Reports of Gospel Work and Other Assembly Activities – Nov-Dec 1952


Our brethren Hill and Martin from Ulster had an encouraging time at Stornoway. Later, at the invitation of a sister in fellowship who lives at Fochabers, they visited that village, where there is no assembly. The place was thoroughly worked with tracts and very good children’s meetings were held. The closing meeting was attended by nearly 100 children and 20 adults. The believers in the assembly in the neighbouring town of Elgin hope to continue a weekly meeting for children. P. F. Bruce, a veteran evangelist, has spent some time in visiting around the country district of Ballatter.


After an encouraging time in Salsburgh during the first part of the summer season, when a few professed conversion, William Wright moved with the Lanarkshire Tent to Bellshill. From the beginning the effort was well supported by Christians from the Bellshill and neighbouring assemblies. While the schools were on holiday it was possible to have meetings for children every afternoon, and for several weeks more than 200 children attended. At the closing meeting of the mission it was reported that there had been several definite cases of conversion and that some backsliders had been restored. (A. McN.)


Stan Ford had a fruitful mission in Abingdon Hall, Partick. Nightly for four weeks the hall was well filled, whilst at the Saturday-evening rallies and Lord’s-day-evening meetings it was scarcely possible to seat all who came. Altogether about 20 people professed conversion. Near the end of the mission, at a most memorable meeting, large crowds sought admission to hear the remarkable story of the evangelist’s conversion and to witness the baptism of several believers. (A. McN.)


A Lammas Fair is held every August in the seaside resort of Ballycastle, which is situated on the picturesque Antrim coast, and for the last 30 years the local assembly has held open-air meetings on Fair Days. This year, despite the babel of noises from stallholders, costermongers and table-gamblers, the local brethren - assisted by many evangelists -were able to witness to the saving power of the gospel in the midst of Vanity Fair. There were about 30,000 visitors to the Fair, many of them Roman Catholics. The open-air meeting lasted for three hours and brief messages were given by C. D. Fleming, A. Paisley, T. Wallace, W. Elder (U.S.A.), R. Love, T. Blue, R. Craig, R. Hull, T. McKelvey and W. J. Fenton. (J.F.)


During the summer months many tent campaigns were held in Ulster. Harold Paisley and Tom Wallace held special tent meetings in the city of Londonderry, and in the small village of Sion Mills (Co. Tyrone) near the Donegal border. The campaign at Londonderry, which lasted for seven weeks, was attended by much blessing. The two speakers visited hundreds of homes, and numbers of people professed to be saved. Although there is only a small assembly (20) at Sion Mills, and although the population is predominantly R.C., the Christians are very active. The evangelists continued preaching for six weeks and, despite the general apathy of the villagers, one young man was saved. (J. F.)


Harry Bedford conducted tent meetings on the outskirts of a new housing estate. Although the effort was well supported by the assembly in Redditch it proved hard going; but a number professed faith in Christ, chiefly among the young. At present, buses bring about 100 children from the estate to the assembly Sunday School, but a site for a new hall is earmarked on the estate and it is hoped to begin building in the near future.


Quite a number of people have been saved and brought into fellowship as a result of the Sunday-evening open-air testimony of the Youth Fellowship in Nottingham. The meetings are held in the Market Square after the time of the indoor services, and the two accordians used are a great attraction to the 200 or 300 people who gather around. (J. S. K.)


More than a year ago we published a report about the Missionary Home which had been opened at Aspley Guise. Two Coventry readers were very interested in the report and a month or two ago they had an opportunity to visit the Home. They tell us that there are now 35 people in fellowship in the assembly meeting in the hall which was once a stable building. Eighteen elderly folks are accommodated in the Missionary Home, but there is quite a long waiting list, and alterations are being carried out to provide more room and meet the need as far as possible. F. Wright and his wife will be pleased to show visitors over the property and tell them the story of this “work of faith” and “labour of love.”


