Langholm Old Church Parish Magazine

N0.37                      Price 1/- with LIFE AND HOME - 6d LOCAL MAGAZINE ONLY                       JANUARY, 1964.

LANGHOLM OLD PARISH CHURCHchurchFounded 1703, present Church built 1846

Minister: Revd. TOM CALVERT, The Old Manse, Langholm. Tel. 256.

Session Clerk: Mr. JOHN TYMAN, National Bank Buildings. Tel. 223

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

Treasurer: Mr. R. A. BLACK, 35 Eskdaill Street.

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

Church Officer: Mr. ARCHIE SMITH, 7 Holmwood Crescent.

Motto Text for 1964—'Speak unto the children of Israel that they go forward'. Exodus 14. I5.

Letter from the Minister

Dear Fellow-Member.

My message for the New Year is, Let Forward be our Watchword. This has been the life-motto of some of the finest pioneers and adventurers down the ages. It was the motto of Moses. After leading the children of Israel out of bondage in Egypt he found trouble and difficulty soon staring him in the face. They came to the Red Sea, and with Pharaoh's armies pursuing them, the people began to panic and grumble and regret ever leaving their old life of slavery. But Moses in a great act of faith sounds the clarion cal—Forward, and then the miracle happens—gates open of their own accord—mountains of difficulty disappear—the very sea has a path within it and through it. Forward was also the motto of Paul. As I said in my sermon on Old Year Sunday, Paul counsels us to "forget the things behind and reach forward to that which lies ahead". Paul never dwelt in the past. If he had he would only have remembered the days when he took part in the stoning of Stephen and in laying hands upon Christian men and women and dragging them before the chief priests for sentence of torture. But all the past had been forgiven, and now Paul lives for the days to come and bravely goes forward—taking the Gospel to lands where no Christian preacher has ever before been. Forward was also the motto of Living-stone. He went to Africa under the London Missionary Society, and was directed to work on the coast among native converts. But this did not satisfy the great urge in his soul. After a journey into the interior and breaking new ground among the Bakjatlas, Livingstone wrote the Directors of the L.M.S. explaining what he had done and expressing the hope that it would meet with their approval. At the same time he said that he was at their disposal "to go anywhere provided it was Forward". It is told of an interview a journalist once had with Lloyd George after he had completed some fifty years of Parliamentary life. The journalist asked him if he would like to live his life over again. "No" he said, "I should not like to go over it again. What is behind me I know. Before me all is new. I want to go forward". In John Buchan's Memory-Hold-The-Door, he says, "I have little patience with the antiquarian habit which magnifies the past and belittles the present. It is a vicious thing to look backward unless the feet are steadfastly on the forward road."

May 1964 see a continued march forward in international and race relationships.

I believe that this march forward had a real beginning in the year just passed away. The year 1963 will always be remembered for the tragic assassination of John Fitzgerald Kennedy, one of the noblest of all Presidents or the United states. 1963 will also be remembered for the great change President Kennedy brought about in relationships between East and West, in the slowing down of the cold war, and in the signing of the test-ban treaty. Let us all pray for God's blessing and protection upon President Lyndon Johnson, who has undertaken to continue this policy of seeking to improve relationships with the Soviet Union, and in helping the case of the American Negro, as his predecessor sought to.

And may it please God that our own country goes forward in every way that is good in this New Year.

Not only may our country continue to prosper in its industrial fields, but also in a new desire for work well done, and a revival of the spirit of readiness to serve rather than be served. And we would all like to see our nation regain her place of leadership and influence in the life of the world. Our country has come through saddening days in the past year, and no one can tell what changes are in store for us in 1964. But let us all pray that whatever happens, God will bless our land with great leadership such as will challenge the restless youth of this generation with a call to adventure in new fields of discovery and invention and world-wide service.

It is my earnest prayer that in the life of our Langholm Old Parish Church, we will go forward in 1964.

If we look back over the past year we see much that indicates we have not been standing still, and much to be truly thankful for. We have seen the Old Parish Church re-slated, and the work paid for within the year. We have seen the installation of a modern heating system in the Parish Hall, and the erection of a lowered ceiling, which has greatly improved the premises both from point of view of acoustics and heating. And in the latter months of the past year steps were taken to order a new heating system for the Parish Church. This certainly can all be calculated as part of a going forward in our church life, but there is another aspect that must be taken into account. Church premises, however well maintained, are of little consequence unless they are fulfilling the purpose for which they were originally built. The true purpose of our Church is to be a centre where the people of the parish and community gather on the Lord's Day for weekly worship and Christian witness. And when any member lapses or becomes indifferent, it should be a matter of our greatest concern to win them back. I am deeply thankful to many of our people who give our church and its worship their loyal support, and for splendid and willing service rendered by our office-bearers, leaders of organisations, and Sunday school teachers. I must say I have felt somewhat disappointed in some of the young people who began well, but who in the past year have given little evidence of their church allegiance. I have a feeling that this is because I have failed in my approach to win them for the church by first seeking to provide social facilities. I mean, I feel I might have done better if in the first instance I had sought to help them to grasp and deepen faith in the Master and his service. Some of them tell me they quite like coming to church but feel a bit odd as none of their friends come. This of course means that the Christian faith still makes demands for courage upon young men and women. And our young people have never been lacking of this quality. In the war days it was a fact that if ever there was a call for volunteers to go on some dangerous work, like the special air service, dropping men behind the enemy lines men were never wanting. And that same quality is still there in the hearts of our young men and women, and can be roused to face any challenge or serve any cause they feel is worth while. I would like them to see that in this age of indifference and cold materialistic outlook, by taking their place as followers of Jesus Christ, and associating regularly with his church and taking part in its worship—they may well be displaying a courage not very different to that held by men who went on Commando raids with slim chances of ever returning.

