Tag Archives: Assemblies of God

Stanley Frodsham: Assemblies of God Founders United Around Mission; Refused to be “Sectarians or Insectarians”

This Week in AG History —April 15, 1944

By Darrin J. Rodgers
Originally published on AG-News, 15 April 2021

On the 30th anniversary of the founding of the Assemblies of God, Stanley H. Frodsham recounted the first General Council and its legacy. According to Frodsham, the longtime editor of the Pentecostal Evangel, Assemblies of God founders in 1914 were opposed to “sectarianism and denominationalism.” However, they also recognized that they had much in common and desired to “unite together on a voluntary cooperative basis” for “the furtherance of the gospel ministry in Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”

Frodsham recalled that J. W. Welch, an early chairman, described missions as the reason-for-being of the Assemblies of God: “We simply recognized ourselves as a missionary society, and we saw the whole world as the field in which to labor.”

This vision for cooperation in order to achieve the evangelization of the world, Frodsham noted, still remained strong in 1944. To illustrate this continuing vision for cooperation, he pointed to the unanimous decision at the 1943 General Council for the Assemblies of God to become a member of the National Association of Evangelicals.

Frodsham explained that the Assemblies of God desired a sweet spirit of fellowship, rather than a harsh spirit of condemnation of other faithful Christians who may not see eye to eye on everything. He quoted evangelist Gipsy Smith: “I refuse to be sectarian or insectarian.” Frodsham humorously explained, “Many insects have stings. So have many sectarians. We as a people refuse to be sectarians or insectarians.”

Today, 107 years after its founding, the Assemblies of God continues to be a fellowship that is united around a vision of cooperation in world evangelism.

Read the entire article by Stanley H. Frodsham, “These Thirty Years,” on page 4 of the April 15, 1944, issue of the Pentecostal Evangel.

Also featured in this issue:

• “My Soul Desireth First-Ripe Fruit,” by Zelma Argue

• “Thirty Years Ago,” by Ernest S. Williams

• “How God Saved a Communist Chieftain,” by Lester Sumrall

And many more!

Click here to read this issue now.

Pentecostal Evangel archived editions courtesy of the Flower Pentecostal Heritage Center.

Do you have Pentecostal historical materials that should be preserved? Please consider depositing these materials at the Flower Pentecostal Heritage Center (FPHC). The FPHC, located in the Assemblies of God national offices, is the largest Pentecostal archive in the world. We would like to preserve and make your treasures accessible to those who write the history books.

Flower Pentecostal Heritage Center
1445 North Boonville Avenue
Springfield, Missouri 65802 USA
Phone: 417.862.1447 ext. 4400
Toll Free: 877.840.5200
Email: Archives@ag.org

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Marguerite Flint: Pioneer Assemblies of God Missionary to India

This Week in AG History —April 7, 1934

By Ruthie Edgerly Oberg
Originally published on AG News, 08 April 2021

Marguerite Flint (1892-1963) once stated, “there are three reasons why I am a missionary. First, for my sake (because when we fail to hear the cry of the needy, we die); second, for their sakes (because millions of people in India are without Christ); third, for His sake (because Jesus died for India). There is every reason why I should be a missionary; there is no reason why I should not be.” Flint served Jesus and the people of India, faithfully, for more than 40 years, from 1915 to 1958.

Born on a farm in Ohio, Flint was raised in a strong Methodist home with a mother who dedicated her to God’s service before birth, asking God for a son that would become a minister. There was a bit of disappointment when the baby was a girl, and Flint was raised with the knowledge that “my life was planned for me, I must either be a deaconess or a Methodist preacher’s wife.” Her mother often whispered to her, “Remember always, I have given you to God. You must not be like the other girls, you are HIS.”

Although the family was Methodist, at age 8, Flint was converted in a Baptist evangelistic service and felt an earnest conviction to work for Jesus. As a young teen, she felt the need for more than she was receiving in her Methodist church and began to attend the Christian and Missionary Alliance church in Cleveland, where D. W. Kerr was the pastor. In 1912, A. B. Simpson spoke at a meeting and Flint felt a definite call to missionary work in India. In the spring of 1913 she experiencing the infilling of the Holy Spirit and left Ohio to attend Rochester Bible Training School in New York. It was there that she had a vision of Indian children, and the dream of building a Bible school for them was born.

In 1915, Flint was ordained by D. W. Kerr, who had by that time become a leader in the newly formed Assemblies of God. She was the first Pentecostal missionary to go out from their church, arriving in Uska Bazar, India, in the fall of that year. After language study in Hindi, she was asked to take care of 10 orphans at Bettiah. While praying to know God’s will for this decision, the words of Exodus 2:9 became clear to her: “Take this child away, and nurse it for me, and I will give thee thy wages.” Out of this beginning, an orphanage and school for more than 200 girls was begun in Bettiah. In 1919, Flint received her official appointment as an Assemblies of God missionary.

At the close of her second missionary term, Flint felt a clear calling to begin a Pentecostal Bible Training School for girls and women. The Assemblies of God purchased property for a school in Hardoi and Flint developed its curriculum and served as its principal, remaining there for 24 years.

In the April 7, 1934, issue of the Pentecostal Evangel, Flint gives report of a great revival taking place at the girls school. There had been a flood and an earthquake in the region that had caused many to pray for God’s help. During these days of prayer, Flint writes that “the Bible school this week has been the nearest thing to heaven I have seen in a long time … there were girls on their faces before God, girls alone in corners standing with the radiance of the holy place on their faces, girls in groups praying with the seekers, some singing in ‘other tongues’ and some groaning alone, but each pressing on to new blessing and new glory.” Classes were cancelled as the teachers and students sought God for a fresh renewal in the Spirit. Flint finished the report with the statement, “Oh, the transforming power of the Holy Ghost! How glad I am for Pentecost. We have a Pentecostal Bible school in very truth now and He is in our midst.”