Encouraging evangelistic tent meetings were held at Mosterton by W. Wynne (Swindon) assisted by C. Gahan (Ilminster). The campaign was planned and arranged by a number of young believers who meet weekly for the study of the Scriptures, and who are commonly known in their locality as the Chiselborough Bible Class. Both evangelists gave a faithful presentation of the gospel, and the Lord’s power was felt in the meetings. Many unsaved ones from the village and from the surrounding countryside came to listen. The little tent was filled on most nights and packed to overflowing on one or two occasions. It was encouraging to see the believers from assemblies around show their fellowship and keen interest by being present at the meetings. No definite cases of conversion are known, but it was felt that the Lord had spoken to some and had convicted them by His Holy Spirit. (D. L.)


During June and July, Edgar Jackman (Cornwall) held open-air meetings for children on the large housing estate at Whitleigh. The results were so encouraging that, in fellowship with N. W. R. Scoble (Plymouth), our brother has arranged to hire the Whitleigh Primary School for Monday-evening services during the winter.


The Gerston Hall assembly at Paignton is known to many who visit this Devonshire seaside resort. Some of those visitors will also know the Mission Hall at Great Parks, which has been the responsibility of the Gerston Hall assembly for many years. We are pleased to hear that an assembly has now been formed at Great Parks, in full fellowship with the parent meeting, and that meetings for the breaking of bread commenced there in September.


C. H. Darch and D. Frost held a tent campaign in the heart of Wellington, on a green near a mew housing estate. Numbers increased during the 18 days until they were more than doubled. A visitor who saw the tent almost full twice in one evening, said “I wish the brethren who say that the days for tent work are ended were here to find it is not true.” One of the chief features of the work was that, of those who professed, not one said anything about it until some time after having found peace. In the third week two people said they were saved On the first night of the mission, and two more on the second night; thus God blesses His own Word. Meetings were also held in the Old People’s Home, and those in the evening of life heard the gospel clearly told out. A helper in this work was L. Thompson, who hopes soon to go to France with the gospel. The local assembly supported the mission very loyalty in every way, and it was their sowing that made such results possible.


L. H. Tranter was cheered by interest in meetings at Trethomas during the early part of September. T. W. Hickley moved his tent from Gabalfa to another new housing estate at Caerau, Cardiff, and later to Pengam, Cardiff. In each district the work has been difficult, but not without encouragements. One man at Pengam professed to be saved the first time he attended the meetings. It gives cause for praise to know that some have confessed faith in Christ during the season. John Dan Jones had a tent at the new housing estate at Fairwater, Cardiff, with good attendances of children and adults. The Thursday United Open-Air Meeting in Cathays Park, Cardiff, has been held right through the summer, and many in the bus queues have heard the gospel and received tracts. The tent meetings held at Aberavon by W. A. Norris and W. Trew continued into the fourteenth week. The Lord’s gracious hand was seen in a number of the young people speaking of being saved, and a few among the adults. A few believers have expressed a desire for baptism.

The assembly at Fforestfach, Swansea, has been encouraged in the open-air testimony this summer, and a series of Saturday-evening ministry meetings is now being contemplated for the winter months. Keen interest is being shown by the believers in the study of the Tabernacle in the assembly Bible Reading on Thursday evenings, as many as 50 people attending. (H. T.)


The annual Summer Camp is taking its place in some assemblies with the Sunday School Outing, as a regular feature of the work among the young people. Many such camps have been held this year, and we have received reports of three of them. The Birmingham and District assemblies’ camp was at Poole; the boys and girls from Exeter went to North Devon; girls from Bristol and Tavistock (Devon) joined forces at Burnham-on-Sea. We have had thrilling accounts of adventures, such as the escape through flood-water at Burnham, but what interests us most is that at each camp there were those who confessed the Saviour; at Poole, 30 boys and girls between 11 and 16 years of age made public confession of their faith. A camp for boys was held as far north as Fort Augustus, in Scotland, and ten boys professed to be saved. Our correspondent says that, since the camp, some of the older boys have been attending the Sunday-evening gospel meetings.


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