Langholm Old Church Parish Magazine

N0.82                       Price 1/2 - with LIFE AND HOME - 6d LOCAL MAGAZINE ONLY                       FEBRUARY 1968.

Minister: Revd. Tom Calvert, The Old Manse, Langholm. Tel. 256.

Session Clerk: Alexander Hutton, Savings Bank, Market Place, Langholm

Clerk to Board: Mr. E. C. Armstrong, Town Hall, Langholm , Tel. 255

Treasurer: Mr. Donald Lamont, Rosevale Street.

Organist: Mr. A. C. Mallinson, A.R.C.O., L.R.A.M., 72 Henry Street.

Church Officer: Mr. W Elliot, 3 Buccleuch Terrace.

Hall Caretaker: Mr Donaldson, 7 West Street.

Text for February, ‘Now you are Christ’s body, and each of you a limb or organ of it”. l Corinthians 12. 27. NEB.

Every year at the end of January, the Church commemorates the Conversion of St. Paul, and I thought that it might be useful in this February parish magazine to say something about what the Church owes to him, about our debt to St. Paul. It can be safely asserted that no event has ever occurred in the whole of human history since the time of Christ, of greater significance and importance than the conversion of St. Paul. It was an event so incredible that the Christians of that day refused to believe it was true, until Barnabas, one of their number, came forward and vouched for its credibility and commended Paul to them. It was the story of the leading antagonist and persecutor of the Christians suddenly becoming disciple and follower of the Lord Jesus. And it gives us reason to believe that if a man like Paul who with fanatical zeal was seeking to destroy the cause of Christ could be converted, then there is hope for everybody.

First we owe to St. Paul that Christianity was saved from being just another Jewish sect to becoming a major world religion.

There was a very real danger at that time of Christianity becoming just a kind of Jewish sect. There were many in the early Church who objected to Paul preaching the Gospel to Gentiles, who insisted that if he did and won converts, those Gentile converts must submit to Jewish rites such as circumcision. Even Peter expounded these ideas, and Paul tells us that he had to withstand him to the face. Paul was the first to insist that “in Jesus Christ neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision; but a new creature”. He also insisted that “there is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female, for all are one in Christ Jesus”. Paul took the words of our Lord‘s Prayer literally, “Thy Kingdom come, Thy will ‘be done in earth as it is in heaven”. He believed and preached that the time was coming when Jesus Christ would rule the nations. He spoke of a day coming when God “shall have put down all rule and all authority and power”. And goes on to say Christ must reign “till He hath put all enemies under His feet”. And in the Epistle to the Philippians he tells us that God hath highly exaulted Jesus, “and given Him a name which is above every name. That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow... and every tongue confess that He is Lord. to the glory of God the Father”. It was Paul who gave the Early Church the vision of the coming of the Kingdom of God upon earth, which for centuries now, Christian people have been praying and labouring to realise. It was Paul who made it possible for Isaac Watts to sing,

“Jesus shall reign Where’er the sun Does his successive journeys run; His Kingdom stretch from shore to shore, Till moons shall wax and wane no more.”

And think what we owe to St. Paul for those wonderful Epistles which form about two thirds of the New Testament writings.

Paul’s letters are far from easy reading but all the time they are grappling with the meaning of Christ's life upon earth, his death and resurrection. He makes it clear that salvation in Christ is not due to anything we can do but in what Christ has already done for us.

Take the Epistle to the Romans.

