts were made, and a clear witness to Christ was given. The annual Report Meeting was held in Orange Street Church. Reports by workers were given and interesting slides were shown. There was much to praise God for and evidences were given that the Lord was using this means to reach and save folk with the Gospel. The day ended with the encouraging news that a young lady, having followed the witness from the Square to the church had made a decision for the Saviour. Praise God!

The South-East London Unit continues its work. From their news-letter points are given which tell of the Lord’s faithfulness to His servants. There has been encouragement as young people have given themselves to the work, and have joined the Unit regularly. A great variety of stories could be told from the different places visited. From the contact with an aged man of 83, to a young lad of 17, the gospel has been given to cover needs at all ages and levels of life, and many enquirers have been left with literature to help them. At TON-BRIDGE, through the advice of the Trench Wood assembly, open-air meetings were held. A number of young people were spoken to, with many houses visited. Let us pray that the Lord will give much blessing to this distinctive form of outreach work.

The summer gives opportunities for seaside work. We have news from S. Mountstevens of such Beach missions. At HYTHE, Kent, encouraging meetings were held for a week. A good number of children gathered for games in the recreation ground in the mornings, and then for meetings on the beach in the afternoons. Adults gathered on the fringe, and about 750 tracts were distributed. Some useful contacts with parents have been made. On MARGATE beach, three weeks’ children’s meetings were held with an average attendance of about 95. Good interest was shown by parents as well as children. Some useful contacts were made during conversations. In connection with the WHITSTABLE assembly, 2 weeks of children’s open-air meetings were held in a recreation ground. Most days, over 100 children attended. Two little ones, David aged 6 and Kelly aged 7, asked to trust the Saviour. We can pray that lasting results will be seen from these labours.

South and West England

From WEYMOUTH comes news of summer open-air work. Each Sunday on the sands a large number of visitors have been able to listen to the great message of salvation. Although there have been no known conversions, there has been much interest and many tracts have been distributed. One pleasing feature of the work has been the involvement of younger believers with older ones with more experience of this work. A fine training ground for evangelism! The work in WEYMOUTH among foreign students has been most encouraging. In addition to numerous conversations in the streets and on the esplanade, it has been possible to arrange several indoor Rallies on Saturday evenings. An evening barbeque held by kind permission of a Christian farmer resulted in a gathering of nearly 200 students. Coffee bar evenings have also been held. It has been good to see the response from students from eight different countries. Many have been blessed, and ’some have definitely committed their lives to the Lord. Prayer is sought for this vital work, for the many portions of Scripture distributed, and for those returning to their homeland with the knowledge of Jesus Christ as Saviour.

South Wales

CARDIFF Christian Rallies have been a feature of assembly life in the city for many years. They began to take place regularly on Saturday evenings in 1937, in an effort to provide spiritual help to the many young Christians in the local churches. The Lord had given much blessing over the years as the Cardiff Big Tent Missions were held, and the Rallies were designed to help those saved to know where assemblies were situated and also to find further blessing in Christian fellowship. Large crowds have gathered in the bigger halls of the city, and aim to provide stimulating ministry to many Christians has been fulfilled. There have also been Rallies which have been arranged specifically for the preaching of the gospel. As time has passed, much encouragement has been felt. Some who first came as young Christians needing to be taught now come as those who teach the Word. The Rallies still continue, although many of the old stalwarts who had the vision to commence such activities have now gone to be with the Lord. We shall pray that these times of fellowship and ministry will continue to be used of the Lord.

The annual summer camp of the SWANSEA and district assemblies and Postal Sunday School was held this year on the Gower Peninsula. Weather was poor but blessing was enjoyed. Several professed faith in-Christ during the camp and others have since decided for the Lord. Many of the Lord’s servants in South Wales are realizing the need of door-to-door visitation. David Morgan has been visiting homes in Mid and South Wales making many personal contacts. John Baker of Dinas Powis is doing a similar work and has recently been helping the assembly at SKEWEN. Children’s meetings have been held by Maurice Newman in LOUGHOR and HEOL-Y-GORS, Swansea.

David Prosser reports good contacts with literature at the Royal Welsh Show, BUILTH WELLS. Some of the best of these were with the stall holders. Barriers were broken down with the Jewish trader, and suitable literature was left with him. Attendances at the Eisteddfod in CARDIFF were disappointing. Not nearly as many visited the literature stand. It was located among all other “religious” stands, including Unitarians, Christadelphians, etc. During the time a team of 12 to 15 worked with literature in the centre of Cardiff each evening. Some interesting conversations were held. We can pray for the printed page!

Devon and Cornwall

News from Dennis Pierce of Tent Crusades in Devon.

At NORTH TAWTON the numbers were not large, averaging about 30 nightly, but unsaved folk came in each time. A few enquiries were made but no definite professions of faith. Blessing was felt by Christians who joined in the work. On the middle Sunday of the Crusade, about 150 gathered at an open-air meeting in the town and for the final night there were about 200 in the tent. There were some good children’s meetings. The KINGSBRIDGE Crusade, working with Arthur Thurston, was quite encouraging. Each night unbelievers were present, and altogether eight trusted Christ. Great concern was shown by others. One 14 year old said that it was fear of her friends that kept her from the Lord. How much prayer is needed for the follow-up work after such Crusades. The work continues at BURRINGTON. Adult response was poor but most of the children in the village came to the Tent. Their interest is keen and there are possibilities of blessing.

Two campaigns of John Hadley in Cornwall are reported. At THREE MILESTONE the tent was erected in fellowship with TRURO assembly. The site was between a housing estate and the Gospel Hall. It proved to be a time of sowing the seed in new ground. Local support was fine and there was a sense of the Lord’s help and blessing. The summer fellowship meetings of the Cornish Assemblies were held in the tent. A happy and profitable time was enjoyed by all who gathered. The campaign at LANIVET near Bodmin had its difficulties. The Council granted permission to erect the tent on a site soon to be used for Council Houses. Opposition commenced from both young and old with threats of destruction! The caravan was housed on a piece of ground nearby. Once the tent was erected friendliness came from all. A two weeks Bible School was held with about 15 Bodmin teenagers attending. “The young people were great”, said J. Hadley, “and were a good testimony to those round about”. There were some who accepted Christ. Contacts made will be followed up during the winter. There are considerable difficulties in making Christ known in a rural setting, and yet the villages of our land desperately need the Gospel!


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