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REVIVAL! It Can Happen Again!

1. Eighteenth Century

1727 - Wednesday, 13 August - Herrnhut, Germany (Nicholas von Zinzendorf)

1735 - January - New England, America (Jonathan Edwards)

1739 - Thursday 1 January - London (George Whitefield, John Wesley)

1745 - Thursday 8 August - Crossweeksung, New Jersey (David Brainerd)

1781 - Tuesday 25 December - Cornwall, England


Wednesday 13 August - Herrnhut, Germany (Zinzendorf)

No one present could tell exactly what happened to the Moravians on Wednesday morning, 13 August 1727 at the specially called Communion service. The glory of the Lord came upon them so powerfully that they hardly knew if they had been on earth or in heaven. Count Nicholas Zinzendorf, the young leader of that community, gave this account many years later:

'We needed to come to the Communion with a sense of the loving nearness of the Saviour. This was the great comfort which has made this day a generation ago to be a festival, because on this day twenty­seven years ago the Congregation of Herrnhut, assembled for communion (at the Berthelsdorf church) were all dissatisfied with themselves. They had quit judging each other because they had become convinced, each one, of his lack of worth in the sight of God and each felt himself at this Communion to be in view of the noble countenance of the Saviour. ...

'This firm confidence changed them in a single moment into a happy people which they are to this day, and into their happiness they have since led many thousands of others through the memory and help which the heavenly grace once given to themselves, so many thousand times confirmed to them since then' (Greenfield 1927:15).

Zinzendorf described it as 'a sense of the nearness of Christ' given to everyone present, and also to others of their community who were working elsewhere at the time. The congregation was young. Zinzendorf, the human leader, at 27, was about the average

age of the group.

Their missionary zeal began with the outpouring of the Holy Spirit. Count Zinzendorf observed: 'The Saviour permitted to come upon us a Spirit of whom we had hitherto not had any experience or knowledge. ... Hitherto we had been the leaders and helpers. Now the Holy Spirit himself took full control of everything and everybody' (Greenfield 1927:21).

Prayer precedes Pentecost. The disgruntled community at Herrnhut early in 1727 was deeply divided and critical of one another. Heated controversies threatened to disrupt the community. The majority were from the ancient Moravian Church of the Brethren. Other believers attracted to Herrnhut included Lutherans, Reformed, and Anabaptists. They argued about predestination, holiness, and baptism.

At Herrnhut, Zinzendorf visited all the adult members of the deeply divided community. He drew up a covenant calling upon them 'to seek out and emphasise the points in which they agreed' rather than stressing their differences. On 12 May 1727 they all signed an agreement to dedicate their lives, as he dedicated his, to the service of the Lord Jesus Christ.

On 22 July many of the community covenanted together on their own accord to meet often to pour out their hearts in prayer and hymns.

On 5 August the Count spent the whole night in prayer with about twelve or fourteen others following a large meeting for prayer at midnight where great emotion prevailed.

On Sunday, 10 August, Pastor Rothe, while leading the service at Herrnhut, was overwhelmed by the power of the Lord about noon. He sank down into the dust before God. So did the whole congregation. They continued till midnight in prayer and singing, weeping and praying.

On Wednesday, 13 August, the Holy Spirit was poured out on them all. Their prayers were answered in ways far beyond anyone's expectations. Many of them decided to set aside certain times for continued earnest prayer.

On 26 August, twenty­four men and twenty­four women covenanted together to continue praying in intervals of one hour each, day and night, each hour allocated by lots to different people.

On 27 August, this new regulation began. Others joined the intercessors and the number involved increased to seventy­seven. They all carefully observed the hour which had been appointed for them. The intercessors had a weekly meeting where prayer needs were given to them.

The children, also touched powerfully by God, began a similar plan among themselves. Those who heard their infant supplications were deeply moved. The children's prayers and supplications had a powerful effect on the whole community.

That astonishing prayer meeting beginning in 1727 lasted one hundred years. It was unique. Known as the Hourly Intercession, it involved relays of men and women in prayer without ceasing made to God. That prayer also led to action, especially evangelism. More than 100 missionaries left that village community in the next twenty­five years, all constantly supported in prayer.

One result of their baptism in the Holy Spirit was a joyful assurance of their pardon and salvation. This made a strong impact on people in many countries, including the Wesleys.


January - New England, America (Jonathan Edwards)

Jonathan Edwards, the preacher and scholar who later became a President of Princeton University, was a prominent leader in a revival movement which came to be called the Great Awakening as it spread through the communities of New England and the pioneering settlements in America. Converts to Christianity reached 50,000 out of a total of 250,000 colonists. Early in 1735 an unusually powerful move of God's Spirit brought revival to Northampton, which then spread through New England.

Edwards wrote that 'a great and earnest concern about the great things of religion and the eternal world, became universal in all parts of the town, and among persons of all degrees and all ages; the noise among the dry bones waxed louder nd louder; all other talk but about spiritual and eternal things, was soon thrown by.

'The minds of people were wonderfully taken off from the world; it was treated among us as a thing of very little consequence. They seemed to follow their worldly business more as a part of their duty, than from any disposition they had to it.

'It was then a dreadful thing amongst us to lie out of Christ, in danger every part of dropping into hell; and what persons' minds were intent upon was, to escape for their lives, and to fly from the wrath to come. All would eagerly lay hold of opportunities for their souls, and were wont very often to meet together in private houses for religious purposes; and such meetings, when appointed, were wont greatly to be thronged.

'And the work of conversion was carried on in a most astonishing manner, and increased more and more. Souls did, as it were, come by flocks to Jesus Christ. From day to day, for many months together, might be seen evident instances of sinners brought out of darkness into marvellous light.

'Our public assemblies were then beautiful; the congregation was alive in God's service, every one earnestly intent on the public worship, every hearer eager to drink in the words of the minister as they came from his mouth. The assembly in general were, from time to time, in tears while the word was preached; some weeping with sorrow and distress, others with joy and love, others with pity and concern for the souls of their neighbours.

'Those amongst us that had formerly been converted, were greatly enlivened and renewed with fresh and extraordinary incomes of the Spirit of God; though some much more than others, according to the measure of the gift of Christ. Many that had before laboured under difficulties about their own state, had now their doubts removed by more satisfying experience, and more clear discoveries of God's love' (Stacy 1842,1989:12-13).

Edwards described these characteristics of the revival:

'(a) An extraordinary sense of the awful majesty, greatness and holiness of God, so as sometimes to overwhelm soul and body, a sense of the piercing, all seeing eye of God so as to sometimes take away bodily strength; and an extraordinary view of the infinite terribleness of the wrath of God, together with a sense of the ineffable misery of sinners exposed to this wrath, and

'(b) Especially longing after these two things; to be more perfect in humility and adoration. The flesh and the heart seem often to cry out, lying low before God and adoring him with greater love and humility. ... The person felt a great delight in singing praises to God and Jesus Christ, and longing that this present life may be as it were one continued song of praise to God. ... Together with living by faith to a great degree, there was a constant and extraordinary distrust of our own strength and wisdom; a great dependence on God for his help ... and being restrained from the most horrid sins' (Pratney 1994:92-93).

In 1735, when the New England revival was strongest, George Whitefield in England and Howell Harris in Wales were converted. Both were 21 and both ignited revival fires, seeing thousands converted and communities changed. By 1736 Harris began forming his converts into societies and by 1739 there were nearly thirty such societies. Whitefield travelled extensively, visiting Georgia in 1738 (the first of seven journeys to America), then ministering powerfully with Howell Harris in Wales 1739 and with Jonathan Edwards in New England in 1740, all in his early twenties.

Also at the end of 1735, John Wesley sailed to Georgia, an American colony. He returned at the end of 1737, frustrated in his work in Georgia. Both John and Charles were converted in May 1738, Charles first, and John three days later on Wednesday 24 May. He wrote his famous testimony in his Journal:

'In the evening I went very unwillingly to a society in Aldersgate Street, where one was reading Luther's preface to the Epistle to the Romans. About a quarter before nine, while he was describing the change which God works in the heart through faith in Christ, I felt my heart strangely warmed. I felt I did trust in Christ, Christ alone, for salvation; and

an assurance was given me, that he had taken away my sins, even mine, and saved me from the law of sin and death' (Idle 1986:46).


Monday 1 January - London (George Whitefield, John Wesley)

1739 saw astonishing expansion of revival in England. On 1st January the Wesleys and Whitefield (now returned from America) and four others from their former Holy Club at Oxford in their students days, along with 60 others, met in London for prayer and a love feast. The Spirit of God moved powerfully on them all. Many fell down, overwhelmed. The meeting went all night and they realised they had been empowered in a fresh visitation from God.

'Mr Hall, Kinchin, Ingham, Whitefield, Hitchins, and my brother Charles were present at our lovefeast in Fetter Lane, with about sixty of our brethren. About three in the morning, as we were continuing instant in prayer, the power of God came mightily upon us, insomuch that many cried out for exceeding joy, and many fell to the ground. As soon as we were recovered a little from that awe and amazement at the presence of his majesty, we broke out with one voice, "We praise Thee, O God, we acknowledge Thee to be the Lord"' (Idle 1986:55).

This Pentecost on New Year's Day launched the revival known now as the Great Awakening.

Revival fire spread rapidly. In February 1739 Whitefield started preaching to the Kingswood coal miners in the open fields near Bristol because many churches were now closed to him, accusing him and other evangelicals of 'enthusiasm'. In February about 200 attended. By March 20,000 attended. Whitefield invited Wesley to take over then and so in April Wesley reluctantly began his famous open air preaching, which continued for 50 years.

He described that first weekend in his Journal:

'Sunday, 31 March - In the evening I reached Bristol, and met Mr Whitefield. I could scarce reconcile myself at first to this strange way of preaching in the fields, of which he set me an example on Sunday; having been all my life (till very lately) so tenacious of every point relating to decency and order, that I should have thought the saving of souls almost a sin if it had not been done in a church.

'Sunday, 1 April - In the evening, I begun expounding our Lord's Sermon on the Mount (one pretty remarkable precedent of field-preaching) to a little society in Nicholas Street.