When Marguerite Flint returned to the United States in 1958, the students told her, “remember that we, whom you have trained, are going to carry on.” Hundreds of girls and women (and later boys) were trained for ministry and sent out into the cities and villages of northern India to fulfill the vision of their teacher.

In a brief sketch of her life written in 1951, Flint wrote of her mother: “My dear mother went to be with the Lord when I was 18 and grieved that her early plans for my life seemed futile. I have often wondered, does she know now that the daughter she gave to God as a baby has seen 36 years on missionary service for the great land of India? I am sure heaven will be even sweeter for her, if that be possible, for the knowledge.” Heaven is certainly sweeter, not just for Flint’s mother, but for scores of Indians whose lives have been changed for eternity because of the faithful service of an early Assemblies of God missionary who was given to God’s service in the womb of her mother.

Read the report, “Glorious Revival in India,” on page 6 of the April 7, 1934, issue of the Pentecostal Evangel.

Also featured in this issue

• “The Spirit of Christ” by E.S. Williams

• “Clouds Without Rain” by Donald Gee

• “The Man with the Withered Hand” by Lilian Yeomans

And many more!

Click here to read this issue now.

Pentecostal Evangel archived editions courtesy of the Flower Pentecostal Heritage Center.

Do you have Pentecostal historical materials that should be preserved? Please consider depositing these materials at the Flower Pentecostal Heritage Center (FPHC). The FPHC, located in the Assemblies of God national offices, is the largest Pentecostal archive in the world. We would like to preserve and make your treasures accessible to those who write the history books.

Flower Pentecostal Heritage Center
1445 North Boonville Avenue
Springfield, Missouri 65802 USA
Phone: 417.862.1447 ext. 4400
Toll Free: 877.840.5200
Email: Archives@ag.org

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Assemblies of God Evangelist Bob Watters Held the First National Evangelistic Crusade in Belgium in 1970

Evangelist Bob Watters (left) and interpreter Henri Lepczynski (right) during the Belgian Good News Crusade.

This Week in AG History — March 14, 1971

By Glenn W. Gohr
Originally published on AG News, 18 March 2021

Over the years, Assemblies of God missionaries have become adept at evangelism and training national leaders. One effective evangelistic tool has been Good News Crusades, which was launched in 1959. The Assemblies of God sponsored and organized large city-wide evangelistic campaigns in various mission areas around the globe, with follow-up and church planting afterwards. Many of these campaigns were held in large auditoriums or tents. Assemblies of God missionaries and national ministers worked together to help fulfill the Great Commission. The goals were to win converts, plant local churches, and stimulate existing congregations. Intense follow-up campaigns were also planned, and contacts were channeled into local Assemblies of God churches. Similar evangelistic meetings are still conducted by missionaries today.

Fifty years ago, the Pentecostal Evangel featured a report of a Good News Crusade held in Congress Hall in Brussels, Belgium. The evangelist was Bob Watters.

A group of Assemblies of God ministers of Belgium met with evangelist Bob Watters in June 1968 and invited him to conduct a series of revival meetings in their country. Much planning and promotion preceded these meetings. National leaders of the Belgium Assemblies of God and Melvin E. Jorgenson, representative of the American Assemblies of God, made the arrangements. The famed Congress Hall at Brussels was secured, and the Ohio District Men’s Fellowship provided literature through Light for the Lost. Continental Bible College (now Continental Theological Seminary) in Brussels chose students to serve as counselors.

In May 1970, Watters conducted what was termed “the first national evangelistic crusade in the history of the nation of Belgium.” The crusade was a cooperative interdenominational endeavor with widespread participation. Assemblies of God and other leading Protestant clergymen sat on the platform and participated in the revival services. Attendees came from 35 Belgian cities.

The gospel was preached in three languages simultaneously during the Good News Crusade. Watters spoke in English. The platform interpreter spoke in French for those people from the south. And the Flemish interpreter used a closed unit-to-earphones sound system for those coming from the north.

Special music complemented the evangelistic messages. Watters played sacred hymns on the organ, and the Protestant Choir of Belgium ministered in song. A converted European nightclub entertainer also presented the gospel to the audience.

Each night after the meetings, people stood in line to speak to the evangelist and his interpreter, Henri Lepczynski, receiving counsel, encouragement, and prayer. Counselors recorded more than 100 first-time conversions.

A number of dramatic conversions took place. Afterwards, a young man wrote to Watters: “After my father died, I felt all alone. I am not alone anymore because now I have Christ.” This man was also reunited with his mother who had become separated from him because of his former life of rebellion.

Pastor and Mrs. Bernard Coviaux, of the Reformed Presbyterian Church of Brussels, became drawn to the messages they heard. They opened their home to Watters and asked him many questions about the new birth and the baptism in the Holy Spirit. Both of them began seeking a deeper relationship to Christ as well as the Pentecostal experience.

At the conclusion of the campaign, Alfred Amitie, superintendent of the Belgium Assemblies of God, was invited to join the Brussels Protestant Ministers Fellowship. “This 1970 National Belgian Crusade will never be forgotten,” wrote Amitie to Watters. “For all the churches … with all our hearts … I thank you for leading this Good News Crusade.”

Watters began preaching in 1950 at the age of 19 and ministered in music and evangelism, along with his wife, Lillian Overstreet Watters, for many years. She passed away in 1985. In addition to Brussels, Bob Watters held evangelistic campaigns in 64 countries of the world. As a result of Watters’ preaching campaigns in Europe, church leaders reported a dramatic increase in church attendance, as well as several new congregations being established. Watters also has written a number of gospel songs, including “Jesus Is The Answer,” “Lord Send Me Into My World,” and “There’s a Difference.”

