Origin of the Revival
"A correspondent residing at Castlegore, Connor, sent us the following interesting particulars:— 'In the immediate neighbourhood of Kells is a schoolhouse where, assembled every Friday evening during the Autumn of 1857, four men (James McQuilikin, Jeremiah McNeilly, John Wallace and Robert Carlisle), who are comparatively young, held a 'believer's fellowship meeting' — their special object being prayer to God that He would bless their labours in connection with the prayer meetings, and Sabbath Schools, which they had organised. For some time there appeared no answer to their prayers but, like the Patriarch of old, they were determined to wrestle with the Almighty until He would bless them. At length God, Who is ever the hearer and answerer of the supplications of His people, graciously assured them that the fruits of their labours would be seen springing up around them. "'About the beginning of January 1858 a youth, who had attended a class in a Sabbath School taught by James McQuilikin. (who was one of the first affected by this movement, and is now employed as a missionary among the people) was the first who was brought to the saving knowledge of the grace of God. Others were converted, one by one, until they were numbered by tens. The movement became so successful that, in a short time, it numbered its hundreds, now thousands and, in all human probability, tens of thousands will be the result of that small beginning, this verifying the prophecy 'a little one shall become a thousand'. "'Having spread so wonderfully about Kells, and Connor, and the surrounding country, in other places the people began to enquire after the marvellous workings of God there. Many, from distances, came and amongst these was one man named S.C. who sought very anxiously for the salvation of his soul, and prayed earnestly for it. God heard and answered his prayers. Like the woman at the well with her Lord, he was determined to tell others to 'come and see' that Saviour Who had done so much for his soul. At first, he traced his steps towards home so that he could tell his family, consisting of a widow mother, brothers, and sisters, of what the Lord had done for him. His warnings to them were not in vain for God blessed his effort, and made him the instrument in His Hand of turning them from sin, and unto holiness. He did not rest satisfied with the good work, which he had been the means of commencing at home, but he told his neighbours around of a loving Saviour able and willing to redeem them, if they would but look to Him for salvation.
"The Ballymena Observer" 18th June 1859.
This is now a private house.