'Monday, 2 April - At four in the afternoon I submitted to be more vile, and proclaimed in the highways the glad tidings of salvation, speaking from a little eminence in a ground adjoining to the city, to almost three thousand people. The scripture on which I spoke was "The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor"' (Idle 1986:56-57).

He returned to London in June reporting on the amazing move of God's Spirit with many conversions and many people falling prostrate under God's power ­ a phenomenon which he never encouraged! Features of this revival were enthusiastic singing, powerful preaching, and the gathering of converts into small societies called weekly Class Meetings.

By June, tensions had developed over manifestations acompanying this revival. Wesley wrote, 'Saturday, 16 June - We met at Fetter Lane, to humble ourselves before God, and own that he had justly withdrawn his Spirit from us for our manifold unfaithfulness: by our divisions; by our leaning again to our own works, and trusting in them, instead of Christ; and above all, by blaspheming his work among us, imputing it either to nature, to the force of imagination, or even to the delusion of the devil. In that hour we found God with us as at the first' (Idle 1986:60).

Revival caught fire in Scotland also. After returning again from America in 1741, Whitefield visited Glasgow. Two ministers in villages nearby invited him to return in 1742 because revival had already begun in their area. Conversions and prayer groups multiplied. Whitefield preached there at Cambuslang about four miles from Glasgow. The opening meetings on a Sunday saw the great crowds on the hill side gripped with conviction, repentance and weeping more than he had seen elsewhere. The next weekend 20,000 gathered on the Saturday and up to 50,000 on the Sunday for the quarterly communion. The visit was charged with Pentecostal power which even amazed Whitefield.


Thursday 8 August - Crossweeksung, New Jersey (David Brainerd)

Jonathan Edwards published the journal of David Brainerd, a missionary to the North American Indians from 1743 to his death at 29 in 1747. Brainerd tells of revival breaking out among Indians at Crossweeksung in August 1745 when the power of God seemed to come like a rushing mighty wind. The Indians were overwhelmed by God. The revival had greatest impact when Brainerd emphasised the compassion of the Saviour, the provisions of the gospel, and the free offer of divine grace. Idolatry was abandoned, marriages repaired, drunkenness practically disappeared, honesty and repayments of debts prevailed. Money once wasted on excessive drinking was used for family and communal needs. Their communities were filled with love.

Part of his Journal for Thursday 8 August reads:

'The power of God seemed to descend on the assembly "like a rushing mighty wind" and with an astonishing energy bore all down before it. I stood amazed at the influence that seized the audience almost universally and could compare it to nothing more aptly than the irresistible force of a mighty torrent... Almost all persons of all ages were bowed down with concern together and scarce was able to withstand the shock of astonishing operation' (Edwards 1959: 142­143).


Sunday 25 December - Cornwall, England

Forty years after the Great awakening began the fires of revival has died out in many places. Concerned leaders called the church to pray.

'And then the Lord of the universe stepped in and took over. On Christmas day 1781, at St. Just Church in Cornwall, at 3.00 am, intercessors met to sing and pray. The heavens opened at last and they knew it. They prayed through until 9.00 am and regathered on Christmas evening. Throughout January and February, the movement continued. By March 1782 they were praying until midnight. No significant preachers were involved ­ just people praying and the Holy Spirit responding.

'Two years later in 1784, when 83­year old John Wesley visited that area, he wrote, "This country is all on fire and the flame is spreading from village to village."

'And spread it did. The chapel which George Whitefield had built decades previously in Tottenham Court Road had to be enlarged to seat 5,000 people ­ the largest in the world at that time. Baptist churches in North Hampton, Leicester, and the Midlands, set aside regular nights devoted to the drumbeat of prayer for revival. Methodists and Anglicans joined in. ...

'Converts were being won ... at the prayer meetings! Some were held at 5.00 am, some at midnight. Some pre­Christians were drawn by dreams and visions. Some came to scoff but were thrown to the ground under the power of the Holy Spirit. Sometimes there was noise and confusion; sometimes stillness and solemnity. But always there was that ceaseless outpouring of the Holy Spirit. Whole denominations doubled, tripled and quadrupled in the next few years. It swept out from England to Wales, Scotland, United States, Canada and some Third World countries' (Robinson 1992:8­9).

This movement developed into the Second Awakening in England and America.

2. Nineteenth Century

1800 - June-July - Red & Gasper River, Kentucky (James McGready)

1801 - Cane Ridge, Kentucky (Barton Stone)

1821 - Wednesday 10 October - Adams, America (Charles Finney)

1857 - October - Hamilton, Canada (Phoebe Palmer)

1858 - March - New York, America (Jeremiah Lanphier)

1859 - Monday 14 March - Ulster, Ireland (James McQuilkin)


June-July - Red & Gasper River, Kentucky (James McGready)

The Wesleyan revival of holiness brought about a spiritual awakening in England and America. It established the Methodists with 140,000 members by the end of the century, and renewed other churches and Christians. By 1792, the year after John Wesley died, this Second Awakening began to sweep Great Britain and America.

In New England, Isaac Backus, a Baptist pastor, addressed an urgent plea for prayer for revival to pastors of every Christian denomination in the United States in 1794. The churches adopted the plan until America, like Britain, was interlaced with a network of prayer meetings. They met on the first Monday of each month to pray. Soon revival came.

James McGready, a Presbyterian minister in Kentucky, promoted the prayer meetings every first Monday of the month, and urged his people to pray for him at sunset on Saturday evening and sunrise Sunday morning. Revival swept Kentucky in the summer of 1800.

McGready had three small congregations in Muddy River, Red River and Gasper River in Logan County in the southwest of the state. The majority of the people were refugees from all states in the Union who fled from justice or punishment. They included murderers, horse thieves, highway robbers, and counterfeiters. The area was nicknamed Rogues Harbour.

'The first real manifestations of God's power came, however, in June 1800. Four to five-hundred members of McGready's three congregations, plus five ministers, had gathered at Red River for a "camp meeting" lasting several days. On the final day, "a mighty effusion of [God's] Spirit" came upon the people, "and the floor was soon covered with the slain; their screams for mercy pierced the heavens."

'Convinced that God was moving, McGready and his colleagues planned another camp meeting to be held in late July 1800 at Gasper River. They had not anticipated what occurred. An enormous crowd - as many as 8,000 - began arriving at the appointed date, many from distances as great as 100 miles. ... Although the term camp meeting was not used till 1802, this was the first true camp meeting where a continuous outdoor service was combined with camping out. ...

'At a huge evening meeting lighted by flaming torches ... a Presbyterian pastor gave a throbbing message ... McGready recalled: The power of God seemed to shake the whole assembly. Toward the close of the sermon, the cries of the distressed arose almost as loud as his voice. After the congregation was dismissed the solemnity increased, till the greater part of the multitude seemed engaged in the most solemn manner. No person seemed to wish to go home - hunger and sleep seemed to affect nobody - eternal things were the vast concern. Here awakening and converting work was to be found in every part of the multitude; and even some things strangely and wonderfully new to me' (Church History magazine, No. 23, p 25).


August - Cane Ridge, Kentucky (Barton Stone)

Impressed by the revivals in 1800, Barton Stone, a Presbyterian minister, organised similar meetings in 1801 in his area at Cane Ridge north-east of Lexington. A huge crowd of around 12,500 attended in over 125 wagons including people from Ohio and Tennessee. At that time Lexington, the largest town in Kentucky, had less than 1,800 citizens. Now Presbyterian, Methodist and Baptist preachers and circuit riders formed preaching teams, speaking simultaneously in different parts of the camp grounds, all aiming for conversions of sinners.

James Finley, later a Methodist circuit rider, described it:

'The noise was like the roar of Niagara. The bast sea of human being seemed to be agitated as if by a storm. I counted seven ministers, all preaching at one time, some on stumps, others in wagons and one standing on a tree which had, in falling, lodged against another. ...

'I stepped up on a log where I could have a better view of the surging sea of humanity. The scene that then presented itself to my mind was indescribable. At one time I saw at least five hundred swept down in a moment as if a battery of a thousand guns had been opened upon them, and then immediately followed shrieks and shouts that rent the very heavens' (Pratney 1994:104).

The Rev. Moses Hoge wrote: 'The careless fall down, cry out, tremble, and not infrequently are affected with convulsive twitchings ...

'Nothing that imagination can paint, can make a stronger impression upon the mind, than one of those scenes. Sinners dropping down on every hand, shrieking, groaning, crying for mercy, convulsed; professors praying, agonizing, fainting, falling down in distress, for sinners or in raptures of joy! ...

'As to the work in general there can be no question but it is of God. The subject of it, for the most part are deeply wounded for their sins, and can give a clear and rational account of their conversion' (Church History magazine, No. 23, p. 26).

Revival early in the nineteenth century not only impacted the American frontier, but also towns and especially colleges. One widespread result in America, as in England, was the formation of missionary societies to train and direct the large numbers of converts filled with missionary zeal.


Wednesday 10 October - Adams, America (Charles Finney)

Charles Finney became well known in revivals in the nineteenth century. A keen sportsman and young lawyer, he had a mighty empowering by God's Spirit on the night of his conversion on Wednesday 10 October 1821. That morning the Holy Spirit convicted him on his way to work. So he spent the morning in the woods near his small town of Adams in New York State, praying. There he surrendered fully to God. He returned his law office that afternoon, assisting his employer Squire Wright to set up a new office. He wrote:

'By evening we had the books and furniture adjusted, and I made a good fire in an open fireplace, hoping to spend the evening alone. Just at dark Squire W--, seeing that everything was adjusted, told me good night and went to his home. I had accompanied him to the door, and as I closed the door and turned around my heart seemed to be liquid within me. All my feelings seemed to rise and flow out and the thought of my heart was, "I want to pour my whole soul out to God." The rising of my soul was so great that I rushed into the room back of the front office to pray.

'There was no fire and no light in this back room; nevertheless it appeared to me as if it were perfectly light. As I went in and shut the door after me, it seemed to me as if I met the Lord Jesus Christ face to face. It seemed to me that I saw him as I would see any other man. He said nothing, but looked at me in such a manner as to break me right down at his feet. It seemed to me a reality that he stood before me, and I fell down at his feet and poured out my soul to him. I wept aloud like a child and made such confession as I could with my choked words. It seemed to me that I bathed his feet with my tears, and yet I had no distinct impression that I touched him.

