Langholm Old Church Parish Magazine

LANGHOLM OLD PARISH CHURCHchurchFounded 1703, present Church built 1846

N0. 13. SEPTEMBER, 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 September " Cast thy bread upon the waters. for thou shalt find it after many days" Ecclesiastes 11.1.

Letter from the Minister

My dear Friends,

Our Motto Text for September reminds us how, in ancient days the Egyptian farmers obtained their annual harvest. Egypt was a country that rarely knew the ravages of famine because of the annual rising of the Nile. Every year between June and September the waters of the Nile overflowed and covered large tracts of desert land, leaving a thick deposit of mud on the land. As the waters began to subside the farmer would row over them in his boat, scattering his seed so that it might take root and grow before the land dried up into desert again. This sowing must often have looked like the waste of precious grain, but experience showed it wasn't wasted. "Cast thy bread upon the waters, for thou shalt find it after many days."

Farmers today do much the same thing. Because of the sustained rainfall of our climate we do not need to wait upon the overflowing of some river. On the other hand, farmers today have to take much the same risk in throwing away their bread if they want an abundant harvest. And every year they find the risk is justified and God's ancient promise fulfilled that " as long as earth remaineth seedtime and harvest . . . shall not cease."

With our Harvest Festival Services in September every year we celebrate the fact that farmers were justified in taking the risk of throwing away their grain. The reward of the risk of throwing away good seed is that it brings forth fruit. " some an hundredfold, some sixtyfold, some thirtyfold". As a famous English preacher of the last generation, Peter McKenzie, said in a prayer at a Harvest Service, "Lord we stuck in a potato and dug up a boiling". And of course what is true of throwing away the seed in springtime is also true in the whole of the business world. If a man wants to prosper in business he needs to be ready to throw away money on risky projects like advertising, and then in time he gets his own back multiplied and increased. A certain manufacturer has told how to advertise his goods on the front page of a certain newspaper for one morning only it cost him £1,500. But he said it paid his firm to do this, and that throwing away that money in advertisement brought an ample return in increased business. So in business as in sowing seed in springtime we get by giving. and I think this is what Jesus meant when He said "Whosoever shall save his life shall lose it; but whosoever shall lose his life for my sake and the Gospel's, the same shall save it".

What is true of sowing seed in springtime, and what is true of risky adventure in business is also true of the giving of ourselves and money to the work of the Church and the advance of the Gospel. I am sure we only prosper when we go forward in this spirit of risk and giving of ourselves. The money or the lives or the effort that seem to be thrown away on evangelistic work at home or abroad is never wasted or lost. I have read of a comparatively poor Scottish woman who used to give an annual contribution to the London Missionary Society. Her friends used to laugh at het and tell her she was just throwing her money away, but her answer was always, "No, l am casting my bread upon the waters". The time came when this woman's two sons both joined the army and were both sent to India. Though they were stationed far apart it so happened that they were both converted to become good Christian men through a missionary sent out to India by the London Missionary Society. When one of them came home and told his mother of the great change that had come into his life since he had become a follower of Jesus Christ, and of how he had been led to take this step, she exclaimed, "Yes it is my annual contribution to Missions. I cast my bread upon the waters, and I have found it again after many days".

It is exactly thc same in the work we are seeking to do in the Churches here in Langholm. It demands a lot of sacrifice in the giving of ourselves and of money but the harvest is sure. lf we sow in faith we will reap in joy. The work done as a Sunday School teacher, or in helping our various youth organisations to bring young men and women under the influence of Christian ideals, the work done in the Guild or Choir or Eldership, and by no means least the man or woman who sets an example of being a regular worshipper, it is like casting your bread upon the waters, the results will certainly be seen after many days.

Passing of Provost John W. Hyslop, M.B.E.

