© Pathhead Baptist Church, Scottish Charity SC016590

Pathhead Baptist

He giveth power to the faint; and to them that have no might He increaseth strength … They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength.

(Isaiah 40:29,31)

The History of Our Church … contd

In this connection an interesting item appears in the minutes of 31st October 1922. "… the Pastor stated that he had arranged with Mr. Beaton for advertising on a tram bus which was to cost £1."

After three happy and successful years, Mr. Stark left to take up the ministry at Lady Lane Baptist Church, Paisley in May 1924. He was followed a short time later by Rev. W. Fotheringham from Shetland, the membership standing then at 142. However, Mr. Fotheringham’s ministry lasted less than two years and for various reasons the membership began to decline, before being built up again during the ten year pastorate of Rev. Samuel Conway.

It is understood from available records that after the first twenty-five years the ‘fervent spiritual impulse which gave the church birth had not yet spent itself’.

It seems too, that the fellowship, like many other churches of that time, saw its role firstly to spread the gospel but also to be involved in the struggle for better living and working conditions for ordinary people.

Rev. John Robertson arrived from Newburgh in 1937 and ministered over the period of the Second World War. Membership numbers remained fairly constant during these difficult years and although they had fallen towards the end of the war, they quickly recovered during the pastorate of the Rev. Robert Galbraith, who came from Glasgow in September 1944. In fact, it reached its peak - 165 members - in 1948.

The shortest ministry was that of Mr. Robert Carter, a student from the Free Church College. It seems that various difficulties and disagreements arose within the church at this time and it was decided that Mr. Carter should leave. He arrived in July 1949 and left in November the same year - 5 months. He returned to the Free Church and to a very successful ministry.

So Pathhead Baptist Church carried forward the Gospel message into the 50's and 60's with the calling of Rev. Stanley Thomas in December 1950, followed in 1956 by Rev. Thomas Stirling from Berwick-on-Tweed. Although these men who ministered in Pathhead at this time were both capable and committed, they were unable to halt the decline in membership, a falling away that was a reflection of a general and increasing loss of interest in the Christian faith.

This was the age of rock and roll and the ‘Beatles’. Television was having a greater influence and young people in particular were turning away from the church.

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