Langholm Old Church Parish Magazine

N0. 3. OCTOBER, 1960.

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 October— "Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is". Hebrews 10, 25.


My Dear Friends,

Celebration of Fourth Centenary of the Reformation. By the time this issue of our Parish Magazine is in your hands, the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland will be meeting in Edinburgh to celebrate the fourth centenary of the Reformation. The meetings commence with a Service of Thanksgiving in the High Kirk of Edinburgh on Tuesday, 11th October, at 11.0 a.m., followed by the Opening of the General Assembly in the Assembly Hall at 2.30 p.m., when delegates from other Churches will be welcomed. There will be meetings on Wednesday, 12th when addresses of greeting will be heard from other Churches of the Reformed Tradition, and when the Moderator, The Right Reverend J. H. S. Burleigh, D.D., will address the Assembly. Her Majesty the Queen will be present at this meeting and will also attend a meeting in the Usher Hall, of which 3,000 women representing churches throughout the country will be present.

It has been truly said that the history of Scotland is at the same time the history of the Church of Scotland, for it was the introduction of Presbyterian Church government in this land that gave us our religious and civic liberties. In the years following the Reformation in 1560, many who took their stand in support of Presbyterian or Reformed Church Government based upon the teaching of the Bible, were subjected to torture and death. Many of them were very young, but like the young men who fought and died in the two world wars, they believed they were dying for a great cause. Richard Cameron was but a year or two above thirty when he was pierced by the swords of the dragoons at the east end of bleak Ayrsmoss. His head and hands were cut off and carried to Edinburgh in a sack, to be dangled before his father Allan Cameron, who was a prisoner in the Tolbooth. Or to refer to one who died for the same cause in our own district, Andrew Hislop, a lad of seventeen, who was taken prisoner and put to death at Craighaugh in Eskdalemuir. The lad had done no wrong, he was simply one of a household who had given shelter to a sick Covenanter.

Many people wonder what value there is in celebrating the Reformation, as our Church of Scotland is doing in Edinburgh next week, and as all Churches throughout the land are asked to do within their own parish Presbytery. There will be no value unless it stimulates among some of us a new appreciation of our religious and national liberties, and inspires us to a new devotion to the cause of Christ’s Kingdom in the land and in the world. Sir Walter Scott described how Old Mortality spent his life in removing the moss from the gravestones of the Covenanters and renewing with his chisel the inscriptions which had been half- defaced by the hand of time. It was a pious task, but scarcely more than that, unless the names of the martyrs which his zeal kept readable acted as a call to faithfulness on the part of those living today.

Dr. John Highet, Lecturer in Sociology in Glasgow University, is very shortly to publish a book; "The Scottish Churches,A Review of their State 400 years after the Reformation". In this book he states that three out of every five adults in Scotland are members of a Christian Church. But he points out that careful enquiry shows that two out of every three members of the Church of Scotland are not attending Sunday worship regularly, and this he says is "a record that ill becomes a national Church." This of course is an overall picture and is not true of certain parishes and congregations. I was recently preaching in a Church in Bearsden where people have to attend half an hour before the Service if they wish to get a seat, and it was a very inspiring experience to listen to a thousand people singing a psalm to one of the old traditional tunes.

In Langholm we are not holding any public meetings to celebrate the Reformation, but the Sessions of the Old Church and of the Erskine Church have approved holding a United Communion Service in the afternoon of Christmas Day, in the Old Church, when Revd. Dr. Cameron Dinwoodie and I will share in the conduct of the Service. There will be no Communion Cards issued for this Service, and the invitation to attend and partake will be to all who love our Lord Jesus Christ.

Minister’s return visit to Blackburn

During the past month I was absent from my pulpit in Langholm Old on the weekend of 25th September, and on that Sunday the congregation was delighted with a return visit of Mr. David Herd who commended himself so warmly to the congregation during the vacancy.

I travelled south to Portsmouth on Friday, 23rd September, to conduct the wedding on the following day of the Revd. Peter M. Dawes, minister of the Portsmouth North End Presbyterian Church. I had a very special interest in this happy occasion as Peter Dawes was for some years my assistant in Portsmouth. He is now moving to become minister of Carcroft, near Doncaster. Then on Sunday, 25th September I returned to my previous Church at Blackburn to conduct the Harvest Thanksgiving Services. St. George’s has maintained its good congregations during the vacancy and will soon be appointing its new minister. Sunday was a special day known as Gift Day Sunday, when the people and organisations are given an opportunity to help the Church Treasurer to balance accounts. The Offering for the day was such that more than satisfied the Treasurer’s hopes. In special gift day envelopes they received £2l0 and in the ordinary weekly offering £254 13s. 6d. which I had the opportunity of intimating to the congregation at the close of the Evening Service. Presbyterian Churches in England have no endowments to support the ministry, and heavy demands are made upon the generosity of the members. But the people in Blackburn, largely a Scottish congregation, love their Church and travel long distances to attend Sunday worship.

