Langholm Old Church Parish Magazine

N0.100                       Price 1/2 - with LIFE AND HOME - 6d LOCAL MAGAZINE ONLY                        SEPTEMBER 1969.

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. Donald Lamont, Rosevale 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 September: “Were there not ten cleansed? but where are the nine?” St. Luke 17. 17.

My message for September is about the grace of gratitude, a virtue which is by no means common and which has to be cultivated. For the tendency human life is for people to take everything for granted, to take everything as if we were entitled to "it as members of a family or the community.

There is a lot said in the Bible about gratitude, about saying thanks. The Psalms are full of thanks and praise. “Bless the Lord, O my soul; and all that Is within me, bless his holy name. Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits: Who forgiveth all thine iniquities; who healeth all thy diseases who satisfieth thy mouth with good things”. St. Paul says “In everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving”. And here in our text Jesus commends the one leper out of ten, the ten per cent, of the population who return to say thank you.

Let us look at this story of the cleansing of the ten lepers as it might and should have been.

Our Lord, going up from Gallilee to Jerusalem, somewhere along the ‘road was confronted by the appalling sight of ten lepers. When they recognised Jesus they lifted up their voices and cried, “Jesus, Master, have mercy on us”. And our Lord replies, go show yourselves unto the priests”. And then we read that “as they went they were healed”. And then what happened? Realising that they were cleansed from a disease that was a living death, they were overcome with such a tremendous surge of gratitude that they began to sing? the Psalm 103, “Bless the Lord O my soul and forget not all his benefits, who Ihealeth all thy diseases, who satisfieth thy mouth with good things”. And then turning in their tracks they return and find Iesus, and casting themselves at his feet cry out, O blessed Master, heaven sent healer, thanks be to God for all that you have done for us.

Now that is how this story of the cleansing of the ten lepers might and should have been, but that is not what St. Luke tells ‘us. St. Luke says that only one of the ten came back and said thank you to Jesus. The other ninety percent. were never heard of again. Ninety per cent. had no word of gratitude for all that Jesus had done for them. And that is just typical of human nature, only some ten per cent. possess this rare grace of gratitude. The other ninety per cent. take everything like health and the blessings of medical science, freedom and security such as has been deprived the people of Czechoslovakia for the past thirty years, for granted and without any sense of appreciation.

In this September message I want to say something about the value the Grace of Gratitude has for ourselves and for others when it is cultivated and practised.

First it contributes to the cheer and gladness of those to whom it is expressed.

How cheered Jesus was when this one leper returned to say thank you, and how hurt he was by the lack of gratitude in the nine. Gratitude brings cheer to those who receive it. Some American business men were once talking about this Grace of Gratitude when one of them said, “I shall always be grateful to my old school teacher, thirty years ago, who gave me a love of English literature.” One of the men asked if he had ever thanked his teacher for what she once did for him? He replied no, but said he would do so. So he wrote a letter of thanks and appreciation and posted it to an address he thought would reach her. Eventually he got a reply, written in the uncertain hand of an old lady. In her reply she s-aid, “I can't tell you how much your letter has meant to me. I am now ‘in my eighties, living alone and feeling very lonely. You will be interested to know that I taught in school for fifty years and yours is the first note of appreciation I ever received. It came to me on a cold winter morning and has cheered me as nothing has for years”.

The exercise of gratitude has a softening and regenerating power over human nature.

Dr. Hans Lilje, who was a prisoner in a German concentration camp, has told us that though bitterness and hate prevailed throughout that dreadful place, he found that a simple “Thank you" when given for his meagre rations, or even when his chains were fastened on him at night, seemed often to make his guards seem ashamed of themselves and their brutal conduct. One night the guard who had chained him came back and said, “Why did you thank me for a thing like that?” “Well”, Dr. Lilje replied, “you have done your duty, haven’t you?" The guard departed shaking his head and murmuring to himself.

Witnessing gratitude in the lives of others less fortunate than ourselves delivers us from self-pity.