I have a burning desire to see our Langholm Old Parish Church an example in this border country of what a church can be. Let me have your help in 1964, and with health and God's blessing we may see our Church life going forward in the best of all possible ways. In the last century there was a famous preacher in Manchester called Collier. He was minister of a large Methodist Central Hall, seating over 3,000, which was filled to over-flowing for long years of his ministry. And I am told that the secret of it all was not so much that Mr. Collier was a man of great worth as preacher and pastor, but because he managed to get all the members to accept the slogan, "every member a missionary". I suggest that if we all undertook to win one person in 1964, someone who has lapsed or grown indifferent or who has never been given any encouragement in religious things, —just one, what a mighty difference we would see in six months time. No one would need to ask the question whether or not we were going forward in 1964.

Go forward into 1964

Of course as it was for Moses so it will be for many of us, there will be a Red Sea to confront us. We will have to face problems and difficulties and perhaps sorrows. God did not remove the Red Sea but he made a path through it for the people to pass unharmed. And He will do that for us in this New Year, just as with Paul, the Lord did not take away the thorn in the flesh, but made his grace sufficient to bear it. Whatever this New Year holds in store for us, adventure and achievement for our young people —new friendships for some—recovery of health for many, I sincerely trust —and for those who are growing old and wonder if it will be their last New Year, may I say, Go Forward. The soundest reasoning of all the philosophers, the truest instincts of the human heart, and the sure promises of the Living Christ all assure us that beyond our little earthly day, we will Go Forward into God's eternal city where we shall know that the best of life has yet to come. "For eye hath not seen nor ear heard, neither hath it entered into the heart of man, the things that God hath prepared for them that love Him".

Church Week February l6th to 23rd

The next issue of this magazine will be devoted entirely to giving the members of the Langholm Old Parish Church full information about a visitation of all members during the week commencing l6th February. The visitors will be members of the Congregational Board, and will be arranged according to Elders' districts. The purpose of the visitation is to discuss with our members how they can help our Church Treasurer to meet our increasing annual expenditure. This is something which all churches of all denominations throughout the country, indeed throughout the whole world, are having to do in this age of constantly rising costs.

In many Churches this is being done under the title of a Christian Stewardship Campaign. The Church of Scotland, the Scottish Episcopal Church, and the Scottish Congregational Union, have all adopted this method of approach. I notice in the Press that the Presbyterian Church in St. John's Wood, London, calls it just "A Visitation Campaign", while the Cambridge Presbyterian Church calls it "A Renewal Campaign". Whatever name used, and we will simply call it "Church Week" when members will be visited by two members of the Congregational Board, the aim is the same. Churches have, whether they like it or not, to find extra money to keep going, since the Church is dependent entirely upon the givings of its members. I will give full information on how our annual expenditure is increased each year with increasing costs, in the next magazine. Meantime I want to say that while the visitation will cover all our members, non-earning members and pensioners will not be asked to increase their giving. From my calculation of figures received from the Church Treasurer, we will require to raise our annual current income in 1964 by approximately £8l8. Suggestions will be made on how members can best help, and of course if every earning member does their part, as I am sure they readily will once they understand the situation the Board is coping with, the congregation will be able to meet its liabilities without recourse to special appeals.

Christmas Services and Parties

I hear from all sides how much the Woman's Guild Christmas Party was enjoyed. Congratulations to Mrs. Carter, Mrs. Wood and all who took part in the arrangements.

The Sunday School Christmas Parties were great fun, and I think Miss Mary Dalgliesh and all the staff plus Archie Smith, deserve our very best thanks and praise. The Primary Party in the afternoon seemed to me to go like a clock and to be as happy as a circus. Our teachers have a wonderful way in getting on with the little folk. The Junior and Senior Party was very full of life and activity, and a tremendous response from the children.

