Bow Road Hall - D L Moody (1875)

The proceedings of Sunday were followed on Monday evening by a prayer meeting of all denominations, which was very cheeringly attended; there were more than four thousand present, although neither Mr Moody or Mr Sankey were there.
The rector of Stepney, Mr Bardsley (who inaugurated the services with prayer) presided over the meeting and the address was delivered by Rev John Kennedy of Stepney Meeting. It is much to be regretted that the harmony has been disturbed by a most untimely discussion on "Baptismal Regeneration" in the East-end papers. Surely these brethren have followed the example set them in the Agricultural Hall, where a well-known opponent of infidelity instantly declined a public and sneering challenge to debate on the ground of unfitness of time and place.

The services on Tuesday and Wednesday evenings showed how ready and willing the Lord is to hear and answer prayer. On both evenings Mr Moody preached, and Mr Sankey sang to audiences that stretched the capacity of the huge building to the utmost and still left disappointed multitudes without. Mr Moody's subject was, “The Son of man Is come to seek and to save that which was lost,“ – a compendium of the whole Scripture from beginning to end in 15 words of one syllable each. It is remarkable how many of the most glorious truths and passages of God's Word are also composed of the simplest words. Mr Moody's usual facility of dramatic illustration was displayed on both evenings; to some extent to an unappreciative audience, many of whom annoyed speaker and hearers by leaving during the addresses. On the second evening, the pressure of the crowd without broke the door down and the inflow of the multitude stopped Mr Moody's discourse. Accepting the inevitable, he coolly gave out the 10th hymn, which was sung while the incomers were quieted and placed. He then resumed his discourse; and at the close, as on the previous evening, many hundreds arose to be prayed for. All these were skilfully marked as lawful prey by the Lord's watching ones near them and were engaged in conversation after prayer. The net result of the second evening was about 300 who remained when all but themselves were dismissed.

On Thursday and Friday evening the address was given by the Rev W Howie of Glasgow and on Thursday Mr Sankey sang at the Agricultural Hall at the commencement of the service, and at Bow-road Hall at the end. There were from three to four
thousand present on Thursday evening when Mr Howie preached on "Zaccheus" taking the especial words "Make haste and come down." The discussion was very powerful, earnest, and effective; and about two hundred and fifty inquirers remained after the first service was ended.

There were not more than half as many present on Friday evening; the hall was terribly dismal and cold, only partially lighted, and much disappointment was felt at the non-appearance of Mr Sankey, who was announced to be present, but did not appear. Mr Howie spoke of “Nicodemus” in the various phases of character, exhibited by him: in the course of his remarks, narrating the conversion of his own father in 1859, who had been an elder of a church for some years, but had not been really brought unto the light. The well-known words, “born once, die twice; born twice, die once," were used of the Lord for his conversion to Himself. The discourse lasted for an hour, and the whole service forty-five minutes more, and a very short time after the blessing was pronounced there were not a score of people remaining in the hall.

It was announced before closing that Mr Moody would hold a service on the following (Saturday) evening at eight o'clock, when wives were recommended to get their marketing done, and husbands to give them money for that purpose earlier than usual.

"The Christian," April 22nd, 1875.

Additional Information

The Hall was built on Bow Common especially for the mission. The marker shows the approximate spot. Ropery Street was the northern boundary of the common which no longer exists.

The Bow Road Hall is a capacious frame building, sheathed with corrugated iron, which was erected for these meetings in the East End of London; it is in easy reach of a vice-infected, poverty-stricken district, which Mr Moody thinks ‘ comes nearer  hell than any other place on earth/ A thick carpeting of sawdust, laid upon the ground, forms the floor. It is seated with cane-bottomed chairs, of which, I am told, it holds over nine thousand. Scripture texts in white letters two feet high, on a background of red flannel, stretch along the several walls.

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