I can mention three of the great stalwarts and leaders of Christian history who were enabled to see the light of salvation through the reading of Paul’s Epistle to the Romans. First in 383 Augustine living a dissolute life in Milan, but longing for deliverance from his lusts, one day was sitting in the garden of his villa. He seemed to hear a voice saying to him, “Take up the Book and read”. He opened his Bible at Romans 13 and read, “Not in rioting and drunkenness, not in chambering and wantonness, not in strife and envying; but put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh to fulfill the lusts thereof." These words went home and led to his conversion, and gave to the Church the saintly Augustine, Bishop of Hippo, whose writings were to guide men’s thoughts through the dark ages when the Roman empire was breaking up. Again in the early sixteenth century, when the Church had become corrupt to the extent that she was selling her pardons to every passing bidder in order to fill the coffers of Rome, Martin Luther goes on a pilgrimage to Rome. Here he seeks to do penance such as might deliver his grandfather from purgatory. This consisted of ascending on hands and knees the Sacred Staircase, said to have been the steps leading up to Pilate’s house in Jerusalem, and carried by angels to Rome. He mounted the stair reciting the Lord’s Prayer at each step. But on arriving at the top, he said to himself, “Who knows if this is true?” And suddenly he hears as a voice speaking to him words from Romans 1. 17., “The just shall live by faith”, and realised that Salvation was not in what man can do but in what Christ has already done for man. This led to the beginning of the Protestant Reformation in Europe and the purifying of the life of the Christian Church in the Western world. And coming to the beginning of the eighteenth century we find the religious life of England at a very low state.

At this time We find Bishop Butler of Bristol refusing the offer? of the Archbishopric of Canterbury, saying, “it was too late for him to support a failing Church”. Yet it was at this time that John Wesley a Church of England minister, had a soul stirring experience. It was one historic evening in Aldersgate Street, London, where “one was, reading Luther’s preface, to the Epistle to the Romans", that Wesley wrote, “about quarter before nine, while he was describing the change which God works in“ the heart through faith in Christ, It felt my heart strangely warmed. 'I felt I did trust in Christ, Christ alone, for salvation; and an assurance was given rne that he had taken away my sins". And it was from this experience at a Moravian meeting and study of Paul’s letter to the Romans that Wesley goes out to set England on fire for God; and begin "the evangelical revival which historians have claimed did more than anything else to save England from the bloody revolution that was working such destruction in France. And the Methodist revival led by Wesley had much to do with the beginning of social reform in the land, and a new attitude to oppressed masses; So We may truly say we owe to St. Paul the conversion of St. Augustine, Martin Luther and John Wesley.

Again we owe to St. Paul that wonderful chapter of 1 Corinthians 13, about what alone matters in religion, love.

Paul claims that it doesn’t matter what we profess or do in the cause of Christ if We have not love. In it he says, “I may have faith strong enough to remove mountains; but if I have no love, I am nothing. I may dole out all I possess, or even give my body to be burnt, but if I have no love, I am none the better. Love is patient; love is kind and envies no one. Love is; never boastful, nor conceited, nor rude; never selfish, not quick to take offence. Love keeps no score of Wrongs; does not gloat over other men’s sins, but delights in the truth . . . . . There are three things that last "forever: faith, hope and love; but the greatest of them all is love”. How much poorer the Bible would have been without this chapter which tells us that love is the only thing that matters in religion and life. Here in this chapter Paul is putting his finger upon the one thing that makes life wholesome and that can ever hope to solve the vast and varied problems of a divided world. love. Bertrand Russell, on his eightieth birthday, after half a century of atheism, was asked what he thought the most important asset a man could have in this life. And here I quote his actual words: “The root of the matter”, he declared, “is as very simple and old fashioned thing, a thing so simple that I am almost ashamed to mention it, for fear of the derisive smile with which wise cynics will greet my words. The thing I mean, please forgive me for mentioning it is love, Christian love. If you feel this you have a motive for existence, a guide in action, a reason for courage, an imperative, necessity for intellectual honesty . .. and although you may not find happiness you will never know the despair of those Whose life is aimless and void of purpose”.

And again we are in debt to St. Paul for that great 15th chapter of first Corinthians on the Resurrection.

