Langholm Old Church Parish Magazine
LANGHOLM OLD PARISH CHURCHFounded 1703, present Church built 1846
N0. 15. NOVEMBER, 1961.
Minister: Revd. TOM CALVERT, The Old Manse, Langholm. Tel. 256.
Session Clerk: Mr. JOHN TYMAN, National Bank Buildings
Treasurer: Mr. R. A. BLACK, 35 Eskdaill Street.
Organist: Mr. A. C. MALLINSON, A.R.C.O., L.R.A.M., 72 Henry Street.
Motto Text for November—"They shall not grow old as we who are left grow old, Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn. At the going- down of the sun and in the morning WE SHALL REMEMBER THEM."
Letter from the Minister
November is the month when we hold our Annual Remembrance Day Service, and when we remember before God with thanksgiving the men and women who in the First and Second World Wars went forth and returned no more. Our Morning Service on Sunday, 12th November will commence at 10.45 a.m. to enable us to be gathered in the Church to observe the Two Minutes Silence at ll a.m. with people all over this country. There will be a British Legion Remembrance Day Service in our Church at 3 p.m. on the same day, when members of the British Legion, members of the Red Cross, and the uniformed organisations are invited to attend. I will be conducting the Service this year, and the address will be given by the Revd. Hugh Drummond, minister of Eskdalemuir. The Lessons will be read by Revd. Dr. Dinwoodie and Revd. J. J. Glover. We hope that there will as last year be a good attendance.
Revd. Hugh Drummond of Eskdalemuir has been Chaplain to the British Legion in Langholm and District for some years, and as he is very shortly to be transferred to a parish in Ross-shire, I would like here to say how much we have appreciated his co-operation and friendship in the affairs of the British Legion in Langholm, and wish him and his wife and family every happiness and success in their move to Ross-shire.
A few years ago I was invited to conduct the Annual Remembrance Day Service in the Guards Chapel in Wellington Barracks, London. Many members of the Scots Guards Old Comrades Association were present, and I well remember how as I recited the words of our Motto Text, They shall not grow old as we who are left grow old; Age shall not weary them nor the years condemn, at the going down of the sun and in the morning we shall remember them-the whole congregation of soldiers repeated in unison and with evident emotion, "we shall remember them". They spoke the words with feeling and reverence as they were actually thinking of old comrades who had fallen in the battle. And many of us feel like that on Remembrance Sunday when we observe the two minutes silence, we think of someone perhaps of our own family, or someone whose friendship we once shared. But it has to be remembered that it is sixteen years since the last war ended, and a new generation has grown up since then who cannot feel the same as older people do, as they have no vivid memories of persons whom they knew who fell in the war. But while it is impossible for many who gather in Church on Remembrance Sunday to recall actual persons who laid down their lives, it is possible and important to remember the kind of people they were, and the qualities of their character. And I would sum up qualities that I have found to be characteristic of the average British sailor, soldier or airman in time of war to be as follows:-
First I would say they were men and women of good faith. I am not thinking so much about their religious faith though the majority were devoted followers of Jesus Christ, but about their faith in the cause of freedom. They believed that they were fighting to destroy an evil thing. Secondly they were splendid examples of courage. I could record many instances of wonderful acts of daring and brave endurance in the war days. Thirdly they were possessed with a grand sense of humour and gift of friendship. They were able to laugh at misfortunes and sing a cheerful song when death and destruction was all around them. And of course the men and women we remember on 12th November are those who made the supreme sac- rifice. Many of them might have saved their lives but in doing so would have left others to die. And as Jesus said, "Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends." It was said of Jesus on the Cross that "He saved others, Himself He could not save", and that was true of most of the men and women we remember in the two minutes silence. Here is one example. At Glenalmond School, in Perthshire, there is a memorial to Alexander Cumine Russell. Soon after he left Glenalmond School, he became an officer in the Highland Light Infantry. His regiment was on the Birkenhead when she sank. The women were ordered to the boats. When one of these boats was filled, the captain placed Russell in charge of it with orders to allow nobody else to enter it. Just as the boat was pulling away from the doomed ship, however, a man who had been struggling in the water grasped an oar and pulled himself into a position in which everybody could see his face. A scream rent the air. Save him-he's my husband, a woman in the boat cried. Without a moment's hesitation Alexander Russell leapt overboard; helped the man into the boat, and then disappeared and was seen no more. Suppose that that soldier who was saved at the cost of Alexander Russell giving his life returned to this country to live a useless life, then what a waste it was of a good life. That is the kind of thought that should come into all our minds as we stand on 12th November for the two minutes silence, are we who have been bought with a great price making certain by the way we are living today that those who fell in the two great wars have not died in vain. That Sunday we will all stand up and sing, I hope right from our hearts,
"Land of our Birth, our faith, our pride,
For whose dear sake our fathers died;
O Motherland, we pledge to thee,
Head, heart, and hand through the years to be."
