William Booth - Hayle (1861)

Catherine writes from Hayle ‘The work gets better and better, the whole place is roused…. William preached last night in the Wesleyan Chapel, crammed to suffocation, and I in the New Connexion, well filled, even though I was not announced. We had a glorious Prayer Meeting in both chapels, about thirty cases in the Wesleyan and twenty with us, some of them the most precious ones I have ever witnessed. I could fill sheets with the account of one gentleman which would thrill you with interest and make you shout the praises of God.’ And later, ‘On Wednesday night William preached in the largest Wesleyan chapel, about half a mile from the other. It was crammed out into the street. I should think there were 1,800 people inside, and I never witnessed such a scene in my life as the Prayer Meeting presented. The rail was filled in a few minutes with great strong men, who cried aloud for mercy, some of them as though the pains of Hell had actually got hold of them! Oh, it was a scene!’


Catherine wrote, looking back on this time, ‘This unusual noise and confusion were somewhat foreign to our notions and practices. William believed strongly in everything being done ‘decently and in order.’ Indeed, I think he somewhat mistook the application of this direction.’ Catherine’s biographer writes about this time in Hayle, ‘Thirty years have elapsed and yet it is common to meet with the fruits of that revival in all quarters of the globe, and to receive letters from those who date their spiritual birth from these meetings.’

Additional Information

The Booths were given the use of the Wesleyan Chapel that stood on this site on the corner of Prospect Place and Chapel Lane.

Related Wells