Aberfeldy Free Church (1860)

SIR.- Five weeks ago, I received a note from one of the ministers at Aberfeldy, informing me that a considerable awakening had taken place there, commencing some ten days previous. He invited me to pay them a visit, which I had the pleasure and privilege of doing a few days after.

The evening of my arrival the lower part of the Free Church (where the meetings have been held, under the joint charge of the Free Church and Independent ministers), was filled. Three strangers addressed the meeting that evening, and about ten o'clock, the services having terminated, an opportunity was given for those in spiritual concern and desirous of being conversed with to remain. About 120 availed themselves of this opportunity. Half of these were in deep anxiety about their souls, the others were apparently Christian friends waiting with those in distress; it was half-past twelve o'clock before the church could be cleared.

The following evening only the two ministers of the place were present, and although the weather during the week was very stormy and wet, the attendance had in no wise diminished. On the second evening a good many also remained for conversation, and on the third and last evening of my visit, although very wet and stormy, the attendance was as large as ever, and at the close a larger number of anxious souls, 70 to 80, remained than on any previous occasion since the commencement, besides a good many Christian friends; several of the latter assisted the ministers in conversing with the anxious.

These inquirers were of all ages, apparently from 15 to 70: One very old grey-haired woman very touchingly said to me during conversation, "Oh, Sir, I never thought that an old body like me would have been in this way." Several very signal trophies of divine grace were named to me, and some of these I conversed with. Almost an entire Bible class of young women taught by a lady were under deep impression, and a number of them hopefully converted.

I conversed with a number of young men among the anxious, from 15 to 25 years of age. Some of these had come from four to six miles on a week evening, and only left the meeting about midnight. The greatest cordiality and brotherly feeling exists between the two ministers of the village. I have received two letters since my return home, copies of which I send to you.A very considerable work of religious awakening has been going on also at Blair Atholl, since the month of August, as also at other places in the surrounding district.

All this is cheering to those who, in the language of the 85th psalm, desire a revival of religion in the land, and long to see David's Son and Lord enthroned in the hearts of the people.

Dundee, 17th November, 1860.

The following are the letters our correspondent refers to:- ABERFELDY, 23rd October, 1860.- My very dear friend,— I am just home from the meeting, and I have to say that the interest is still increasing,

There is hardly a night since you were here but we have new cases of "What must we do to be saved?" It is most cheering to see so many young people seemingly in deep concern and not a few of them by all appearance rejoicing in the blessed Saviour. I have had no strangers assisting us since you were here. Mr M-- and I take the services night about and we feel quite comfortable. 

ABERFELDY 11TH NOVEMBER 1860, My dear brother, it is about twelve o'clock and am only just home from the meeting. I really know not what to say, where to begin and where to end. The work here is most wonderful, instead of the interest decreasing it is always increasing. There are new cases of persons under deep concern every night and has been so every night since you were here. I conversed with a great many tonight who csme from Fortingall, ten miles and only left as i came home. It would indeed delight your soul to look at the mulitude of seemingly saved persons as they spread themselves over the whole of the lower part of the Free Church who were not long ago darkness, but now light in the Lord. Oh what a sight how delightful to have eyes to see them, and ears to hear the testimony they bear to the truth of God's love to souls and His salvation now enjoyed by them.  It is my impresion that we are to have a whole winter of this blessed work. There is still one great united cause between Mr --- and myself and we get on very pleasantly together. I address the one night and he the other, and in conversing with the anxious, he takes the one side of the house and I the other. And the movement is not confined to this place now, but has extended to Fortingall, Glenlyon, Kenmore, and Lawers. I was at Kenmore last Monday; Mr--- came purposely for help and I went with him, and truly the Lord is working there. I heard two young men in prayer, the one after the other who, not three weeks ago, were both ringleaders in all evil but who are now as bold in the work of the Lord as they were formerly in the work of Satan. Oh! what hath the Lord wrought! It is my turn to address the meeting tomorrow night - Monday. I cannot give you any idea of the number of converted, there are so many, and the whole community seems to be pervaded by the Spirit, and without there are many adversaries, and this of itself is one proof of the reality of the work.

"The Wynd Journal," November 24th, 1860.

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