Bob Watters is still living and currently resides in Springfield, Missouri. He celebrates his 90th birthday on March 21, 2021.

Read more in “National Belgian Crusade” on pages 20-21 of the March 14, 1971, issue of the Pentecostal Evangel.

Also featured in this issue:

• “The Lord Your Healer,” by Robert C. Cunningham

• “Pinedale [New Mexico] Gets A New Church.”

• “The Spirit’s Perpetual Work,” by Andrew T. Floris

And many more!

Click here to read this issue now.

Pentecostal Evangel archived editions courtesy of the Flower Pentecostal Heritage Center.

Do you have Pentecostal historical materials that should be preserved? Please consider depositing these materials at the Flower Pentecostal Heritage Center (FPHC). The FPHC, located in the Assemblies of God national offices, is the largest Pentecostal archive in the world. We would like to preserve and make your treasures accessible to those who write the history books.

Flower Pentecostal Heritage Center
1445 North Boonville Avenue
Springfield, Missouri 65802 USA
Phone: 417.862.1447 ext. 4400
Toll Free: 877.840.5200
Email: archives@ag.org
Website: www.iFPHC.org

1 Comment

Filed under Uncategorized

J. T. Boddy’s Deathbed Message from 1931: Holiness and Heaven

J. T. Boddy with his wife and daughter, Macie. Circa 1915.

This Week in AG History — February 6, 1932

By Darrin J. Rodgers
Originally published on AG News, 04 February 2021

A person’s last words often reveal what was in his or her heart.

John Thomas Boddy, former editor of the Pentecostal Evangel (1919-1921), was a poet and a deep theological thinker. He was ordained by the Free Methodist Church in 1901 and transferred his credentials to the Assemblies of God in 1917. When he passed away on Nov. 6, 1931, he left behind a message that he wanted those still alive to carefully consider. 

What was Boddy’s message from his deathbed?

Boddy’s daughter, Macie Lucas, wrote that her father meditated constantly on the Word of God while ill during the last two months of his life. She recounted that he preached for hours at a time while on required bedrest, and that he sensed an urgency to share, above all else, biblical truths about the holiness of God. She received so many inquiries about his last words that she preserved them in an article in the Feb. 6, 1932, issue of the Pentecostal Evangel

According to Lucas, during his last weeks, Boddy repeatedly quoted Hebrews 12:14: “Without holiness no man shall see God.” Boddy knew he was dying, so it is understandable that he was meditating on Scripture verses about heaven. But Boddy emphasized the link between heaven and holiness.

Critics sometimes accuse early Pentecostals of promoting “works righteousness” in their emphasis on holiness. But Boddy explained that people cannot be holy by their own efforts. “God desires to impart His holiness to us,” he noted. This imparted holiness prepares the believer for heaven. He said: “There is no evil in heaven. There is no mixture in heaven. If you expect to go to heaven you must have a measure (the essence) of heaven in you here.”

Lucas recounted that, as Boddy was sharing about holiness, “his face would be radiant with the glory of God and he would burst forth in praises. Often he wept in the presence of God as he contemplated the glories of heaven.” 

What does a life of holiness look like? Boddy echoed John Welsey, who taught that holiness meant loving God with all our heart, mind, soul, and strength, and fleeing from sin. 

Boddy was a prince of preachers, and in his final opportunity to share what was on his heart, Boddy encouraged people toward holiness and heaven.

Read about Boddy’s last words in the article, “A Revelation of Heaven,” by Macie M. Lucas, on page 6 of the Feb. 6, 1932, issue of the Pentecostal Evangel.

Also featured in this issue:

 • “Standing True to Scriptural Principles,” by Robert McClay

 • “What the Pentecostal People Believe and Teach,” by R. E. McAlister

And many more!

Click here to read this issue now.

Pentecostal Evangel archived editions courtesy of the Flower Pentecostal Heritage Center.

Do you have Pentecostal historical materials that should be preserved? Please consider depositing these materials at the Flower Pentecostal Heritage Center (FPHC). The FPHC, located in the Assemblies of God national offices, is the largest Pentecostal archive in the world. We would like to preserve and make your treasures accessible to those who write the history books.

Flower Pentecostal Heritage Center
1445 North Boonville Avenue
Springfield, Missouri 65802 USA
Phone: 417.862.1447 ext. 4400
Toll Free: 877.840.5200
Email: Archives@ag.org

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

The Female Anglican-turned-Pentecostal Missionary Who Became the Primary Shaper of Early Assemblies of God Missiology

This Week in AG History — January 22, 1921

By Darrin J. Rodgers
Originally published on AG News, 21 January 2021

Alice E. Luce (1873-1955), a British-born Anglican missionary, learned of the emerging Pentecostal movement when she was engaged in ministry in India. After hearing about two women in India who had been baptized in the Holy Spirit, she visited them in order to learn more. After Luce became convinced that their experience was biblical, she also was Spirit-baptized in about 1910. Luce identified with the Pentecostal movement and, in 1915, she transferred her ordination to the Assemblies of God.

Luce became the most prominent missiologist (theologian of missions) in the Assemblies of God in its early decades. Luce authored a series of three articles, titled “Paul’s Missionary Methods,” published in the Pentecostal Evangel in 1921. In these articles, Luce endeavored to show that the Apostle Paul taught that missionaries should aim to build indigenous churches — churches that were self-supporting, self-propagating, and self-governing. Importantly, this indigenous church principle differed from the majority of mainline Christian missions agencies, which equated Westernization with Christianization. The Apostle Paul, according to Luce, preached Christ, not culture.