'I must have continued in this state for a good while, but my mind was too much absorbed with the interview to remember anything that I said. As soon as my mind became calm enough I returned to the front office and found that the fire I had made of large wood was nearly burned out. But as I turned and was about to take a seat by the fire, I received a mighty baptism of the Holy Spirit. Without any expectation of it, without ever having the thought in my mind that there was any such thing for me, without any memory of ever hearing the thing mentioned by any person in the world, the Holy Spirit descended upon me in a manner that seemed to go through me, body and soul. I could feel the impression, like a wave of electricity, going through and through me. Indeed it seemed to come in waves of liquid love, for I could not express it in any other way. It seemed like the very breath of God. I can remember distinctly that it seemed to fan me, like immense wings.

'No words can express the wonderful love that was spread abroad in my heart. I wept aloud with joy and love. I literally bellowed out the unspeakable overflow of my heart. These waves came over me, and over me, and over me, one after another, until I remember crying out, "I shall die if these waves continue to pass over me." I said, "Lord, I cannot bear any more," yet I had no fear of death' (Wessel 1977:20-22).

The result? That night a member of the church choir which Finney led called in at his office, amazed to find the former sceptic in a 'state of loud weeping' and unable to talk to him for some time. That young friend left and soon returned with an elder from the church who was usually serious and rarely laughed. 'When he came in,' Finney observed, 'I was very much in the state in which I was when the young man went out to call him. He asked me how I felt and I began to tell him. Instead of saying anything he fell into a most spasmodic laughter. It seemed as if it was impossible for him to keep from laughing from the very bottom of his heart' (Wessel 1977:22).

Next morning, with 'the renewal of these mighty waves of love and salvation' flowing through him, Finney witnessed to his employer who was strongly convicted and later made his peace with God. That morning, Finney continues, 'Deacon B-- came into the office and said to me, "Mr Finney, do you remember that my cause is to be tried at ten o'clock this morning? I suppose you are ready?" I had been retained to attend this suit as his attorney.

'I replied to him, "Deacon B--, I have a retainer from the Lord Jesus Christ to plead his cause and I cannot plead yours."

'He looked at me with astonishment and said, "What do you mean?"

'I told him, in a few words, that I had enlisted in the cause of Christ, and then repeated that I had a retainer from the Lord Jesus Christ to plead his cause, and that he must go and get somebody else to attend his lawsuit. I could not do it.

'He dropped his head and without making any reply went out. A few moments later, in passing the window, I observed that Deacon B-- was standing in the road, seemingly lost in deep meditation. He went away, as I afterward learned, and immediately settled his suit privately. He then betook himself to prayer and soon got into a much higher religious state than he had ever been before.

'I soon sallied forth from the office to converse with those whom I might meet about their souls. I had the impression, which has never left my mind, that God wanted me to preach the Gospel, and that I must begin immediately. ...

'I spoke with many persons that day, and I believe the Spirit of God made lasting impressions upon every one of them. I cannot remember one whom I spoke with, who was not soon after converted. ...

'In the course of the day a good deal of excitement was created in the village because of what the Lord had done for my soul. Some thought one thing and some another. At evening, without any appointment having been made, I observed that the people were going to the place where they usually held their conference and prayer meetings. ...

'I went there myself. The minister was there, and nearly all the principal people in the village. No one seemed ready to open the meeting, but the house was packed to its utmost capacity. I did not wait for anybody, but rose and began by saying that I then knew that religion was from God. I went on and told such parts of my experience as it seemed important for me to tell. ...

'We had a wonderful meeting that evening, and from that day we had a meeting every evening for a long time. The work spread on every side.

'As I had been a leader among the young people I immediately appointed a meeting for them, which they all attended. ... They were converted one after another with great rapidity, and the work continued among them until only one of their number was left unconverted.

'The work spread among all classes, and extended itself not only through the village but also out of the village in every direction' (Wessel 1977:26-31).

Finney continued for the rest of his life in evangelism, revival, and pastoral work and he founded Oberlin college to train evangelists and ministers.


October - Hamilton, Canada (Phoebe Palmer)

Revival broke out at evangelistic meetings led by Walter and Phoebe Palmer in Hamilton, Ontario in Canada during October 1857. Attendances reached 6,000, and five to six hundred professed conversion including many civic leaders. It was widely reported.

Walter Palmer, a Holiness Methodist physician, assisted his talented wife Phoebe, a firebrand preacher. 'Her preaching, teaching, half-a-dozen books, and editing of The Guide to Holiness left "an indelible impact on both Methodism and the wider Church." ...

'Finney, the reformer, Mrs. Palmer, the pioneer of many benevolent and missionary enterprises, and William E. Broadman, organizer and executive head of the United States Christian Commission, did not seem like mystic dreamers to their generation ... they rang the changes on ... the theme that the Spirit's baptism was the secret of pulpit power and the fountain of that energy which alone could accomplish the evangelization of the world' (Pratney 1994:107).

Jeremiah Lanphier, a city missioner, began a weekly noon prayer meeting in Fulton Street, New York in September that year. By October it grew into a daily prayer meeting attended by many businessmen. Anticipation of revival grew, especially with the financial collapse that October after a year of depression.


March - New York, America (Jeremiah Lanphier)

At the beginning of 1858 that Fulton Street prayer meeting had grown so much they were holding three simultaneous prayer meetings in the building and other prayer groups were starting in the city. By March newspapers carried front page reports of over 6,000 attending daily prayer meetings in New York, 6,000 attending them in Pittsburgh, and daily prayer meetings were held in Washington at five different times to accommodate the crowds.

Other cities followed the pattern. Soon a common mid­day sign on businesses read, 'Will re­open at the close of the prayer meeting.'

By May, 50,000 of New York's 800,000 people were new converts. A newspaper reported that New England was profoundly changed by the revival and in several towns no unconverted adults could be found!

In 1858 a leading Methodist paper reported these features of the revival: few sermons were needed, lay people witnessed, seekers flocked to the altar, nearly all seekers were blessed, experiences remained clear, converts had holy boldness, religion became a social topic, family altars were strengthened, testimony given nightly was abundant, and conversations were marked with seriousness.

Edwin Orr's research revealed that in 1858­59 a million Americans were converted in a population of thirty million and at least a million Christians were renewed, with lasting results in church attendances and moral reform in society.


Monday 14 March - Ulster, Ireland (James McQuilkin)

Revival swept Great Britain also, including the Ulster revival of 1859.

During September 1857, the same month the Fulton Street meetings began, James McQuilkin commenced a weekly prayer meeting in a village schoolhouse near Kells with three other young Irishmen. This is generally seen as the start of the Ulster revival. The first conversions in answer to their prayer came in December 1857. Through 1858 innumerable prayer meetings started, and revival was a common theme of preachers.

On 14 March 1859 James McQuilkin and his praying friends organised a great prayer meeting at the Ahoghill Presbyterian Church. Such a large crowd gathered that the building was cleared in case the galleries collapsed. Outside in the chilling rain as a layman preached with great power hundreds knelt in repentance. This was the first of many movements of mass conviction of sin.

The revival 1859 brought 100,000 converts into the churches of Ireland. God's Spirit moved powerfully in small and large gatherings bringing great conviction of sin, deep repentance, and lasting moral change. Prostrations were common ­ people lying prostrate in conviction and repentance, unable to rise for some time. By 1860 crime was reduced, judges in Ulster several times had no cases to try. At one time in County Antrim no crime was reported to the police and no prisoners were held in police custody.

Edwin Orr noted that this revival made a greater impact on Ireland than anything known since Patrick brought Christianity there. By the end of 1860 the effects of the Ulster revival were listed as thronged services, unprecedented numbers of communicants, abundant prayer meetings, increased family prayers, unmatched scripture reading, prosperous Sunday Schools, converts remaining steadfast, increased giving, vice abated, and crime reduced.

Revival fire ignites fire. Throughout 1859 the same deep conviction and lasting conversions revived thousands of people in Wales, Scotland and England.

Revival in Wales found expression in glorious praise including harmonies unique to the Welsh which involved preacher and people in turn. There too, 100,000 converts (one tenth of the total population) were added to the church and crime was greatly reduced. Scotland and England were similarly visited with revival. Again, prayer increased enormously and preaching caught fire with many anointed evangelists seeing thousands converted.

3. Early Twentieth Century

1904 - Monday 31 October - Loughor, Wales (Evan Roberts)

1906 - Saturday 14 April - Azusa Street, Los Angeles (William Seymour)

1907 - January - Pyong-Yang, Korea

1914 - Belgian Congo in Africa (C. T. Studd)

1921 - Monday 7 March - Lowestroft, England (Douglas Brown)

1936 - Sunday 29 June - Gahini, Rwanda (East African Revival)


Revival historian Edwin Orr observed: 'The early twentieth century Evangelical Awakening was a worldwide movement. It did not begin with the phenomenal Welsh Revival of 1904­05. Rather its sources were in the springs of little prayer meetings which seemed to arise spontaneously all over the world, combining into streams of expectation which became a river of blessing in which the Welsh Revival became the greatest cataract. ...

'The Welsh Revival was the farthest­reaching of the movements of the general Awakening, for it affected the whole of the Evangelical cause in India, Korea and China, renewed revival in Japan and South Africa, and sent a wave of awakening over Africa, Latin America, and the South Seas.

'The story of the Welsh Revival is astounding. Begun with prayer meetings of less than a score of intercessors, when it burst its bounds the churches of Wales were crowded for more than two years. A hundred thousand outsiders were converted and added to the churches, the vast majority remaining true to the end. Drunkenness was immediately cut in half, and many taverns went bankrupt. Crime was so diminished that judges were presented with white gloves signifying that there were no cases of murder, assault, rape or robbery or the like to consider. The police became "unemployed" in many districts. Stoppages occurred in coal mines, not due to unpleasantness between management and workers, but because so many foul­mouthed miners became converted and stopped using foul language that the horses which hauled the coal trucks in the mines could no longer understand what was being said to them, and transportation ground to a halt' (Orr 1975c:192­193).

