Tag Archives: Pentecostal Evangel

“Fake News” and the Holocaust: A 1934 Warning from a Pentecostal about the Coming Jewish Holocaust

robinson_1400b

Charles E. Robinson, circa 1940s

This Week in AG History —January 27, 1934

By Darrin J. Rodgers
Originally published on AG News, 24 January 2019

The year was 1934, and a rising tide of anti-Semitism seemed to be sweeping the Western world. Adolf Hitler had recently ascended to power in Germany and strident voices in America were blaming Jews for the Great Depression.

Responding to this anti-Semitism, Pentecostal Evangel Associate Editor Charles E. Robinson wrote an article “as a solemn warning to all Christians” to avoid playing any role in the persecution of the Jews. In his article, “A Lawyer Examines Evidence,” Robinson invoked his professional training to demonstrate that a widely disseminated book purporting to be a secret Jewish manual for world domination was, in fact, a hoax.

protocolsThe book in question, The Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion, was an early 20th-century example of what might be called “fake news” today. Written to inflame public opinion against Jews, millions of people — including Christians — fell for its false claims that a Jewish conspiracy was responsible for global economic and political turmoil.

Many people began targeting Jewish people for persecution, making them the scapegoats for social unrest. “The Jews are in for a bad time,” Robinson predicted. “That they will suffer every unspeakable villainy that godless men can devise is no doubt true.”

Charles E. Robinson (1867-1954) had stature in Christian and professional circles. He began preaching in the Methodist church at age 17, graduated from law school, and practiced law with his father in Kansas City before entering the full-time ministry. He was ordained by the Assemblies of God in 1922 and quickly rose to prominence as a district leader in Arkansas. From 1925 until 1947 he served as an associate editor of the Pentecostal Evangel. He authored approximately 20 books, which were published by Gospel Publishing House, Zondervan, and various British publishers, among others.

Robinson was not alone in his sensitivity to the plight of persecuted Jews. Another associate editor of the Pentecostal Evangel, Myer Pearlman, was a British-born Jew who had accepted Christ and who became a prominent Assemblies of God theologian. Stanley Frodsham, the editor, was also from Britain and regularly alerted readers to the difficulties faced by Jews across Europe.

What can we learn from the response of Assemblies of God leaders who spoke out against populist anger directed toward Jews in the 1930s? They warned readers to carefully judge stories that seemed designed to vilify others. In this case, people who disliked Jews conspired to fabricate a story that was historically unfounded. “Fake news” stories about conspiracies may, ironically, be a conspiracy to engender hostility against alleged conspirators.

Sadly, Robinson’s prediction that the Jews would “suffer every unspeakable villainy that godless men can devise” came true with the Holocaust (1939-1945). However, future calamities might be avoided if more people were to follow Robinson’s admonition and carefully examine the evidence before accepting supposed news as truth.

Read the entire article by Charles E. Robinson, “A Lawyer Examines Evidence,” on page 3 of the Jan. 27, 1934, issue of the Pentecostal Evangel.

Also featured in this issue:

• “The Way of an Eagle,” by Tinnie Wheeler

• “Preach Faith,” by E. S. Williams

And many more!

Click here to read this issue now.

Pentecostal Evangel archived editions are provided 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: http://www.iFPHC.org

Leave a comment

Filed under Biography, Ethics, History

Charles Ramsay Preached using Cartoons, and for 43 Years the Pentecostal Evangel was his Pulpit

Ramsay_728
This Week in AG History — September 12, 1936

By Darrin Rodgers
Originally published on PE-News, 10 September 2015

When most Christians share the gospel, they do so through words or actions. But Charles Ramsay (1911-1994) preached using cartoons, and for 43 years his pulpit was the Pentecostal Evangel.

Ramsay grew up in Minnesota and, pursuing his love for art, attended the Chicago Art Institute. Yielding to a call to the ministry, in 1935 he enrolled at Central Bible Institute, the Assemblies of God school in Springfield, Missouri. To help make ends meet, he began working part time at Gospel Publishing House (GPH). A gifted artist, Ramsay was asked to create weekly cartoons for the Pentecostal Evangel and the Adult Sunday School Quarterly.

Ramsay began working full time for GPH after he finished college, and his cartoons became a well-loved feature in the Pentecostal Evangel for decades to come. Ramsay was the leading Christian cartoonist of his era, according to Vaughn Shoemaker, chief cartoonist for the Chicago Daily News. “Every one of his cartoons,” Shoemaker stated, “is equivalent to a sermon. It will never be known in this world just how far his cartoons have gone in extending the Kingdom of our Lord.”

