Thursday, February 16, 2012

Dwight L. Moody and the Evangelists of Dr. Bob's Youth

Dwight L. Moody and the Evangelists of Dr. Bob’s Youth

Colonel Franklin Fairbanks in Northfield, Mass., with Moody on September 12, 1875

Moody made news while remaining in Northfield, the papers pointing out that Christ hadn’t been welcomed in his hometown but Moody had. When the Greenfield Recorder Gazette reported that Moody would be speaking on Sunday, September 5, at the local Congregational church, so many came that he had to speak outside to accommodate them. By September 12 the Sabbath sessions had become daily rituals with 2,000 people in attendance. New York, Boston, and the Associated Press sent reporters to see what was happening.11 Moody told reporters he hadn’t had a break in two and a half years and was planning to take time off, but D. W. Whittle, a friend of Moody’s since their Chicago YMCA days, observed that “Moody’s idea of rest and seclusion included dozens of meetings and hordes of people.” This was never more true than the fall of 1875 when, flushed with his success in Britain, Moody was impatient to get going.12

[Source for above: Bruce J. Evensen , God’s Man for the Gilded Age: D. L. Moody and the Rise of Modern Mass Evangelism (    Oxford University Press, USA, 2003), 51.]

Lyle Dorsett, A Passion for Souls (    : Moody, 2003)

. . . Saturday, August 14, 1875, . . . the steamship Spain came into New York Harbor . . .  Then on Monday morning, August 16, they climbed aboard a northbound train, reaching Northfield by midday.1 [p. 209]

William Revell Moody, The Life of Dwight L. Moody, 258-62, includes a long section from Major Whittle’s diary for September 1875. Moody met Major Whittle and P. P. Bliss at the station in St. Vernon, Vermont, on Wednesday, September 8, 1875. “Two weeks we passed in this beautiful mountain home of our brother.” [p. 259]

“During our stay with Moody, services were held in the Congregational Church every night with blessed results. The whole population attended, and hundreds came from surrounding towns. Dear Moody’s mother and two brothers, connected with the Unitarian Church, were much blessed. I shall always thank God for the blessed experience of these two weeks. Many brethren from different parts of the country came and went while we were there, among them Stuart, of Philadelphia; Rowland, Dodge, and McBurney, of New York; Remington, of Fall River; Moore, of Boston; Fairbanks, of Vermont, and others.” [p. 261]

[Source of quotes above: William R. Moody, The Life of . . . Dwight L. Moody (New York: Fleming H. Revell, 1900)]

The latter gentlemen [Messrs. Bliss and Whittle, the Chicago revivalists] are now engaged in the hotel where I am staying completing their book of hymns. Mr. Fairbanks, son of ex-Gov. Fairbanks, of Vermont, is here giving them words of encouragement and cheer. There are delegations here from every town and hamlet in Massachusetts, Vermont, and Connecticut, . . .

[Source for quote above: “The Revivalists. Moody and Sankey at Northfield, Mass.” in the New York Times, Northfield, Mass., Monday, Sept. 13, 1875. ; accessed 2/16/12.]

“The revivalists Moody and Sankey held services at Northfield to-day, the people coming from all the country round, so that the Orthodox Church proved too small, and Moody spoke from the church steps to an audience of 1,000 in the morning. At 3 o’clock Mr. Sankey and Col. Whittle, of Chicago, talked to the children in the church and Col. Fairbanks, of St. Johnsbury, and D. W. McWilliam, President of the Young Men’s Christian Association of Brooklyn, N. Y., organized a grove meeting for the crowds waiting for the evening service. At 5 o’clock Mr. Moody preached again to an audience of 2,000 persons. Messrs. Moody and Sankey will decide upon their revival campaign on Tuesday.

[Source for quote above: “The Great Revivalists. The Lives and Labors of Moody and Sankey.” / “The Revivalists at Northfield, Mass.” in the New York Times, Springfield, Mass., Sept. 12; Published September 13, 1875 : ; accessed 2/16/12]

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