Touches of revival had stirred New Quay, Cardiganshire, on the west coast of Wales where Joseph Jenkins was minister of a church in which he led teams of revived young people in conducting testimony meetings throughout the area.

Seth Joshua then held meetings there, then at Newcastle Emlyn and at Blaenannerch, at which students from the Methodist Academy attended including Evan Roberts.

At Blanannerch on Thursday 29 September, Seth Joshua closed the 7 am meeting before breakfast crying out in Welsh, 'Lord ... bend us'. Evan Roberts remembered, 'It was the Spirit that put the emphasis for me on "Bend us". "That is what you need" said the Spirit to me. And as I went out I prayed, O Lord, bend me.'

During the 9 am meeting, Evan Roberts eventually prayed aloud after others had prayed. He knelt with his arms over the seat in front, bathed in perspiration as he agonised. He recalled, 'I cried out, "Bend me! Bend me! Bend us! Oh! Oh! Oh! Oh!" (Evans 1969:70).

The revelation, 'God commendeth his love' (Romans 5:18) overwhelmed Evan Roberts. Soon a motto of the revival became 'Bend the church and save the world'. Evan Roberts in his twenties was one of God's agents in that national revival.

Monday 31 October - Loughor, Wales (Evan Roberts)

Soon after the impact of the Spirit on him at Seth Joshua's meetings, he took leave to return home to challenge his friends, especially the young people.

Back home in his small village of Loughor on the south coast of Wales, Evan Roberts spoke after the usual Monday night meeting to 17 people. The Holy Spirit moved on them all. He then spoke every night to increasing crowds. By the weekend the church was packed and invitations came for him to speak in other churches and chapels. He usually took a small team with him to pray, witness and sing.

November 1904 saw the fires of revival spread throughout Wales. Newspapers began describing the crowded meetings. By January 1905 the papers had reported 70,000 converted in less than three months.

The Spirit of God convicted people as Evan Roberts insisted:

1. You must put away any unconfessed sin.

2. You must put away any doubtful habit.

3. You must obey the Spirit promptly.

4. You must confess Christ publicly.

He believed that a baptism in the Spirit was the essence of revival and that the primary condition of revival is that individuals should experience such a baptism in the Spirit.


Easter Saturday 14 April - Azusa Street, Los Angeles (William Seymour)

William Seymour, the Negro leader of The Apostolic Faith Mission located at 312 Azusa Street in Los Angeles on Easter Saturday, 14 April 1906 began there with about 100 attending including blacks and whites. It grew out of a cottage prayer meeting at Bonnie Brae Street where the weight of the swelling crowds has broken the front verandah, so they had to move.

Not only was the racial mixture unusual, but newspaper reports, usually critical of these noisy Pentecostal meetings, drew both Christians and unbelievers, poor and rich, to investigate.

'At Azusa, services were long, and on the whole they were spontaneous. In its early days music was a cappella, although one or two instruments were included at times. There were songs, testimonies given by visitors or read from those who wrote in, prayer, altar calls for salvation or sanctification or for baptism in the Holy Spirit. And there was preaching. Sermons were generally not prepared in advance but were typically spontaneous. W. J. Seymour was clearly in charge, but much freedom was given to visiting preachers. There was also prayer for the sick. Many shouted. Others were "slain in the Spirit" or "fell under the power." There were periods of extended silence and of singing in tongues. No offerings were collected, but there was a receptacle near the door for gifts. ...

'Growth was quick and substantial. Most sources indicate the presence of about 300­350 worshippers inside the forty­by­sixty­foot white­washed wood­frame structure, with others mingling outside... At times it may have been double that. ...

'Thus the significance of Azusa was centrifugal as those who were touched by it took their experiences elsewhere and touched the lives of others. Coupled with the theological threads of personal salvation, holiness, divine healing, baptism in the Spirit with power for ministry, and an anticipation of the imminent return of Jesus Christ, ample motivation was provided to assure the revival a long­term impact' (Burgess & McGee 1988:31­36).

The exploding pentecostal movement around the world usually traces its origins to Azusa Street, from which fire spread across the globe. For example, John G. Lake had visited the mission at Azusa Street. In 1908 he pioneered pentecostal missions in South Africa where, after five years he had established 500 black and 125 white congregations.


January - Pyong-Yang, Korea

Revival in Korea broke in the nation in 1907. Presbyterian missionaries, hearing of revival in Wales, and of a similar revival among Welsh Presbyterian work in Assam, prayed earnestly for the same in Korea. 1500 representatives gathered for ten days at the annual New Year Bible study course in which a spirit of prayer broke out. The meetings carried on day after day, with confessions of sins, weeping and trembling. The leaders allowed everyone to pray aloud simultaneously as so many were wanting to pray, and that became a characteristic of Korean prayer meetings.

'The day before the course ended, the evening meeting seemed full of the presence of God, many broke down confessing their sins, and the whole congregation wept, confessed, prayed and praised at the same time. According to those present, what might appear to be chaos was actually a beautiful expression of the work of God's Spirit' (Davies 1992:189).

Observers were astounded. The delegates of the New Year gathering returned to their churches taking with them this spirit of prayer which strongly impacted the churches of the nation with revival. Everywhere conviction of sin, confession and restitution were common.

By March 2,000 were converted, and 30,000 by the middle of 1907.

Brutal persecution at the hands of the Japanese and then the Russian and Chinese communists saw thousands killed, but still the church grew in fervent prayer. Prior to the Russian invasion thousands of North Koreans gathered every morning at 5 am. Sometimes 10,000 were gathered in one place for prayer each morning.

Early morning daily prayer meetings became common, as did nights of prayer especially on Friday nights, and this emphasis on prayer has continued as a feature of church life in Korea. Over a million gather every morning around 5 am for prayer in the churches. Prayer and fasting is normal. Churches have over 100 prayer retreats in the hills called Prayer Mountains to which thousands go to pray, often with fasting. Healings and supernatural manifestations continue.

Now the city of Seoul alone has 6,000 churches, many with huge numbers. Koreans have sent over 10,000 missionaries into other Asian countries.


Belgian Congo, Africa (C. T. Studd)

Africa has seen many powerful revivals, such as the Belgian Congo outpouring with C T Studd in 1914. 'The whole place was charged as if with an electric current. Men were falling, jumping, laughing, crying, singing, confessing and some shaking terribly,' he reported. 'As I led in prayer the Spirit came down in mighty power sweeping the congregation. My whole body trembled with the power. We saw a marvellous sight, people literally filled and drunk with the Spirit' (W.E.C. 1954:12­15).

Accounts like that are typical of the continuing moves of God's Spirit in Africa this century. Early this century an estimated 10% of the population was Christian. The Christian population has reached 45-50% of Africa south of the Sahara. By the end of this century the number of African Christians is expected to be 400 million, half the population.

Local revivals are a characteristic of the worldwide growth of the church this century.


Monday 7 March - Lowestoft, England (Douglas Brown)

Douglas Brown, a Baptist minister in South London, saw conversions in his church every Sunday until he began he began itinerant evangelism in 1921. Within eighteen months he then addressed over 1700 meetings, and saw revival in his evangelistic ministry. The Lord had convicted him about leaving his pastorate for mission work. Although reluctant, he finally surrendered.

'It was in February 1921, after four months of struggle that there came the crisis. Oh, how patient God is! On the Saturday night I wrote out my resignation to my church, and it was marked with my own tears. ...

'Then something happened. I found myself in the loving embrace of Christ for ever and ever; and all power and joy and blessedness rolled in like a deluge. How did it come? I cannot tell you. Perhaps I may when I get to heaven. All explanations are there, but the experience is here. That was two o'clock in the morning. God had waited four months for a man like me; and I said, "Lord Jesus, I know what you want; You want me to go into mission work. I love Thee more than I dislike that." I did not hear any rustling of angels' wings. I did not see any sudden light' (Griffin 1992:17-18).

Hugh Ferguson, the Baptist minister at London Road Baptist Church in Lowestoft on the East Anglia coast had invited Douglas Brown to preach at a mission there from Monday 7th to Friday 11th March. The missioner arrived by train, ill. However, he spoke Monday night and at meetings on Tuesday morning, afternoon and night. The power of the Holy Spirit moved among the people from the beginning. On Wednesday night 'inquirers' packed the adjacent schoolroom for counselling and prayer. Sixty to seventy young people were converted that night, along with older people. Each night more packed the 'inquiry room' after the service. So the mission was extended indefinitely. Douglas Brown returned to his church for the weekend and continued with the mission the next Monday. By the end of March the meetings were moved from the 700 seating Baptist Church and other nearby churches to the 1100 seating capacity of St John's Anglican Church.

March saw the beginning of revival in the area. Although Douglas Brown was the main speaker in many places, ministers of most denominations found they too were evangelising. Revival meetings multiplied in the fishing centre of Yarmouth as well in Ipswich, Norwich, Cambridge and elsewhere. Scottish fishermen working out of Yarmouth in the winter were strongly impacted, and took revival fire to Scottish fishing towns and villages in the summer. Jock Troup, a Scottish evangelist, has visited East Anglia during the revival and ministered powerfully in Scotland.

At the same time, the spirit of God moved strongly in Ireland, especially in Ulster in 1921 through the work of W. P. (William Patteson) Nicholson a fiery Irish evangelist. This was at the time when Northern Ireland received parliamentary autonomy accompanied by and tension and bloodshed. Edwin Orr was converted then, although not through W. P. Nicholson. Orr wrote:

'Nicholson's missions were the evangelistic focus of the movement: 12,409 people were counselled in the inquiry rooms; many churches gained additions, some a hundred, some double; ... prayer meetings, Bible classes and missionary meetings all increased in strength. ... Ministerial candidates doubled' (Griffin 1992:87).

In Great Britain the Welsh Revival of 1904-5 impacted the nation. Though not as widespread or as intense, the revivals of 1921-2 touched thousands following the devastation of World War I. Revival flamed again in 1948-9 after World War II, especially in the Scottish Hebrides.