Belief in the after life is universal and instinctive, and the only reasonable belief a man can hold who believes in a God of justice and love. As Tennyson puts it, “Thou Wilt not leave us in the dust; Thou madest man, he knows not Why. He thinks he was not made to die, and Thou hast made him. Thou art just”. But St. Paul is the only New Testament writer who has anything definite to say about the nature of the body in the aftlerlife, about the ressurrection of the body. In the Apostles Creed we recite “I believe in the Resurrection of the body; and the life everlasting”, but what do we mean“? St. Paul alone seeks to clarify this belief. In this wonderful 15th Chapter which for generations has been read in part at burial Services, St. Paul tells us that the Resurrection body will be a transformed body. There has long been a superstitious belief that in the resurrection of the body we mean the physical body, but cremation or decay of the physical body makes this belief untenable. For example, on 2lst . May, 1650 the Marquis of Montrose was publically executed for treason at the Mercat Cross of Edinburgh. His body was then dismembered the trunk buried beside the public gallows on the Boroughmuir; the head was fixed on a spike on the Tolbooth; the arms and legs were sent to be displayed at Stirling, Glasgow, Perth and Aberdeen. At the Restoration the ‘Scottish Parliament resolved that his scattered members be gathered together and “Interred with all honour imaginable". This was done in 1661 and the head, the trunk, and one arm were buried in St. Giles Cathedral. In 1930 Dr. Charles Warr, then minister of St. Giles’, was offered an arm, purporting to be that of the Duke of Montrose, preserved by a devout Jacobite family. Because its authenticity could not be absolutely established, the arm was not buried in St. Giles but preserved at the family seat of the Duke of Montrose at Drymen. Now the literal belief in the “resurrection of the body” demands that on the Resurrection Day,“this arm will have to come from Drymen, and be joined by the missing legs, wherever they may be, and reunited with the rest in St. Giles’.

But in this chapter Paul states emphatically that “flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God”. Paul uses the analogy of a seed being sown. The seed is put into the ground and dies, but in due time rises again with a different body from that Which was sown. And so in the Resurrection of the dead It is sown a natural body; it is raised a spiritual body. There is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body.

That our Lord’s resurrection body was different from the physical body is clearly maintained in the Gospels. On the morning of the third day Mary did not recognise her Risen Lord to begin with, and thought he was the gardener. It was not until He spoke the word, “Mary” that she knew Him. So with the two disciples on the road to Emmaus, they conversed with him as a fellow traveller, and it was not until they sat at supper and observed how He broke the bread, that they recognised Him. And so in the life beyond we will be different, clothed with a spiritual body, but knowing each other as Jesus was known after His Resurrection. As Alfred Tennyson writing about his departed friend Arthur Hallam, says, “The eternal form will still divide, the eternal soul from all beside, and I shall know him when we meet”.

And finally we owe to St. Paul the conception of the Church as the body of Christ, of which we are all limbs or members.

In chapter 13 of 1 Corinthians Paul says, “Now you are Christ's body, and each of you a limb or an organ of it”. Now that Christ had departed from His earthly and physical body, it is laid upon us His followers to serve they purpose of hands and feet and voice ‘or the carrying on of His work in the world. One of the early saints expressed this conception of the Church in these words, “Christ has no body now on earth but your body, no hands but yours no feets but yours; Yours are the eyes through which is to look out Christ’s compassion upon the world' Yours are the feet with which He is to go about doing good, Yours are the hands by which he is to bless us now.

Everyone of us, therefore, who have been drawn into the great fellowship of the Body of Christ, must do some part, for “ye are the body of Christ, and severally members thereof”. Christ can only express Himself now through His followers Whom He has in the world. Through them, the blind may receive their sight, the lame may be made to walk and devils may be cast out. A legend tells that after Christ had returned to heaven after His work in the World was done, an angel of God asked Him, "Have you finished?” “It is finished,” Christ replied. “But What plans have you made for your Work in the world to be continued?” the angel asked. “I have my disciples,” said Jesus. “But what if they fail you?” asked the angel. To which our Lord replied, “I have no other plan”. If we fail Him, He has no other plan, He is depending upon us. “You are Christ’s body, and each one of you a limb or an organ of it”.


Dear Fellow-Member,

I was glad of the opportunity of a short holiday last weekend, when my place in the Old Parish pulpit was taken by Dr. Robert Marshall from Newcastleton. I have heard from many how much Dr. Marshall’s visit was enjoyed and appreciated. Before coming to Newcastleton, Dr. Marshall was in West Africa as a medical missionary, and our Guild remembers a happy evening a year ago "when he talked about his work in West Africa, illustrating his talk with coloured slides. During last weekend my wife and I motored down to Cambridge and spent two days with my daughter Rosemary recently married to David Anderson, and now living in Cambridge. “We were able to have our son Robert out for Sunday, as Bishop’s Stortford College is within easy reach of Cambridge.

