Langholm Old Church Parish Magazine

LANGHOLM OLD PARISH CHURCHchurchFounded 1703, present Church built 1846

N0. 6. JANUARY 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 JANUARY—"Thy shoes shall be iron and brass, and as thy days, so shall thy strength be". Deut. 33, 25.


My dear Friends,

I wish to commence this letter by wishing you all a Very Happy New Year. l earnestly pray that l96l may be to you all a year of prosperity and true happiness, and that in the life of the Old Parish Church we may know real happiness and blessing in our worship, and advancement in all that pertains to prosperity in the work of our Church.


In my sermon of New Year Sunday morning, I took three texts which I maintain contain the secret of happy living for the coming year, The first from Philippians 3, 13: "Forgetting those thing; that are behind". In writing these words Paul realised that there was much in his past life that was best forgotten. His past mistakes and failures had been forgiven when he met with the Risen Christ on the Damascus road, and to go on mourning over his past sins was to make God’s forgiveness ineffective, and render himself useless for any useful work in the future, This also applies to regrets over past opportunities missed. They are best forgotten because we cannot go back into the past and make a better of things. It applies to past resentments and hurts. They are best forgotten and forgiven, for carrying them with us harms no one but ourselves. My second text was from Psalm 103, verse 2: "Forget not all His benefits". As we go forth upon this New Year it will help us to remember the many blessings we enjoy. "Count your many blessings, name them one by one, and it will surprise you what the Lord hath done". We only need to visit a Hospital to realise how much better off we are than a lot of other people. And my third text was from Hebrews 13 at verse10: "To do good . . . forget not for with such sacrifices God is well pleased". It was said of Jesus that "He went about doing good", and all those who seek to follow Him in this will realise in the end of the day that in so far as they have lived to help and bless others their lives have not been lived in vain. And here I quote the well known words. "I shall pass this wav but once, therefore any kind word that l can speak, or kind action I can do, shall be done now, as I shall not pass this way again".


We have enjoyed a very happy Christmas it the Old Parish Church, commencing with the Evening Service on Sunday 18th December, when the children brought such variety of acceptable gifts which were later taken to the children in Dr Barnado’s Home at Hawick At that Service that children and their teachers enacted the story of Christmas. and we all greatly enjoyed the service. It was cheering to see the Church so well filled, and to find the congregation singing the Carols with so much delight. Then on Christmas Eve the Candle-light Service of Carols and Lessons, conducted by the Youth Fellowship, brought out a large congregation. and we congratulate the Youth Fellowship upon having organised and carried through such a helpful and enjoyable Service. At this Service an offering was taken on behalf of Dr. Barnado’s Homes which amounted to £13/16/2. On Christmas Day we were glad to ask the children to come forward to receive a small gift from the lovely Christmas Tree and again, to have such a well attended service. At the Evening Service Mr. Mallinson gave us a choice selection of Christmas music, when the Soloist was Mr. David Murray. On the Sunday evening before Christmas the Youth Fellowship went out carol-singing, visiting the Hope Hospital and several homes.


An interesting article in the Scotsman the other day told how in Salisbury Church. Edinburgh a new system has been inaugurated for making the work of the Church known throughout the parish. Three committees have been formed, each composed of five members, whose activities range from delivering the parish magazines to taking round tape recording of one of the previous Sunday Services to those unable to attend. It is good to hear of new methods and efforts of religious approach to the community and of Churches adopting new ways to break through apathy and indifference. In our own parish the Kirk Session has given thought to this need, and at a recent meeting approved the formation of a Youth Council, the members to be pledged to share in the work and Services of the Church. The Youth Council of the Langholm Old Parish Church will consist of young people over 14 years of age, who are willing to share in any of the following forms of Christian service; teaching in the Sunday School; or serving as a Parish Magazine distributor; or serving in the Choir; or being willing to share in conducting the Evening Service either by reading a Lesson, or helping in taking up the Offering. The Youth Council will meet in the Church at the close of the Evening Service on the last Sunday of each month. to discuss matters relating to the welfare and progress of the Church, and if desired, make recommendations to the Kirk Session. l will be glad to see all our young people become members of the Youth Council, and assist the Kirk Session and minister to do all in our power to make the work and witness of our Church effective. While we call this effort a Youth Council, may I say we also hope to include in it here its membership any of our people who no longer think of themselves as youths but who are willing to take a hand in the work of the church. The story is told of how in the old days of Stage Coaches, a number of people were one day travelling between Huddersfield and Manchester. It was noticed that while there were first-class, second-class and third class fares, they all shared the same coach and conditions, and this for a time seemed to arouse a certain amount of discontent. Then coachmen called out, first-class keep your seats, second-class get out and walk, third class get out and push up the coach. The main aim of the Youth Council whether the members be old or young, is that they should all be like those third class passengers in the stage coach, ready and willing to lend a hand in some form of Christian Service.


The Youth Fellowship, which is representative of all the Langholm Churches, commences meetings for the New Year on Sunday, 8th January, at 7.30 pm. in the Old Parish Hall. A programme has been arranged for the weekly meetings, which is to include on a Sunday evening in March a visit from the Organising Secretary of the Church of Scotland Eventide Homes. He will show us by film and pictures something of the twenty-six Eventide Homes which the Church of Scotland has established throughout Scotland, the nearest being at Galashiels. At this meeting, members of the Church and community will be invited, and will be entertained to tea by the Youth Fellowship. The Youth Fellowship will close the present session with a Youth Rally on the evening of Palm Sunday; 26th March., when members of Youth Fellowships in Carlisle are being invited to join with us, both in the Evening Service in the Old Parish Church, and later to a tea and discussion in the hall. The theme of Youth Rally will be: "The Lord hath need of him".