In 1955, Ramsay accepted a position as head of the art department at Oral Roberts Evangelistic Association. He moved to Tulsa but continued creating cartoons for the Pentecostal Evangel until 1978. He began teaching art at Oral Roberts University when the school opened in 1965, and was a leader in the Tulsa arts community.

When Ramsay passed away in 1994, the Assemblies of God lost its best-known cartoonist. Flower Pentecostal Heritage Center Director Wayne Warner memorialized him, writing: “Now Charlie’s ink pens have been laid aside. He has autographed his last creative work. He has met his last deadline. Few will remember his preaching or writing but multitudes remember his distinctive ink drawings and paintings that in the words of Vaughn Shoemaker were ‘equivalent to a sermon.'”

For decades, one or two Ramsay cartoons could be found in each issue of the Pentecostal Evangel. However, the September 12, 1936, issue, dedicated to Sunday School and ministry to children, featured 20 of his cartoons.

Also featured in this issue:
* “Does Your Bible Wear Out Evenly?” by Myer Pearlman
* “The Living Word in the Written Word,” by Alice E. Luce

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 History

Pentecostal Evangel Celebrates 102nd Anniversary – First Issue Featured Interracial Content and Called for Unity

PE_ipad_728
This Week in AG History — July 19, 1913

By Darrin Rodgers
Originally published on PE-News, 16 Jul 2015

The Pentecostal Evangel, now known as PE News, is 102 years old this week. The magazine, launched as the Christian Evangel in 1913, transitioned from print to a digital platform at the beginning of 2015.

Over the years, PE News witnessed numerous changes. The title changed six times, and the place of publication changed three times. Publishing the weekly magazine was quite an undertaking. To lessen the cost and workload, the magazine was only published every other week from 1918 to 1923.

J. Roswell and Alice Flower established the Christian Evangel to report on revivals and missions activities and published it out of their home in Plainfield, Indiana. The first issue, dated July 19, 1913, featured interracial content. Three articles were by or about G. T. Haywood, the African-American pastor of the largest Pentecostal congregation in Indianapolis. The Flowers selected a masthead that remains relevant 102 years later: “The simplicity of the Gospel, In the bonds of peace, The unity of the Spirit, Till we all come to the unity of the faith.” Their call to unity implicitly recognized that their readers did not yet have “unity of the faith” — that disagreement existed on some matters. In the meantime, they affirmed that believers should aim for “unity of the Spirit.”

This language recognizing spiritual unity amidst diversity was included in the preamble of the constitution adopted by the first General Council of the Assemblies of God in April 1914. At that same meeting, J. Roswell Flower was elected to serve as the first general secretary of the Assemblies of God. The Flowers gave their magazine to the newly formed Assemblies of God. E. N. Bell, the first chairman, also gave his magazine, Word and Witness, to the new organization. The two periodicals merged in January 1916. The title changed in 1919 to Pentecostal Evangel, and under that name the periodical became one of the most prominent publications in the Pentecostal movement.

Today, PE News is the official news agency for the Assemblies of God and continues to network believers around the world.

Click here to read the first issue of the Christian Evangel.

Click here to read an engaging history of the Pentecostal Evangel, published in the 2013 edition of Assemblies of God Heritage.

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 News

Early Assemblies of God Deaf Ministry

PenEva19310411_13

Photo from the April 31, 1931 issue of the Pentecostal Evangel

This Week in AG History — October 29, 1932

By Darrin Rodgers
Originally published on AG-News, Mon, 28 Oct 2013 – 3:09 PM CST

Elsie Peters (1898-1965) was the earliest known Assemblies of God minister to the deaf. Peters’ call to deaf ministry came in 1919, when she befriended a deaf couple in Springfield, Missouri. At the time, Peters was a housewife with three children. One day, when stopping to catch her breath from the busyness of daily life, she uttered a little prayer, “Lord, what can I do for You today?” To her surprise, she felt the Lord answer her with the following instruction: “Go and visit a deaf mute.”

Peters visited a local deaf couple, Sullivan and Addie Chainey, who gladly welcomed her into their home. They told her that they often felt overlooked. It was difficult for them to make friends. Through their friendship with Peters, the Chaineys eventually accepted Christ and also entered into deaf ministry.

From this inauspicious beginning, the Assemblies of God ministry to the deaf emerged. Lottie Riekehof began teaching sign language at Central Bible Institute in 1948, and Home Missions (now U.S. Missions) created a division for Deaf Ministries in 1953. In 2011, the Assemblies of God included 82 deaf culture churches and more than 1,500 churches with some type of ministry in working with deaf people in the United States.

