Plymouth Mechanics' Institute (1861)

The following letter from Devonshire is dated Dec. 16

The prayers which have been for many months made for Plymouth have had an abundant answer, and God has commenced a glorious work here. The interest excited among all classes by Mr Henry's preaching is intense, and very many souls have been brought to the Lord Jesus. The meetings were densely crowded, and people of all classes were there; the gay worldling, who came from curiosity; the salt-righteous church-goer, who came to criticise; the sceptic, the scoffer, and the poor anxious inquirer, were all to be found there, and many were led by God to feel a need of that Saviour, were directed to Him and found Him. Every meeting bore its fruit, and as the week wore on, the addition of the happy faces of those who had found peace at former meetings was visible amongst the crowds who came to hear the glad tidings. I gave you a short account of last week's meetings (No. 126) and stated that the number of conversions had been very large. This week's work has been even more blessed. On Thursday morning the Mechanics' Institute was densely crowded, and many professed to find peace. That evening our dear brother, Mr Henry, preached in the great room in Ebrington-street to men only, of whom there were above 1000 present. The room was filled, and it was a truly imposing sight. Some of the men stood up and told the circumstances of their own conver­sion, which were very interesting; and the reading of the text, "Be sure your sin will find you out," went with deep import to many a heart. A very large number of the men were under deep conviction of sin and remained to be spoken to by the Christians present, and many went home happy. On Friday morning Mr Henry held a meeting in the same place for young converts and inquirers, and we have reason to believe that more came to know the Lord there than at any of the previous meetings. A great many came to the house of the friend with whom Mr Henry was staying to inquire the way of God more perfectly, and the Lord graciously revealed Him­self then to nearly all who came to seek Him. The Christians in Plymouth are rejoicing at the answer God has given to their prayers; and when dear Mr Henry took leave of them to go to Ireland, many deep, heartfelt prayers were offered up that God would lead him to come here soon again. Truly the fields are white to the harvest. Pray ye the Lord of the vineyard to send more labourers into his harvest.

From the 'Revival Newspaper', Volume VI, page 6.

The Lord has again led our dear brother T. Shuldham Henry to Plymouth and has blessed his testimony abundantly. The large room in the Mechanics' Institute is filled to overflowing every night that he preaches; even the stairs and passages are filled, and hundreds of people have to go away for want of room. Very many remain every night to be spoken to, and numbers go home rejoicing in Christ. It is wonderful to see the change that comes over the faces of some of those dear people, when they, for the first time rest their souls in the finished work of Christ. The look of distress and anxiety gives place to one of joy, or sometimes to one of settled peace—a look quite unmistakable to those who have seen much of God's great work in these wondrous days. We have cause for deep thankfulness to God for what he has done in Plymouth now; let us have something more to thank him for besides, and in this we know we shall be heartily joined by all who love the cause of Christ. The question is often asked, "How do the converts stand?" We can answer it, and say that those who believed in the Lord Jesus Christ when Mr Henry was here a year ago, have held fast to the profession they then made, and have indeed become "new creatures." And nothing gave our dear brother Mr Henry more joy, than to see numbers of well-known faces, all saying that they felt Jesus more precious to their souls every day of their lives. God has also used his seven addresses published in a little book, to bring souls to himself. We have met with some who have been brought to the knowledge of Christ through reading them.

From the 'Revival Newspaper', Volume VII, page 171.

Additional Information

The Institute used to face down Princess Street, but the area has been re-developed.

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