Sunday 29 June - Gahini, Rwanda (East African Revival)

Sunday seemed normal at the mission station built on the gentle slopes of a hill at Gahini in north-east Rwanda. Pupils from the day schools and the Evangelists' Training School attended the service along with local people gathered in the whitewashed, mud brick and corrugated iron roofed church. A ward service was also held in the similarly built 30-bed hospital for patients and visiting families and friends. A hundred pupils aged up to late teenagers in the girls boarding school hostel met that evening for their hymns and prayer.

About 9.30 pm the silence erupted into frightening shrieks and pandemonium in the girls' hostel. A few girls who had been intensely seeking to know God better seemed embroiled in demonic attacks stirred up in others. Some furniture was smashed in the turmoil. Mission staff ran to intervene, dragging girls outside to separate and calm them. 'Slowly they calmed down. Even as they did so, however, the sound of shouting and singing could be heard from different parts of the hill. And it went on all night!

'At 3.30 am on Monday morning, the noise started again in the girls' school ... Girls were shaking and crying uncontrollably and some were very frightened. ...

'What could have caused such a disturbance? The teachers in the school explained it simply. Four school-girls had been "in dead earnest about getting right with God". While they were praying quietly some non-Christian girls came in. They too were seeking, but not for God; they were seeking contact with their ancestral spirits. The atmosphere changed. ... Of one thing there was no doubt: the pandemonium created was of the devil. It was certainly not of God' (Osborn 1991:17-18).

Similar strange eruptions occurred in the hospital, boys' school, Evangelists' Training School and among people visiting the mission station, but without the destruction of property nor the satanic atmosphere encountered that first night.

'In the days that followed people in many different circumstances would suddenly begin to shiver, leading them at first to believe that they had a fever of some sort. Then a terrifying sense of their sin would overtake them and a fear of facing a holy God. The existence of unforgiven sin became unbearable... [and] it was not enough to repent of a sin unless that repentance was evidenced by total rejection and removal of everything associated with that sin. The blazing light of God's holiness required nothing less. Then the joy and peace of forgiveness and liberation from the guilt and power of sin became almost overwhelming and expressed itself in wild singing and jubilation' (Osborn 1991:18-19).

The famous East African revival began in Rwanda in June 1936 and rapidly spread to the neighbouring countries of Burundi, Uganda and the Congo (now Zaire), then further around. The Holy Spirit moved upon mission schools, spread to churches and to whole communities, producing deep repentance and changed lives. Anglican Archdeacon Arthur Pitt­Pitts wrote in September, 'I have been to all the stations where this Revival is going on, and they all have the same story to tell. The fire was alight in all of them before the middle of June, but during the last week in June, it burst into a wild flame which, like the African grass fire before the wind, cannot be put out' (Osborn 1991:21).

That East African revival was sustained for forty to fifty years and helped to establish a new zeal for enthusiastic holiness in African Christianity. It confronted demonic strongholds, and began to prepare churches to cope with the horrors of massacres and warfare which erupted in later years.

4. Mid-twentieth Century

1949 - Hebrides Islands, Scotland (Duncan Campbell)

1951 - Monday 4 June - City Bell, Argentina (Ed Miller)

1965 - Sunday 26 September - Soe, Timor (Mel Tari)

1970 - Tuesday 3 February - Wilmore, Kentucky (Asbury College)

1970 - July-August - Solomon Islands (Muri Thompson)

1971 - Wednesday 13 October - Saskatoon, Canada (Bill McCleod)

1973 - September - Phnom Penh, Cambodia (Todd Burke)

1973 - Sunday 16 September - Enga District, Papua New Guinea


Hebrides Islands, Scotland (Duncan Campbell)

Following the trauma of World War II, spiritual life was at a low ebb in the Scottish Hebrides. By 1949 Peggy and Christine Smith (84 and 82) had prayed constantly for revival in their cottage near Barvas village on the Isle of Lewis, the largest of the Hebrides Islands in the bleak north west of Scotland. God showed Peggy in a dream that revival was coming. Months later, early one winter's morning as the sisters were praying, God give them an unshakeable conviction that revival was near.

Peggy asked her minister James Murray Mackay to call the church leaders to prayer. Three nights a week the leaders prayed together for months. One night, having begun to pray at 10 p.m., a young deacon from the Free Church read Psalm 24 and challenged everyone to be clean before God. As they waited on God his awesome presence swept over them in the barn at 4 a.m.

Mackay invited Duncan Campbell to come and lead meetings. Within two weeks he came. God had intervened and changed Duncan's plans and commitments. At the close of his first meeting in the Presbyterian church in Barvas the travel weary preacher was invited to join an all night prayer meeting! Thirty people gathered for prayer in a nearby cottage. Duncan Campbell described it:

'God was beginning to move, the heavens were opening, we were there on our faces before God. Three o'clock in the morning came, and GOD SWEPT IN. About a dozen men and women lay prostrate on the floor, speechless. Something had happened; we knew that the forces of darkness were going to be driven back, and men were going to be delivered. We left the cottage at 3 am to discover men and women seeking God. I walked along a country road, and found three men on their faces, crying to God for mercy. There was a light in every home, no one seemed to think of sleep (Whittaker 1984:159).

When Duncan and his friends arrived at the church that morning it was already crowded. People had gathered from all over the island, some coming in buses and vans. No one discovered who told them to come. God led them. Large numbers were converted as God's Spirit convicted multitudes of sin, many lying prostrate, many weeping. After that amazing day in the church, Duncan pronounced the benediction, but then a young man began to pray aloud. He prayed for 45 minutes. Again the church filled with people repenting and the service continued till 4 am the next morning before Duncan could pronounce the benediction again.

'Even then he was unable to go home to bed. As he was leaving the church a messenger told him, "Mr. Campbell, people are gathered at the police station, from the other end of the parish; they are in great spiritual distress. Can anyone here come along and pray with them?"

Campbell went and what a sight met him. Under the still starlit sky he found men and women on the road, others by the side of a cottage, and some behind a peat stack ­ all crying to God for mercy. The revival had come.

'That went on for five weeks with services from early morning until late at night ­ or into the early hours of the morning. Then it spread to the neighbouring parishes. What had happened

in Barvas was repeated over and over again. Duncan Campbell said that a feature of the revival was the overwhelming sense of the presence of God. His sacred presence was everywhere' (Whittaker 1984:160).

That move of God in answer to prevailing prayer continued in the area into the fifties and peaked again on the previously resistant island of North Uist in 1957. Meetings were again crowded and night after night people cried out to God for salvation.


Monday 4 June - City Bell, Argentina (Ed Miller)

A young man, Alexander, and his band of rebels sat in the front row of a revival meeting in Buenos Aires aiming to disrupt it. God convicted him and he repented. His gang began to leave but fell under the Spirit on the way out. All were converted. Two of them later went to Bible School.

Ed Miller taught at the Bible Training Institute in the little town of City Bell, just outside Buenos Aires. In June he was led to cancel lectures so the whole Bible School could pray every day. He announced this on the first Sunday in June.

Alexander, the former rebel, 'a teenager of Polish descent, was still in prayer long after midnight when he sensed a strange feeling of something pressing down upon him, an intense great light surrounding him and a heavenly being enfolding him. The boy was terrified and fled back to the Institute.

'The heavenly visitor entered the Institute with him, and in a few moments all the students were awake with the fear of God upon them. They began to cry out in repentance as God by his Spirit dealt with them. The next day the Spirit of God came again upon Alexander as he was given prophecies of God's moving in far off countries. The following day Alexander again saw the Lord in the Spirit, but this time he began to speak slowly and distinctly the words he heard from the angel of God. No one could understand what he was saying, however, until another lad named Celsio (with even less education than Alexander), overcome with the Spirit of God markedly upon him, began to interpret.. These communications (written because he choked up when he tried to talk) were a challenge from God to pray and indeed the Institute became a centre of prayer till the vacation time, when teams went out to preach the kingdom. It was the beginning of new stirrings of the Spirit across the land' (Pytches 1989:49­51).

The Bible Institute continued in prayer for four months, 8­10 hours a day, with constant weeping. Bricks became saturated with tears. One student prayed against a plaster wall daily, weeping. After six hours his tear stains reached floor. After eight hours his tears began to form a puddle on floor.

Two students went to a town, wept and prayed for three to four weeks. Then the Holy Spirit led them to hold tent meetings which filled the tent. The Lord moved on the crowds powerfully.

Prophecies given to the Bible School told of God filling the largest auditoriums and stadiums. That happened within three years with the visit of Tommy Hicks. Crowds of 25,000, then 180,000 gathered at his meetings.

Tommy Hicks was conducting a series of meetings in California in 1952 when God showed him a vision. While he was praying he saw a map of South America covered with a vast field of golden wheat ripe for harvesting. The wheat turned into human beings calling him to come and help them.

He wrote in his Bible a prophecy he received about going by air to that land before two summers passed. Three months later, after an evangelistic crusade, a pastor's wife in California gave that same prophecy to him that he had written down. He was invited to Argentina in 1954 and had enough money to buy a one way air ticket to Buenos Aires.

On his way there after meetings in Chile, the word Peron came to his mind. He asked the air stewardess if she knew what it meant. She told him Peron was the President of Argentina. After he made an appointment with the Minister of Religion, wanting to see the President, he prayed for the Minister's secretary who was limping. He was healed. So the Minister made an appointment for Hicks to see the President. Through prayer the President was healed of an ugly eczema and gave Hicks the use of a stadium and free access to the state radio and press. The crusade was a spiritual breakthrough and led to a period of very rapid church growth in Argentina.


Sunday 26 September - Soe, Timor (Mel Tari)

A rebellious young man had received a vision of the Lord who commanded him to repent, burn his fetishes, and confess his sins in church in Soe, Timor. He did. He challenged others to do the same. Hundreds did. He chose 23 young people who formed an evangelistic team, Team 1. They gave themselves full time to visiting churches and villages and saw thousands converted with multitudes healed and delivered. In one town alone they saw 9,000 people converted in two weeks.

