Leicester - Salvation Army (1877)

THE sudden and extraordinary upward bound of the Mission in Leicester will make the past month forever memorable. A large unused warehouse facing one of the main thoroughfares of the town, in the midst of a working-class population, has been taken for our use; and roughly as the place has been fitted up, so far, the people are thronging to see the strange sight. 

We cannot refrain, however, from expressing the delight with which we took part in the services of the day. Beginning at six o'clock in the morning with a triumphant procession from the centre of the town, and ending with a blessed, soul-saving prayer meeting, with four open-air preachings and processions, and four indoor meetings between, the day was as one of the days of heaven on the earth. 

From, 'The Christian Mission Magazine', March 1877, page 67.

God is still wonderfully blessing us here. At nearly every service some souls find peace and go home happy. Hallelujah!

From, 'The Christian Mission Magazine', April 1877, page 98.

Twenty-two men in one meeting testified to His power to cleanse from the last remains of the carnal mind. They had given up drink, dancing and the devil, song-singing, snuff and smoking, foot-racing, dog-racing, pigeon-flying, places of amusement and now were clean men on the road to eternal bliss. They had made up their minds to go to heaven at all cost they were surrounded by their old companions and were very much persecuted at times, but they meant heaven and their old mates understood this. 

...At the close of one service we have had as many as 45 or 50 souls. Three long rows of seekers, right across the Warehouse, nearly twenty in a row, some swearers, some drunkards, some liars, some thieves etc.

From, 'The Christian Mission Magazine', November 1877, page 291.

WE are just closing one of the best years of our lives; a year of peculiar trial and affliction, but one of great victory. Every time we look upon the mass of people that attended the Salvation Warehouse, and upon the number of saved men and women, who mission the streets every night through wet and wind, fog and rain, and all sorts of weather, we exclaim, ''what hath God wrought?" In the last few months. hundreds of precious souls have professed to find peace, and we don't know a church or chapel or mission room in the town but has some of our converts; so that while we keep together a great crowd of blood-washed souls, and have about fifty public speakers, who have been fetched out of the gutters of Leicester.

From, 'The Christian Mission Magazine', January 1878, page 22.

(New people had taken over the station here)

THE white flag of the Salvation Army is flying high in this wicked town. God has been blessing our labours in a wonderful manner. During the last month some of the most desperate characters have been brought to God. Our open-air meetings have been a mighty power for good. Sometimes the drunken rowdies have broken into our ring and swore they would break up our meetings, but thank God they have never been able to do so. We have got down on our knees before God, and they have been as helpless as children before us. Hallelujah!

We have a strong corps of soldiers in the Salvation Army in Leicester. A band of men and women that nothing can stop.

Sunday morning, August 25th was a mighty time. After the service an old man, 75 years of age, came down to the penitent form, cried for mercy, and God blessedly saved him. A short time before, another old man, 73, got saved. They can now both rejoice together. The same evening we had an experience meeting for twenty minutes. Such a mighty meeting I hardly ever saw, we had some quick, mighty Holy Ghost speaking, we sang four tunes, and 105 spoke in that short time and I then spoke for half an hour. God was in the work and in the prayer meeting which followed, twenty-five precious souls wept their way to the feet of Bleeding Mercy, and found salvation through the blood of the lamb. Hallelujah!

To sit and listen to some of the dear men and women who have been saved the last few weeks, is enough to melt the hardest heart. One man said I am an old man, but only young in grace, but thank God my worst hours now, if I have any worst, are better than my best used to be before I was converted to God.

...during the month we had some 120 at the penitent form and we expect to raise some real good sound desperate soldiers for our army out of them.

Brother and Sister White have given themselves to the Mission, and have gone to labour in the North of England as officers in our army and another brother will be off in a few days, which makes eight who have gone the last five months, and thank God we have some more coming on and will be ready by and by.  

...We commenced well for the first Sunday after the War Congress had 35 saved. This sent Bro Morrison, our new Evangelist nearly off his feet. Our congregations get larger every week. Full last Sunday, about 100 standing. Twenty good cases of conversion.

From, 'The Christian Mission Magazine', October 1878, page 269.

BEST months since I became an officer in the Salvation army. Our meetings have been attended with rich influence and Pentecostal power. Glory has filled our souls and grand Hallelujahs gone from our hearts.

...Sunday, Nov 17th, was a mighty day; we were pelted with old dirty shoes, rotten apples, &c., &c. Nothing daunted, we went on about our Master's business. The drunken rowdies just turning out of the public houses in the afternoon, tried to stop up the street, so that we could not get along with the procession. But, thank God, they did not succeed; we got the victory through the Blood and shouted Hallelujah!

At night the Warehouse was packed with people and then came a mighty smash, forty sin-smitten souls wept their way to the feet of bleeding mercy, and experienced the sweet forgiving love of God, and went home happy in Jesus.

On Sunday night, Dec. 1st, we had a great struggle in the prayer meeting with the powers of darkness, and for some time it seemed as though we should be beaten; but holding on in faith, the Captain of our Salvation came to our help. One brother began to pray, "Lord, we want the power, Lord, we will have the power." Other brethren and sisters took hold of God by faith, at the same time the Holy Ghost came upon us like a rushing mighty wind, carrying everything before it. We erected penitent forms, one for backsliders, one for other sinners, and one for believers who were seeking Sanctification, and all three had their share of patronage. We found at the close of the meeting that twelve had professed to find pardon and thirty purity of heart. Oh, Hallelujah.

The Holy Ghost has come upon us in such a mighty manner sometimes, that many of our people could not bear up under it. Big, strong men, fell helpless on the floor and laid like dead men.

From, 'The Salvationist', January 1879, page 19.

...Whitsuntide was a grand time with us. \Ve commenced operations at 6 a.m in the open-air Whit-Sunday. Although very wet all day our soldiers were at their post, kept their powder dry, and consequently were ready for any attack made by the enemy. Several wounded, and some healed and enlisted on the spot.

Whit-Monday.- We had a grand field-day in the Abbey meadow, and marched to a sumptuous mess at 5 p.m., and afterwards, a sharp engagement for three hours, in which, nine were taken prisoners from the devil and set free in the pardoning love of God

...Yes, the war is still going on in Leicester, and scores since Whitsuntide have made a full surrender and given themselves to God, and the latest is we are opening a second Salvation Barracks in the town under the command of Captain Sarah McMinnies.

From, 'The Salvationist', August 1879, page 212.

For future reports look at 'The War Cry' which began in January 1880.


Additional Information

The Hall was near here towards the end of the street.

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