Horningsham Congregational Chapel (1862)


The Revival was introduced by our kind friend and brother, Mr Goldsbrough, of Mere, the reading of which has been blessed to me and other Christians in this place. We have desired and prayed for times of refreshing, and in the greatness of his mercy the Lord has granted our request. For some months past several have appeared to be under religious impressions, but not one came forward declaring what the Lord had done for his soul. It was impressed upon my mind that under the Divine blessing some extra efforts might be beneficial to the people; and one day I thought I would rejoice if, in the providence of God, an evangelist were sent to us. The next day I received a letter from Mr Goldsbrough stating that arrangements were making for an evan?gelist to visit several villages in the neighbourhood and that if I wished he would come to Horningsham. This proposal was gladly accepted; and, accordingly, Mr Pointer, formerly of Woolwich, came and held several special services. There was a good number present at the first service, and great attention was paid to the address delivered. I spoke to one man who for some time had been under impressions, and to his brother, who had been blessed under a sermon I had preached about three weeks before. Nothing more worthy of notice occurred at this service. Another meeting was held on Saturday evening. Mr Pointer addressed the young on the following Sabbath afternoon. It soon became manifest that a gracious influence was upon the meeting, and after the address several young people remained to be directed to the Lamb of God, who beareth away the sin of the world. In the evening the chapel was completely filled, and again the word was with power. Some appeared to be leaked down. Another service was held on Monday evening, when our school-room was insufficient to con?tain the people, and, accordingly, we went into the chapel, which was soon filled. Requests for prayer were sent in, and again God was present in his power to save. An after-meeting was held, at which great distress of mind was manifested. In?quirers were invited to call at my house on the following morning, and Mr Pointer and myself were fully engaged in directing them to Jesus. There was a crowded meeting on Tuesday evening, the people filling the aisles and the gallery-stairs. Some found peace and others were awakened. This was the last service Mr Pointer intended holding; but as the work was prospering, he was induced to remain over another Sabbath. We established inquiry-meetings; a good number attended them. On the Sabbath the meetings were again very numerously attended. Some few more had now found peace, while others appeared in deeper distress. The result of the work is seen in increased attendance on the services, our week-evening meetings being attended by three times more than formerly. Mr Pointer has paid us another visit and conducted several services. He left us on the 24th of March for Cheddar, where we have followed him with earnest prayer. On that evening we had no less than 250 at our prayer-meeting; and at the Thursday evening service, although the rain poured down incessantly, we had 180. There are now forty who profess to have found forgiveness. For the greater part, they are young people. There are others who are now under conviction. God has heard prayer in a remarkable manner. Those who have found peace are thoroughly happy, earnest in prayer, and zealous in their endeavours to bring others to the house of God and to do good in other ways. The most thoughtless and some very hardened ones have been brought to Jesus. There were several girls in Mrs Mansfield's Bible-class whose conduct was so bad as to lead to their expulsion who now give satisfactory evidence of true conversion. Teachers in the Sunday-school are rejoicing over the salvation of some in their classes, as also of two teachers. Deep seriousness has prevailed in all the meetings. There has been nothing of what is generally understood by excitement. Even when the greatest number been sembled they departed as quiet as the ordinary congregation. It is true the young people are so happy that sometimes one band goes one way singing, "Christ for me!" and another goes another way singing, "There is a fountain filled with blood;" and also true that one who has made a profession for many years has growled out, "Why don't 'em go home quiet?" nevertheless it cannot be called excitement, unless happiness be called by that name, and therefore we do not repress it. May I beg an interest in the prayers of the Christian readers of the Revival on the behalf of those who are now under impressions and those who have found. the Saviour; also that the work of the Lord may still further extend in this village, and that the good hand of the Lord may be upon our dear brother Pointer where he now is. J. P. MANSFIELD.

From the 'Revival Newspaper', Volume VI, page 126.

Additional Information

J P Mansfield was pastor of the Congregational chapel; it professes to be the'oldest non-conformist chapel' in England.

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