Another young man, Mel Tari witnessed this visitation of God and later became part of Team 42. He attended the Reformed Church in Soe, a mountain town of about 5,000 people, when the revival broke out there on Sunday 26 September 1965. That night, as at Pentecost, people heard the sound of a tornado wind and flames on the church building prompted police to set off the fire alarm to summon the volunteer fire fighters. Many were converted that night, many filled with the Spirit including speaking in tongues, including English. By midnight teams of lay people had been organised to begin spreading the gospel the next day. Eventually, about 90 evangelistic teams were formed which functioned powerfully with spiritual gifts. Healings and evangelism increased dramatically. Specific directions from the Lord led the teams into powerful ministry with thousands becoming Christians. They saw many healings, miracles such as water being turned to non­alcoholic wine for communion, some instantaneous healings, deliverance from witchcraft and demonic powers, and some people raised from death through prayer.


Tuesday 3 February - Asbury College, Wilmore, Kentucky

A revival broke out in Asbury College in Wilmore, Kentucky, on Tuesday 3 February 1970. The regular morning chapel commencing at 10 o'clock saw God move on the students in such a way that many came weeping to the front to kneel in repentance, others gave testimonies including confession of sin, and all this was mixed with spontaneous singing. Lectures were cancelled for the day as the auditorium filled with over 1,000 people. Few left for meals. By midnight over 500 still remained praying and worshipping. Several hundred committed their lives to Christ that day. By 6 a.m. next morning 75 students were still praying in the hall, and through the Wednesday it filled again as all lectures were again cancelled for the day. The time was filled with praying, singing, confessions and testimonies.

As they continued in prayer that week many students felt called to share what was happening with other colleges and churches. Invitations were coming from around the country as news of the revival spread. So teams went out from the next weekend to tell the story and give their testimonies. Almost half the student body of 1000 was involved in the teams witnessing about the revival. In the first week after the revival began teams of students visited 16 states by invitation and saw several thousand conversions through their witnessing. After six weeks over 1,000 teams had gone from the college to witness, some of these into Latin America with finance provided by the home churches of the students. In addition, the neighbouring Theological Seminary sent out several hundred teams of their students who had also been caught up in this revival.

Those remaining at the college prayed for the teams and gladly heard their reports on their return. The Holy Spirit did similar things wherever they went. So that revival spread. The college remained a centre of the revival with meetings continuing at night and weekends there along with spontaneous prayer groups meeting every day. Hundreds of people kept coming to the college to see this revival and participate in it. They took reports and their own testimonies of changed lives back to their churches or colleges so sharing in the spread of the revival.

Revival also spread among the hippie drop-outs in the early seventies. Thousands were converted in mass rallies on he beaches and in halls. They developed their own Jesus People magazines, music and evangelism.


July-August - Solomon Islands (Muri Thompson)

Muri Thompson, a Maori evangelist from New Zealand, visited the Solomons in July and August 1970 where the church had already experienced significant renewal and was praying for revival. Many of these Christians were former warriors and cannibals gradually won to Christ in spite of initial hostility and the martyrdom of early missionaries and indigenous evangelists.

Beginning at Honiara, the capital, Muri spent two months visiting churches and centres on the islands. Initially the national leaders and missionaries experienced deep conviction and repentance, publicly acknowledging their wrong attitudes. It was very humbling. A new unity and harmony transformed their relationships, and little things which destroyed that unity were openly confessed with forgiveness sought and given.

Then in the last two weeks of these meetings the Holy Spirit moved even more powerfully in the meetings with more deep repentance and weeping, sometimes even before the visiting team arrived. At one meeting the Spirit of God came upon everyone after the message in a time of silent prayer when the sound of a gale came above the gathering of 2000 people.

Multitudes were broken, melted and cleansed, including people who had been strongly opposed to the Lord. Weeping turned to joyful singing. Everywhere people were talking about what the Lord had done to them. Many received healings and deliverance from bondage to evil spirits. Marriages were restored and young rebels transformed.

Everywhere people were praying together every day. They had a new hunger for God's Word. People were sensitive to the Spirit and wanted to be transparently honest and open with God and one another.

Teams from these areas visited other islands, and the revival caught fire there also. Eventually pastors from the Solomons were visiting other Pacific countries and seeing similar moves of God there also.


Wednesday 13 October - Saskatoon, Canada (Bill McCleod)

Bill McCleod invited the twin evangelists Ralph and Lou Sutera to speak at his church in Saskatoon. Revival broke out with their visit which began on Wednesday 13 October 1971. By the weekend an amazing spirit gripped the people. Many confessed their sins publicly. The first to do so were the twelve counsellors chosen to pray with inquirers. Numbers grew rapidly till the meetings had to be moved to a larger church building and then to the Civic Auditorium seating 2000.

The meetings lasted many hours. People did not want to leave. Some stayed on for a later meeting called the Afterglow. Here people received prayer and counsel from the group as they continued to worship God and pray together. Humble confession of sin and reconciliations were common. Many were converted.

Taxi drivers became amazed that people were getting cabs home from church late into the night or early into the morning. Others were calling for taxis to take them to church late into the night as they were convicted by the Lord. Young people featured prominently. Almost half those converted were young. They gave testimonies of lives that had been cleaned up by God and how relationships with their families were restored. The atmosphere in schools and colleges changed from rebellion and cheating to co­operation with many Bible study and prayer groups forming in the schools and universities.

Criminals were also confessing their sins and giving themselves up to the police. Restitution was common. People payed long overdue bills. Some businesses opened new accounts to account for the conscience money being paid to them. Those who cheated at restaurants or hotels returned to pay their full bill. Stolen goods were returned.

Christians found a new radical honesty in their lives. Pride and jealousies were confessed and transformed into humility and love. As people prayed for one another with new tenderness and compassion many experienced healings and deliverance.

Not all welcomed the revival. Some churches remained untouched by it or hostile to it. This seems common to all revivals.


September - Phnom Penh, Cambodia (Todd Burke)

In September 1973 Todd Burke arrived in Cambodia on a one week visitor's visa. Just 23 years old, he felt a strong call from God to minister there, the only charismatic missionary in the country. Beginning with two English classes a day, conducted through an interpreter, he taught from the Good News Bible. Those interested in knowing more about Jesus stayed after class and he saw daily conversions and people filled with the Spirit and healed. Revival broke out in the war torn capital of Phnom Penh and rapidly spread to surrounding areas.

During that September Todd's wife DeAnn joined him, they received permission to stay in the country, and mounted a three day crusade in a stadium where thousands attended and hundreds were saved and healed supernaturally. A powerful church spread through a network of small house churches. Todd met with the leaders of these groups at early morning prayer meetings every day at 6 am. Most pastors were voluntary workers holding normal jobs. Some cycled in from the country and returned for work each morning. Healings, miracles and deliverance from demonic powers were regular events, attracting new converts who in turn were filled with the power of the Spirit and soon began witnessing and praying for others.

When the country fell to the communists in 1975 the Burkes had to leave. They left behind an amazing church anointed by the power of God before it was buried by going underground to survive.

Sunday 16 September - Enga District, Papua New Guinea

Prayer meetings began among pastors, missionaries and Bible College students in the Baptist mission area among Engas of the Western Highlands of Papua New Guinea in the early 1970s owing to the low spiritual state in the churches. This prayer movement spread to the villages. In some villages people agreed to pray together everyday until God sent new life to the church.

During September 1973 pastors from the Solomon Islands and Enga students who were studying at the Christian Leaders Training College visited the Enga churches. Revival broke out in many villages on Sunday 16 September. Many hundreds of people, deeply convicted of sin, repented and were reconciled to God and others with great joy.

Pastors in one area held a retreat from Monday to Wednesday in a forest which previously had been sacred for animistic spirit worship. Others joined the pastors there. Healings included a lame man able to walk, a deaf mute to spoke and heard, and a mentally deranged girl was restored.

Normal work stopped as people in their thousands hurried to special meetings. Prayer groups met daily, morning and evening. In the following months thousands of Christians were restored and thousands of pagans converted. The church grew in size and maturity.

This was followed in the eighties by tough times. Tribal conflict, destruction and bloodshed erupted. Revival often precedes hard times.

5. Late Twentieth Century

1977 - Thursday 10 March - Min District, Papua New Guinea (Diyos Wapnok)

1979 - Wednesday 14 March - Elcho Island, Australia (Ginijini Gondarra)

1979 - Sunday 13 May - Anaheim, Los Angeles (John Wimber)

1984 - Thursday 14 June - Brugam, Papua New Guinea (Ray Overend)

1988 - North Solomon Islands Province, Papua New Guinea (Jobson Misang)

1988 - Thursday 4 August - Kambaidam, Papua New Guinea (Johan van Bruggen)

1988 - Madruga, Cuba

1989 - Henan and Anhul, China


Thursday 10 March - Min District, Papua New Guinea (Diyos Wapnok)

Pastors from the Solomon Islands spoke about their revival at a pastors and leaders conference at Goroka in the highlands of Papua New Guinea. Diyos Wapnok attended from the Baptist Mission area at Telefolmin. He heard God call his name three times in the night there and realised that the Lord was drawing his attention to some special challenge.

Later, on Thursday afternoon 10 March, 1977 at Duranmin in the rugged Western Highlands, where Diyos was the principal of the Sepik Baptist Bible College, while he spoke to about 50 people they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and great joy. The students experienced a light brighter than day, filling the room where they were. Many simultaneously felt convicted of unconfessed sin and cried out for mercy and forgiveness. All became aware in a new ways of the majesty, authority and glory of God. Revival had come to Duranmin and the Sepik. This glimpse of God's greatness gave a new dimension to the students' preaching. The movement spread beyond the churches to their unreached neighbours and to most of the villages in the whole Sepik area. Many churches of new believers were established and in the next three years at least 3,000 new believers were baptised.


Wednesday 14 March - Elcho Island, Australia (Djiniyini Gondarra)

The Lord poured out the Holy Spirit on Elcho Island in northern Australia on 14 March, 1979.

Djiniyini Gondarra was then the Uniting Church minister in the town of Galiwin'ku at the south of the island. He had been away on holidays to Sydney and Brisbane, returning on the late afternoon Missionary Aviation Fellowship flight. This is his account of that Pentecost among Australian Aborigines, first printed in his book Let my People Go:

'When we landed at Galiwin'ku airport we were welcomed and met by many crowds of people. ...

'After the evening dinner, we called our friends to come and join us in the Bible Class meeting. We just sang some hymns and choruses translated into Gupapuynu and into Djambarrpuynu. There were only seven or eight people who were involved or came to the Bible Class meeting, and many of our friends didn't turn up. We didn't get worried about it.