We were all very distressed at the sudden news of the passing of Provost Hyslop. Many tributes have been paid to his character and splendid service to Langholm, and I would like to add my personal appreciation of his friendship and my sense of loss in his passing. I came first to know him at a Common Riding Concert in the British Legion Club in 1960, and from then on knew him as a friend whom I found great delight in meeting. We had many happy conversations about life in the East and about various local interests. His fine sense of good humour and his charity of outlook upon people made him the kind of friend one felt better for meeting. I saw him several times during his last illness and found him always anxious about the wellbeing of the work he represented in Langholm, and particularly about the preparations for the Common Riding. He fully intended being present at the Service in the Old Parish Church on the Sunday before the Common Riding and taking a part. Our deep and sincere sympathy goes out to Mrs. Hyslop and family in their and our own great loss.

Langholm Common Riding

On the Sunday previous I found great pleasure in welcoming to a special Morning Service Cornet lan McVittie with his Right and Left Hand Men, members of the Common Riding Committee, and members of the Town Council. The lessons were read by Cornet lan McVVittie and James Maxwell, Vice-Chairman of the Common Riding Committee. There was a very large attendance, and we felt very honoured in the grand response to the Service. The Common Riding Day was one my family and I will always remember as a very happy day. We felt very proud of the smartly turned out Cornet, so well known to us. and who had been one of my lirst communicants at the last Communion. He carried through his duties with a fine dignity. The weather was certainly in favour of the day, and as I stood with my family at the top of Airkinholm Terrace and watched the procession of horsemen and horsewomen gallop up Whita Hill, led by the Cornet, it confirmed in me an impression I had already formed that Langholm really has something in its Common Riding to maintain with pride each year.

Boys' Brigade Camp

Our 1st Langholm Company of the Boys' Brigade had a happy camp at Stranraer. On the Sunday they had a Service in the Camp conducted by the officers of the company and the boys enjoyed hearty singing in the open air. On Monday most of the boys sailed from Stranraer to enjoy a visit to Northern Ireland. Wednesday was Visitors' Day, when a number of people from Langholm including Rev. Dr. Dinwoodie, attended. The weather became very unfavourable on the Thursday evening and the camp was transferred to the halls of the High Kirk in Stranraer. At the close of the Camp presentation was made by the boys to Mr. Nelson Millar in appreciation of his good services as camp cook.

At the same time the 11th South Shields Company of the Boys' Brigade was in camp in a field just beyond the Old Manse, Langholm, by the kind permission of John Henderson of Murtholm. The company paraded to the Old Parish Church on the first Sunday and to Erskine Church on their second Sunday, when Dr. Dinwoodie conducted the Services. I had pleasure in conducting two Drumhead Services on the Sunday evenings, which were supported well by people from Langholm. On the last evening the camp sing-song was attended by a number of people from the town and the Girl Guides who assisted greatly in the platform programme. It was a grand experience for the lads from South Shields to live under canvas in Langholm.

United Services for August

I am glad it has been possible for us to have United Services again with Erskine Church and to find the attendances so encouraging. I was glad to see united choirs in Erskine, and to have members of the Session and of the Youth sharing in reading lessons in the Old Parish.

Presbytery Quinquennial Visitation

You will recall that in the ruonth of April our Church received a visitfrom the Hawick Presbytery Superintendence Committee, and that the Convener, Revd. Stephen Goodbrand, M.A., of Hobkirk conducted the morning worship on Sunday, l6th April. Since then we have received the report and findings of the Committee's visit, which in the main is congratulatory and encouraging. The report does make two recommendations in the name of the Presbytery; (a) that we seek to implement the Covenant System. This means that we seek to get as many of our people who are on the higher rate of Income Tax to give their contributions to the Church under Deed of Covenant and thereby enable our Treasurer to regain the income tax paid on the amount for the benefit of the Church. (b) that we should adopt the Model Constitution as a means of encouraging more members to take an active part and responsibility in the work of the Church. TheModel Constitution was produced after the Union of the Church of Scotland and United Free Church in 1929 chiefly with a view of helping larger congregations of the Church of Scotland to meet their new responsibilities. Previous to the Union the fabric of the Church of Scotland Churches and Manses had been the responsibility of the Heritors, and with the Act of Union they were relieved of this responsibility and it now became a responsibility of the individual Church and congregation. Up till then the Kirk Session had been responsible for both the material and spiritual affairs of the Church, but the framing of the Model Constitution for parishes quoad omnia makes provision for the appointment of a Congregational Board, which includes the Kirk Session plus a number of members of the congregation, not more than the number of Elders, and duly elected at a meeting of the Congregation. This is something which all parishes will require to adopt sooner or later, but the Visitation Committee feel that with a membership of close on 800, it would be for the progress and advancement of the Old Parish Church in Langholm to spread the responsibility of administering the affairs of the Church over a larger number of people.