The Pentecostal Evangel editor commended Luce as “an experienced missionary” who wrote the articles “with the express purpose of helping our Pentecostal missionaries to get a clear vision of Paul’s methods of evangelization.” The editor furthermore stated that these methods were applicable not just overseas, but also “to every town and community and district in the homeland.” The editor also affirmed the centrality of missions in the young Pentecostal movement: “The Pentecostal people are peculiarly missionary, and the growth of the Pentecostal movement is due largely to this missionary spirit.”

It is well known that missions has been a primary focus of the Assemblies of God since its earliest years. Many may not realize, however, that it was a female Anglican-turned-Pentecostal missionary, Alice Luce, who was the primary shaper of early Assemblies of God missiology.  

Read the series of three articles by Alice E. Luce, “Paul’s Missionary Methods,” in the following issues of the Pentecostal Evangel (click the following links):

Jan. 8, 1921 (pages 6-7).

Jan. 22, 1921 (pages 6 and 11).

Feb. 5, 1921 (pages 6-7).

Also featured in this issue:

• “A Call to Prayer,” by J. W. Welch

• “Some Last Things,” by J. Narver Gortner

And many more!

Pentecostal Evangel archived editions courtesy of the Flower Pentecostal Heritage Center.

Do you have Pentecostal historical materials that should be preserved? Please consider depositing these materials at the Flower Pentecostal Heritage Center (FPHC). The FPHC, located in the Assemblies of God national offices, is the largest Pentecostal archive in the world. We would like to preserve and make your treasures accessible to those who write the history books.

Flower Pentecostal Heritage Center
1445 North Boonville Avenue
Springfield, Missouri 65802 USA
Phone: 417.862.1447 ext. 4400
Toll Free: 877.840.5200
Email: Archives@ag.org

1 Comment

Filed under Uncategorized

The 1937 New Year’s Message for the Assemblies of God

This Week in AG History — January 16, 1937

By Darrin J. Rodgers
Originally published on AG News, 14 January 2021

While much has changed in the past 84 years, Ernest S. Williams’ New Year’s admonition to the Assemblies of God in 1937 remains strikingly relevant. Williams was the only veteran of the Azusa Street Revival to serve as general superintendent of the Assemblies of God (1929-1949). Known for his spiritual depth, he led the Fellowship during a period of significant numerical growth.

Williams took the helm of the Fellowship the same year as the Great Depression began. In 1929, the Assemblies of God reported 1,612 churches with 91,981 members. By 1937 those tallies had approximately doubled to 3,473 churches with 175,362 members.

“God has blessed our Fellowship of Spirit-filled redeemed people with a phenomenal growth,” Williams acknowledged. However, he warned readers of “danger” that accompanied growth. With the increase in numbers, Williams cautioned, comes the temptation to rely on “human ideas and human methods, not all of which are sanctified to the glory of God.”

Christians are called to live and worship “in spirit and in truth” and “in demonstration of the Spirit and of power,” Williams wrote. Any substitute would cause the Assemblies of God to suffer “grievous loss.” He suggested that “prayerful watchfulness and entire consecration” were required to maintain this spiritual calling.

Williams encouraged believers to seek unity. He expressed his belief that the Pentecostal movement “would be a far greater service to God were it all united.” It may not be God’s will, he clarified, that this unity be expressed organizationally. In his view, believers should be united “in one spirit and Christian fellowship” and in “Christian love and worship.”

While Williams opposed divisions due to “sectarian causes,” he acknowledged that true Christian unity could only develop among believers who embraced solid doctrine and morals. “Let us therefore show Christian love and Christian fellowship to all of God’s children who love and do the truth, wherever they may be,” Williams wrote, “but let us continue an uncompromising stand against tolerance of evil wherever it is found.”

Williams concluded his New Year’s message with a missionary call. “The uttermost parts of the earth is our motto,” he propounded. “May the coming year be one of rich harvests in souls and in personal soul development.” This dual concern for deep spirituality and sharing the gospel continues to be central to Assemblies of God identity.

Read Williams’ article, “The Task That Is Before Us,” on page 4 of the Jan. 16, 1937, issue of the Pentecostal Evangel.

Also featured in this issue:

• “Leaving the Choice with the Lord,” by Stanley H. Frodsham

• “Power, Love and a Sound Mind,” by Donald Gee

And many more!

Click here to read this issue now.

Pentecostal Evangel archived editions courtesy of the Flower Pentecostal Heritage Center.

Do you have Pentecostal historical materials that should be preserved? Please consider depositing these materials at the Flower Pentecostal Heritage Center (FPHC). The FPHC, located in the Assemblies of God national offices, is the largest Pentecostal archive in the world. We would like to preserve and make your treasures accessible to those who write the history books.

Flower Pentecostal Heritage Center
1445 North Boonville Avenue
Springfield, Missouri 65802 USA
Phone: 417.862.1447 ext. 4400
Toll Free: 877.840.5200
Email: Archives@ag.org

1 Comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Donald Gee: Christ is the Perfect Interpreter between God and Man

This Week in AG History —December 24, 1949

By Ruthie Edgerly Oberg
Originally published on AG News, 24 December 2020

In the 1949 Christmas Eve issue of the Pentecostal Evangel, noted British theologian and church leader Donald Gee gifted readers with a word picture of the mystery of the Incarnation. Sharing his vast experience of speaking through an interpreter, Gee illustrated the value of Jesus Christ, the God-Man, speaking the native language of both divinity and humanity.

Any speaker addressing an audience in a language unfamiliar to them will need a qualified interpreter to make sure that his message is accurately and adequately communicated to his hearers. After sharing some embarrassing and humorous incidents with interpreters in his own speaking career, Gee says that the best two interpreters with whom he worked shared the same distinction: a French father and an English mother. Both languages were spoken natively throughout their upbringing and, thus, they were equally at ease with either tongue.

