|Lisburn Christian Workers’ Union Committee. L to R: (seated) Joseph Lockhart (Secretary), Rev Albert Griffith (Honorary Vice President), David Seeds (Chairman) and Robert Watson (Assistant Secretary). (back row) Jean Kennedy, Mary Moore, Robert Moore (President), Michael McNeilly, Margaret Sharkey and Joyce Healy (Treasurer). Missing from the photo are Hazel Borland and Isobel McComb||Christian Workers’ Union Hall, Lisburn, opened in 1936.|
Christian Workers’ Union Market Street, Lisburn.
Saturday evening meeting: 7.30pm
Sunday Gospel meeting: 8.15pm
|Joseph Lockhart||Secretary||(Tel: 92673279)|
|Robert Watson||Assistant Secretary||(Tel: 92665996)|
The Lisburn Christian Workers’ Union was founded in 1922 and each Saturday evening they held a meeting in the Boys Hall, Wardsborough Road, which was well attended. On Sundays, after Church Services, the local churches were responsible, each in turn for one month, to conduct the Christian Workers’
The Rev. W. P. Nicholson mission opened in the Orange Hall in 1922, but so great was the numbers that it moved to Railway Street Presbyterian Church.
Even this proved too small, and people were glad to find seating on the windowsills. Men turned out in large numbers, and hundreds were saved - drunkards and gamblers included, whose lives were totally changed. This was a revival.
Sometime later, the Marashalle, daughter of the Founder of the Salvation Army, accompanied by her daughter, as Soloist, conducted an Evangalistic Campaign in Railway Street Church. The C.W.U. also held a very successful Campaign in Stevenson’s Garage, Castle Street, in 1930, conducted by Mr. Alex. Kerr, Belfast, and very large crowds attended In 1933, a tent mission was held at Wallace Avenue conducted by Mr. Jock Troop, Glasgow. A gifted preacher and lovely singer, he drew large crowds and many people were saved.
In 1939, a tent mission was held at Lambeg Corner, conducted by Mr. Alex. Kerr. The 1939-1945 war had already commenced as the Mission got under way and regulations required that no lights be visible from outside, so the tent was lined with thick dark paper to hide the light. This too was a great mission and many were saved.
In 1936, the Welcome and Christian Worker’s Union Mission, Lisburn, formed on the amalgamation of the Welcome Mission (founded 1898) with the Lisburn Christian Worker’s Union (founded 1922) and the present hall in Market Street was opened in October 1936 for the carrying on of the work of this United Mission.
The original church, built about 1774 and rebuilt 1789, was formerly an old Wesleyan Preaching House, and it is believed that in the year 1789 the Rev. John Wesley preached in it, as in his journal, under 6th June 1789, it is stated: “In the evening I was at the new Chapel at Lisburn, the largest and best furnished in the North of Ireland.”
After many changes of user and usage, (the hall was, in 1914, “The Lisburn Electric Picture Palace”) the Building under C.W.U. ownership, reverted to its first use, the preaching of the Gospel.
The Lisburn C.W.U. is Interdenominational, and all Christians are welcome, and their help will always be greatly appreciated. It is affiliated to the Irish Alliance of Christian Workers’ Unions and Mr Robert Watson and Mr Joseph Lockhart represent the Lisburn Union at meetings of the Irish Alliance.
The above article is taken from “A Brief History” of the C.W.U. written by Theo. McKibben.