'I began to talk to them that this was God's will for us to get together this evening because God had planned this meeting through them so that we will see something of his great love which will be poured out on each one of them. I said a word of thanks to those few faithful Christians who had been praying for renewal in our church, and I shared with them that I too had been praying for the revival or the renewal for this church and for the whole of Arnhem Land churches, because to our heavenly Father everything is possible. He can do mighty things in our churches throughout our great land.

'These were some of the words of challenge I gave to those of my beloved brothers and sisters. Gelung, my wife, also shared something of her experience of the power and miracles that she felt deep down in her heart when she was about to die in Darwin Hospital delivering our fourth child. It was God's power that brought the healing and the wholeness in her body.

'I then asked the group to hold each other's hands and I began to pray for the people and for the church, that God would pour out his Holy Spirit to bring healing and renewal to the hearts of men and women, and to the children.

'Suddenly we began to feel God's Spirit moving in our hearts and the whole form of our prayer suddenly changed and everybody began to pray in the Spirit and in harmony. And there was a great noise going on in the room and we began to ask one another what was going on.

'Some of us said that God had now visited us and once again established his kingdom among his people who have been bound for so long by the power of evil. Now the Lord is setting his church free and bringing us into the freedom of happiness and into reconciliation and to restoration.

'In that same evening the word just spread like the flames of fire and reached the whole community in Galiwin'ku. Gelung and I couldn't sleep at all that night because people were just coming for the ministry, bringing the sick to be prayed for, for healing. Others came to bring their problems. Even a husband and wife came to bring their marriage problem, so the Lord touched them and healed their marriage. ...

'Many unplanned and unexpected things happened every time we went from camp to camp to meet with the people. The fellowship was held every night and more and more people gave their lives to Christ, and it went on and on until sometimes the fellowship meeting would end around about midnight. There was more singing, testimony, and ministry going on. People did not feel tired in the morning, but still went to work. ...

'The outpouring of the Holy Spirit in Arnhem Land has swept further to the Centre in Pitjantjatjara and across the west into many Aboriginal settlements and communities. I remember when Rev. Rronang Garrawurra, Gelung and I were invited by the Warburton Ranges people and how we saw God's Spirit move in the lives of many people. Five hundred people came to the Lord and were baptised in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.

'There was a great revival that swept further west. I would describe these experiences like a wild bush fire burning from one side of Australia to the other side of our great land. The experience of revival in Arnhem Land is still active in many of our Aboriginal parishes and the churches.

'We would like to share these experiences in many white churches where doors are closed to the power of the Holy Spirit. It has always been my humble prayer that the whole of Australian Christians, both black and white, will one day be touched by this great and mighty power of the living God' (Renewal Journal #1, 1993, pp. 21-23)

Sunday 13 May - Anaheim, Los Angeles (John Wimber)

In 1977 John Wimber began leading the fellowship of about 40 people which had been commenced by his wife, Carol. It later became the headquarters of the Vineyard Christian Fellowships. John preached from Luke's gospel and began to pray for healings with no visible results for nine months although the worship and evangelism attracted many people. Then healings began to happen and became a regular part of Vineyard ministry.

John summarised their story:

'Beginning some time in September of 1976, Bob Fulton, Carol Wimber, Carl Tuttle, along with others, began assembling at the home of Carl Tuttle's sister. The agenda was simple: praying, worshipping and seeking the Lord. By the time I came several months later, the Spirit of God was already moving powerfully. There was a great brokenness and responsiveness in the hearts of many. This evolved into what became our church on Mother's Day in 1977.

'Soon God began dealing with me about the work of the Spirit related to healing. I began teaching in this area. Over the next year and a half God began visiting in various and sundry ways. There were words of knowledge, healing, casting out of demons, and conversions.

'Later we saw an intensification of this when Lonnie Frisbee came and ministered. Lonnie had been a Calvary Chapel pastor and evangelist, being used mightily in the Jesus People Movement. After our Sunday morning service on Mother's Day 1979, I was walking out the door behind Lonnie, and the Lord told me, "Ask that young man to give his testimony tonight." I hadn't even met him, though I knew who he was and how the Lord had used him in the past. That night, after he gave his testimony, Lonnie asked the Holy Spirit to come and the repercussions were incredible. The Spirit of God literally knocked people to the floor and shook them silly. Many people spoke in tongues, prophesied or had visions.

'Then over the next few months, hundreds and hundreds of people came to Christ as the result of the witness of the individuals who were touched that night, and in the aftermath. The church saw approximately 1,700 converted to Christ in a period of about three months.

'This evolved into a series of opportunities, beginning in 1980, to minister around the world. Thus the Vineyard renewal ministry and the Vineyard movement were birthed' (Vineyard Reflections, May/June 1994).

July - Port Elizabeth, South Africa (Rodney Howard-Browne)

Rodney Howard-Browne has seen many, many thousands converted through his ministry, many more renewed in their love for the Lord and empowered by the Holy Spirit. His ministry remains controversial because of the manifestations involved, especially laughter.

'In July of 1979, at eighteen years of age, Rodney M. Howard­Browne of Port Elizabeth, South Africa, reached a crossroads in his life. Over a period of several months, an increasing spiritual hunger had been developing within him, and while at an interdenominational prayer meeting with about eighteen young people at this time, he cried out to the Lord, "God, either you come down here tonight and touch me, or I'm going to die and come up there and touch you." ... Describing this incident at his camp meeting fifteen years later (July 18, 1994), he said it was as though all of a sudden somebody had taken gasoline and put a lighted match to it. The fire of God fell upon Him instantaneously, and he was immersed in the liquid fire of the Holy Spirit. He became completely inebriated in the Holy Ghost. He was beside himself. Overflowing, he laughed uncontrollably. He went from laughter to weeping to tongues, back to laughter and weeping again. Four days later, the glory of God was still upon him, and by this time he was saying, "God, lift it. I can't bear it any more. . . Lord, I'm too young to die, don't kill me now." For a two­week period, he felt the presence of God. He said that, although these things became the basis of his later ministry, this was not really evident until about ten years later.

'In December of 1987, Rodney M. Howard­Browne arrived in the United States to engage in evangelistic work, but it was not until April of 1989 in Clifton Park, near Albany in upstate New York, that he began experiencing continuous revival during his meetings. In a 1994 interview on TBN with Paul Crouch, Rodney Howard­Browne said of the outset of the revival that, while he was preaching, "The power of God fell in the place without warning suddenly. People began to fall out of their seats. . . . rolling on the floor. The very air was moving. People began to laugh uncontrollably while there wasn't anything funny. . . . The less I preached, the more people were saved."

'From this point onward, these phenomena accompanied his ministry regularly' (Riss 1995: WWW)


Thursday 14 June - Brugam, Papua New Guinea (Ray Overend)

Ray Overend describes part of a revival in the Sepik area.

'I will never forget June 14th, 1984. Revival had broken out in many churches around but Brugam itself, with many station staff and many Bible College and Secondary School students, was untouched. For a whole week from 8th June a well known preacher from New Zealand (Fred Creighton) had brought studies on "Life in Christ by the power of His Spirit". There was much very thorough teaching. On Tuesday afternoon in prayer I had a real peace that the Lord would break through in Brugam. Then early on Thursday night, the 14th, Judah Akesi, the Church Superintendent, invited some of us to his office for prayer. During that prayer time God gave him a vision. In the vision he saw many people bowed down in the front of the church building in the midst of a big light falling down from above just like rain.

'So after the ministry of the Word that night Judah invited those who wanted to bring their whole heart and mind and life under the authority of Christ to come forward so that hands might be laid on them for prayer.

'About 200 people surged forward. Many fell flat on their faces on the ground sobbing aloud. Some were shaking ­ as spiritual battles raged within. There was quite some noise...

'The spiritual battles and cries of contrition continued for a long time. Then one after another in a space of about three minutes everybody rose to their feet, singing spontaneously as they rose. They were free. The battle was won. Satan was bound. They had made Christ their King! Their faces looked to heaven as they sang. They were like the faces of angels. The singing was like the singing of heaven. Deafening, but sweet and reverent' (Overend 1986:36­37).

The whole curriculum and approach at the Bible School for the area changed. Instead of traditional classes and courses, teachers would work with the school all day from prayer times early in the morning through Bible teaching followed by discussion and sharing times during the day to evening worship and ministry. The school became a community, seeking the Lord together.

Churches which have maintained a strong Biblical witness continue to stay vital and strong in evangelism and ministry, filled with the Spirit's power. Christians learn to witness and minister in spiritual gifts, praying and responding to the leading of the Spirit.

'Many received spiritual gifts they never had before. One such gift was the "gift of knowledge" whereby the Lord would show Christians exactly where fetishes of sanguma men were hidden. Now in Papua New Guinea sanguma men (who subject themselves to indescribable ritual to be in fellowship with Satan) are able to kill by black magic... In fact the power of sanguma in the East Sepik province has been broken' (Overend 1986:23­24).

In 1986 a senior pastor from Manus Island came to the Sepik to attend a one year's pastors' course. He was filled with the Spirit. 'Shortly afterwards he went to Ambunti with a team of students on outreach. There they were asked to pray for an injured child who couldn't walk ­ and later in the morning he saw her walking around the town. He came back to his course and said: In my 35 years as a pastor on Manus I had never seen the power of God!' (1986:38).


North Solomon Islands, Papua New Guinea (Jobson Misang)

Jobson Misang, an indigenous youth worker in the United Church reported on a revival movement in the North Solomons Province of Papua New Guinea in 1988:

'Over the last eight weekends I have been fully booked to conduct weekend camps. So far about 3,500 have taken part in the studies of the Living in the Spirit book. Over 2,000 have given their lives to Jesus Christ and are committed to live by the directions of the Spirit. This is living the Pentecost experience today!

'These are some of the experiences taking place:

''1. During small group encounters, under the directions of Spirit­filled leadership, people are for the first time identifying their spiritual gifts, and are changing the traditional ministry to body ministry.

'2. Under constant prayers, visions and dreams are becoming a day to day experience which are being shared during meetings and prayed about.

