Page:Distinguished Churchmen.djvu/215

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THE REV. WILSON CARLILE 179

sion of my good vicar, I commenced a small open- air service every week night from nine to ten in a recess in front of the Vestry Hall, opposite the Kensington High Street railway station. Doubt less many would consider this place to be one of the most unsuitable spots on the face of the earth for commencing Church Army work. This was the hour, however, and the place where numbers of coachmen, valets, grooms and others took their evening stroll before returning to finish their duties, and in addition there were hundreds of casual passers-by. The meetings were held in all weathers, sometimes under umbrellas with the rain falling, and on several occasions in heavy snow. It was by this means that a deep interest was aroused in the hearts of many who had previously been utterly careless about the concerns of their souls, and who never entered any place of worship. But it was impossible for one voice to do all the preach ing night after night, and it became absolutely necessary that the speaking powers of lay helpers should be developed. It was difficult for members of my nightly congregation to break the ice so near their own homes and in front of such critical audiences, which often did not hesitate to pass the most severe and unpleasant remarks upon the struggling efforts of these youngsters."

" Maybe you recall many incidents of those early days?"

" Yes ; first, a young butler engaged in one of

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