During the past year a special effort has been made to help the Church Extension Committee of the Church of Scotland get rid of its heavy debt. £300,000 was required to wipe out the debt and keep on the work of building new Churches, The result has met with a ready and generous response. Our Parish was given the target of £l50, and I am pleased to say that by allocation and by special retiring collections on Christmas Day, we have been successful in realising our target.


l am sure you are all pleased to join with me in offering our warmest congratulations to the Provost of Langholm, Mr. John Woodward Hyslop, on his receiving the M.B.E. in the New Year`s Honours List. Mr. Hyslop has served as Provost of Langholm since l952, has served on the council for 14 years: a member of the Dumfries County Council for 13 years. He is chairman of the Advisory Committee of the National Assistance Board for Dumfries and Kirkcudbrightshire, a member of the Electricity Consultative Committee for the South of Scotland; and a member of J.P. Licensing Court. We are all proud of our Provost and full of admiration of the good work he does for our town and county, and take pleasure in him receiving this well deserved honour.

At the same time we congratulate Sgt. Robson on his selection and promotion as Inspector of Police. We regret this involves him leaving Langholm and moving to Annan. Both Sgt, Robson and his family have gained a warm place in the hearts of the people of the Old Parish Church, and we take great pleasure in his deserved promotion.


Mr. William Beattie Laidlaw, 25 Drove Road, passed away at the age of 86. and we extend to his family our sincere sympathy in their bereavement. He was a very fine type of man, who had happy memories of life. During his latter years of weakness and blindness he was nursed with special care by his family. I always enjoyed talking to him about the old days of Langholm and was privileged to join with him. along with our elder, David Hendrie, in a celebration of the Lord’s Supper after our last Communion. He was looking forward to a visit of the Youth Fellowship Carol Singers, but passed away a week before the night we were to call.

Andrew Graham, Eskdaill Street, passed away at the age of 66, after a short illness. He was well known in Langholm and district for his agricultural interests, and as possibly the last remaining saddler in the district. He was altogether a delightful character whom I had just got to know and enjoy visiting for his cheerful outlook.

I am very glad to say that our highly esteemed Session Clerk, Mr. John Tyman, is making good progress after his recent operation. On behalf of the Kirk Session and Parish, I express our pleasure at the news of his good progress towards complete recovery, and to say how much we have missed him from his pew in recent weeks. I am also glad to say that Mrs. Allison, a regular and faithful worshipper in the Old Parish Church, is making good progress. and we hope to see her home from hospital soon.

With warmest thanks to all our people for very many Christmas and New Year greeting cards to the Manse.

Yours sincerely,

TOM CALVERT, minister


During December there was only one meeting of the Guild. and this took the form of a Christmas Party. The tables were beautifully decorated and after a sumptuous tea Mrs. Morrison and Mrs. Telford sang. A film show was greatly appreciated and the meeting was voted an all-round success.

The first meeting in 1961 will be on Tuesday, 10th January. No special programme has been fixed, but it is hoped to have "Any Questions" by a team drawn from the Guild. Members are asked to bring their work. We are looking forward to having; Erskine Guild members as our guests at the Burns’ Night on January 24th. Miss J. Graham will give an address, and it is hoped to have some singers too.

Members are reminded of the Sale of Work in early March. When this date was fixed in August it seemed a long way ahead, but now the festive season is over, and the first snow drops pushing their green heads through the ground, Spring and the Sale of Work are indeed very near. Our Secretary has heard from Mrs. Carr, Knowefield, Carlisle, that she will be delighted to open the Sale.

E. Glendinning.


The Sunday School organised Christmas parties for the Senior Sunday School on Thursday 22nd, and for the Primary on Saturday 24th December. The parties were supervised by Miss M. E Dalgliesh and members of the teaching staff and were greatly enjoyed. The Primary party was favoured by a visit from Santa Claus (in the person of our elder, Mr. D. I. Anderson) who distributed gifts to the children, and took a note of special requests.


On Friday 23rd December, the officers and members held their first annual dance in the Old Parish Hall. They enjoyed a very good supper served by the senior N.C.O.s, assisted by Mrs. G. Beattie, J. Beattie and Mrs Robertson. The party was very much enjoyed and closed by singing the National Anthem and Auld Lang Syne.



8th—11.45 a.m. and 6 p.m. Revd Tom Calvert. Flowers: Mrs. Maclntosh, 36 Holmwood Drive.

15th—11.45 a.m and 6 p.m. Revd. Tom Calvert. Flowers; Mrs. C. Glendinning, 70 High St.

22nd—11.45 am. and 6 p.m. Revd. Tom Calvert. Flowers: Miss Mary Hounam, 54 Caroline Street.

29th—11.45 a.m. and 6 p.m. Revd. Tom Calvert. Flowers: Mrs. John Tyman, Barbank.


5th—11.45 a.m. and 6 pm. Revd. Tom Calvert. Flowers: Mrs. W. Hosie, 60 Holmwood Drive.


16th December in the Old Parish Church — Adam Anderson, Corrie Mains to Helen Riddell Grieve. Lodge Bungalow.


10th December—William Beattie Laidlaw, aged 86 years.

17th December—Andrew Graham, aged 66 years. Jesus said, "l am the resurrection. and the life: he that believeth in Me, though he were dead, yet shall he live. And whosoever liveth and believeth in Me shall never die".


We wish to acknowledge with best thanks gift of Christmas rees from Buccleuch Estates for the Church and the hall. The trees beautifully decorated and lighted, added much to giving us a real Christmas atmosphere.