After his death, many tributes to his life followed to the life of Charles
Thompson, some of which I have given below:
At the time of the funeral, Mr H Lee Jones said that "he felt sure that
Birkenhead was burying that day one of the noblest citizens it had every had,
or would have."
"He was more than a philanthropist - he was a Christian who found
inspiration for his service not merely in the natural feelings of compassion,
but in the constraining love of Christ. I am convinced that nothing but Divine
love could have sustained him amidst the burdens and disappointments of his
work. He once visited a home of a wretched woman who had died from fever and
lay there avoided by all. He with two policemen, one of whom afterwards died
through contracting the disease, assisted the undertaker in this dismal duty.
No fear of consequences could hinder him from acts of Christ-like service."
(Rev. T Colligan, a Presbyterian Minister).
"He always had a pleasant smile when you met him, and was always diligent
in the work to which he had consecrated his life. One great aim of his life
seemed to be to comfort and help the poor in the midst of their sorrows - to
make the widow's heart to leap for joy and to brighten the lot of the poor
children of the streets. To this end he visited them in their homes and
gathered them together in meetings, where he ministered to their necessities.
And while ministering in this way to their temporal welfare he was at the same
time, most of all deeply concerned about their spiritual condition. His was no
shallow superficial philanthropy concerned merely with temporal things. In
every way in his power he sought to bring all among whom he laboured to the
Saviour, and to fill their hearts, and homes and lives with the joy of the
blessed Gospel. Anyone who heard him speak of the Gospel of Salvation to the
people could not but feel what a comfort it was to think that, as of old, the
poor had the Gospel preached unto them and only the Great Day will reveal how
many, through his instrumentality were brought from darkness to light.
(Rev. William Hutton, Grange Road Presbyterian Church)."
"His Christianity was of an exceedingly cheerful type and his faith in the
Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ was childlike in its simplicity and firm in
its grasp. At a Christmas Dinner in 1883 we arranged the first of the
Christmas Day Dinners, when 530 children were regaled with hot pot and plum
pudding together with an orange given to each child. The annual supply never
failed after that. Space will not permit me to give details of the work in
which my dear friend engaged, or instances of the blessing accruing from his
unselfish devotion to the interests and well being of others. Suffice to say
that no pen can adequately describe the joy and gladness introduced into the
young life of the hundreds under his influence. He visited homes of
wretchedness and squalor, sought to reclaim the drunkard, to cheer the lives
of the downcast, to soothe the pillow of the dying, to introduce the light and
hope of the Gospel to the despairing." (J G B Mawson, Baptist Lay Preacher).
"His office was unpretentious - a chair, with a small box on it, was his
stool. All around him were parcels of stores, toys and books. His office told
at once the tale that he stood on no ceremony, that there was no ice to break,
that he was certainly the most approachable man to the tiniest child or most
lapsed of men and women. He was one of those 'never mind-me' sort of men. He
thought of himself last of all or, at times, never at all." (Rev. George
Rapkin, Church of Christ, Alvaney Place).
"At his weekly meeting of eighty widows many came on the Thursday with sad
hearts but they left with a stronger faith in God and a brighter hope of
Heaven, a faith and hope enkindled by his friendly word, his glad song and his
sunny smile. To them he was "a shelter from the storm and a covert from the
wind." Nor can we forget him in the tiny garden among the swings and toys
where he collected the maimed, the halt, and the blind from the Tranmere
Workhouse. In the Workhouse Hospital and Wards he was a frequent visitor and
his words of comfort and spiritual counsel were always enforced by some little
personal gift." (Rev. F Church, Brunswick Chapel).
"His form will ever be associated with the May Day Festival, the glorious
Steamboat River Trips, and the feast of good things on New Brighton Sands. At
the daily meals for the children we could not look down the four rows of
radiant faces and merry eyes without hearing the voice of the world's
Redeemer, saying - 'Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of
these, ye have done it unto Me.'" (Rev. F Church, Wesleyan Minister).
"You would find him at the Borough Hospital on Sabbath afternoons, by song
and handshake and prayer cheering the suffering; at the sick-bed of the
pauper, too, or in the lowly dwelling of the widow and the orphan, in the
prison cell, trying to fan back into a flame the flickering spark of grace in
the breast of some erring one; feeding the hungry in the peaceful hours of the
early Sabbath morning in the Mission, and revelling in the outburst of sacred
song and worship at the night services with which his works of mercy and of
love were crowned." (J R Kaighin).
"At the Workhouse in Tranmere he was always a great favourite. His regular
visits to that sombre-looking institution were as a welcome ray of sunshine
after a long period of gloom to many poor creatures who find a home there, and
who experience all too little of life's pleasures and joys." (H McWhinnie)