TEXAS HOLINESS ASSOCIATION
the 16th day of January, 1898, Rev. John Stanfield, an ordained minister in the
Cumberland Presbyterian Church, was sanctified in the meeting held by Rev. R. L.
Averill and the Hudson Band in Sunset, Texas. He at once began to preach
holiness as a work subsequent to regeneration. This stirred his brethren in the
Cumberland Presbyterian Church and they preferred charges against him in the
Gregory Presbytery, which convened at Bridgeport, Texas, April, 1898. After much
discussion a motion prevailed to suspend him from the church for preaching the
second blessing. He, like many others in that day on whom the Holy Ghost had
fallen with power, gave no heed to the orders from his church, but “went
everywhere preaching the Word”; and great crowds would come to hear this
suspended preacher tell of his new experience, and fall into the altar and get
the same blessing. The Presbyterians no longer wanted him; but he had calls more
than he could fill to preach to the holiness people who had so recently gotten
into the experience in the meetings held by the Hudson Band; at Sunset where he
received the blessing in his own church while pastor there; at Chico, his home
town; at Alvord, Crafton, Park Springs, and other places.
the need of pastoral oversight, and hearing the call to feed the sheep, he began
to organize them into holiness bands, and to give them his entire time as
pastor. He formed these bands into a holiness circuit with nine preaching points
on it. From this grew other holiness bands in different parts of northwestern
Texas. Then came the thought that there ought to be an association of these
bands into one body, to keep the unity of the Spirit and to preserve clearness
of doctrine. A call was made in the spring of 1899 by Rev. John Stanfield, the
pastor of some of these bands, for a general meeting for this purpose in
connection with the first campmeeting at Sunset, Texas.
the first organization among the holiness people as a distinctive body was
perfected, with Rev. John Stanfield, president, Rev. A. B. Jones,
vice-president, Dr. J. W. Harvey, secretary. Here we insert the minutes of this
association in full as they appear in the first year book of that association:
OF THE NORTHWEST TEXAS HOLINESS ASSOCIATION
at the holiness camp ground, Sunset, Texas, August 9, 1899.
time last spring the Sunset holiness band, through its pastor. Rev. J. T.
Stanfield, made a call for all local holiness bands and unions to meet during
the August Sunset campmeeting, for the purpose of organizing an association.
to said call the following local bands: Sunset, Pella, Crafton, Chico, Duxbury,
and representatives from Forestburg, Nocona, Prospect, Alvord, Park Springs,
Newport, Sandflat, and Evergreen met at the Sunset camp ground at 2 p. m.,
August 9, 1899. The following persons were present:
J. T. Stanfield, G. W. Williams, C. A. McConnell, Dr. C. H. Hobbs, A. W. Hurdt,
W. A. Golman Rev. A B Jones J. W. Bowers, S. W. Myers, T. L. Erwin, R. W.
Dickinson, W. B. Hill, B. P. Hull, G. W. Powell, L. O. Johnson, N. J. Kelso, J.
T. Brown, E. T. Turner, Dr. A. M. Hills, Rev. O. H. Brown, Edgar Burkart, D
Boone, N. B. Evans, H. H. Wells, J. H. Kelley, North Morgan, Brother Simmons,
Thomas McConnell, Dr. J. W. Harvey, Rev. L. L. Issacs, J. W. Hull, J. Hall, S.
M. Smith, W. J. Chiddix, W. W. Bates, G. H. King.
was unanimously decided to organize a holiness association embracing
northwestern Texas, Indian Territory and Oklahoma said association to be known
as the Northwest Texas Holiness Association.
following officers were elected: Rev. J. T. Stanfield, president; Rev. A. B.
Jones, vice-president; Dr. J. W. Harvey, secretary-treasurer
was decided that the Northwest Texas Holiness Association meet annually and
semiannually, the annual meeting to be held at Sunset camp ground each year,
during the campmeeting, the date of meeting to be announced by the president.
The semiannual meeting to be held at such time and place as the officers of the
association may select from time to time.
Brethren: Below will be found our plan for organizing into local holiness bands
or unions, as adopted by the Northwest Texas Holiness Association. While it is
short and simple, we believe it covers all the ground necessary for an
organization, and at the same time grants to each individual the fullest
A. B. Jones
THE HOLINESS PEOPLE
according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through sanctification of the
spirit” (1 Peter 1:2). Greeting:
Saints: it is a well known fact that the holiness movement in the South has been
largely of an evangelistic character, and we praise the Lord for so many able
evangelists in the field, and that their labors are being so wonderfully blessed
in getting people saved and sanctified throughout our fair land.
we feel that their labors are not as effectual and abiding, in many instances as
might be. For instance, a traveling evangelist comes into a community and holds
a ten days’ or two weeks’ meeting. Many profess holiness. Doubtless many
belong to churches whose pastors fight or oppose holiness. The result is they
soon become lukewarm and discouraged, and some lose their experience altogether.
These are truths which every one should consider. We believe it is just as
essential to keep people saved as it is to get them saved.
believe the time has now come in the history of the holiness movement that in
order to prevent this falling off, and to hold the holiness people together,
some kind of organization is useful. So we would recommend that holiness people
everywhere form themselves into local holiness organizations.
local ministers of all denominations are getting into the experience of
sanctification, are anxious to preach a full salvation, and would make excellent
true Christians who profess holiness and believe in sanctification as a second
work of grace, are eligible to membership, and may become members by enrolling
their names upon the roll of members.
local organization shall elect from among its members a president,
vice-president, and secretary-treasurer, who shall constitute the executive
hoard of the organization, have charge of all its business affairs, control all
property of the organization. Said officers to be elected annually, and must be
faithful in the discharge of their duties. Two or more stewards may be appointed
by each local organization to look after the finances.
organization was simple, yet full enough to hold the holiness people together
and have an annual and a semiannual meeting, which was a great blessing to the
people. It held its functions, and did a good work in establishing some camps,
and starting a holiness paper, The Holiness Banner, which did much to strengthen
the association. This association had representatives at the convention that met
at Greenville, Texas, and there it was merged into the Holiness Association of
holiness circuits afterward formed Pentecostal Nazarene Churches, and many of
them still exist, and out of the men who composed the first Northwest Texas
Holiness Association, have come some of the most prominent workers that we have
today; pastors, evangelists, missionaries, editors, and song evangelists.
have observed that where the work was well organized it was so well conserved
that it strengthened the local work as well as spreading it into other fields,
and has left landmarks that will last in history. But where the work was not so
fostered, and not organized, it has fallen to pieces, and few men of note have
come from such work.
was an open field, with some choice spirits in it that had rather die than prove
untrue to the trust that God had committed to them. It caused a great commotion
with the old-time churches, when these men took an aggressive stand for
organized holiness. They were at first called come-outers, and when they saw
that there would be an organization, then the opposition said, “There is not
brains enough in the bunch to frame a church government that will stand”; but
when it was proved that the church was a success, they took off their hats and
said, “They have come to stay.”