The late Dr. Sangster has told of once going to a certain ohurch as a visiting preacher, and learning in the vestry from the church officer that some old people from a Home for the Blind were occupying the front seats. He wondered if they would like to choose one of the hymns and asked the church officer to enquire from them. While he was away, Dr. Sangster went over in his mind what hymns they might choose. Would it be “Art thou weary, art thou languid, art thou sore distressed?” or would it be “Lead kindly light amid the encircling gloom?” Then the church officer came back and said. they would like to sing the hymn 413 (Methodist Book). that great hymn written by Joseph Addison.

“When all Thy mercies, O my God. My rising soul surveys, Transported with the view, I’m lost. In wonder, love and praise."

We have this hymn in our Church of Scotland Book, number 26, and if you read it through. remember that these people were blind, and yet they wanted to sing.

“Ten thousand thousand precious gifts, My daily thanks employ; Nor is the least a cheerful heart, That tastes those gifts with joy."

Another point, the cultivation of the Grace of Gratitude is the shortest road to what we call human happiness.

Over two hundred years ago a book was written by a wise and noble man called William Law. His book is entitled, “A Serious Call to a Devout and Holy Life”, and in it he says this about finding happiness. “If any one would tell you the surest and shortest way to all happiness, he must tell you to make a rule to yourself to thank and praise God for everything that happens to you. For it is certain that Whatever seeming calamity happens to you, if you thank and praise God for it. you will turn it into a blessinig.” This is what happened to a young widow about whom Dr. Rathbone Oliver writes. He tells of a young doctor friend who met an untimely death. He was also well acquainted with the young doctor’s wife. They had been married only one year when the young doctor died from a chance infection from an autopsy. Dr. Oliver said he never knew two people who loved and understood each other so perfectly. He confesses with shame that he did not go to the funeral. He who had written so much about how to overcome sorrow was afraid to meet the ycung widow, because he felt he hadn’t the right words to speak. He expected to find her completely broken down. Then one day he met her accidently She was wearing no mourning, and there was nothing about her to suggest sad depressive hopelessness. Her face was alight with something different from mere happiness. He managed to mumble a few words about why he hadn’t written her and for not coming to see her in her great grief. She smiled at him, and then said, “Ah, doctor, you don't understand. I miss Dick, of course I miss him. But I haven’t room in my heart for anything but thankfulness and gratittude to God. I had a whole year of Dick’s love, a whole year of perfect happiness. No other woman has had as much as I. If I live to be eighty I shall not have had time to thank God enough. And wher. I stop living, Dick and I will begin living together again."

Another point, a thankful heart cannot for long remain an unbelieving heart.

Rossetti, the English poet, says that the worst moment for the atheist is when he feels grateful and has no one to thank. And Katherine Mansfield the novelist, wlho had rejected religion, when she went to Switzerland marvelled at the natural beauty surrounding her; she wrote to a friend: “If only one could make some small grass-hoppery sound of praise of thanks to someone. But who?" On the other hand when George Matheson, early in his ministry, and beset by coming blindness fell a prey of doubts and was on the point of abandoning his ministry Then there came to him a wonderful mood of grati- tude for so much in life. and led him to write his much loved hymn.

“O love that wilt not let me go I yield mv flickering torch to Thee I give Thée back the life I owe That in Thine ocean depth its flow May richer, fuller be."

One last point a heart filled with gratitude has to find some outlet.

Many find this outlet in worship and singing praises to God, and I suppose the reason why many never worship God on Sundays is that like the ninety per cent. of the ten lepers they feel no sense of gratittude for all God has given them and all others have done for them.

Others find this outlet by giving themselves to some worthwhile service to others. For example. a young girl I have read about fell into a deep pool and was on the point of drowning when rescued by her brother. She never said much about her feelings but when she was old enough she trained as a nurse because she felt she wanted to do something for others in repayment for what had been done for her. And today she is serving as nurse in a missionary hospital, to give something to others in return for what was once done for her. Dr. Theodore Ferris has a story of a traveller out in Africa watching a nun dressing the wounds of a leper. The wounds were revolting. gruesome and repulsive. As he watched her, he said. “I wouldn't do that for ten thousand dollars". She replied, “I Wouldn’t eitherl She was not doing it for dollars but out of a heart of gratitude for all her Lord and Master had done for her by His suffering and death on Calvary, and rem b em enng H1s words, Inasmuch as you do unto the least of these, ye do it unto Me".