Read Elsie Peters’ testimony about her ministry to the deaf on page 14 of the October 29, 1932, issue of the Pentecostal Evangel.

Also featured in this issue:
* “The Holy Spirit and the Scriptures,” by Ernest S. Williams
* “Some Modern Definitions,” by Myer Pearlman

And many more!

Click here to read this issue now.

For more information about deaf ministry, see the website of the National Deaf Culture Fellowship of the Assemblies of God.

Pentecostal Evangel archived editions courtesy of the Flower Pentecostal Heritage Center. For current editions of the Evangelclick here.

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 Church, Missions

Farmer makes pilgrimage to Springfield


Elvin FarmerSixty-nine years ago an eleven-year-old boy, Elvin Farmer, walked door-to-door in Glenwood, Arkansas, asking friends and neighbors to buy the Pentecostal Evangel for two cents each. It was a very proud moment for the earnest young man when he learned that he was the top seller in his area and that his achievement would be noted in the October 15, 1938 issue of the Pentecostal Evangel.

That story prompted one of his four daughters to recently visit the Flower Pentecostal Heritage Center, located in the Assemblies of God Headquarters in Springfield, Missouri. A thorough search yielded the 1938 article, which was to be a surprise gift for Farmer’s 80th birthday party in California in April 2007.

Two months later, Farmer, his daughter, and his grandchildren visited Springfield and toured the Assemblies of God Headquarters. Farmer, a faithful Assemblies of God member for 80 years, currently attends Calvary Christian Center Assembly of God in Yuba City, California.

According to his daughter, Darla, Farmer is “very proud that he raised his four daughters in the Assemblies of God.” She stated that the tour allowed him “to see the inner workings” of the Fellowship and “gave him a stronger sense of belonging.”

When traveling through Springfield, be sure to stop and visit the Assemblies of God Headquarters. Free tours include visits to the Gospel Publishing House, AG World Missions, the Flower Pentecostal Heritage Center and more! Explore our websites for more information on the Flower Pentecostal Heritage Center museum and the guided walking tour of the Assemblies of God national headquarters.

Photo: young Elvin Farmer, circa 1938.

Technorati Tags:
, ,

Posted by Darrin Rodgers

Leave a comment

Filed under News

Missing GPH songbook: “Songs of Light and Life” (1926)


You may remember that in January 2007 we discovered a new (old) Assemblies of God hymnal that we had not seen before. It was published by Gospel Publishing House in the 1940s, but somehow disappeared from sight and mind for decades before re-emerging. It is now safely stored in the Flower Pentecostal Heritage Center vault! Click here for the announcement of that exciting find.

It happened again! At least, we hope it will. A search through old issues of the Pentecostal Evangel yielded yet another GPH songbook that we do not have in our collection. We have never seen a copy of it, and we do not know of any other person, archive or library that owns a copy.

The Pentecostal Evangel, from June 19, 1926 through Aug 13, 1927, advertised a new GPH songbook — Songs of Light and Life. One advertisement, published in the June 19, 1926 issue (page 15), stated that the songbook, which contained 165 songs, was well-suited for revival services and camp meetings. The ad warned readers that they should order quickly because of the limited quantities on hand. The price? It cost twelve cents per copy; fifteen cents postpaid.

If you have a copy of Songs of Light and Life or if you know where one is located, please contact the Flower Pentecostal Heritage Center at archives@ag.org.

Posted by Darrin Rodgers

Leave a comment

Filed under News

Celebrating 100 years of Pentecost in Springfield, Missouri

Corum Farmhouse


Farmhouse where Lillie Corum was baptized in the Spirit in 1907

June 1, 2007 marks 100 years of Pentecost in Springfield, Missouri.

Just after the Azusa Street revival broke out in Los Angeles in 1906, Evangelist Rachel Harper Sizelove began writing glowing reports to her sister, Lillie Corum, who lived in Springfield, Missouri. Mrs. Corum started reading copies of William Seymour’s Apostolic Faith paper, and she earnestly began seeking and praying to receive the baptism in the Holy Spirit.

The next May, Rachel Sizelove traveled from Azusa Street to Springfield to visit her sister and family. And in an all-night prayer meeting, Lillie Corum was baptized in the Spirit at her farmhouse in the wee hours of June 1, 1907. She is credited with being the first person in Springfield to receive the baptism in the Holy Spirit. And soon afterwards, the Corum family, rejected by their Baptist pastor, began holding prayer meetings in their home. This was the beginning of Central Assembly of God, the mother church in Springfield, Missouri.

Continue reading

2 Comments

Filed under News