Storm Damage

The recent storm which wrecked so many homes in Glasgow has left us with considerable damage at the Old Parish Church. The wall between the church and Buccleuch. Park was collapsed by the storm to the extent of some twenty feet, and much of the remaining wall will have to be rebuilt. At a meeting of the Board on Thursday evening, Mr. Coulson, our Fabric convener, gave a report and estimate for rebuilding, and we are faced with an expenditure of over £300 for this work alone. The boiler house was flooded in an earlier of the winter costing about £50 for replacement of electrical equipment damaged by flooding. As this is the second time this has happened since the installatio of the oil burning electrically controlled boiler, we require to take some action to prevent a recurrance of this kind of damage. This will involve a better form of drainage from the present seep drainage system, and an automatic water pumping installation. This is to cost another £550. In addition to the church fabric the roof of the Manse coal house is falling in and will have to be re-roofed in the near future. To meet the cost of work that will have to be carried through early in this year, the Board has resolved to organise a Garden Fete in June, and a Committee has been appointed to make all necessary arrangements.

Greenbank Eventide Home

At a recent meeting of members of the Greenback Promotion Committee and the Convener and Director of Church of Scotland Committee on .Social Service, it was stated that the Home would be officially opened, prividing there is no unexpected hold-up in the work, on Wednesday, 24th April. We expect the home to be at least partly occupied before that date, and there are applications from local people to more than fill the accommodation available, The Home looks very attractive and will provide comfort and delight for many of our elderly people in the years to come. And for this Langholm and District will treasure the memory of the late Miss Lilian McGeorge.

Visit of Hamish Buchanan

I was delighted and tremendously interested to recently receive a letter from Hamish Buchanan, grandson of the late and revered Rev. James Buchanan. The late Rev. James Buchanan was minister of Langholm Old Parish for well over 40 years, and one of the first improvements to the parish he undertook was the building of our present Old Parish Hall, better known. as the Mission Hall. Later it was through Mr. Buchanan’s effort that the church organ was installed. .Hamish lives in Sydney, Australia, and is at present in this country. His occupation is that of a public relations officer. His father, Hamish Buchanan, would be well known to many in Langholm, having been born and brought up in the Old Manse. It was a last wish before he passed away, I think about two years ago, that. his son Hamish would one day play with the Langholm Rugby Football Club, and the Committee are making arrangements for this wish to be fulfilled in early March, before Hamish returns to Australia. He is a leading player in the Manley Rugby Club in Sydney, a young man of 31, six foot in height, and plays left prop. I have invited Hamish on the occasion of his visit to Langholm to share in a Church Service and give the address in the pulpit his grandfather occupied for almost half a century. He writes that he will be honoured to do this. I have not yet been able to fix the date but will make it well known through the public press.

Special Serviees in February

On Sunday, 18th February the Evening Service will be a United Service of Erskine, Congregational and Old Parish in the Old Parish. This Service will be led by the Langholm Town Band, when members of the Band will read the Lessons, sing a solo and play some well known tunes. The prayers will be led by Dr. Dinwoodie, and a short address will be given by Rev. Dr. Escott.

On Sunday, 25 February, we invite the Guides and Brownies to the Evening Service to observe Thinking Day.

Sympathy with the Bereaved

On 7th January, Robert McDonald Meek, High Mill, Langholm, passed away after some months of growing weakness. Robert Meek came to live in Langholm last year after retiring as Headmaster of Craigentinny School, Edinburgh. He was held in very high esteem by his staff and scholars. Before joining the Langholm Old Parish he was a member of Dean Parish Church, Edinburgh, where he served for some years as an Elder and as Sunday School Superintendent. He was a man of rare qualities of mind and heart. He met his illness with a wonderful faith and peace and courage. Our deepest sympathy with Beattie, this bereaved wife, and other relatives.