Gee masterfully weaves this experience into an illustration of Jesus Christ in his article “An Interpreter is Born.” As the Son of God, Jesus spoke the language of heaven with the ease of a native son. Yet as the Son of Man, Jesus also spoke the language of earth with the same native ease. Jesus, therefore, was “the perfect Interpreter between God and man, for He — and He alone — speaks both languages perfectly.” With equal authority He could say “My Father in heaven” and my “mother and brethren” from Nazareth. He interpreted Heaven’s message of love to mankind and, in turn, can interpret the “feelings of our infirmities” at the right hand of God. In this sense, the Interpreter becomes the “one mediator between God and Man” — being born of both in Bethlehem. As the soul of man craves an explanation of the things of God, God has, in His redemptive plan, provided an Interpreter.

Gee takes the illustration one step further. Not only has Christ come to reveal the language of heaven to earth; He has equipped His followers to continue this task of interpretation. After providing for mankind to be “born from above” through salvation and, consequently, filled with the Holy Spirit, they become interpreters to others of the language of heaven. “Men wholly of this world cannot readily understand the things of God; they need interpreters — literally, ‘those who explain.’” Such interpretation “needs familiarity with the languages of heaven and of earth.” The interpreter cannot have a worldly mindedness that is unable to grasp the depth of meaning of the deep things of God nor yet can he or she have a “mistaken monasticism” that has lost touch with the language and experience of humanity.

The author then takes the illustration even one step further. While the task of interpretation is the duty of every Christian, it is especially relevant to the Pentecostal believer. “The Pentecostal gift of ‘interpretation of tongues’ in its own supernatural realm invites the same longing for the divine ability to bring the unknown into the realm of understanding … the language of ecstasy has its heavenly place, but happy is he who can translate it for our good into our more mundane speech.” We still need supernatural interpreters who, like Daniel, can explain the handwriting of God when He has a message for mankind.

Without the Incarnation of our Lord Jesus, there would be no satisfying revelation — or interpretation — of God to man and no adequate representative of man to God. Unto us an Interpreter is born; Emmanuel, “God with us,” who was born to bring understanding where confusion had reigned.

Gee invites us to accompany the shepherds to “even now go unto Bethlehem” and give thanks that an Interpreter has come — who will begin to unravel the mysteries of God and then “ever live to make intercession for us.”

Read “An Interpreter is Born” by Donald Gee on pages 2 and 13 of the Dec. 24, 1949, edition of the Pentecostal Evangel.

Also featured in this issue:

• “Our Immanuel – Christ Jesus” by P. C. Nelson

• “The Incarnation – Why Was it Necessary” by F. J. Lindquist

• “Christmas at Rupaidiha” by Hattie Hammond

And many more!

Click here to read this issue now.

Pentecostal Evangel archived editions courtesy of the Flower Pentecostal Heritage Center.

Do you have Pentecostal historical materials that should be preserved? Please consider depositing these materials at the Flower Pentecostal Heritage Center (FPHC). The FPHC, located in the Assemblies of God national offices, is the largest Pentecostal archive in the world. We would like to preserve and make your treasures accessible to those who write the history books.

Flower Pentecostal Heritage Center
1445 North Boonville Avenue
Springfield, Missouri 65802 USA
Phone: 417.862.1447 ext. 4400
Toll Free: 877.840.5200
Email: archives@ag.org
Website: www.iFPHC.org

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Anne Eberhardt: Assemblies of God Missionary Educator in India

This Week in AG History — November 29, 1930

By Glenn W. Gohr
Originally published on AG News, 03 December 2020

Anne Eberhardt (1904-1995), Assemblies of God missionary to North India for 43 years, has a rich testimony of coming from a Catholic background, receiving salvation and the baptism in the Holy Spirit, attending Bible school, and serving on the mission field.

Born in a small village in Austria-Hungary called Obesenyo, Anne Eberhardt and her family were Catholics. The town only had one church and one school, and both were Catholic. When Anne was about six, her parents, her aunt and uncle, and another couple decided to travel to the United States in search of a better life. Anne’s mother became so seasick on the journey that she decided that she would never go back to her homeland.

The family settled in Cleveland where Anne was raised Catholic, attended a Catholic school, and was confirmed in that faith. She had a love for the things of God, and one of the nuns said, “I wouldn’t be surprised if you would become a nun when you grow up.” But God had another plan.

When the influenza epidemic was raging around 1918, Anne’s aunt got sick with the flu and was given up to die. She remembered meeting some Nazarene people who had a strong faith in God, and she had seen a real change in their lives. This kindled faith inside her. Lying on her deathbed, the aunt prayed, “Lord, if You will heal my body, and let me live for one year, I will live that year for You.”

God answered her prayer. She felt the power of God come upon her, and she was instantly saved and healed. Then she prayed again, “Now, Lord, lead me to the people that live closest to the Bible.” Soon after this the aunt saw an advertisement for a Pentecostal church on East 57th and White Avenue called First Assembly of God, and she began attending.

Through her aunt’s testimony of healing and reports of the Pentecostal church meetings, Anne, at age 15 also began attending First Assembly of God. She was inspired by the ministry of J. Narver Gortner, who pastored First Assembly during the early 1920s.

Anne visited her aunt’s church and was saved during a campaign the visiting Argue family of Canada held in Cleveland in 1921 where she answered the altar call. That was almost 100 years ago. At a service the next day, Anne was baptized in the Holy Spirit and immediately began sharing her faith, although her parents did not approve of her newfound religion. She was not allowed to go back to the church.