Congregational Meeting and Model Constitution
A meeting of the congregation of the Old Parish Church will be held in the Church on Sunday, 12th November at the close of the Morning Service to consider and if so resolve to adopt for our congregation the Model Constitution, as has been recommended by the Presbytery of Hawick. You will remember that in a previous Parish Magazine letter I pointed out that in the Quoad Omnia Parishes in Scotland before the Union of the Churches in 1929 the material affairs of the Church was a responsibility of the heritors. When the heritors were relieved of this, the local congregation required to undertake full responsibility tor maintenance of buildings and finance, and this fell to the Kirk Sessions to administer. As the Kirk Sessions primary duty is the spiritual oversight of the congregation and parish, the General Assembly produced what is called the Model Constitution, which involves setting up in parishes a Congregational Board. This Board consists of a number of men and women who are elected at the Annual Congregational Meeting held in January, who serve along with the Elders in administering the material affairs of the congregation and parish. It was the opinion of the Superintendence Committee of Hawick Presbytery when we were visited in April, that with a congregation close on SOO members, it would be for the strengthening of the Church both in attendance at Sunday worship and in support of its financial needs if more people were brought into responsibility of administration of the Church affairs. The Kirk Session has given its approval to the Presbytery recommendation, and the law of the Church new requires that at a meeting of the congregation duly called, the congregation should be asked to approve, and at a second meeting held two Sundays later asked to ratify the Presbytery's recommendation. I will explain the significance and functioning of a Congregational Board more fully at the Meeting of the Congregation, and appeal to all who have the interests of the Old Parish Church at heart to make a point of being present on Sunday, 12th November at the Morning Service.
Junior Youth Club
The Junior Youth Club for young folk ages 9 to 13 years has started off with a good response. One of the problems we are facing is finding a night in the hall vacant. Meantime the Women's Guild is kindly co-operating to make it possible for meetings on Tuesday evenings before the Guild meets, and the whole evening when there is no Guild meeting. We are fortunate in getting Mrs. and Miss Farmer as tutors for country dancing, with Mrs. Elliot at the piano. We are hoping to get someone to undertake responsibility for the Junior Choir, which I am sure will be for the strengthening of our Church. Brenda Morrison, Lila McVittie and Helen Telfer have plans for a pantomime.
Congratulations to Jackie Nixon
We are all very pleased to hear that Jackie Nixon has been accepted by the Church of Scotland Youth Committee for training as a Youth Leader at Murray House in Edinburgh. Jackie will be leaving us in the course of another week to commence his training. I might say that the Youth Committee have Jackie lined up for a special appointment as a Youth Leader for a Church group in Edinburgh. It is to be the first appointment of its kind in the Church of Scotland seeking to cope with the problem of the religious approach to youth who are completely outside of any kind of Church influence. When Jackie was interviewed for this appointment he made a very good impression upon the Youth Committee and they are well satisfied that he is the man they were looking for. We will miss him a lot in the work of the Old Parish Church where he is a valued Sunday School teacher, secretary of the Youth Club and the Youth Fellowship, and where he has been a very fine influence among the young folk of Langholm. We will all follow his progress with keenest interest, and with our prayers that God will bless him and give him all needful strength and understanding for this his calling.
Special Services in November
On Sunday, 26th November we will observe St. Andrew's Day Services. The Evening Service that day, and as last year, will be conducted by members of the Youth Fellowship, three young people giving short addresses of the Call of Christ to young men and women today, and when lessons will be read, offering taken up, and the bell tolled by members of the Youth Fellowship.
