In 1858 the church had 30 conversions which is a lot for the Shetlands. The pastor, Sinclair Thomson, wrote, 'None of the number are fully fifty years of age, the greater number are from twenty to twenty-one... We have had a Sabbath school for the last 47 years, the number upon the roll being generally an average of 60. In the course of three months back, it has increased to over 120. Our place of worship is now overcrowded upon the Lord's day and in fine weather many who come cannot find room. We recognise the present movement here, more immediately as being God, as we have not resorted to any means which we have not practised for many years. Nor is there the least room left us for human boasting.'
Evidently, most of them had not been brought under spiritual conviction through the preaching. Some were struck by hearing some of those recently converted engaging in prayer in a common prayer meeting. Some by a few pithy remarks made by someone during a prayer meeting. Some again by the ardent exhortations of a young convert while travelling on the road together and some by reading the Scriptures, when the threatenings of God in his book went to their hearts like daggers.
By late spring 1859 there were another 20 baptisms. 'This success in one Baptist Church in Shetland is unprecedented... The Lord is still doing wonders of mercy in this corner; so we expect soon to have another occasion for baptism. I cannot say the exact number, but they will not be under eight and most of them are young men from 22 to 27 years of age.'
BHMS reports 1859 and 1860.
With thanks to Tom Lennie's, Scotland Ablaze, pages 41 and 42.