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Canada's Largest City is Visited With Floods of the "Latter Rain"
A 1920s eye-witness account of the ministry of Aimee Semple McPherson during the later years of the Pentecostal revival.


How shall we begin to lay before you the wonderful things that took place during the ministry of our dear Sister McPherson here? Words seem almost to fail, but we can truly say "God poured His Spirit on us as He did on them in the beginning."

What a sight—the lame, halt and blind, seeking deliverance.

Sunday came and everything was in readiness; every saint was found in their places when the hour came for morning worship; they were full of hope and faith, ready for a fresh drink at the Fountain. Every heart was open before God, and the searching time began. Altar call was given at the close of the address; what a scene—those who had been living at a distance from God and in a cold and miserable condition were the first to lead the way—then falling in rank as it were, were those weeping and crying for mercy asking that their sins might be forgiven.

The Spirit fell and souls came through to the baptism in the first service, ready to put their shoulder to the wheel with all the armour on. The Spirit of God lingered in the building on till the evening meeting making it really holy ground. The revival was now on in truth and the spirit of it already felt. The evening meeting revealed an altar filled with sinners seeking salvation with a prayer room below filled with hungry children of God seeking the baptism of the Holy Spirit.

From this [time] on we could plainly see God working on the hearts of the people, as the numbers in attendance increased as well as those seeking help from God. The coming Thursday was announced to be set apart for healing and prayer for the sick; it came, and the throng with it. What a sight—the lame, halt and blind, seeking deliverance; their very faces spoke of the terrible suffering they were undergoing; but wait, these faces were to be changed, and indeed they were; after a glowing talk from our dear sister preparations were made for prayer. The piano and stringed instruments played softly "My faith looks up to Thee" as the prayer of faith was ascending and God did the rest.

This scene we will never forget. Those who had been bound for so long were now being set free through faith in Jesus' name. Quietly and softly the music floated over the air; suddenly all eyes were turned on a young girl who ascended the platform with crutches, with great difficulty. Mrs. McPherson relieved her of them laying them down on a nearby chair, asking her in the meantime of her faith in the One who was to heal her. Prayer was offered; she arose to her feet, and to the amazement of the crowded house she walked across the platform with Mrs. McPherson's aid but no crutches; suddenly she started out alone, and by this time there was no longer silence but great exclamations of joy and praises to God arose all over the congregation.

Shortly she ran like a child of ten throwing herself into the outstretched arms of Mrs. McPherson. The people could no longer keep their seats but stood to their feet and in one volume there rose the sound of many hands clapping together for joy at what God had wrought among them. Many other cases [took place] in this service that I wish I could here tell, but space is limited and there are so many good things yet not revealed.

The tide was continually rising, being very marked [by] … attendance. Shortly the building, seating some 2000 was too small and many [were] standing, eager to see and hear the works of God. Many from outside points were attending namely: Toronto, Ottawa, Chicago, Winnipeg, Kingston, New York, Newfoundland, New Hampshire and other. Afternoon meetings that Mrs. McPherson was not able to be in charge of were conducted by Bro. Aruge, daughter and son; these were marked with great success; numbers increasing daily, the altar in nearly every service would be crowded with hungry people seeking Christ and divine healing. Never did we see anything like it in our lives; these services would not close until people were compelled to leave in order to get preparations made for evening service.

In the afternoon as well, God manifested Himself in healing power; Evangelist Argue had been greatly used in this manner and felt led to pray for those who could not attend the evening services. One man was brought in who had been dumb for years, but when the prayer of faith was offered, his first words were "Praise the Lord." Another unable to hear, … heard for the first time, and many other cases. Are the days of miracles past? Ask anyone who attended this campaign and you will receive a positive reply that they are not. What else could they say when we beheld with our own eyes God working among us?

[I] would love to deal with every service as they come, but space will not permit, so [I] will now go on to the last week of the meetings.

Oh what a week, filled with events Montreal will never forget. By this time the press was on our trail and they too were bringing before the public the things that God was doing in our midst. Reporters coming in our meetings were amazed at what they saw and heard, and at times were so lost, [they] would almost forget their task and find themselves one among the many who were looking on in wonder and amazement. The last Thursday came for prayer for the sick, people thronged the place with hundreds on the outside unable to enter; policemen were jostled about in the crowd, and at times nearly taken off their feet by those seeking the Great Physician who did not fail them.

What a time of weeping and rejoicing. At times we would feel moved with compassion for those who were suffering severely, and then would come the sight of those who were completely delivered walking back and forth across the platform, praising God for what He had done. I cannot do justice to these services nor am I able to touch on the emotion and high spiritual tide that was felt so keenly at the meetings.

Saturday afternoon was almost indescribable. The crowds were intense; policemen were unable to cope with them at times as they pressed their way to gain an entrance. What a scene as our dear sister moved among the suffering throng, laying hands on many suffering and aching heads, offering the prayer of faith that moved the heart of God and brought relief to many.

This service never closed except for a short recess, but went right on into the evening service when the Word of God was brought before the people and hundreds thronged to the altar as Mrs. McPherson gave the call. As they would come in such numbers, our dear sister would put her hand to her face and exclaim: "What shall we do with them, where shall we put them, already every available space around the altar and six rows from the front are filled." Strong men [threw] themselves on the platform as they responded to the call, weeping and calling on God, tears flowing freely from those who were now returning to God and giving themselves up to Him.

God's presence was real the moment you entered the place, the air being charged … with His Spirit.

Our closing day had come when our dear sister was to deliver her last message to this people for a while, and the morning service was a feast for those hungry for more of God. Many [were] seeking salvation, and the prayer room was a sight not to be forgotten; men and women, rich and poor alike, with great tears rolling down their cheeks, some kneeling, others lying prostrate under the power of God, tarrying to be endowed with power from on high; God's presence was real the moment you entered the place, the air being charged as it were, with His Spirit.

This service also went on into the evening meeting. At six-forty five p.m. the house was filled with many standing, unable to get in; … service was started and testimonies from those newly in the way. One exercise of the service followed the other till time came for the address; interest was keen and … our dear sister stood fearless before the mass of people declaring that this night they must make their choice. What would they do with Jesus?

Men and women all over the building would be seen wiping tears from their eyes rather quickly as Mrs. McPherson pictured on the minds of the people that scene of the One who died that they might live. "Just as I am without one plea," was started softly; young men and women again flocked and crowded the altar praying to God. As their burdens rolled away, young men would be seen emptying their pockets of cigarettes, cases and tobacco, getting cleaned up, ready to join the mighty army of redeemed soldiers.

Thus the closing scene of the campaign has been described. Hundreds, [saying] "God be with you till we meet again," and passing by shaking hands with our dear sister, had grateful hearts to God and [to her] for the message that during this campaign reached into their hearts.

Originally published in Testimony, January 1921.
www.paoc.org/

 

 
 
 
 

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