Dear Brother,—I was in Westmoreland for a fortnight, at Windermere and Kendal, and you will be pleased to hear of the gracious work which the Lord wrought in those places. I arrived in Windermere on the 4th of March; and we held meetings every night that week, in the Assembly Rooms, capable of holding not more than 300 persons. This place was far too straight for the people who flocked to hear the gospel, and this being so scattered a population makes it the more remarkable. During these meetings, the Lord's presence and blessing were realized in a truly blessed manner. Some of the very vilest sinners in the neighbourhood, and also some of the most respectable, nominally religious persons, were broken up and brought to Christ, the Lord giving them a true sight and sense of their guilt and danger.
On the Saturday evening, Robert Somerville, Esq., my host, invited a number of Christians, and others, to tea and social intercourse, at his own house. About sixty were present in his drawing-room, and the Lord's power was upon us. While pressing home God’s truths, the Lord wrought most powerfully on the minds of all present. Dr.--- began to sob aloud. He was fairly broken up. The world had had a powerful hold on him. He had been a regular attendant at church, and a most upright man, but had never been converted, never known his sins forgiven through faith in the precious shed blood of Christ. But now the Lord had cut the strings of all that bound him to earth. He was brought there and then on the spot to Christ, and when I went and spoke to him, in the presence of all the people, I found him deeply impressed by a sense of the love of Christ. God had given him a sight of Jesus, and his heart was filled with joy and peace through believing. It was indeed a touching scene; many were weeping. Captain--, only very recently brought to Christ, came up to his friend, took hold of his hand, and sobbing aloud, said, in broken accents, " Old fellow, I'm glad to see it, I'm glad to see it." The company broke up, I believe, never to forget that evening party. On the Sunday, it was a blessed day. Many were converted. I had to leave on Monday for Kendal, where I was appointed to preach, but it was thought wise to get together those who had been converted in Windermere and meet them for tea. My dear wife stayed at this meeting, while I went on to Kendal. Sixty-four present in that social meeting boldly testified that God for Christ's sake had pardoned their sins; that they could rest upon the finished work of Christ on the cross.
At Kendal the Lord was with us. I had visited this town some six weeks before, and had had much blessing, so that the people were somewhat prepared for these services. I preached in the Town-hall for some nights, and the place was densely packed. The partitions were taken down, and the various rooms adjoining the hall were also crowded, and every spot that could be made available for standing-room, even down to the street. The Lord gave power in testimony, and most blessed results followed. It would be impossible for me to enumerate the many cases of conversion which came under our notice. Suffice it to say, that we could scarcely get to close the meetings. On Wednesday, we were there till after eleven, and on Thursday till past midnight. In these meetings there was the entire absence of all excitement, but there was the calm, solemn, realized presence of God.
On the Friday, a tea-meeting was given to those that had received blessing in these meetings, to which the dear friends from Windermere were also invited. Upwards of 300 sat down to tea in Fell-side School-room. In the evening we had social intercourse, and liberty was given to any to speak who had received blessing. Upwards of sixty spoke, and testified that God for Christ's sake had pardoned all their sins. At the close of the meeting, I proposed that the Kendal friends should escort those from Windermere down to the railway-station, for a special train had been hired for them. About 400 of us marshalled through the town to the station, singing as we went, " The coming of Jesus, oh! sinner, and draws near." This was given out two lines at a time, together with a solemn scripture, calculated to arrest the attention of the unconverted. After a word of prayer in the station, the Windermere friends got into the train, and we sang altogether the hymn, "In loudest strains this note shall swell," &c.; and while singing this the train carried them away.
The company now dispersed, and I hurried to my lodgings, exceedingly tired. Scarcely had I taken off my boots, however, before I heard singing; the whole of the Kendal people had gathered in front of the house, and my host came in and said, " It's no use, they won't go away until they have seen you and bid you good night.” I went down in my slippers, and after speaking a few words, asked them to be satisfied with my bidding them good night altogether, when they struck up singing, "Shall we ever all meet again." After this they quietly dispersed and I retired, weary in body, but praising the Lord for the manifest blessing He had vouchsafed through the preaching of Jesus.
From the 'Revival Newspaper', Volume VI, page 170.
The school building still exists.