Hall Fund and Reconstruction Work

All the organisations using the Hall are invited to contribute £ to the Church Treasurer towards the cost of provision of additional toilets. The work will be completed by the end of this month. Thereafter we have to consider at a meeting when all organisations using the Hall will be represented, what further work is most urgent. I mentioned in the last letter of the July/August Magazine that the Sunday School has done an exceptionally wonderful job in raising over £100 for this work. During the summer the Hall Talkie Projector has been away for complete renewal of the amplifier at a cost of close on £50, and I wish to thank the Women's Guild, the Youth Club, and the Fellowship of Youth for each donating £10 to meeting this cost. During the first week of September I am inviting members of organisations using the Hall to assist in giving same a thorough clean up and repair to any broken seats or tables, and will appreciate volunteers coming forward to help in this work.

Services and Meetings in September

The Youth Club commences new session next week, meeting on Saturdays in the Church Hall, from 7-30 p.m. to 11 p.m. The Sunday School takes up again on Sunday, 11th September, meeting with the Morning Service. The Minister's Bible Class will meet on Sunday evenings after the Evening Service, 7-15 p.m. to 7-45 p.m., and commencing on Sunday evening, 10 th September. The Youth Fellowship will hold the first meeting for the new session on Sunday, l7th September, meeting in the Hall at 8 p.m.

The Harvest Thanksgiving Sunday will be the 24th September. The Morning Service will be led by the children of the Sunday School, when the children will bring gifts of flowers and fruit. The Evening Service will be attended by members of the Eskdale Young Farmers' Club, when members of the Club will read the lessons. After the Service the Young Farmers' Club will be entertained in thc Church Hall by the Youth Fellowship. As previously, we invite gifts of flowers, fruit and produce for decoration of the Church at the Harvest Services, and gifts can be left at the Church any time on Saturday, 23rd September.

Parish Visitation

My plan is to commence visitation of the congregation of the Old Parish Church on the week commencing 10th September in Holmwood. On the week commencing 17th September in Holmwood. On the week commencing 24th September in Eskdaill Street and Eskdale Place.

Sympathy in Bereavement

We all join in deepest sympathy with Mr. and Mrs. Tom Irving of 2 Mary Street in the loss of their daughter Caroline. I have not known any family to bestow a more wonderful love and devotion to their child as Mr. and Mrs. Irving gave to Caroline during her days of weakness and helplessness. We know how much they sorrow at their loss and wish them to know how much we feel for them. We also are saddened by the passing of Mrs. E. Robson of 8 Elizabeth Street, who was well known and loved in Langholm. G

ood Wishes for Recovering Health

We are all glad to see our esteemed Elder, Mr. T. McKail, home from Hospital again, and glad that he is making a good recovery. We are also glad to hear that Mr. John Reid of Caroline Street is much stronger again. He has given out-standing service to the Old Parish Church in care of the grounds and looking after the heating of the Church and Hall. We have missed him very much during his recent illness and are grateful for the help given by his son. In the name of the people of the Old Parish, we send him our best wishes and prayers for a good recovery.

With warm greetings to all our people.

