Reports of Gospel Work and other Assembly Activities


David Ward sends us the following report—“By kind invitation, about 30 brethren attended the Home Workers’ Conference at “Plas Menai” from April 18th to 25th. May I on their behalf tender our warmest thanks to the Directors, to A. Hall and his wife, and to their staff. Our every need had been anticipated and we lacked nothing. Harold St. John (to whom we owe a deep debt of gratitude) expounded the Scriptures morning and evening. From the history of Samuel, Saul and David he pointed the way to spiritual worship, . effective witness, consistent walk, and victorious warfare. In Paul’s first letter to the Corinthians, chapter 12, we were reminded of our privileges and responsibilities as members of the one Body; in chapter 14 as servants of our one Master; in chapter 13 of the love that bears and endures, and forms the ‘cementing’ and governing principle. At the Sunday-evening Gospel Service four Evangelists representing England, Scotland, Ireland and Wales, gave simple, stirring gospel messages. The singing was grand—in the village, on the bridge near Aber Falls, and in the lounge after dinner. The weather was ideal, and the scenery, although familiar, had lost none of its charm.”


On Saturday, May 3rd, a number of friends gathered at White House Farm, Higham, Kent, for the “send-off” of the North Kent Caravan given by the widow of H. H. Batchelor as a memorial to her late husband. It was announced at the meeting that a new tent and seating was being provided through the kindness of a friend. L. Slark (Sidcup) ministered the Word, and Fredk. J. Wren received the caravan and placed it in the charge of John Burns, commended by some of the assemblies in Ayrshire. G. E. Andrews spoke of the spiritual need of Kent, told of his experiences, and mentioned plans for the coming season. Bernard Batchelor spoke touchingly of his late father’s interest in the gospel, and the meeting closed with prayer for the 15 workers who purpose going out with caravans, tents and amplifiers in Southern England and the Home Counties during the present summer season.


A special gospel campaign was held at Dinsdale, a village four or five miles from Darlington, at which a gospel testimony is still being maintained. J. Bathgate was the evangelist and the campaign went even better than friends had hoped. There were never less than 30 village-folk present, and on some nights the attendance was as high as 60. There were three very definite conversions, one a young lady from Darlington, and the others a man and his wife. Confidence has been raised that the work already started is likely to progress and that further blessing will be seen. The evangelist, who worked very hard, is particularly gifted for the hpuse-to-house visitation which was undoubtedly the means of bringing so many to the meetings. David Hyslop has commenced tent work at Newsham, near Blyth, and we hope to give a detailed report later. (J. Howard Hall)


Numerous districts in the Shetlands have again heard the Good News. J. Merson and J. Moar, both mentioned in our last report, joined hands for gospel work in the Island of Yell. In this Island of approximately 1,000 inhabitants there is a small but lively assembly of about ten believers, who meet in a house to remember the Lord. Visiting speakers are given excellent opportunities and support for gospel work at different places in the Island. Our brethren visited many homes and held various meetings. At one place in North Yell, J. Merson had the joy of leading a young woman to the Saviour. He concluded his visit to Shetland by addressing the usual gospel meetings in Lerwick and Scalloway on the Lord’s Day. At Lerwick another young woman professed faith in Christ. Our brother left for the mainland greatly refreshed, and reports concerning those who were saved during his visit show that they are going on well. J. Moar visited the small island of Papa Stour for a fortnight of sustained meetings. He is presently giving help at the various meetings of the assemblies as opportunity presents itself. His days are largely spent in tract distribution. J. Welch (Wolverhampton) has paid his first visit to Shetland. He gave ministry and preached the gospel in Lerwick, Scalloway, Selivoe, Yell, Hoswick Trondra and Whiteness. The ministry, which was most practical throughout, has been greatly appreciated. The Lord’s people have been blessed and strengthened through it. Much work is also done by spare-time workers in Shetland, which cannot be referred to in detail. The Lord is blessing His servants, and thanksgiving is due to Him for this. (R. S. Bowen)


Newcastle is a popular holiday resort situated on the Co. Down coast, ‘where the mountains of Mourne sweep down to the sea.’ For many years this town, predominantly Roman Catholic in population, had been almost impervious to the appeal of the gospel. A few years ago, however, some Christians went to reside there, were enabled to start a small assembly, and engaged in gospel activities among young and old. During the early part of this year, Charles McEwen (Exeter) and James Hutchinson (Dundonald) conducted a series of gospel meetings which continued for 11 weeks. This campaign proved to be a time of reaping after many years of patient sowing. Of those who professed conversion some were senior scholars in the Sunday School, some had been members of the Roman Catholic Church, while others had lived reckless and sinful lives. (John Furguson)


After much prayer on the part of the assembly at Ballyhackamore, Belfast, Dan Cameron (Uncle Dan) was invited to conduct a gospel mission for children during the first fortnight in April, Special assembly prayer-meetings were held during the week preceding the campaign, and attractive invitation cards were distributed to the Sunday School children and to the people in the neighbourhood. During the meeting there was an average nightly attendance of 300 children and adults—for the parents of the children were also invited. A short prayer-meeting followed every children’s meeting. Throughout the mission Uncle Dan’s bright personality, the tuneful hymns and choruses, the many Bible competitions and quizzes, and the refreshing variety of lessons captured the children’s interest, and quite a number of them professed to be saved. Object lessons played an important part in the meetings, and skilful use was made of the flannelgraph. One Saturday evening at the end of the campaign, a conference on Sunday School work was held, Dan Cameron giving an address and he, with two local brethren, answering questions which had been submitted by the audience. It is interesting to note that Uncle Dan was permitted to give short gospel addresses in a few of the Belfast Primary Schools during their morning assembly. (John Ferguson)


