Mrs Elspeth Crooks, aged 55, on 27th March (18 days after her mother). Elspeth was saved when young, baptised in 1969, and was in fellowship at Chappell Street, Barrhead, until 1978 when she went to work in Aberdeen. She married Jim Crooks in 1981 and, in these 30 years, they served the Lord together in various assemblies at Inverness, Dumfries, Belfast and Dundee. She was given to hospitality and supported Jim in his missionary interest, especially in Romania. She was marked by a deep faith and this was manifest throughout the last two years of distressing illness. Her great number of praying partners looked for another outcome, but she never uttered a complaint and displayed a peace which could only be from the Lord Himself. She had hoped to live long enough to see her first grandchild but he (Benjamin) arrived a week later. This has been a consolation to Jim, Andrew (his son) and Susanna (daughter-in-law), who were grateful for the prayers of the Lords people at this time. The very large attendance at the cemetery in Cupar and at the thanksgiving service in Hillbank, Dundee, was a testimony to the esteem in which she was held.
Mrs Joyce Heelham, aged 87, passed into the presence of her Lord on 22nd March, after a lengthy, trying illness which she bore with great patience, never complaining about her lot. She was saved at 23 years of age in 1948 at Gorton (Manchester) a week after Jim her husband-to-be. After being baptised they were both received into the assembly at Gorton and there remained faithful until 1992, when they came to live in Annalong, Co Down, to be nearer their only son Philip with his wife and family. Joyce was truly a very dear Christian lady, who loved the Lord and His people, being always found at the assembly gatherings. She was a woman who was gentle, generous and godly with a bright testimony among saved or unsaved. She will be sadly missed. Her funeral services were conducted by S Haugh, Dr D Allen, J Bingham, J Wallace and R Pickering.
Mrs Nancy Neilly, aged 87, went to be with the Lord on 9th March. Saved at the age of 9 she came into fellowship at Chappell Street, Barrhead at the age of 15 and continued in fellowship there for 71 years. She bore a consistent testimony throughout her long life in this one assembly and was a Sunday School teacher for a number of years. She married Willie Neilly in 1955 and they were much respected in the town for their Christian witness. After Willie passed away in 1995 she continued in Chappell Street assembly until 21/2 years ago when she went to live with her daughter Elspeth at Cupar, her son Ian at Morpeth, and for the last year at Summerhill Home, Aberdeen. Her last year was overshadowed by the serious illness of her daughter Elspeth, Mrs Jim Crooks, who survived her by just 18 days. She is missed by Ian and Hillary and by her son-in-law Jim, her sisters Sadie and Ellen, and all her grandchildren.
Mrs Christine Pollard, aged 67, was called home on 22nd January after a short illness. She was saved as a girl of 9, and after her baptism received into fellowship in Kings Park, Glasgow. True to her nursing training, Christine showed great care for others. Married in 1969 she and her husband Arthur were commended in 1970 to serve the Lord and moved to Montrose. They established the Scottish Postal Bible School which drew students from areas where there was little assembly testimony. She, with Arthur, was a founding trustee of Faskally House, and during their time there, and subsequently, Christine was a valued member of Perth assembly. The large attendance at the funeral service was a true token of how highly she was esteemed. Prayer valued for those in the immediate family circle.
Mrs Shiena Rose, aged 90, was called home to be with her Lord on 29th December. She met her husband, Charlie, while they both served their country in the armed forces, and she was posted for duty at Prime Minister Clement Atlees country estate (Chequers) during the Second World War. She was received into the fellowship of believers in the Gospel Hall in her home town of Carluke in 1944. She and Charlie were married in 1949 and together they were actively involved in serving the Lord in Carluke. Shiena was involved in many avenues of service - Sunday School, girls class, womens work, missionary sewing group, sisters prayer groups, teenage camp work, hospitality to saints and speakers as well as outreach work in hospitals and eventide homes. Even at the age of 90 she was involved in the "Coffee Break" outreach. She was of a very placid temperament, always smiling, always willing to help, always grateful, and an avid supporter of all the assembly activities. She rarely missed a meeting, and if she did there was a good reason. She was an inspiration and godly example to follow and is sadly missed by the assembly at Carluke. Please pray for Charlie and his daughters, their husbands, the grandchildren and great-grandchild.
Mrs Hazel Sloan, aged 68, went to be with Christ on 22nd February, having endured notably long years of poor health - increasingly so in the last year. During this trial, her husband Samuel admirably devoted himself to her, until the moment of her release came. The loss is keenly felt. Mrs Sloan was faithful, self-effacing and supportive of her husband in his work in the assembly. For a long time in Plantation, Lisburn, they moved in recent years to Broughshane where their daughter Judith and husband Trevor are in fellowship. She requested little attention to herself in what was a large funeral service, where representatives of both the above assemblies contributed, and the word was preached by David Gilliland and John Fleck. The truth and triumph of resurrection pervaded the service.
Mr Errol Stafford went to be with his Lord on 6th March, after a long illness which he bore with real courage. Errol was saved on 19th February, 1974, at the age of 27 while attending gospel meetings being conducted by Albert McShane and Norman Turkington in Tullyroan Gospel Hall, Co. Armagh. Soon afterwards he was baptized and received into the fellowship of the Tullyroan assembly where he, along with his dear wife Edith, continued faithfully until his homecall. The assembly was central to Errols life and the gospel his primary interest. His funeral service was taken by Wesley Martin, Bertie Millar, Leslie Ballantine and his nephew, Aaron Colgan. The very large attendance gave testimony to the esteem in which he was held by many. Errol is greatly missed by Edith, his two daughters and their families.
Mrs Ruth Tinkler, aged 65, was called home on 19th February. Brought up in a Christian home in South Shields, she heard the gospel many times but on 9th January, 1958 was saved through the preaching of a Mr Cupples. Later she was baptised and came in fellowship with the Harton assembly. Upon her marriage in 1973 she moved to Northumberland and was a valued member of the assembly at Red Row, being consistent in attending the assembly meetings and gatherings in the area, and given to hospitality. She maintained an interest in the work of God locally, and was an active supporter of missionary work in a practical way by sending many parcels to the mission field. A large company attended her funeral. She is greatly missed. Prayer valued for her husband John and the small assembly.