Ricard Weaver home Manchester (1896)

Richard Weaver continued to have meetings all over the country, so long as he was fit enough to accept the invitation. As time went on he would normally only be only able to work twelve or thirteen weeks a year. On his travels in 1893, he reported from Cambridge, This is the hardest place I was ever in. I have no after-meetings. I just speak and close the meeting, and leave them with the Lord.’ He visited Glasgow annually but was sad because several of his friends from his original campaign there had turned their backs on him due to the ‘trial’ he had experienced early in the 1870’s. On his final visit there in 1896 he conducted a mission at St George’s Cross Tabernacle, and while there he bumped into an old friend, the pastor of Free St Mary’s Govan. That meeting led to an invitation to the Manse and then one for him to conduct an evangelistic mission in the church. Weaver readily promised to do so. The pastor was held in high esteem in church circles in Scotland, and when the news got around that he had invited Weaver, many other requests came in for his services. Sadly Weaver was never able to fulfil his promise, and he would never be able to accept the offers that came in, but his heart full of thankfulness as it appeared that his old friends had ‘forgiven’ him.

Not long after this he caught a chill and it was soon clear to him that this would be his final illness. He gave instructions for his funeral and his tombstone. An hour before he died, he sent a telegram to the son of a dear friend that said, ‘Just going home shouting Victory.’ He died with his family around him.

Here are some excerpts from people who knew Weaver:

‘The precious, cleansing blood of Christ was his constant theme, and he put the whole energy of his being into it…myself and my family were struck with his refined gentleness. The refining power of the grace of God was eminently exemplified in him.’

Dr Barnardo said, ‘…Henry Bewley admired Richard immensely and believed in him. No one, indeed, who came near this remarkable man could doubt his deep sincerity. His unconventionalism shocked not a few: yet it was native to the man, it simply marked his reality. His sincerity glistened like a diamond…. I myself have felt why men were thrilled, and why women surrendered themselves to the magic of an oratory that was untutored indeed, but which was touched as by a live coal from off the heavenly altar. I have never heard anyone, never expect to hear anyone on earth to compare with him in his matchless eloquence…. His singing was something altogether by itself, unique, standing apart. It was as effective as his speech.’

‘…He had a voice of great power and flexibility, a tender heart, a fine command of simple Saxon language, the power of exposing sin and shams of every kind, a mind thoroughly saturated with the word of God, a clear, strong grip of the truth, and an experience in gospel work almost unrivalled…. The gentleness of our dear friend, his geniality, his generosity, made him live in the hearts of hundreds whom he and we will never know of until the great day.’

‘….But though a great sufferer, he had a wonderful knack of burying his sorrow. He had nothing of cynicism or moroseness, or of morbid unhealthiness of disposition. Our children all loved him. Their eyes brightened whenever he entered the parlour…. And Richard Weaver was faithful as well as wise. He was a kind-hearted friend. He was exceedingly willing to oblige in every way possible all who sought his company.

Richard Weaver was a man who dedicated his life to prayer, preaching and evangelising. He was a former collier and therefore a preacher for the working man. Thousands came to the Lord through his ministry. Although technically a Primitive Methodist, he would minister wherever he felt God wanted him to go. He gave his time to God, he gave his money to God, he gave his family to God and he gave his health to God. And as a result, what great fruit was poured out through him.

Additional Information

There is now an electricity substation here.