Cottage, the first meetinghouse
|Beanstown Mission Hall, Lisburn.|
|Pictured at Beanstown Mission Hall are people who took part in the thanksgiving and final service on Sunday afternoon 27th July 2008. L to R: Jim Hamilton, Derek Greenaway, Rev Ronnie McCracken, Trevor Matthews, Margaret Sharkey, Robert Watson, Rosemary Campbell and Wesley Campbell.|
The final service at Beanstown Mission Hall was held on Sunday 27th July 2008 and services will be held in homes and other venues.
Regrettably, the hall will be demolished due to major road reconstruction in the area.
Leaders: Robert Watson and Mrs. Margaret Sharkey.
Telephone: 9266 5996
First Sunday of each month at 3.30pm.
Prayer Meeting each Wednesday at 8.00pm.
|Wesley Campbell, now age 92, attended meetings at Ivy Cottage in the late 1910’s, and supplied the historical information about Beanstown Mission Hall.||This excellent 1915 photo of the Campbell family shows Wesley Campbell, age 2, sitting on his mother’s knee.|
|Pictured on Sunday afternoon 6th
November 2005, are some of the people who gathered for worship
each month at Beanstown Mission Hall.
L to R: (front) Billy McCleery, Margaret Sharkey, Robert Watson, Wesley Campbell and Rosemary Campbell - Organist. (back row) John Spence, Sammy Law, Harper Kirkpatrick, Jean Kennedy, Betty Kirkpatrick, Annie McKeown and Jim Reid.
In the early 1900’s, Mr William Orr, a member of Magheragall Presbyterian Church began holding afternoon meetings in the living room of his home at Ivy Hill Cottage on the Ivy Road, Derriaghy. The meetings were well attended for many years. When Mr Orr moved from Ivy Hill to a small farm at Beanstown he had no room on his farm large enough for Gospel meetings. He approached a Miss Boomer and asked for permission to rent part of an old hand loom weaving shop in a row of buildings on the Beanstown Road; she approved and a Sunday afternoon Gospel Meeting commenced here in about 1920. Very soon this meeting place became too small so he rented the room next to it and took down the dividing wall making one large room.
In 1921/2 a Gospel Mission was held, led by Mr. Tommy Haire. Mr Haire was a plumber by profession and was well known in those days as the ‘Preaching Plumber.’ Numbers continued to grow and the full use of the hall was granted.
In October 1923, the Faith Mission Pilgrims were invited to hold a Gospel Mission in the hall. Led by Miss Joan Harper from Scotland, the six-week Mission was so popular that separate meetings were held for children in order to accommodate the numbers of adults attending. During the Mission the fellowship at Beanstown witnessed a ‘Mini Revival’ and as a result of this, the Prayer Union was formed. They met on Wednesday evenings at 8.00pm and these meetings together with the Sunday afternoon Gospel Meetings continued until Sunday 27th July 2008, when the final service was held at Beanstown Mission Hall led by committee members Mr Robert Watson and his sister, Mrs Margaret Sharkey. Regrettably, the hall will soon be demolished due to major road reconstruction in the area but services will continue in other mission halls.
Mr Wesley Campbell
Mr Wesley Campbell, who took part in the final service on Sunday 27th July 2008, supplied the history of Beanstown Mission Hall. A lifelong Methodist, his full Christian name is John Wesley, named after the founder of Methodism. Wesley was born on 2nd July 1913 and when being interviewed, he explained that as the only surviving founder member, he was probably the only person who could have supplied this historical information.
In preparing this article I went with Wesley to Ivy Cottage, the first meetinghouse. Although renovated and with a modern extension added, it has still maintained many of the characteristics of the original old cottage. We met the present owner and had a most interesting chat about what the cottage was like in the early 1900s. Wesley asked to see the room where the meetings were held and recalled as a young boy coming through the porch and joining the packed gathering of worshippers in the front room of the house.
Wesley also recalled with great clarity being saved on 26th October 1923, at the age of just 10, during the Mission at Beanstown Mission Hall led by the Faith Mission Pilgrims. I reminded him that he had explained earlier that no children attended those meetings to which he quickly explained that his father on that occasion had cataracts and was awaiting eye treatment. As he was unable to see properly, the ten year-old Wesley was asked to accompany his father to the Mission (the 1915 black and white photo of the Campbell family reproduced above shows Wesley, age 2, sitting on his mother’s knee). Wesley’s father was caretaker of the Lisburn Water Works, and he can clearly remember his father taking him by the hand from their home at the Water Works to the Sunday afternoon Gospel Meetings at Beanstown Mission Hall.
Wesley enjoyed a lifetime of Christian fellowship at Beanstown and during the final service on Sunday 27th July 2008 he gave thanks for many precious and happy memories at the Mission Hall.