Healing and Revival
"Healing in Ocean Grove"
Mary Howe Mossman was born in June 29, 1827 in Massachusetts to Silas and Betsey (Goodale) Mossman. She grew up in a religious family and attended an Evangelical church. Mossman's mother had a deep relationship with God and her mother's example led her to a personal relationship with Christ. She was an intensely shy person and she knew that when she gave her life to Christ that he might call her anywhere to do anything. It was a struggle but she handed her will over to God and stepped into a new life. Always deeply sensitive she developed an internal life in God that was intimate and worshipful. She felt called to give up the self-life and to live only as Christ called her. Mossman saw Christ as the Bridegroom and her life was centered on serving Him in all things. She wrote about her spiritual journey in the book "Steppings In God - The Hidden Life made Manifest." Her first edition did not even include her name as author, only her initials MHM.
Mary Mossman was a teacher by profession however in 1859 she became very ill. Not knowing what to do she prayed and God brought her to James 5:15 "The prayer of faith shall save the sick." This was a revelation to her and she began to improve within a short time. She entered a new adventure in believing that God still healed. In the spring of 1868 God called Mossman to begin to travel as a Bible Reader. She had no sending church and she struggled with timidity. She bowed to the wishes of Christ, often not knowing where she would go from day to day. God made a way and took care of her in remarkable ways. She learned to be utterly dependent upon God for her leading and direction. On one journey she heard the audible voice of the Lord directing her to a town. Mossman was lead to pray for two women who were very ill. They both recovered. In 1876 Mossman visited a local family. One of the children had cholera and was dying. While there she felt that God was asking her to pray. She did so and went home to find God calling her to intercede during the night. The next day she was told that the child's symptoms had disappeared and a full recovery was expected. Within another few weeks she prayed for a woman dying of tuberculosis. The woman was healed.
Mossman attended conventions led by Dr. Charles Cullis and A. B. Simpson. She believed that healing was about coming into a deeper relationship with Christ. Mossman said "If our first apprehension of faith-healing is from a physical stand-point, we incline to think that all who believe in the all-sufficiency of Christ may instantly receive the manifestation of healing through the appropriating faith, but as we pass on into deeper spiritual life and affiliate more with the Divine mind concerning us, we learn that the new wine must be put into new bottles." The one all-absorbing desire is to be dead to all but Jesus. Being fully baptized into Christ, we are baptized into His death, and can no longer choose our states. We no longer see the old man with its fleshly desires and diseases, but the new man created in Christ Jesus, and in the new life which we by faith receive we press on to apprehend all that for which we are apprehended of Christ Jesus (Phil. 3: 12).
Although Mossman struggled with her own health she often experienced God's healing presence restoring her. Because people were being healed when she prayed, more and more began to ask her for prayer. For 25 years Mossman had been a wanderer for the Lord. Occasionally God would bring to mind the idea that she would have a home. This seemed impossible based on her ministry, where she had no salary and received funds as people felt led. Mossman bought a small tent site in Ocean Grove, New Jersey. In 1880 she felt God was asking her to build the home He had for her. She built "Faith Cottage" in the Ocean Grove section of Neptune Township in Monmouth County, New Jersey. God provided all the funds and the furniture without her asking anyone for their help. After 1881 she lived part of the time in Melrose, Florida in a home built for her by William Lee, known as Faith House, where she taught the Bible and prayed for the sick.
In late 1882 and early 1883 Mossman, with her Faith Cottage partner Miss Beach, traveled with Sarah Lindenberger to visit Faith Homes in Europe, including Bethshan in England, and Mannendorf and Hauptweil in Switzerland. They helped to open a Faith Home in Naples, Italy during their travels. In 1884 Mossman wrote her life story in her book "Steppings in God", which was published in 1885. In 1894, when John Alexander Dowie visited Ocean Grove to speak on Divine Healing, he visited Mossman's home and had a meeting there in deference to her as a "mother in the faith" in healing.
to pray for the sick for the rest of her life. Late in her life Mossman
became involved with the Pentecostal Movement and at the age of 79 attended
a Pentecostal Camp meeting in Alliance, Ohio. (Minnie
Tingley Draper also attended that meeting.) In 1906 Mossman again
traveled to England. In 1900 and 1910 when census workers asked Mossman
about her occupation she declared that she was a "Minuteman For God."
She died on June 13, 1914 in her beloved Faith Cottage in Ocean Grove,
NJ at the age of 86. Mossman, a shy woman who did not desire attention,
was instrumental in supporting, teaching, and training people in praying
for the sick. Her Faith Home in Ocean Grove was one of the earliest and
longest running in the Faith-Cure Movement.
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