Healing and Revival

"The Full Gospel"

Charles Sydney Price was born to Mary Hannah Bee and Charles Henry Price in England in 1887. His mother died when he was four and his father later remarried a woman that Charles loved and respected. Price attended the local grade through high school for Methodist scholars from about 1899-1904. Although it was known as Wesley College it only kept students until they were 18 in preparation for possible attendance to London University. Struggling with what to do after leaving Wesley, Price joined the Royal Navy in 1906 as assistant warehouseman, but was discharged within a couple of months due to a bad knee. He would later say he went to Oxford Law School for a time, but Oxford has no record of his attendance. In 1907 Price immigrated to Canada in search of work and ended up on a railroad crew. He then moved to Spokane, Washington hoping to find work there. He went to a church service at a Free Methodist Mission and was converted. He decided to stay with the mission as a worker and was ordained a Methodist minister that same year. He also met and married Bessie Rae Osborn. The couple would go on to have 4 children of their own and one daughter from England.

Price came under the influence of "modernistic" or liberal theology. The teachings included the lack of belief in the bible as the Word of God, and a repudiation of the miraculous. He left the Methodist church and became Congregationalist pastor. Later he would describe this period of his life as one who was 'spiritually blind, leading his people into a ditch'. He pastored this way for twelve years. Price moved to California where he was pastor of the First Congregational Church of Lodi. In 1921 there was a revival being led by Aimee Semple McPherson in San Jose, California. One of the members of his church told him about how he had gone to the revival and had the experience of being filled with the Holy Spirit. Soon this began to spread through other members of his church as well. He went to the meetings to gather evidence to teach against this doctrine. Instead he came under great conviction about his own emptiness. On the third night he was seated on the platform with other pastors. When the alter call came for sinners to be saved, Price publicly responded. He was filled with joy. He attended some "tarrying meetings" a Baptist church and received the "filling of the Spirit" a few nights later, and began to speak "with other tongues".

Price immediately returned to his church and gave his testimony. 1000 members began to hold seekers meetings crying out to God for His presence. A revival was begun. One of the outcomes was that 1000 members of the church started evangelistic outreaches. Price began to see people healed in his meetings. Denominational leaders criticized what was happening in his church. Price left the Congregationalists to begin Lodi Bethel Temple. In 1922 he began to hold itinerant evangelistic meetings in Oregon and British Columbia. There were some very miraculous healings in Victoria, British Columbia. In 1923 Price preached to over 250,000 people in a three-week period and many were healed. In 1923 he held a healing meeting where Lorne Fox and his entire family were healed. Lorne and his sister began their own evangelistic and healing ministry shortly afterwards.

Price held meetings in Calgary, Edmonton, Winnipeg, Toronto, Minneapolis, Duluth, St Louis and Belleville, Illinois. In 1926 Price started publishing the "Golden Grain" periodical, which included many testimonies of healings and miracles. In 1928 Price suffered a blow when his lawyer absconded with all his funds. His supporters helped to raise some of the money, but he decided to purchase a tent to hold meetings, so that he no longer had to pay large auditorium expenses. He called it the Kanvas Katherdral. It's reported there were 1000 conversions a day the last 10 days of the Belleville meetings. He continued to travel through the northwest over the next several years. Everywhere he went he saw miraculous healings in his meetings and thousands came to Christ. He counted 35,000 conversions in 1928 alone. The constant traveling put a strain on his marriage. By 1930 he and his wife separated. They eventually divorced in the 1930s.

While many ministries shut down or were severely curtailed during the 1930's, due to the depression, Charles S. Price continued to draw thousands to his meetings. In the late 1930s he ministered in Norway, England, Egypt, Palestine, Turkey, Syria, Lebanon, Italy, as well as continuing to speak throughout the US. He started to refer to himself as Dr. Price, which appears to have been an honorary title rather than an educational one. In 1939 Price estimated that he had traveled over a million miles on evangelistic campaigns since he began in 1922. His schedule was demanding. At meetings where he was the main speaker he would speak two or three times a day and often pray for healing well into the night. During the war years it was increasingly difficult to draw large crowds and Price often spoke in churches and camp meetings. In 1940 between mid-March and mid-August he preached 218 times besides holding 35 healing services, stayed late hours praying for the sick, gave several community speeches to groups like the Rotary Club, did radio addresses, all this while traveling 2700 miles by train and 8500 miles by car. In one day alone he spoke 5 times in Springfield, Missouri.

Price was not affiliated with a particular denomination and his meetings were often supported by multiple churches within an area. He had a special relationship with the Assembly of God denominational leadership and regularly spoke at their camp meetings and was often invited to speak in their churches. He was a prolific writer. He wrote several books including: And Signs Followed the Life Story of Charles S. Price, The Potter and the Clay, Spiritual and Physical Health, Made Alive, Two Worlds, The Real Faith, You Can Know God Here and Now, Divine Intervention, and Miracles besides producing his Golden Grain Magazine from 1926 to 1947. He used radio extensively and often preached from Los Angeles, California when he was not on the road. He also taught at the Southern California Bible College and was often asked to fill in for pastors in the Los Angeles area. In 1945 he felt that the Lord was calling him to spend time at home. The next two years were focused on writing, preaching locally, and in rest and prayer. He died March 8, 1947.


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