Sympathy in Bereavement
We express our sympathy with William Goodfellow in the passing of his wife Mrs. Elizabeth Graham Goodfellow, after many months of failing health. She was cared for with great devotion in the Hope Hospital during the last two months, and was remembered daily by her many friends in Langholm.
Just as I am about to send this letter to the printers I hear of the sudden and sad bereavement that has come to Mr. Robert Johnstone, Kernigal, Walter Street in the passing of his wife Elizabeth Mary, at the age of 55. They were both with us at Communion on Sunday, and she was in good spirit and seemed in good health up to the night before her passing from us. We feel very sad in this unexpected bereavement as we had come to knew and like Mrs. Johnstone very much both as a member of our Church and as a woman anxious to play her due part in the community life of Langholm. We express our deep and very sincere sympathy with Mr. Robert Johnstone.
I would like to say how much we pray and hope for the good recovery of John Reid of Caroline Street. He has for years given of his best to our Church in the care of the grounds and heating, and this work is being maintained now by his son. We are pleased to have Mrs. Reid as our new Church cleaner, and I would like to say how much we appreciated our former cleaner, Mrs. Davidson, and wish her and her husband happiness in the good work they have undertaken as Church Officer and caretaker of the St. Andrew's Greenknowe Church at Annan.
We are very interested to have news of the happy event of the marriage of Cynthia Violet MacMillan, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. A. D. MacMillan, Holmhead, in Cyprus, to Mr. J. F. Edwards of Slough. We express our warmest good wishes for their happiness.
With kind greetings to all our people.
TOM CALVERT, Minister.
Kirk Session Report
At the celebration of the Sacrament of the Lord's Supper on Sunday, 29th October 526 members and friends received Communion. At the Morning Service the following were received into full membership of our Church.
By certificate or restoration.
Mr. and Mrs. William Vevers, 20 Holmwood Dr., Mr. and Mrs. George Ellwood, 13 Holmwood Dr., Mr_ John Davidson Ellwood, 4 Kirk Wynd, Mr. and Mrs. James lrving, 25 Charlotte Street, Mr. and Mrs. James Liggins, 32 Waverley Rd., Mrs. J. A. Lovell, 29 Rosevale Street, Mr. and Mrs. David Elliot, Glenelg, Walter Street, Miss Pamela Halliday, 20 Braehead, Miss Sheila Bell, 5 David Street, Miss Kathleen Goodfellow, 8 Buccleuch Terrace, Mrs. Catherine Irving Norden, Holmwood Dr., Mr. Robert K. Graham, 35 Caroline Street, Mr. R. Harvey, Priors Lyn Cottage, Canonbie, Mr. and Mrs. John Mitchell, Cronks Bank, Mr. and Mrs. David Dalgliesh, 4 Walter Street, Mrs. Isabella I. Little, 37 Eskdaill Street.
By Profession of Faith
Mr. and Mrs. James Copeland, High Mill, Kenneth Ellwood, l3 Holmwood Dr., Brian Ellwood, 13 Holmwood Dr., George Ellwood, 13 Holmwood Dd., John Ritchie, 2 Holmwood Gardens, Ramsay Johnstone, 8 Holmwood Crescent, Mary Elliot, 13 Buccleuch Terrace, Kathleen Macartney, 27 Eskdaill Street, Isabel Little, 28 Eskdaill Street, David Hogg, 34 William Street, James Vevers, 20 Holmwood Dr., Jessie Bowman, 20 Holmwood Dr., Denis Raymond Male, 10 George Street, Allan Burgess, 26 Eskdale Pl., Walter James Grieve Hislop, Petterburn.
Women's Guild Report
A special Dedication Service for the Woman's Guild was held in the Old Parish Church on Sunday evening, 8th October, when Mr. Calvert gave an inspiring address, taken from the text "And whosoever shall compel thee to go a mile, go with him twain". The lessons were read by Miss Glendinning and Mrs. Neill.