A five weeks’ gospel campaign was held in Killyleagh Gospel Hall, the speakers being G. Clark and J. Gowan. Attendances at all meetings were good. Four people professed to be saved and the Christians were blessed. One young woman was restored to the Lord and brought back into fellowship in the assembly. (John W. Boyd)


George Latimer writes from the Mountrath—Mountmellick district—“I have been up in the mountain district where I have made contacts with a number of families, and I persuaded some to come to the gospel meeting in Mountrath last Sunday. I hope to have a few gospel meetings in the mountains in the near future, God willing. We had 62 at the gospel meeting recently; that is a sure sign that the people are taking an interest and we trust it will continue.” We extract the following from a letter from S. W. Lewis (Co. Donegal)— “We moved the portable hall to this place recently and commenced gospel meetings. It is a very busy time in these parts with the planting of the crops and the turf-cutting, but we are getting good numbers—all adults and mostly men. Hugh Scott (Lisburn) is with me and there is good liberty to preach the Word. We have the caravan with us and it is. delighful living in it these days in this lovely part of Donegal. We are having a good reception in our house-to-house visitation.” T. E. J. Archer reports—“G. Thomas and his wife have been visiting various towns in the midlands and north west of Eire, going to some places for the first time. They display texts for about half-an-hour before the meetings, and find that New Testaments and Gospels are received by the people. In only one town was there strong opposition: there, the boards were smashed and the workers put out of the place. They returned later and had a good meeting. Our brother and his wife are purchasing a caravan to facilitate the work in country districts.”


Village work on Saturday afternoons has again been taken up by the believers at Llanelly and also in the Cardiff district. The many new housing estates in South Wales afford particular opportunity for the extension of this work. At Neath a small hut erected on a housing estate has been crowded by approximately 100 children on Lord’s Day afternoons, making it necessary to hold junior and senior sessions. South “Wales assemblies avail themselves of Easter for gatherings for the ministry of the Word. This year, times of help are reported from Llanelly, Port Talbot, Glanyllyn, Crindau Newport, Blackwood, Ebenezer, Heath and Adamsdown Hals, Cardiff and from Porthcawl. The United Missionary Conferences at Swansea and Cardiff, held in April, were times of encouragement and help. E. W. Rogers gave a series of addresses at Fforestfach in April, the ministry being much appreciated. There was a good attendance at the Briton Ferry annual meetings in May, and in the same month keen interest was shown in reports given at the United Home Workers’ Conference in Cardiff, as well as in the ministry by J. M. Davies on that occasion. L. H. Tranter had a series of meetings in Pwllgwaun, Pontypridd, in April, and in Hengoed in May. (Harold Thomas)


Much blessing is reported from this small Devonshire assembly, where great interest in the gospel has been shown by children attending the Sunday School which was recently started. Two of the girl scholars have trusted the Saviour, and a young woman was saved during the gospel meeting one Sunday evening. (G. H. Maxwell)


Until about three years ago the assembly of Falmouth was very small indeed. Help which was badly needed was received when some senior brethren with their families came to live in the district. The work began to grow, the Sunday School was restarted, attendances at the gospel meeting improved, and mid-week meetings for prayer and ministry commenced. All went well until some of the helpers went elsewhere to live, and once again the number in fellowship became very small. Happy times are still experienced, especially at the Lord’s table and in gospel testimony, and the active assistance of brethren spending their holidays in the Falmouth area will be greatly appreciated. (G. H. Maxwell)


After a mission at Holywood (Belfast), where attendances were larger than local brethren could recollect having seen for many years, and where a lady trusted the Saviour, Aneurin Ward returned to Wales and had good meetings at Porth in the Rhondda Valley. Working there with Jack Harris during the late war, an assembly was formed following much preparatory work .by W. A. Norris and William Trew. During the recent meetings a young man blinded in an underground accident nine years ago was brought to Christ, as well as another young man and two young women. Three of them are now considering assembly fellowship. During a week-end visit to Adamsdown (Cardiff) a young lady was saved whose mother the evangelist had led to the Lord 16 years previously. There was further blessing during visits to Deri (near Bargoed) and Tredegar (Monmouthshire); in the latter place a young man was baptized who had been saved under the ministry of William Trew, and during the service the young man’s brother professed Christ. After working in the Southampton area, Aneurin Ward took meetings at Warwick, and Annerley Hill, London, where he led a young man to the Saviour and met two of his friends who had been saved during a Children’s Mission he conducted there four years ago.


Those who live far from Cheshire may be forgiven for thinking of Eastham in relation to its neighbour, Port Sunlight, for this name has become very much a ‘household’ word! The small assembly at Eastham watched the progress of an ‘afterchurch’ Service which was held by a larger assembly not far away, and then decided that they could start a similar work in their own hall. We have received a very interesting report of this new venture and its progress, and we note that when Stan. Ford visited Eastham, the attendance reached 150. Better still, there are some who have been led to trust the Saviour as a result.


The assemblies’ united Saturday-night open-air meetings commenced in May at the site in Hadden Street. The interest shown during the first few meetings gives encouragement. Open-air meetings have been held on Sunday nights throughout the winter in the same place. A tract band has been formed, the intention being to visit towns and villages near Aberdeen on Thursday evenings.


A mission at Fraserburgh, planned to last one week, was extended to four. The hall was well filled each evening, but it was the visitation work that produced the results and those who professed faith in Christ did so in their own homes. Some who had previously received the Saviour were baptized, and the local assembly was much encouraged. (Harry Burness)


Harry Burness spent a week at Sandend giving a series of addresses from Matthew’s Gospel, and blessing was experienced among the company.


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