Yours sincerely. TOM CALVERT, Minister,

Langholm Old Parish Church Woman's Guild

Now that the summer is nearly over, our thoughts turn towards winter activities, and during the past few months the Guild committee have got a full and interesting programme drawn up for the coming session.

On Sunday evening, October 5th, the Rev. Tom Calvert will conduct a special service ot dedication for the Woman's Guild. The Business Meeting is on Tuesday, October 10th, when the office bearers will be appointed; there are also some vacancies on the committee to be filled. At that meeting it is hoped to have the printed Syllabus to hand for distribution but in the meantime, special attention is drawn to a visit from the Gretna Choral Society on Tuesday, October 24th. A concert will be given in the Parish Church, and tickets at 2/- each will be on sale at the end of September. Guild Members are asked to make this concert as well known as possible, and to interest as many people as can be seated in the Parish Church.

During the coming Session, it is the hope of the Guild to make as much money as possible for the various schemes to which it is committed, and to this end, there will be a special table at each meeting, on which members may put up for sale something they have produced or made.

Youth Fellowship

The opening meeting for the Youth Fellowship will be on Sunday, 17th, at 8 p.m. We would like to see a full attendance when we will discuss arrangements for entertaining the Young Farmers' club on Sunday evening, 24th September.

Minister's Bible Class

The Minister's Bible Class commences on ISunday,10th September, in the Church at 7-10 p.m. The Minister invites young people of the Youth Club and of the Town. The Class will last little over half an hour, and young people will be given a warm welcome, and an opportunity to take part in discussions.



20th W Janice Grace, daughter of Mr and Mrs. Peter Laidlaw. 15 Maxwell Place.

In Memoriam

Caroline lrving, age 3 years, of 2 Mary Street.

"Suffer little children, and forbid them not to come unto Me: forsuch is the kingdom of heaven". Matthew 19, 14.

Church Calendar


3rd—11 a.m. and 6 p.m. Revd Tom Calvert, flowers Mrs. Beverley, 39 Henry Street; Elders —Morning; Archie Smith, William Stuart, R. Douglas, H. Hosie, R. K. Neill and D. Anderson. Evening: R. Black, C. Constable and Youth Fellowship.

10th—11 a.m. and 6 p.m. Revd. Tom Calvert. Flowers: Mrs. D. I. Anderson. 65 Caroline Street. Elders: W. Smith, D. Hendrie, C Constable, M. Douglas, L. Ewart and J. W. Wood. Evening: M. Armstrong, A. Smith and Youth Fellowship.

I7th—11 a.m. and 6 p.m. Revd. Tom Calvert Flowers; Mrs, Dalziel, 16 Braehead. Elders; J. Maxwell, R. T. Robertson, J. Pattie, R. N. B. Noble, J. MacIntosh and H. Hosie. Evening: J. W. Wood and J. Tyman, and Youth Fellowship.

24th—11 a.m. and 6 p.m. Harvest Thanksgiving Services. Flowers: Mrs. F. Armitage, Glowrie, Hillside. Elders: A. Smith, C. Constable, M. Douglas, R. Douglas, R. Black, D, Hendrie. Evening: J. Maxwell, H. Hosie and Youth Fellowship.


lst—11 a.m. and 6 p.m. Revd. Tom Calvert. Flowers: Mrs. D. Milligan, 5 Buccleuch St. Elders; M. Armstrong, W. Smith, L Ewart, J Pattie, R. T. Robertson and R. K. Neill. Evening: A. Smith. J MacIntosh and Youth Fellowship.

8th—11 a.m. and 6 p.m Evening Service Women's Guild Dedication, Revd. T. Calvert. Flowers: Mrs. A. Erskine, 35 Eskdaill Street. Elders; M. Douglas, C. Constable, R. Douglas, H. Hosie. J. Tyman, J. W. Wood. Evening: R. K. Neill, J. Pattie, and members of Women's Guild.