Langholm Old Church Parish Magazine

N0.72                       Price 1/2 - with LIFE AND HOME - 6d LOCAL MAGAZINE ONLY                       MARCH 1967.

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. Robert Black, 35 Eskdaill 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 March, “Let your magnanimity be manifest to all.” Philippians 4. 5. N.E.B.

I am taking my sermon for last Sunday morning as the message for the March Magazine. The Greek "word in the original text, here translated rnagnanimity is the word “Epiekeia", a word with such big and generous meaning that Bible scholars have said it is almost untranslatable In the A.V. translation of the Bible it is translated “moderation”; in the R.V. it is translated “forebearance; while in the N.E.B. by this grand word “magnanimity". Aristotle the Greek philosopher, said that epiekeia meant justice and more than justice. Professor William Barclay of Trinity College, Glasgow, tries to explain its meaning in this way. Suppose you were marking the examination papers of two students, and in justice to the papers you give one 80 per cent. and another 50 per cent. Then you remember that the student given 80 per cent. has enjoyed good health, favourable circumstances and everything’s been in his favour. But the student given 50 per cent. has had bad health during the term, and has suffered under a sad bereavement recently. This makes you think again and consider giving him a higher percentage because of adverse circumstances. This would be epiekeia, the word translated moderation or forbearance or magnanirnity.

Magnanimity means acting bigly, generously, avoiding drawing a conclusion according to the strict letter of the law. In this Epistle to the Philippians which Paul wrote from his prison cell in Rome, he is writing to the office bearers of a Church he had founded some years previous, a Church which is being almost wrecked by disputing and jealousy among the office- bearers, including two Women, Euodias and Syntyche. And he is telling them that as Christian men and women they should act bigly, that they should be far above jealousy, resentment and envy in the Lord's work. “Let your magnanimity be manifest to all” Of course magnanimity is not a quality of natural man, it is a quality that was seen at its highest and best in Jesus Christ. And Paul is here claiming that it is the business of Christian men and women to reproduce in themselves something of Christ’s big. way of thinking and speaking and feeling.

The man or woman possessing something of the magnanimity of Iesus will be slow to condemn human failure.

The A.V. translation “moderation" means just this Moderation means taking into account the circumstances behind any situation, and this is what Jesus always did as he looked upon men and women. This is What Professor Barclay suggests when marking examination papers, and it is interesting to note that moderation was the word used for the first public examinations for degrees at Oxford University. Jesus moderated over men and women, and always could see some circumstance that accounted for human failure, and some hope of reclamation. They brought to him a woman taken in the very act of adultery and said that according to the Law of Moses she should be stoned, what did he say? And we read how he stooped down and wrote with his fingers in the sand, and then looking up said, “he that is Without sin let him cast the first stone”. Again he stooped and began writing with his finger, and on looking up a second time found all had fled except the woman. Whereupon the asks, “Woman, where are thine accusers? Hath no man condemned thee?” She said, “No man, Lord”. And Jesus said unto her, “Neither do I condemn thee go, and sin no more". Jesus knew well that none of those who would have stoned the woman were guiltless of sins of thought if not of deed, and that this woman had been more sinned against than sinning. And this is how Robert Burns was thinking and feeling about human failure when he wrote,

“Then gently scan your brother man,

Still gentler sister woman,

Though they may gan a kennin wrang,

To step aside is human.

What’s done we partly may compute

But know not what's resisted.”

The man or woman possessing something of the magnanimity of Jesus will always strive to be above petty jealousy and envy.

Jealousy and envy was, I think the root trouble in the Church in Philippi. There was disputing among the office bearers very likely about position of importance, or about how certain things should be done. And Paul pleads with them to be of the same mind in the Lord’s work, to be magnanimous, to be big people, to be above petty jealousy and envy.

The temptation to be jealous, envious, comes to everyone including the saint. We find it in every profession and calling, and the pity is that it often hinders the Lord’s work, as it was evidently doing the Church in Philippi. It takes big men and women, magnanimous men and women to keep above this subtle temptation. John the Baptist was able to meet this temptation with magnanimity. Think what it must have meant for John to live under the shadow of Jesus. For long, John had held the spotlight of public attention. He had been the suceessful preacher, acclaimed by the muititudes and the talk of everyone. Then came Jesus, taking the crowds away from John, attracting even John’s closest friends and most loyal disciples, and bringing John the Baptist’s career to an end. lesser might have been consumed with jealousy, He might have taken dislike and resented Jesus. Instead John pointed to Jesus in public, “Behold the Lamb of God. He must increase but I must decrease”. lf John had never spoken another word that has been recorded in Scripture, this large and generous tribute to the One who had taken away his place and success marks shim down as a magnamious.

The man or woman possessing something of the magnamity of Jesus will be aiways ready to torgive as Jesus did.

Think of the magnanmity of our Lord in the matter of forgiveness. The rabbis said that three pardons were the limit. One day Peter, thinking no doubt he was being generous, asked Jesus, “How often shall my brother sin against me and I forgive him, until seven times?” It is a good thing our Lord did not accept Peter’s limit on forgiveness, it was a good thing for Peter and a good thing for us. Our Lord replied “I say not unto thee until seven times, but until seventy times seven”.

In forgiveness Jesus was magnanimous, even on the Cross he prayed, “Father forgive them for they know not what they do”. And his forgiveness was always with the hope of reclamation and restoration. l have read of W.E. Gladstone, that when he was Chancellor of the Exchequer he sent down to the Treasury for certain statistics upon which to base his budget proposals. The statistician made a mistake. But Gladstone was so sure of the man's accuracy that he didn’t take time to verify the figures. He went before the House of Commons and made his speech, basing his appeal on the incorrect figures that had been given him. The speech was no sooner made than the newspapers exposed its glaring inaccuracies. Gladstone was naturally overwhelmed with embarrassment. He went to his office and sent at once for the statistician responsible for the humiliating situation. The man came full of shame and fear, thinking he was going to be dismissed from his position at the Treasury. But instead, Gladstone said, “I know how very much you must be upset by what has happened, and I sent for you to put you at your ease. For a long time you have been engaged in handling the intricacies of National accounts and this is the first mistake that you have made. I want to congratulate you on your good work in the past and express keen appreciation”. Now that is magnanimity approaching to the magnanimity of Jesus in forgiveness, and it is more than forgiveness, it is the first step in reclaiming and restoring the forgiven one.

What a power magnanimity has in restoring and reclaiming.

I have never yet known a man or woman to be won back from a life of error or failure by threats or condemnation. I have known many to be Won back for the good life by magnanimous forgiveness. Victor Hugo illustrates this attitude Well in his Les Miserables, in the story of the ex convict who had stolen the bishop’s silver candlesticks. The officers have him and are waiting for the bishop’s word to send him back to prison. But no, the bishop says, “the silver is his, I gave it to him”. Then speaking in an aside to the ex convict he says, “and by the way, when you come back, don’t use the garden path, it isn’t necessary. Come in by the door, it is always open. And never forget you have promised to be a better man. Jean Valjean, it is your soul I buy from you give it to God, now go in peace”. And that is what magnanimity in forgiveness does, what it can do, what it has done, it buys the forgiven one’s soul and gives it to God. That is what Jesus did for Simon Peter after the tragic denial, the way Jesus forgave Peter by never saying a word about the ghastly denial, but sending a message to meet him in Galilee, and there only saying, “Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me?” Ever after Peter was Christ’s devoted man. Jesus had bought back his soul and given it to God.

Finally, notice four little words following our text. “Let your magnanimity be manifest to all. The Lord is near”.

Here is the secret of magnanimous Christian living, keeping the Lord constantly in our thoughts. It will save us from our readiness to judge and condemn others and give us concern only to seek to reclaim them. It will help us to keep -above tendency to jealousy and envy and resentment; and it Will help us to be magnanimous like Gladstone when we forgive.

"The Lord is near”. Paul is in prison, awaiting the call to go forth to execution. This is perhaps what he means. For then he would be forever with his Lord. “To depart” he said, “is to be with Christ, which is far better”. Without being in any Way morbid it is a good thing for us sometimes to remember that the Lord is near to us in this way. Life is short, and when the end comes if we have dealt with others with magnanimity, we can expect God so to deal "with us. For as the beatitude reminds us, “Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy”.


Dear Fellow-Member,

I wish to comment on special events of March the previous month.

Classes for First Communicants

Classes will commence on Sunday, 19th March, meeting after the Evening Service. Young people are invited to attend whether or not they wish to join the Church at the April Communion. Classes will continue each Sunday evening until 23rd April.

Annual Meeting of the Congregation

The Annual Meeting of the Congregation of the Old Parish Church takes place on Thursday, 23rd March in the Church Hall at 7.30 p.m. The meeting will commence with a programme of singing by the Junior Choir under Mrs. Margaret Smith. This will be followed by refreshments. After refreshments the business meeting will follow when the Church Treasurer will present the Annual Statement of Accounts. This will be followed by appointment of members to the Board to fill vacancies. According to our constitution one third of the members of the Board retire annually, by alphabetical rotation, but same are eligible for reelection. The members due to retire this year are, Mr. Andrew Mothersole Mrs. Little, and Misses Mary Graham and Jean Ferguson. ‘With three existing vacancies this means seven nominations are required. Following the appointment of Board members there Will be opportunity to discuss and transact business that concerns the welfare of our Church and parish. I appeal to all members to make a real effort to attend the Annual Meeting of the Congregation this year.

Visit of Mr. William Mackay, Church of Scotland Stewardship Organiser

Mr. William Mackay left his engineering employment over a year ago to enter the service of the Church as Stewardship organiser, and we were all delighted to hear him speak at the Board meeting on Tuesday, 28th February. Mr. Mackay served in the Queen’s Own Cameron Highlanders during the last war, was a prisoner of war, and after his release was stationed for a time in the Langholm Camp. It was while in Langholm that he became a member of the Church. I hope that we will reach agreement to have him with us for a month later in the year to conduct a Stewardship campaign in the Old Parish Church. A Christian Stewardship campaign over three hundred have been held in the various parishes throughout Scotland in recent years-means recalling members to a sense of belonging and attending their Church. In a congregation like ours with some 921 members, 60 per cent. of them never within the church from year end to year end, none can doubt the need for such an effort.

Guild Annual Sale of Work

The Guild Annual Sale of Work takes place in the Church Hall on Saturday, 18th March, to be opened at 2.30 Mrs. Alec Scott, Over Wrae. As the Guild has given over £200 to the Church in the past year, and another £200 for the redecoration of the Church Hall, all will agree that this effort deserves our most generous support.

Young Wives Fellowship

The Young Wives Fellowship held ea very successful and happy Coffee Afternoon on Saturday, 25th February. We all enjoyed the Tots and Teens Fashion Parade, and the dancing. The proceeds are given in aid of Church funds, and this is much appreciated in supporting the Treasurer in meeting costs of lighting and heating the hall.

Guide Thinking Day

We were very delighted to have the Langholm Guides and Brownies attending the Evening Service on Sunday, 19th February to observe the annual Thinking Day. Lessons were read by Jaqueline Fletcher and Carol Bell. The Guides were led by Capt. Mary Dalgliesh and Lieut. Jean McVittie and the Brownies were under Brown Owl Mary Armstrong and Tawny Owl Jennie Hall.

United Service in Congregational Church, Palm Sunday Evening

On Palm Sunday, 19th March the Evening Service will be in the Congregational Church, when the Service will be led by the Junior Choir under Mrs. Margaret Smith. I am sure there will be a large attendance.

Boys’ Brigade Parents Night

Parents of boys in the Senior and Junior Brigade and their friends are invited to a parents night in the Church Hall on Weldneisday, 8th March at 7.30 p.m. It is certain to be a happy and well attended night.

Elder’s Long Service Record

The Hawick Presbytery, and later the General Assembly in May, are awarding to Mr. William Stuart a certificate of congratulation and thanks for long service. Mr. William Stuart was ordained an elder of the Old Parish Church in 1917, and down the years has rendered exemplary service as an elder, Sunday School Superintendent, and choir member. Mr. William Stuart is at present indisposed and a patient in Ward 7 of Carlisle City General Hospital, and the prayers and good Wishes of all members of our Church are for his good recovery. We join in congratulating him of the exceptional and fine record of service to his Church, and to the Lord and Master to whom he committed his life in earlier years.

