Assemblies of God
The Assemblies of God is a large Christian denomination founded after the Azusa Street Revival in the early 20th century. The core beliefs of the denomination are Evangelical. Pentecostalism is inherent in the church's theology, with special emphasis placed on the Baptism in the Holy Spirit. In 2005, the church reported 12,500 churches with 1.6 million full members and 33,600 clergy, making it the largest denomination among those holding to Pentecostal views.
The General Council of the Assemblies of God Church was anxious to establish a college after World War II. Because church headquarters were in Springfield, Missouri, Evangel College (now Evangel University) was built there, using the site of an old Army hospital.
They use a unique hybrid in regards to church polity: though generally congregational in practice, Assemblies of God ministers are ordained through the national headquarters (and can be defrocked by them as well).
Notable current and former members
- Gordon Fee, theologian and ordained minister
- John Ashcroft, politician
- Sarah Palin, politician, attended until 2002
- Elvis Presley, singer (possibly lapsed)
- Jimmy Swaggart, televangelist (formerly ordained, but later defrocked by the Assemblies of God)
- Blumhofer, Edith L. Restoring the Faith: The Assemblies of God, Pentecostalism, and American Culture. (1993). 281 pp. A major scholarly study.
- Crowe, Terrence Robert. Pentecostal Unity: Recurring Frustration and Enduring Hopes. (1993). 282 pp.
- McGee, Gary B. 'This Gospel . . . Shall Be Preached': A History and Theology of Assemblies of God Foreign Missions since 1959. Springfield, Mo.: Gospel, 1990. 358 pp.
- Poloma, Margaret M. The Assemblies of God at the Crossroads: Charisma and Institutional Dilemmas. (1989). 309 pp. scholarly study