This was the mood of Isaac Watts when down in Southampton he wrote his great hymn.

“When I survey the wondrous Cross On which the Prince of Glory died, My richest gain I count but loss, And pour contempt on all my pride. See from His head, His hands, His feet Sorrow and love flow mingled down; Did e’er such love and sorrow meet. Or thorns compose so rich a crown? Were the whole realm of Nature mine That were an offering far too small Love so amazing, so divine, Demand my soul, my life, my all,”


Dear Fellow Member.

Autumn Fair

You will see from the local press that the Autumn Fair, to be held in the Buccleuch Park on Saturday, 14th September, and to be opened at 2.30 p.m. by Mr. Hector Monro, includes many events that should make it an exciting and successful day. The Children's Fancy Dress Parade organised by Miss Mary Dalgliesh, will start from the Station entrance at the Townfoot at 2 p.m. The Car Treasure Hunt, organised by Mr. and Mrs. J. Barnfather, will leave from the Kilngreen and finish at the Kilngreen. The time of starting and other details will be made known in the press. The Beauty Contest, organised by Mr. E. C. Armstrong, will be judged by Provost and Mrs. Iames Grieve, Mr. and Mrs. Derek Batey and Mr. and Mrs. Hector Monro. The Barbecue which will continue throughout the afternoon, is to organised by Mr. James Wilson and Mr. William Geddes. The Langholm Town Band will lead the Fancy Dress Parade, and play in the Park during the afternoon.

We appeal for gifts to support the various stalls, as noted below.

Work Stall: Mrs. Calvert, The Manse. Produce Stall: Mrs. Geddes, Upper Mumbie. Candy Stall: Mrs. Donald Lamont, 31 Rosevale Street. Bottle Stall: Mrs. Carter, 5 Drove Road. Cake Stall: Mrs. Tom Coulson, Four Winds, Hallpath. Tombola: Mrs. Jim Kyle, Kyleakin, Wauchope Place. Parcel Stall: Miss Lila McVittie, 5 Wauchope Place. Jewellery Stall: Miss Rita Cairns, 1 Elizabeth Street. Teas: Mrs. Elaine Anderson, Mary Street; Flowers: Mrs. Margaret Smith, Clifton, Hallpath. Mile of Pennies: Mr. Gavin Graham, Masonic Buildings. Handkerchief Girl: Miss Ann Young, 83 Caroline Street. Young Wives Stall, Mainly for Children: Mrs. Elma Aitken, 20 Charlotte Street. Games: Mr. John Scott. 54 William Street.

The Church will be open all day on Friday, 13th to receive gifts.

Car ferry service will be operated to help older people attend the Fair, and all wishing to be picked up should inform me, or any member of the Committee.

Sunday School

The Sunday School commences a new session on Sunday, 1st September and we will welcome Children from three upwards. We are in need of three additional teachers and I will be very pleased of offers to help in this splendid work. We are losing three of our young teachers at this time, Jean Hyslop, who moves to Glasgow to commence training; Robert Hart, who goes to Strathclyde University; and Julia Kulik, who goes to Edinburgh University. Many thanks for the good service they have given and best wishes for their future

Women’s Guild

The Guild commences the new session on Tuesday, 8th October with a Business Meeting and viewing holiday slides of members and friends. The new syllabus Wlll shortly be available, and should provide a very interesting series of meetings

Young Wives Fellowship

The Young Wives commence meetings on alterna- tive Tuesday evenings to the Guild, the first meeting being Tuesday, 3rd September at 8 p.m. and the second meeting of the month will be Tuesday, 17th September.

The Young Wives are holding a Iumble Sale in the Hall on Friday, 4th Qctober at 6 p.m. They will wel- come gifts of jumble and the Hall will be open on the Friday afternoon to receive same

Fourth British Conference of Christian Youth

One of our young Elders, Mr. John Scott, was sent to this conference representing the Presbytery of Hawick. About a thousand young people from all over Britain and overseas attended, and partook in the programme “Living ’68 Style". From all reports it was an exciting consference and the delegates attending were sent home to do something about the problems of world poverty, and a new understanding of the meaning of Christian discipleship. As John Scott is Secretary of the Langholm Youth Club, the Youth Club Committee is to support a United Service in the Old Parish Church on Sunday evening, 13th October. The Service to be led entirely by youth, and the address given by John Scott, giving us his impressions of the discussions at the conference in Edinburgh.

