Tag Archives: Renewal

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.

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Review: Testimonies of Signs and Wonders

Cover of the revised edition, published 2014.

Testimonies of Signs and Wonders: Evangelistic Crusades of Maria Beulah Woodworth-Etter in Moline, Rock Island, Illinois and Davenport, Iowa in the Years 1902-1903-1907, or Redigging the Wells of Holy Spirit Renewal: Our Forgotten Heritage in the Quad Cities, compiled by Kenneth Richard Kline-Walczak. Revised version. Davenport, IA: The Author, 2006.

Maria Woodworth-Etter, among the most prominent of the healing evangelists in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, became one of the best known Holiness preachers to embrace Pentecostalism. Her popularity was due in large part to her practice of faith healing and other charismatic gifts, which began occuring in her meetings in about 1885. Her ministry attracted large crowds, fierce detractors and fervent supporters, as well as widespread coverage in newspapers from coast to coast. Newspaper editors, who often deemed the excitement and large crowds sparked by the woman evangelist to be worthy of critique, helped to spread her fame. The standard biography of Woodworth-Etter, Maria Woodworth-Etter, For Such a Time as This (Bridge-Logos, 2005), was authored by former Flower Pentecostal Heritage Center Director Wayne E. Warner.

Now Kenneth Kline-Walczak has cataloged Woodworth-Etter’s influence in one corner of the world — the Quad Cities on the Iowa-Illinois border. His book consists largely of an impressive collection of articles (1884-1907) about Woodworth-Etter from regional newspapers, assembled in chronological order and reprinted for the purpose of introducing the region’s readers to its Pentecostal past. The compiler also includes a helpful guide to the people and places mentioned in the articles. Kline-Walczak’s detailed research will aid not only historians, but also people in the Quad Cities as they seek to recover the sacred stories of God’s work among them in previous generations.

Reviewed by Darrin Rodgers

Paperback, xxvi, 194 pages, illustrated. $20, plus $4.00 shipping. Order from: Ken Kline, 2535 Central Avenue, Apartment 1, Dubuque, IA 52001 (email: woodworth65@yahoo.com ; phone: 563-845-9823).


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