Congregational Church Cleckheaton (1875)

"Sunday morning the very large and delightful Congregational Church was full in every part. The afternoon service was yet more crowded. It was especially for the young people and children. No one could have failed of feeling the mighty power of God present both morning and afternoon. In the evening the scene was quite beyond the common. The great audience were fairly bowed and many of them broken down, under the weight of God's presence. Seven hundred or more remained for the after-meeting. The better to deal with them, they were separated into three different meetings. As many earnest inquirers as could get into a large room below, were invited to follow Mr Boardman there, while others went into another room to receive instruction from another person, and the rest remained where they were.

"The rooms below filled up immediately; a few home questions were put to them, such as would have been asked of any one of them alone, and they answered by signs; and when the final one was put,* Will you—do you now accept the Lord Jesus as your Saviour? ' a large part of them answered, ' I do.' And then, when those who had accepted Christ were requested to give place to those waiting outside, a hundred or more rose at once and went out, and immediately their places were filled by others. Again the matter was put in the simplest and most direct way possible, and the Holy Ghost seemed to fall on the people with the words, and nearly all present gave testimony to Christ as having saved them there. This is a meagre and imperfect statement of some of those material facts of that day and evening. The last day will declare the sum total of the conversions which took place.

"The next day, a mill owner, who had been brought into full trust in the blessed Saviour during the Sunday morning service, opened his mill for a special service for his work- people on Monday, giving them for it the last three-quarters of an hour of the work-time of the day. Then he went from mill to mill and secured a similar arrangement in all the mills. The Lord went before him in every instance. To his amazement, when he proposed the matter to one mill owner, wholly unaccustomed to attend any place of worship, he said at once, ' O yes, certainly I have done it already. My work people came to me to know if they might have the use of one of the rooms half an hour after closing time, and I said, * Yes, and half an hour before too, and I'll not dock the time.' '

From 'Life and Labours of Rev. W E Boardman' by his wife.