However, Anne made friends with Elizabeth Weidman (later Elizabeth Weidman Wood), who became a missionary to China. Elizabeth worked in an office across the street from Anne, and met her for lunch each day as they talked about the Lord. Finally, after about six months, Anne decided to go back to the church, against her parents’ wishes. Her father said she would have to leave if she was going to attend the Pentecostal church, but before she headed out the door, he changed his mind, allowing her to stay at home and allowing her to attend the church of her choice.

About a year later, Marie Juergensen, missionary to Japan, spoke to the young people of First Assembly, urging them to consecrate their lives to God. After this, Anne earnestly prayed, saying she was “willing to be made willing to do His will.”

For a few years, Anne worked as a stenographer, secretary, and bookkeeper. Then she had an opportunity to attend Central Bible Institute (CBI) in Springfield, Missouri, and began to feel a call to missionary work. One Friday afternoon, A.G. Ward spoke to all the missionary prayer groups on campus about the leper work in North India. After that meeting, Anne thought, It would take a lot of consecration to go and work among the lepers. She never imagined that God would ask her to do just that.

Missionary Blanche Appleby spoke at the Bible school that evening and encouraged the students to offer themselves as a “living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God.” Anne felt the Lord asking her if she would be willing to go anywhere with the gospel. She replied, “Yes, Lord, anywhere.” However, when the Lord asked to her to go to North India a struggle followed.

After earnestly praying all that evening and the next day, Anne felt a strong calling and peace that she was to go as a missionary to India. She joyfully completed the rest of her Bible school studies, keeping in mind that God had a plan for her life.

After graduating from CBI, Anne worked for one year in the editorial department of the Gospel Publishing House in Springfield, Missouri, and then pastored a church at Breckenridge, Missouri, for six months. She was approved for missionary service and sailed for India in February 1931.

Her first term of missionary service was spent assisting the Harry Waggoner family with a leper colony and orphanage in Uska Bazar. Next came a time of evangelistic work in the Kheri District, where she also edited the North India Field News, a periodical published by Assemblies of God missionaries. This was followed by 13 years of teaching at the Hardoi Bible Training School in United Province where Marguerite Flint was the principal. Next she was asked to start a night Bible school in Jabalpur and was there for nine years.

After years of missionary work in India, Anne said, “I have never been sorry I said ‘Yes’ to the Lord. That was my greatest decision up to that time; an experience as real as the day I was saved and the day I was baptized in the Holy Spirit.”

After retiring from missions work, Anne moved back to Cleveland and again attended her home church of First Assembly of God in Lyndhurst. She continued to be a wonderful encourager to many and guided some to also enter the mission field. She recorded much of her life story in a booklet called For the Glory of God, published in 1985. She passed away in 1995.

Anne Eberhardt obeyed God and dedicated her life to His service. Read more about her story in “From Catholicism to Pentecost” on pages 2-3 of the Nov. 29, 1930, issue of the Pentecostal Evangel.

Also featured in this issue:

• “The Three Phases of Sanctification,” by Donald Gee

• “Seven ‘Conventions,’” by Arthur H. Graves

• “Is It Possible to Be Happy?” by J. Narver Gortner

And many more!

Click here to read this issue now.

Pentecostal Evangel
archived editions courtesy of the Flower Pentecostal Heritage Center.

Do you have Pentecostal historical materials that should be preserved? Please consider depositing these materials at the Flower Pentecostal Heritage Center (FPHC). The FPHC, located in the Assemblies of God national offices, is the largest Pentecostal archives and research center in the world. We would like to preserve and make your treasures accessible to those who write the history books.

Flower Pentecostal Heritage Center
1445 North Boonville Avenue
Springfield, Missouri 65802 USA
Phone: 417.862.1447 ext. 4400
Toll Free: 877.840.5200
Email: archives@ag.org
Website: http://www.iFPHC.org

1 Comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Stanford E. Linzey, Jr. Collection Deposited at Flower Pentecostal Heritage Center

Captain Stanford E. Linzey, Jr., CHC, USN (U.S. Navy Photo: 1974)

Dr. Stanford Eugene Linzey, Jr. (1920-2010) holds the distinction of being the first Assemblies of God minister to serve as an active duty Navy chaplain. During his 65 years of active ministry, during which he served as a pastor, chaplain, educator, author, and evangelist, Linzey became well known in the Assemblies of God and the broader Pentecostal and charismatic movements.

Linzey’s son, Chaplain (MAJOR) James F. Linzey, USA (Ret.), has deposited at the Flower Pentecostal Heritage Center a collection of books, sermons, photographs, and other materials documenting his father’s life and ministry.

Linzey was born on October 13, 1920, in Houston, Texas to Stanford Linzey and Eva Fay Westphal Linzey. Linzey first accepted Christ as Lord and Savior at 10 years of age and was reared Southern Baptist. However, as a teenager he strayed from his Christian upbringing and became, according to James F. Linzey, “a smoking train hopper.” In 1938, when he was 18 years old, Linzey’s misconduct landed him before a judge, who ordered that he go to jail or join the Navy. He enlisted in the Navy in 1938.

Linzey served aboard the USS Yorktown, which was homeported in San Diego, California. It was there that he met a young Pentecostal evangelist named Verna Hall in 1940. She invited him to attend her church, First Assembly of God in National City, California. He recommitted his life to Christ, joined her church, and they married on July 13, 1941 in McAllen, Texas.

Verna played a significant role in discipling Linzey. Verna’s step-father (Rev. Francis L. Doyle), mother (Alice Hall Doyle), and brother (Pentecostal evangelist Franklin Hall) lived in San Diego and also mentored Linzey. Linzey did office work for Franklin Hall and also preached in San Diego on the streets, in rescue missions, and in parks under his tutelage. Linzey, influenced by his wife’s teaching, received the baptism with the Holy Spirit on July 29, 1942, in Los Angeles at the church pastored by Raymond Harms.

