Ballyreagh (1843)



1843. A very extensive and blessed religious awakening also took place on the Maguiresbridge circuit. One Sunday evening a little girl, the daughter of Mr. Robert Orr of Ballyreagh, while singing hymns, became suddenly and strangely affected, was put to bed, and on regaining consciousness began at once to praise God. Such was the impression made on the mind of her father that, on the following morning, he sent for a brother prayer-leader, John Grainger, and they arranged at once to hold a prayer-meeting. This was so largely attended and accompanied with such Divine power that services were continued night after night. Grainger was joined by another prayer-leader, James M'Clintock , and through the blessing of God on the labours of these devoted men, the work spread in all directions, and the whole country was roused. Topped Mountain, Tempo, Ratoran, and Pubble were all greatly quickened, while at Ballyreagh there was not. a Protestant family unblest. James McClintock, the principal agent in this glorious work, was a young man of superior natural ability, mighty in the Scriptures, and intensely earnest Amongst those converted were James Wilson, James Edwards, and Andrew Armstrong of Ballyreagh, and Thomas Hurst of Topped Mountain, all of whom subsequently entered the itine­rancy. The superintendent of the circuit, Mr. William Beatty, writes, "Our March quarterly meetings were all greatly owned of God. We held five of them, not one of which was unattended with signal good. Between forty and fifty persons professed to have received the blessing of pardon." This good work, and consequent lack of sufficient accommodation for those who desired to attend the services, led to the erection of the chapel at Pubble.

'History of Methodism in Ireland', Volume iii, by Crookshank, p333-4.

1855. A very gracious religious awakening took place in connection with the Primitive Wesleyans at Ballyreagh, and like the similar work twelve years previously, commenced in the family of Mr. Robert Orr. He having taken seriously ill, his son Robert, then a young man of twenty-one, became seriously anxious about him, prayed earnestly for his recovery, and the Lord merci­fully granted his request. He then resolved to enter upon a new life, went to class-meeting, where the power of God descended, and at a love-feast held in Lisbellaw found peace in believing. A blessed work thus began which soon spread, and a large number were led to the Saviour. These included five brothers of Robert Orr, two of whom, Thomas and James, as well as Robert, afterwards entered the itinerancy; William M'Cabe, a Romanist, and Chris­topher Wilson of Cavancarragh. The good work also extended to Ballinamallard and Knockmanoul, where "the overwhelming power of saving grace" appeared to overturn all opposition, and before the end of the year hundreds of souls were converted to God:"

'History of Methodism in Ireland', Volume iii, by Crookshank, p467.


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