Over 60 Club

The members of the Over 60 Club led by the hostess, Mrs. Flint, attended the Evening Service on Sunday, 25th August in an act of thanksgiving for the weekly use of our Church Hall. This was tremendously appreciated by the minister. The Club went on a delightful outing to Moffat on Tuesday, 27th August, two coaches being filled. The perfect weather and meal at Moffat together with the drive through St. Mary's Looh district made it an outing that will be long remembered. We owe a lot to the foresight and drive of Mrs. Flint in organising so many events for the older people of our community.

Classes for First Communicants

Classes will commence on Sunday, 15th September immediately after the Evening Service and continue each Sunday until 20th October. I will welcome young people of 14 years and over, and may I say that attending these classes does not carry obligation to become members of the Church at the present time. Any older people who are not communicant members and cannot attend these classes should let me have their names and I will arrange private instruction. I will also be glad to have the names of any wishing to join the Ghurch by certificate of transfer or by restoration of membership.

Special Services

During the coming winter we plan to discontinue the Guild Dedication Service and have the Guild lead a monthly evening service. The Young Wives Fellowship will also lead occasional evening services, the next being on 6th October. The Over 60 Club on Sunday, 3rd November, and the Eskdale Young Farmers will lead the Harvest Thanksgiving Evening Service on 20th October. We also hope to have the Langholm Town Band leading a Carol Service on Sun- day, 8th December.

Sympathy with the Bereaved

David Elliot, Glenelg, Walter Street, passed away in the Lochmaben Hospital on Sunday, llth August, at the age of 87. After spending some 40 years in the printing business in London, he returned to his native district and spent many happy years among old friends. He was blessed with good health for most of his life, but owing to deafness has not been in attendance at church for some time. We express our sympathy with his relatives, and our admiration of many of his neighbours for their visits to him and care of him in these latter months of his failing health.

With greetings to all our people.

Yours sincerely

TOM CALVERT, Minister.

F.W.O. July 1967 £58 9 9 1968 £63 12 9

Ordinary 1967 £17 13 9 1968 £19 19 9


The Kirk Session is called to me-et in the vestry on Thursday evening 9th September at 7.30 p.m., followed by a meeting of the Board at 8 p.m.

The Autumn Fair Committee is called to meet in the vestry on Mqnday, 9th September at 7.30 p.m. A full attendance is desired.


August 18, Shaun Campbell, son of Dorothy Park 1 Holmwood Drive.

August 24, Patricia Rose, daughter of Mr. and Mrs Michael Armstrong, 26 John Street.


August l7, James McFarlane Irving, Townhead House, Langholm, to Christine Davidson Zemla, Extonall, Market Place, Langholm.

August 24, Allan Samuel McGimpsey, The Diamonds, Canonbie, to Eileen Mary Hawthorn, 5 Albert Place, Langholm.

August 3l James Ballantyne Little, Sorbie Cottage, Drove Road, Langholm, to Larraine Hogg, 24 Waverley Road, Langholm.


August 11, David Elliot, Glenelg, Walter Street. Age 87.

“Because I live, you too will live”. St. John 14. 19. N.E.B.


September 8, 11 a.m. and 6 p.m. Rev. Tom Calvert. Flowers, Mrs. Dalziel, 16 Braehead.

September 15, 11 a.m. Battle of Britain Remembrance Service. 6 p.m. Overseas Missions Message. Rev. Tom Calvert. Flowers, Mrs. Jean Armitage, Glowrie, Hillside. Class for First Communicants after Evening Service.

September 22, 11 a.m. and 6 p.m. Rev. Tom Calvert. Flowers, Mrs. D. Milligan, 5 Buccleuch Square. Class for First Communicants after Evening Service.

September 29, 11 am. and 6 p.m. Rev. Tom Calvert. Flowers, Mrs. A. Erskine, 35 Eskdaill Street. Class for First Communicants after Evening Service.

October 6 11 a.m .and 6 p.m. Rev. Tom Calvert. Flowers, Miss Ina Irving, 20 Henry Street. Class for First Comrnunicants after Evening Service.