Linzey was an enlisted sailor with the rate of Musician First Class, serving as First Clarinetist in the U.S. Navy Band aboard the USS Yorktown. He also served as a Radioman on the third deck. He became a World War II hero when the Yorktown was bombed, torpedoed, and sank during the Battle of Midway in June 1942. Had it not been for the Yorktown, the war on the Pacific front would have been lost. Aboard the Yorktown, Stanford was nicknamed “The Deacon” for conducting Bible studies, witnessing among the sailors and officers, and teaching the Pentecostal message, which he learned from his wife, Verna.  

After the war, President Harry Truman sent Musician First Class Linzey a letter, stating, “As one of the Nation’s finest, you undertook the most severe task one can be called upon to perform. Because you demonstrated the fortitude, resourcefulness and calm judgment necessary to carry out that task, we now look to you for leadership and example in further exalting our country in peace.” Also, General Omar N. Bradley, USA (Ret.), sent a letter to Stanford, stating, “I congratulate you upon completion of your service in the armed forces and for your part in bringing to a conclusion a two-front war which resulted in the unconditional surrender of the Axis Powers.”

Pentecostal ministers who influenced Linzey’s early ministry, in addition to Verna and her family, included Raymond T. Richey and Raymond Harms. Stanford and Verna received ministerial credentials from the Assemblies of God in 1945. The following year, they pioneered the El Cajon Evangelistic Tabernacle, an Assemblies of God congregation in El Cajon, California, which they co-pastored.

Verna and Stanford Linzey, co-pastors of El Cajon Evangelistic Tabernacle (Assembly of God), El Cajon, California, circa late 1940s.

When Linzey re-entered the U.S. Navy as a chaplain in 1954, it was natural that he would ask for the endorsement of the Assemblies of God. He became not only the first active duty Navy Assemblies of God chaplain, but also the first active duty Pentecostal Navy chaplain. Further, he was the first Pentecostal Navy chaplain to attain the rank of Navy captain. He served as a Navy chaplain for 21 years, retiring in 1974.

Linzey received a B.A. and a Th.B. degree from Linda Vista Baptist College and Seminary (now Southern California Seminary) in El Cajon, California, a Master of Divinity degree from American Baptist Seminary of the West in Covina, California (now Berkley School of Theology in Berkley, California), and a Doctor of Ministry degree from Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena, California. He also studied at Harvard Divinity School as a resident graduate. He is listed in Marquis’ Who’s Who in Religion, International Men of Achievement, and 5000 Personalities of the World.

Linzey and his wife, Verna, were an impressive couple. Verna, a pastor, crusade evangelist, television evangelist, songwriter, and author, was accomplished in her own right. Together, they had ten children, three of whom followed in their father’s footsteps and became military chaplains.

During his 20 years as a chaplain and afterward as an evangelist, Linzey taught widely on the Pentecostal message – in North America, Europe, Korea, Okinawa, Philippines, Japan, Hong Kong, and Singapore. Venues included media outlets such as radio and television (including Trinity Broadcasting Network); Assemblies of God churches throughout the United States and some mainline Protestant churches; colleges such as Evangel College (now Evangel University in Springfield, Missouri), Southern California College (now Vanguard University of Southern California in Costa Mesa, California), Bethany Bible College (Santa Cruz, California); Bethel Bible Institute (Manilla, Philippines), and Far East Advanced School of Theology (now Asia Pacific Theological Seminary in Baguio, Philippines).

Linzey also guest lectured on various leadership topics at Indiana University (Bloomington, IN), Seattle Pacific University (Seattle, WA), California State University (Fullerton, CA), California State University (Long Beach, CA), the University of the Ryukyus (Okinawa), Prairie Bible Institute (now Prairie Bible College, Three Hills, Alberta, Canada), and Asia Pacific Military Retreats in the Far East.

Linzey also spread the Pentecostal message as the keynote speaker for various civic organizations, Full Gospel Business Men’s Fellowship International, Business Men’s Fellowship International, the Fellowship of Full Gospel Churches and Ministries International, Christian Servicemen’s Centers, and in the Navy as an enlisted sailor and as a chaplain. Due to his Pentecostal ministry as the Senior Chaplain of the USS Coral Sea, the Coral Sea was dubbed “The Pentecostal Ship.”

A prolific author, he wrote on the baptism with the Holy Spirit in his books: Pentecost in the Pentagon, The Holy Spirit in the Third Millennium, Baptism in the Spirit, and God Wat at Midway (later published under the title USS Yorktown at Midway); his pamphlet, Why I Believe in the Baptism with the Holy Spirit; and numerous articles published in Pentecostal Evangel, Pentecostal Messenger, Voice, Link, C.A. Herald, San Diego Union-Tribune, and Christian Times. Various articles on leadership were also published in such publications as Readers Digest, Sunday School Counselor, At Ease, Filling Your Boots (a leadership pamphlet he wrote), and Call to Prayer.

Chaplain Stanford Linzey delivers the invocation at Coronado Naval Base at the 60th Anniversary of Japan’s Surrender in World War II before President George W. Bush speaks. Photo taken by Chaplain (MAJ) James F. Linzey, USA (Ret.), August 28, 2005.

When Stanford Linzey, Jr. joined the Navy in 1938, he could not have imagined how his life would unfold. After his recommitment to Christ and marriage to Verna Hall, ministry became his primary focus. He broke new ground as the first Assemblies of God active duty Navy chaplain, he ministered as a chaplain and as an evangelist around the world, and he produced numerous written works. Now, with the Stanford Eugene Linzey, Jr. Collection accessible at the Flower Pentecostal Heritage Center, future generations will be able to study his life, ministry, and legacy.