On 12th Ianuary, Thomas Little, 37 Holmwood Drive, passed suddenly away. He had been in failing health for the past two years. He was a very fine character and highly respected. The Langholm Fire Brigade of which he had been a member, attended the funeral in uniform as an opportunity of paying their highest respect to his memory. Our deepest sympathy with his wife Jane, his son, and two daughters.

On 17th January, James N. Corrie, 12 Charlotte Street, Langholm, passed away after a wonderful life of 89 years. A man of splendid character and highly esteemed by all who knew him. He enjoyed much comfort and devoted care in the home of his daughter Mrs. Isabella Calvert. Our sympathy in bereavement with his daughter and her family.

On 20th January, George Jeffrey, 6 Henry Street, Langholm, passed away suddenly at the wonderful age of 95. He was a very much loved man for his wide community interests in Langholm Common Riding, wrestling, a Burns enthusiats, and with a long life of happy memories as an engine driver with North British Railways. After our Communion Sundays I enjoyed. visiting him with William Smith, his Elder, and celebrating Communion in his home. Sincere sympathy with his daughter and her husband, Mr. and Mrs. Laidlaw, who were so devoted to him.

With warm regards to all our people.

Yours sincerely,

TOM CALVERT, Minister.

Treasurer's Report

Collections for December, 1967 and January, 1968

F. W. O.

December £115 10 1

January £48 16 9


December £42 3 9

January £14 17 6

Women's Guild

During January the Guild enjoyed three very happy meetings. On 9th January we were entertained to a delightful musical programme by the CarlisIe Citadel Songster Brigade. On Tuesday, 16th a Burns. Supper with the Arthuret Mothers’ Union as guests, haggis carried in by Mrs. Anderson, piped in by Piper Ian Innes, and addressed by Miss Jeannie Graham. The toast to the “lmmortal Memory” was proposed by. Dr. Rowland Calvert, “Town and Trade” by Mr. Jacob Thomlinson, replied to by Mr. Richard Hill. Guests by Miss Ella Glendinning, replied to by Mrs. Jennifer Hill from Longtown. Singers were Mrs. Young, Miss Jean Ferguson, James Little and Ian Rodger, Miss J. Graham reciting, and Mr. Andrew Mallinson as accompanist

On Tuesday, 30th January, the Guild held a Bible Supper when there was a very small attendance but a very much enjoyed meeting. The award for the most unusual article named in the Bible was won by Miss Jean Ferguson.

On Monday, 5th February our Guild members will be the guests of the Carlisle Church of Scotland Guild. The Guild meeting on Tuesday, 13th will enjoy a visit from the Young Wives Fellowship who will provide a programme of entertainment. The Guild meeting on 27th February, since Mr. Robinson is unable to come as shown in syllabus, the meeting will take the form of a Coffee Evening, with Bring and Buy Stall and Jumble Sale, held in aid of Greenbank Eventide Home Fund. We are anxious for this effort to be well supported.


On Wednesday, 7th February, the meeting will be in the afternoon. The meeting on Tuesday, 13th will be with the W0men’s Guild in the evening at 7.30 p.m.


February 11 - 11 a.m. and 6 p.m. Rev. Tom Calvert. Flowers, Mrs. K. Neill, Varna, Ha’path.

February 18 - 11 a.m. and 6 p.m. Rev. Tom Calvert. Flowers, Mrs. Robert Graham, Eskdaill Street. The Evening Service will be a United Service, led by Langholm Town Band.

February 25 - 11 a.m. and 6 p.m. Rev. Tom Calvert. Flowers, Miss Elizabeth Rowe, 30 Henry Street. Guides and Brownies at Evening Service for Thinking Day observances.

March 3 - 11 a.m. and 6 p.m. Rev. Tom Calvert. Flowers, Mrs. W. Kay, 22 Caroline Street.


January 7 - Gillian Margaret, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. John Paterson, Terrona.


January 7 - Robert McDonald Meek, High Mill, Langholm.

January 12 - Thomas Little, 37 Holmwood Drive, Langholm. Age 66.

January 17 - James N. Corrie, 12 Charlotte Street, Langholm. Age 89.

January 20 - George Jeffrey, 6 Henry Street, Langholm. Age 95.

“I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith”. 2 Timothy 4. 7.