While at Blackburn I was able to arrange for the Church Youth Club to come on a visit to Langholm on Sunday, 26th November, when they will be received and entertained by the Members of our Youth Fellowship. There will be a coach load of probably about thirty lads and girls, and they will join with our young people in a Youth Rally at the Evening Service. The Blackburn Youth Club will of course wish to return this hospitality by inviting the members of our Youth Fellowship to go on a visit to St. George’s, Blackburn at a later date. It is good for the young people of different Churches to meet in this way, and this is something we hope to encourage among Churches in the Hawick and Dumfries Presbyteries.

Celebration of the Sacrament of the Lord’s Supper, and Admission of New Members

On Sunday, 30th October, we will celebrate the Sacrament of the Lord’s Supper at the ll.45 Morning Service, and again at 3 p.m. At the Morning Service we will also witness the first communicants, confirming their baptismal vows, and being received into the full membership of the Church. We hope for a full attendance at the Morning Service. Any who wish to come into full Church membership by transfer or restoration of membership should let me have their names as soon as possible. I will also be glad to have names of any who would like Private Communion in their homes or hospital on the following day.

Remembrance Day Service in November

Sunday, 13th November is to be observed throughout the land as Remembrance Sunday, when our people are asked to observe the two minutes silence at 11 am. when we remember the fallen in the two world wars. On that Sunday we will commence the Morning Service at 10.45 a.m. to enable the congregation to be assembled for the two minutes silence at ll a.m. In the afternoon of that day a special United Service of Remembrance will be held in the Old Church at 3 p.m., to be attended by members of the British Legion, and when T.A., and Youth organisations are invited to attend. I have been invited to give the address at this Service, and others taking part will be Revd. Miss Bonnar, B.D., the Revd. Dr. Cameron Dinwoodie, and the Revd. Hugh Drummond of Eskdalemuir, who is Chaplain to the Langholm British Legion.


Much I have appreciated the help of the elders in taking me round, and how much I appreciate the warm welcome accorded me by all our people. In the first week of October I am visiting Mr. Ewart’s district, on the second week with Mr. Neill, the third week with Mr. Hendrie, and the fourth week with Mr. Hosie.

Parish Magazine

In this issue of the Magazine we give a complete list of the Magazine distributors. This enables any one wishing to have it delivered to them to know who to approach. I wish to correct my statement in last month’s issue regarding the cost. At a recent meeting of the distributors along with the Church Treasurer, it was decided to leave the monthly charge at what it was previously, namely 6d. monthly for the Parish Magazine and Life and Work inset.

Flowers for the Communion Table.

On the recommendation of the minister the Session has approved the appointment of Mrs. M. Armstrong as Convener of Flowers. Mrs. Armstrong will now be responsible for supervising the list of donors of flowers, and when necessary see to their distribution to sick or aged. And here may I express a word of very warm thanks to the flower donors. The flowers are always so beautiful, and do so much to enrich our Sunday worship.


I am sure that all the people of Langholm join with us in congratulating Miss Davina Irving, in Hope Hospital, on attaining her 98th birthday on Friday, 16th September. In closing may I say how much we regret the departure of Mr. and Mrs. A. A. Banks on their removal to Moffat. In thanking them both for their good services to Church, Sunday School and Women’s Guild. we wish them every happiness on Mr. Bank’s retirement.

With warm greetings to all who read this letter from TOM CALVERT, Minister of Langholm Old Parish Church.

Langholm Old Parish Church Women’s Guild

Whenever the nights start to draw in, our thoughts turn to Guild activities, and from the Syllabus for the 1960-61 session, it would seem that the ladies have a busy and interesting time ahead in the coming months.

At the invitation of the Erskine Guild, members of Langholm Old attended a special Dedication in the Erskine Church on September 27th The speaker was Mrs. Anderson, Hawick, and her address was a great inspiration to those present. After Mrs. Anderson’s talk, a most excellent tea was served in the Church Hall.

The Opening Meeting of the Langholm Old Guild took the form of a social evening on 28th September. The Rev. Tom Calvert officiated, and Mrs. R. K. Neill extended a welcome to members and friends.

Mrs. Banks who for the past four years has been President of Guild, and is now leaving the district, was presented with two tubular outdoor chairs, as a mark of appreciation of her services to the Guild. Miss Jeannie Graham in a few well chosen words handed over the gifts with the sincere good wishes of the Guild members.

The rest of the evening was given over to entertainment.

Mrs. Jean Davidson and Mrs. Betty Little accompanied by Mrs. Morrison, sang a number of songs. Mrs. Little also gave a recitation, and a snappy and humorous duologue was put over by Misses Brenda Morrison and Lila McVittie. This item was not only produced by the two young ladies, but composed by them as well!

The next meeting is on October 11th, when Mrs. R. K. Neill will give a report on her visit to the General Assembly. At this meeting the office bearers for the coming session will be elected, and the Financial Statement for the past year’s working read and considered.

On Tuesday, 25th October, Mrs. Armstrong, Briery Hill, Ewes, will be coming along to show her films and give a talk on her travels in the Middle East. This should be a very interesting meeting.

An "Old Folks’ Night" will be held on 8th November, and further details will be given about this .... etc.

To All Young People of Langholm.

As many of you will already know, the Youth Fellowship has been revived once again in Langholm, largely due to the interest and enthusiasm shown by Mr. Calvert.

One or two meetings have already been held, but these were simply to organise the running of the Fellowship for the coming Winter. A small committee was formed and a programme for the first two months has already been compiled.

The first meeting takes the form of a social evening and will be held on Sunday, 9th October at 8 p.m., instead of the usual 7-30, owing to the Harvest Festival Service in the Church. Other events during the session include the showing of coloured slides, record nights, panel games, such as "Any Questions", and we are also to have a visit from the Youth Fellowship of Mr. Calvert’s old congregation in Blackburn.

A very full and varied programme has been arranged and we hope to have many of our old friends with us, and as many new ones as possible. On behalf of the committee, then, I should like to welcome all young people to the Fellowship during the coming session.

JIM GRAHAM (Secretary).

The Boys’ Brigade

The Boys’ Brigade meets on Friday evenings for weekly parade, and on Sundays at 10.55 a.m. for Bible Class. On Friday 30th, the enrolment night was held when 15 new boys came along to join the Company. The Company is now 56 strong including officers.

Old Church Badminton Club

The Annual General Meeting was held on Thursday, 29th September, when there was a good attendance. Mr. W. G. Smith was appointed Chairman, Miss Lyla McVittie Treasurer, and Miss Brenda Morrison as Secretary, with Archie Irving, Billy Irving, and Mr. and Mrs. Henry Erskine as the Committee. The Club meets on Thursdays at 7 p.m. in the Church Hall. Membership fee ٟ per annum.

Church Calendar


16th—11.45 a.m. and 6 p.m. Revd. Tom Calvert. Flowers—Miss Ina Irving. First Communicants Class after Evening Service.

23rd—11.45 a.m. and 6 p.m. Revd. Tom Calvert. Flowers—Mrs. Wm, Smith. First Communicant Class after Evening Service.

30th—11.45 a.m., 3 p.m. and 6 p.m. Revd. Tom Calvert. Communion and Admission First Communicants at Morning Service. Second Table of Communion at 3 p.m. Communion Thanksgiving Service at 6 p.m.


6th—11.45 a.m. and 6 p.m. Revd. Tom Calvert. Flowers—Mrs. Gordon Morrison.

13th—10.45 a.m. and 6 p.m. Revd. Tom Calvert. Flowers—MrsMurray. United Remembrance Service at 3 p.m.



4th—Archibald Douglas Irving, son of Mr. and and Mrs. Irving, 5 Holmwood Drive.

4th—Kathleen Ellwood, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Ellwood, 4 Kirk Wynd.

28th—Robert William Hyslop, son of Mr. and Mrs. Hyslop, Colyn Cottage.

28th—Neil Hyslop, son of Mr. and Mrs. Hyslop, Colyn Cottage.

28th—John Nelson Hall, son of Mr. and Mrs. Hall, Westwater Cottage.

28th—Douglas Hall, son of Mr. and Mrs. Hall, Westwater Cottage.


2nd—Alison Fletcher, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Fletcher, l2 West Street.

2nd—Anne Hendrie, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Hendrie, Cleuchfoot.

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