_________________

Do you have Pentecostal historical materials that should be preserved? Please consider depositing these materials at the Flower Pentecostal Heritage Center (FPHC). The FPHC, located in the Assemblies of God national offices, is the largest Pentecostal archives and research center in the world. We would like to preserve and make your treasures accessible to those who write the history books.

Flower Pentecostal Heritage Center
1445 North Boonville Avenue
Springfield, Missouri 65802 USA
Phone: 417.862.1447 ext. 4400
Toll Free: 877.840.5200
Email: archives@ag.org
Website: http://www.iFPHC.org

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Pinellas Park, Florida: First Home for Retired Assemblies of God Ministers

Residents at the Pinellas Park Home, circa 1950.

This Week in AG History —November 20, 1955

By Ruthie Edgerly Oberg
Originally published on AG News, 19 November 2020

Many are familiar with Maranatha Village Retirement Community in Springfield, Missouri, established in 1973. However, this was not the first time the Assemblies of God responded to the need to provide care for its retired ministers and missionaries.

In the early years of the Pentecostal movement, a strong belief in the imminent return of Christ sent ministers and missionaries into difficult places in the United States and around the world with the Pentecostal gospel message. Many of these ministers lived entirely by faith, with only enough to meet their daily needs. Their lives were spent for God with little thought to laying up materials things for their old age. Even for those who were in a position to prepare for retirement, their conviction that they were living in the last days led many of them to enter their later years with little life savings, investments, or death benefit insurance.

As early as 1933, the General Council recognized the need to provide assistance for aging ministers and widows of ministers who died without insurance or savings. A committee on pensions for retired ministers was formed and reported recommendations back to the 1935 General Council in session, which included the creation of a fellowship fund for retired ministers and a voluntary death benefit program. The retired ministers fund would be supported by donations and earnings from Gospel Publishing House and would be available to “needy ministers or their widows who have engaged in an active and approved ministry in the General Council fellowship for a period of 10 or more years.”

In 1946 it was recommended to the General Presbytery that the Assemblies of God establish a home for aged ministers who “have spent their strength and lives in the gospel ministry and now face their declining years with no place to go or without anyone to care for them.” This home became a reality in 1948 when the Pinellas Park Hotel was purchased. The hotel had 29 rooms, each equipped with two twin beds, and two furnished parlors in the warm and pleasant climate near St. Petersburg, Florida. Former General Secretary-Treasurer J. R. Evans, age 79, and his wife became the first residents.

An article, “Meet This Happy Family,” published in the Nov. 20, 1955, Pentecostal Evangel, introduced readers to some of the residents of the Pinellas Park Home. “They are pioneers of Pentecost, representing the first generation of full gospel ministers. They were mature men and women in the days when the Spirit was outpoured in Topeka, Los Angeles, and all around the world. They represent the evangelists who first brought the message of Acts 2:4 to the cities of America, the pastors who stuck it out through thick and thin to establish Pentecostal churches, the first missionaries our struggling Assemblies sponsored on the field.”

Residents at Pinellas Park were retired from the professional duties of the ministry, but not from ministry itself. They taught Sunday School in local churches, led Bible studies, provided for one another’s needs, and provided much of the maintenance of the home. On any given day, one could find missionaries who had once opened up nations for the Pentecostal message passing out tracts and witnessing in the community of St. Petersburg.

It was not long before a larger facility was needed and construction began on a new facility in Lakeland, Florida, adjacent to the campus of Southeastern Bible College (now Southeastern University). Bethany Retirement Home was dedicated in 1960 and served the needs of retired ministers and laypeople until 1972, when Southeastern needed the property for expansion.

Forty acres was purchased next to Central Bible College in Springfield, Missouri, for the construction of Maranatha Manor (now Maranatha Village Retirement Community). Residents, who all their lives had been on the move for the gospel, packed up and moved one more time. College of the Ozarks in Point Lookout, Missouri, provided private air transportation from Lakeland to Springfield, and the new residents of Maranatha Village arrived in May 1973.

The Pentecostal Evangel article, “Meet This Happy Family!” reminded readers that Sunday, Nov. 20, had been designated “Aged Ministers Assistance Sunday,” a time when Assemblies of God churches were asked to remember the aged ministers, missionaries, and their widows with a special offering.

Mothers and fathers of the faith taught many the way of salvation and Spirit-filled living, knowing that in their time of need, God would not fail them. Today that need remains. Aged Ministers Assistance (AMA) continues to provide a monthly stipend for those in need and Maranatha Village is now a 100-acre home for both ministers and laypeople living in Christian community.

Read the article “Meet This Happy Family!” on page 6 of the Nov. 20, 1955, issue of the Pentecostal Evangel.

Also featured in this issue:

• “This is God’s Will for You” by E.M. Wadsworth

• “Some Day We’ll Understand” by J.J. Krimmer

• “It Brings Miracles” by Zelma Argue

And many more!

Click here to read this issue now.

Pentecostal Evangel archived editions courtesy of the Flower Pentecostal Heritage Center.

Do you have Pentecostal historical materials that should be preserved? Please consider depositing these materials at the Flower Pentecostal Heritage Center (FPHC). The FPHC, located in the Assemblies of God national offices, is the largest Pentecostal archive in the world. We would like to preserve and make your treasures accessible to those who write the history books.

Flower Pentecostal Heritage Center
1445 North Boonville Avenue
Springfield, Missouri 65802 USA
Phone: 417.862.1447 ext. 4400
Toll Free: 877.840.5200
Email: archives@ag.org
Website: www.iFPHC.org

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized