Dunbar Free Church (1874)

A series of evangelistic services have been conducted for some weeks past in the Free Church, Dunbar,
by Mr William Stoddart of Kelso. Mr Stoddart has been regularly assisted by various ministers of the town, and other Christian friends deeply interested in the work of the Lord. Among these helpers may be mentioned Mr Murray, coast missionary; Captain Bird, Adjutant of the Haddingtonshire Militia and Captain Paterson, commanding a detachment of the 64th Regiment. These and others have been very helpful by their prayers and active services. The fervent and powerful evangelistic addresses of Mr Stoddart have been greatly relished by all, and greatly blessed to not a few. The attendance of people of various classes and denominations, encouraging from the beginning, has gone on increasing, and the interest excited has been of a deep and precious kind. The first meeting, beginning at half-past seven, has been generally closed about a quarter to nine, after which a second meeting for the impressed and anxious has been regularly held. From 50 to 60 or 70 have usually stayed to the second meeting and many deeply interesting cases of spiritual distress have been tenderly dealt with by experienced Christian friends. Many young people have been awakened, and to all appearance savingly converted to God. Not a few married people and others advanced in life, have also received the blessing, and profess to rejoice in that Saviour whom they never rightly knew before. The work at these second meetings was of a most interesting and encouraging kind. Some who were prejudiced against them have entirely changed their minds, everything connected with them being so quiet, so solemn and impressive. Nothing in the shape of mere human excitement or sensation has been witnessed, but there have been many evidences of the Spirit of God working powerfully on the heart and conscience through means of the word. It would not be prudent to specify cases. It is sufficient to say, that as far as experienced Christians can judge not a few young persons and others have received real spiritual good and seem to be rejoicing in Jesus. Care has always been taken to tell those who have made a new profession of faith in Christ, that it is only by a consistent Christian life that the reality of their change can be proved. Many of the hymns known by the name of Mr Sankey have been sung with great effect, both at the first and the second meetings. A considerable number of copies of Dr Bonar's little work, "Follow the Lamb," and his still better-known work, God's Way of Peace, have been circulated among the young people, and are eagerly
read. Those who have been awakened, and, as is hoped, savingly impressed, manitest a new and deep interest in religious instruction and have attended the meetings night after night, often at considerable personal inconvenience. In short, the
leading features of the precious evangelistic services that have been held in so many parts of the country have been visible in these meetings at Dunbar. There has been nothing to offend, and much to encourage and cheer the people. It should also be stated, that immediately after the commencement of the evening meetings in the Free Church, a noonday prayer meeting was commenced in the neighbouring schoolroom, and it has been well attended and greatly enjoyed by Christians of all denominations. Dunbar has been repeatedly prayed for at the Edinburgh mid-day meetings, and by Christian friends at a distance. We now see, in this hopeful awakening, a striking and blessed answer to prayer.

"Times of Blessing," Dec 10th, 1874.

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Being converted into flats.

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