On the following Tuesday there was a good attendance at the Annual Business meeting: Mr. Calvert was in the chair. The Treasurer read a satisfactory financial report, and the new office bearers for the ensuing session are now as follows: President, Mrs. Calvert; Vice-President, Mrs. Neill, Secretary, Miss Glendinning; Treasurer, Mrs. J. Goodfellow. Committee: Mrs. Anderson, Mrs. Black, Mrs. E. Calvert, Mrs. Dalziell, Mrs. Donaldson, Mrs. Douglas, Mrs. Ewart, Mrs. Hogg, Mrs. W.Morrison, Mrs. McVittie, Mrs. Little, Miss Plenderleith and Mrs. W. Morrison. A report of the Mass Guild Meeting in the Usher Hall at Assembly time, was also read. After tea, "A Matter of Opinion" panel dealt with some interesting questions.
A concert given in the Parish Church on 16th October by the Gretna and District Choral Society was a great success, although there were some anxious moments when the lights failed. The visitors were received and guided up through the Church by candlelight, but just before the performance was due to commence, the lights came on again, much to the relief of the organisers! Everyone felt that it was an uplifting experience to listen to the wonderful singing and the beautiful settings. The concert party were later entertained to supper in the Church Hall.
At the time of going to press, arrangements are being made for an Auction Sale at the Church Hall on Saturday, November 4th, when it is hoped to raise a good sum towards the Hall Improvements Fund.
On November 14th, the Rev. A. Lamont, recently inducted to the Newcastleton Parish Church will speak at the Guild meeting. At this meeting there will be visitors from Ewes and Westerkirk Guilds. The South of Scotland Electricity Board will give "An Evening with Electricity" at the meeting on Tuesday, 28th November.
An invitation has been received from the Erskine Guild to attend their meeting on February 13th, 1962. The visit from Erskine to Langholm Old Parish Guild will now take place on February 27th - not the 20th as originally arranged. Members are asked to make a note of these dates on their syllabus.
l2th—10.45 a.m. Remembrance Day Service. 3 p.m. British Legion Remembrance Service. 6 p.m. Evening Service, Revd. Tom Calvert. Flowers, Mrs. C. Constable, Eskholm. Elders, Morning, J. W. Wood, C. Constable, R. Douglas, D. Hendrie, R. N. B. Noble, J. Pattie. Afternoon, A. Smith, W. Smith, H. Hosie, R. Black, R. K. Neill and D. Anderson. Evening, H. Hosie and D. Anderson and Youth Fellowship.
l9th—11 a.m. and 6 p.m. Revd. James Keillor, Mouswald and Torthorwald. Flowers, Mrs. A, McMillan, 40 Henry Street. Elders, Morning, R. K. Neill, W. Smith, J. Tyman, M. Armstrong, M. Douglas, J. Maclntosh, Evening, A. Smith and R. Black, with Youth Fellowship.
26th—11a.m. and 6 p.m. Revd. Tom Calvert. Evening Service conducted by members of Youth Fellowship. Flowers, Mrs. R. A. Black, 35 Eskdaill Street. Elders, Morning, H. Hosie, R. T. Robertson, J. Pattie, J. Maxwell, L. Ewart and C. Constable. Evening, Youth Fellowship with M. Armstrong and R. K. Neill on vestry duty.
5th—11 a.m. and 6 p.m. Revd. Tom Calvert. Flowers, Miss Dalgliesh, I3 David Street. Elders, Morning, W. Smith, D. Hendrie, C. Constable, M. Douglas, L. Ewart and J. W. Wood. Evening, J. Maxwell, A. Smith and Youth Fellowship.
8th—Brian Donaldson, son of Mr. and Mrs. R. Donaldson, Holmwood Dr. Marriages October 28th-Ernest Bowman, Holy House, Gatesgill, to Jessie Martin Vevers, 20 Holmwood Dr.
3rd—Archibald Irving, 52 Caroline Street, to Catherine Baird Taylor Ritchie, 2 Holmwood Gardens.
Mrs. Elizabeth Graham Goodfellow, age 76. Funeral at 18 High Street on 20th October.
Miss Janet Irving, age 87 of Kirkpatrick-Fleming. Funeral at Langholm on 28th October.
Suddenly.—Mrs. Elizabeth Mary Johnstone, Kernigal, Walter Street, age 55. Funeral at Langholm on 4th November.
The Kirk Session will meet in the vestry on Thursday, 9th November at 7.30 p.m. There will be a Meeting of the Congregation at the close of the Morning Service on Sunday, 12th November.