Sympathy With The Bereaved

William Bell Stockbridge, 12 Meikleholm, passed away on 7th February, and we express deepest sympathy with his wife and son. A nephew of the late William Stockbridge, Rev. David Whiteford, is the present Deputy Chaplain-General. His father, Rev. David Whiteford, was for many years minister of Edgerston.

The funeral of Mrs. May Burnham took place at Ewes on 14th February. Mrs. Burnham was a sister of the late Mr. James Paterson of Terrona. Our syrnpatlhy in bereavement with relatives. Mrs. Agnes Elliot Nichol, 6 West Street, passed away very suddenly on 2lst February. Our sympathy in bereavement with her husband Thomas Nichol and their family.

With warm greetings to all our people.

Yours sincerely,




Collections for February 1967

F. W. O. £79 2 9

Ordinary £16 13 0

By Deed of Covenant £12 0 0

Collecting Boxes £1 15 11


During the month of February the Guild shared in the Womenls Wlorld Day of Prayer United Langholm Churches Service, held on the 10th, with Mars. Mina Carter for Old Parish Guild, Miss Grace Brown for Erskine Guild, Mrs. Milroy for Congregational Church, and Mrs. Graham for the Scottish Episcopal Church, leading the Service.

On 14th February our Guild attended as guests the Erskine Guild meeting, when warm hospitality was enjoyed, and a very impressive programme of Salvation Army singers from Annan was greatly appreciated.

On 21st February Mrs. Margaret Smith was the speaker and made a very deep impression as she spoke about her work and experience in Occupational Therapy in Dumfries, Glasgow and U.S.A. This was one of the very best Guild nights we have enjoyed.

The next meeting is on 7th March when Rev. Andrew Farms, B.D., the parish minister of Canonbie, will give us a programme of songs which he will introduce and sing. We hope for a good attendance. The closing meeting of the session will be on 21st March when we are to have the new film on the Life of Mary Slessor, “She Blazed the Trail”. This will be an open night, as many will want to see this new and exciting film.

The Guild Annual Sale of Work takes place on Saturday, 18th March in the Church Hall, to be opened at 2.30 p.m. by Mrs. Alec Scott, Over Wrae. Stalls will include Cake, Work, Produce, Candy, Bran Tub, Sunday School stall, and Young Wives Fellowship stall. Gifts are invited for the various stalls. Tea will be served. The hall will be open on Saturday morning from 10 a.m. to receive gifts for the stalls. Remembering that the Guild donates to the Church Treasurer over £200 each year to meet the unified appeal, and in the past year has contributed over £200 to the decoration of the hall, We will all want to give this effort our mbst generous support.

The Guild Business Meeting, when the date and destination of the Summer Outing will be decided, will be held at the close of the meeting on Tuesday, 2lst March.


March 12-11 am. and 6 p.rn. Rev. Torm Calvert. Flowers, Mrs. Scott Morrison, 49 Henry Street.

March 19 - Palm Sunday. ll am. Rev. Tom Calvert. Flowers, Mrs. Mary Armstrong, Marlsy-de. Class for First Communicants at 7.15 p.m. in the Church. 6 pm. United Service in the Congregational Church, when the Junior Choir under Mrs. Margaret Smith will lead the Service.

March 26-11 a.m. and 6 p.m. Easter Sunday. Rev Tom Calvert. Class for First Communicants after Evening Service. Flowers, Mrs. Ritchie Hyslop, Waverley Road.

April 2-11 a.m. and 6 pm. Rev. Tom Calvert. Flowers, Mrs. J. E. Kyle, Kyleakin. Class for First Communicants after Evening Service,


February 19—Aileen, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. John Armstrong, Hillhead, Langholm.

February 19-Baillie, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. James Green, 33 Ancrum Court, Glenrothes.

February 26—Jacqueline Ann, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Keith Foster, 15 Charles Street (Old), Langholm.


February 7-William Bell Stockbridge, 12 Meikleholm. Age 76.

February 14-Funeral of Mrs. May Burnham at Ewes.


February 2l-Mrs. Agnes Elliot Nichol, 6 West Street. Age 71.

“O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory; Thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Iesus Christ.“ 1 Corinthians 15. 55-57.