'3. Local congregations are meeting at 4 am and 6 am three days a week to pray, and studying the Scriptures is becoming a day to day routine. This makes Christians strong and alert.

'4. Miracles and healings are taking place when believers lay hands on the sick and pray over them.

'5. The financial giving of the Christians is being doubled. All pastors' wages are supported by the tithe.

'6. Rascal activities (crimes) are becoming past time events and some drinking clubs are being overgrown by bushes.

'7. The worship life is being renewed tremendously. The traditional order of service is being replaced by a much more lively and participatory one. During praise and worship we celebrate by clapping, dancing, raising our hands to the King of kings, and we meditate and pray. When a word of knowledge is received we pray about the message from the Lord and encourage one another to act on it with sensitivity and love.'

Problems encountered include division taking place within the church because of believers' baptism, fault finding, tongues, objections to new ways of worship, resistance to testimonies, loss of local customs such as smoking or chewing beetlenut or no longer killing animals for sacrifices, believers spending so many hours in prayer and fasting and Bible studies, marriages where only one partner is involved and the other blames the church for causing divisions, pride creeping in when gifts are not used sensitively or wisely, and some worship being too unbalanced.

Thursday 4 August - Kambaidam, Papua New Guinea (Johan van Bruggen)

Johan van Bruggen, a missionary at the Lutheran Evangelist Training Centre, Kambaidam near Kainantu in the Eastern Highlands of Papua New Guinea, wrote in his circulars:

'There came Thursday 4 August (1988), a miserable day weather wise, although we had great joy during our studies. Evening devotions ­ not all students came, actually a rather small group. I too needed some inner encouragement to go as it was more comfortable near the fire. We sang a few quiet worship songs. Samson, a fellow who by accident became one of our students last year ­ he and Paul had wanted to go to another school, missed it, and ended up in our Evangelist Training Centre and stayed on, although at times felt miserable, as we all do ­ well, this Samson was leading the devotions. We had sung the last song and were waiting for him to start. Starting he did, but in an unusual way. He cried, trembled all over! ... Then it spread. When I looked up again I saw the head prefect flat on the floor under his desk. I was praying in tongues off and on. It became quite noisy. Students were shouting! Should I stop it? Don't hold back! It went on and one, with students praying and laughing and crying ­ not quite following our planned programme! We finally stood around the table, about twelve of us, holding hands. Some were absolutely like drunk, staggering and laughing! I heard a few students starting off in tongues and I praised the Lord. The rain had stopped, not so the noise. So more and more people came in and watched!

'Not much sleeping that night! They talked and talked! And that was not the end. Of course the school has changed completely. Lessons were always great, I thought, but have become greater still. Full of joy most of the time, but also with a tremendous burden. A burden to witness.

'What were the highlights of 1988?

No doubt the actual outpouring of the Holy Spirit must come first. It happened on August 4 when the Spirit fell on a group of students and staff, with individuals receiving the baptism of the Holy Spirit on several occasions later on in the year. The school has never been the same again. As direct results we noticed a desire for holiness, a hunger for God's Word which was insatiable right up till the end of the school year, and also a tremendous urge to go out and witness. Whenever they had a chance many of our students were in the villages with studies and to lead Sunday services. Prayer life deepened, and during worship services we really felt ourselves to be on holy ground.

'The fact is that our school is not just another church institution. As one of the students remarked recently, the real head teacher at Kambaidam is the Holy Spirit. Well, he certainly did a good job! Our 35 new students were again fascinated by the new life they discovered among the second year students. The Word of God did the rest. During the month of March real repentance took place. One week before Easter the Holy Spirit moved mightily among the students and staff. There was a lot of crying during that week. Each night the students met in small prayer groups. The aim was to get them prepared to go out to seven small Easter camps that were planned for the Gazup area ­ our area here around the school. Well, God's Spirit really prepared them well! I have never seen and heard so much crying. Many students had listed all their sins. I must confess that some of these lists really shook me. There was witchcraft, magic, adultery, stealing, drunkenness. It once again showed me how deep and far the world has invaded the church today. There was tremendous relief as students were assured of forgiveness and were filled with the Holy Spirit.'

A young student, David, in his early twenties from the Markham Valley had a growing burden for his village of Waritzian which was known and feared as the centre of pagan occult practices. He prayed earnestly. As part of an outreach team he visited nearby villages and then went to his own people. He was concerned about the low spiritual life of the church. He spent a couple of days alone praying for them.

Then as he was teaching them they heard the sound of an approaching wind which filled the place. Many were weeping, confessing their sins. They burnt their fetishes used in sorcery. This area had been a stronghold of those practices. Many people received various spiritual gifts including unusual abilities such as speaking English in tongues and being able to read the Bible. People met for prayer, worship and study every day and at night. These daily meetings continued to be held for over two years.

In November 1990, Johan van Bruggen wrote:

'This is what happened about 2 months ago. A new church building was going to be officially opened in a village in the Kainantu area. Two of our last year's graduates took part in the celebrations by acting the story in Acts 3: Peter and John going to the temple and healing the cripple.

'Their cripple was a real one - a young man, Mark, who had his leg smashed in a car accident. The doctors had wanted to amputate it, but he did not want to lose his useless leg. He used two crutches to move around the village. He could not stand at all on that one leg. He was lying at the door of the new church when our Peter and John (real names: Steven and Pao) wanted to enter. The Bible story was exactly followed: "I have got no money, but what I have I give you. In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise up and walk!" Well, they acted this out before hundreds of people, among them the president of the Goroka Church District and many pastors and elders. Peter (Steven) grabbed the cripple (Mark) by the hand and pulled him up. And he walked! He threw his crutches away and loudly praised the Lord! Isn't that something? What a faith!

Their testimony was given at a meeting of elders when Kambaidam was discussed. Mark was a most happy fellow who stood and walked firmly on his two legs. He also had been involved in criminal activities, but in this meeting he unashamedly confessed his faith in the Lord Jesus.

Later I talked with them. Steven (Peter) told me that the Lord had put this on his heart during a week­long period of praying. "I had no doubt that the Lord was going to heal Mark, and I was so excited when we finally got to play­act!" And Mark? He told me that when Steven told him to get up he just felt the power of God descend upon him and at the same time he had a tingling sensation in his crippled leg: "I just felt the blood rushing through my leg, bringing new life!" Mark is now involved in evangelistic outreach and his testimony has a great impact.

Madruga, Cuba

In 1988, revival broke out in a small church in Madruga, Cuba. 'People would begin to weep when they entered the church,' said their pastor. More than 60 churches experienced a similar move of the Spirit. And today the Holy Spirit's presence is still being felt. Despite gestures of tolerance towards Christians, believers in Cuba still experience much hardship and oppression. Nevertheless, God is moving amongst the 10 million people of Cuba, just like in the early church recorded in the book of Acts.

The revival has generated more than 2,400 house churches - more than all the official churches put together. Though open evangelism is still outlawed, teenagers and joining the children and adults to witness boldly in parks, beaches, and other public places, regardless of the risk.

There is a 'holy and glorious restlessness' amongst the believers, said one pastor. 'The once defensive mood and attitude of the church has turned into an offensive one, and Christians are committed to the vision of "Cuba Para Cristo!" - Cuba for Christ!' (Open Doors, September 1993).

1988 saw astounding revival. The Pentecostals, Baptists, independent evangelical churches and some Methodist and Nazarene churches experienced it. One Assemblies of God church had around 100,000 visit it in six months, often in bus loads. One weekend they had 8000 visitors, and on one day the four pastors (including two youth pastors) prayed with over 300 people.

In many Pentecostal churches the lame walked, the blind saw, the deaf heard, and many people's teeth were filled. Often 2000 to 3000 attended meetings. In one evangelical church over 15000 people accepted Christ in three months. A Baptist pastor reported signs and wonders occurring continuously with many former atheists and communists testifying to God's power. So many have been converted that churches cannot hold them so they must met in many house churches.

'In Cuba in 1990, an Assemblies of God pastor whose congregation never exceeded 100 people meeting once a week suddenly found himself conducting 12 services per day for 7,000 people. They started queuing at 2.00 a.m. and even broke down doors just to get into the prayer meetings' (Robinson 1992:14).


Henan and Anhul, China

Dennis Balcombe, pastor of the Revival Christian Church in Hong Kong, regularly visits China. He has reported on revival there.

In 1989 Henan preachers visited North Anhul province and found several thousand believers in the care of an older pastor from Shanghai. At their first night meeting with 1,000 present 30 were baptised in the icy winter. The first baptised was a lady who had convulsions if she went into water. She was healed of that and other ills, and found the water warm. A 12 year old boy deaf and dumb was baptised and spoke, 'Mother, Father, the water is not cold ­ the water is not cold.' A aged lady nearly 90, disabled after an accident in her 20s, was completely healed in the water. By the third and fourth nights over 1,000 were baptised.

Enchuan, 20 years old in 1990, had been leading evangelistic teams since he was 17. He said, 'When the church first sent us out to preach the Gospel, after two to three months of ministering we usually saw 20­30 converts. But now it is not 20. It is 200, 300, and often 600 or more will be converted.'

Sister Wei, 22 years old in 1991, spent 48 days in prison for leading open air worship. She saw many healings in prison and many conversions.

On 12 March 1991, The South China Morning Post, acknowledged there were a million Christians in central Henan province, many having made previously unheard of decision to voluntarily withdraw from the party. 'While political activities are cold­shouldered, religious ones are drawing large crowds' (Hong Kong and China Report, March 1991).

Dennis Balcombe reported on 27 August 1994:

'The persecution of the church has not ceased since our arrest in February. Many home churches have been raided, Bibles confiscated and preachers put in prison... For example, one of the Henan preachers, a 28-year-old sister, has been given a 3 year prison sentence for distribution of Bibles. Many house churches in Guilin ... have been closed down and the leader imprisoned. ...

'This year has seen the greatest revival in Chinese history. Some provinces have seen over 100,000 conversions during the first half of this year. Because of this, the need for Bibles is greater than ever. This year we have distributed to the house churches over 650,000 New Testaments, about 60,000 whole Bibles, one million Gospel booklets and thousands of other books.'

Revival continues in China with mighty signs and wonders amid severe persecution, just as it was in the early church.