The Christmas Gift Service on Sunday, December 22nd, was short and very impressive. I was amazed how well the little folk of 3 to 5 years of age managed to behave so well. The call to bring gifts was recited by Joan Hyslop, following which the children brought well over 100 beautifully wrapped gifts. These were received by Archie Smith and Douglas Anderson. Lessons were well read by Gordon Cameron, Graham Robertson and Roddie Innes. The children sang two special Christmas songs, and a choir made up of the Boys' Brigade, Life Boys, Girl Guides and Brownies sang "See in yonder manger". The gifts were kindly taken to four different centres, to Springbells Children's Home Annan; Wendy House, Dumfries; Dr. Barnardo Home, Hawick; and the Children's Ward of Carlisle Infirmary. Letters of very warm thanks and appreciation have been received

The Evening Service on Sunday before Christmas was led by a choir organised by Mrs. Mina Carter. The choir rendered eight Christmas songs and carols and gave us a most happy evening. We hope to see the same choir in action many times again.

The Christmas Eve Candlelight Service was this year shared by the Youth Fellowship, the Boys Brigade, the Girl Guides and others. I got the impression that much is lost by introducing a screen for projecting words of carols, as this takes away from the centrality of Communion Table, Lectern, and Christmas Decorations. However, we learn by experience in these matters. The collection on behalf of the World's Hunger Campaign realised over £l3.

I would like to make a special reference to the Evening Service on Old Year Sunday, conducted by Jackie Nixon. We are all very proud of Jackie, one of our own lads who has entered upon a career as Youth Leader under the Church of Scotland Youth Committee He is working in a difficult district among youth who are completely out with any kind of religious influence, and I hear he is making marked progress in the work. It is my hope that after another year Jackie may become a Divinity student of our Church and enter the ministry of the Church of Scotland. His conduct of the Service and his sermon greatly impressed us all, and we join in wishing him continued good progress and happiness in his work in 1964.

Sympathy with the bereaved.

In December four well known and well loved members of our church passed away. First Mrs. Mary Wallace, 32a Henry Street, very suddenly, and we express deepest sympathy with her family. Thomas Milligan, 3 Henry Street, again very suddenly, and our deepest sympathy with widow and daughter. Mrs. Francis Mary Rutherford, Caroline Street. She passed away while with her daughter Mrs. McCartney, in Eskdaill Street, to whom we express sincere sympathy. And the fourth was Maggie Taylor in Charles Street Old, whom I thought had made a good recovery after a short time in hospital. She was a very devoted Church member and very generous to her Church, It is sad to lose friends at Christmas, and we all felt particularly sorry for the relatives.

With very best wishes for health and happiness in 1964 to all members and friends of the Old Parish Church.

Yours sincerely,

TOM CALVERT, Minister.

Treasurer's Report

Annual Envelopes £l7 10 0

Candle Light Service (Hunger Campaign) £l4 0 0

Christmas Day Service £:l 8 3

By Deed of Covenant £42 0 0

Youth Fellowship

The Youth Fellowship continues meeting at 7-30 p.m. on Sundays, and meets with a good response. The Fellowship went out carol singing on Sunday evening before Christmas, and on visiting the Thomas Hope Hospital comprised some 40 members. The patients greatly enjoyed their visit, as did others at Meikleholm, Rosevale, Walter Street, and around the Christmas Tree at the Town Hall.

Youth Club

The Youth Club has good prospects of being provided with a permanent centre next summer. Meantime the Langholm Drill Hall has been granted for a weekly meeting on Tuesdays, commencing Tuesday, 14th January, 7 to 10 p.m.

Church Calendar

January, 1964.

l2th—11 a.m. Revd. Tom Calvert. 6 p.m. United Service with Erskine in Old Parish; Preacher, Revd. Dr. Dinwoodie. Flowers, Mrs. Campbell, Glendinning, 70 High Street.

19th—11a.m. and 6 p.m. Revd. Tom Calvert. Flowers Miss Mary Hounam, 54 Caroline Street.

26th—l1 a.m, and 6 p.m. Revd. Tom Calvert. Flowers Mrs. John Tyman, Barbank.


2nd—11 a.m, and 6 p.m. Revd. Tom Calvert. Flowers Mrs. Wm. Hosie, 60 Holmwood Drive.


December. 10th-—Kevin Innes, son of Mr. and Mrs. Keith Beverley, 56 William Street.

22nd—Tracy Margaret, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Henry Copeland, 1 Wauchope Place.

In Memoriam


4th—Funeral to Langholm Cemetery of Mrs. Mary Wallace, 32a Henry Street, age 68.

24th—To Langholm Cemetery, of Thomas Milligan, 3 Henry Street, age 69.

24th—To Westerkirk. Mrs. Francis Mary Rutherford. 73 Caroline Street. Aged 76.

26th—To Langholm Cemetery. Margaret Mary Taylor 13 Charles Street Old. Aged 63.

"Thou art the King of glory, O Christ,

Thou art the everlasting Son of the Father.

When Thou hast overcome the sharpness of death,

Thou didst open the kingdom of heaven to all believers.

We believe that Thou shalt come to be our Judge.

We therefore pray Thee help Thy servants,

Whom Thou hast redeemed with Thy precious blood

Make them to be numbered with Thy saints.

In glory everlasting". Amen.

Te Deum Laudamus. 718.


The Kirk Session will meet in the vestry on Thursday, 9th January at 7-30 p.m.

The Congregational Board will meet on Thursday, 30th January in the vestry at 7-30 p.m.