The Architectural Inspiration for Oral Roberts University

One of the most common questions I have been asked in my role as a historian and archivist at Oral Roberts University is, “Why the futuristic look of the university?” Some architecture scholars have studied the campus trying to divine its secrets, noting it as a classic example of Mid-Century Modernist style.[1] But where did … Continue reading The Architectural Inspiration for Oral Roberts University

Oral Roberts University vs. Bob Jones University: Two Different Responses in History to Racial Moments

There is an interesting article in Politico  that demonstrates how Oral Roberts University's history is different than other conservative Christian universities on racial justice. In the article, Professor Randall Balmer of Dartmouth College notes that one of the galvanizing issues that helped to eventually form the religious right of the 1980s was the debate over … Continue reading Oral Roberts University vs. Bob Jones University: Two Different Responses in History to Racial Moments

Bishop Travis B. Sipuel: A Pentecostal Survivor of the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre

During my research on the history of the Pentecostal movement in Tulsa, I discovered the story of a Church of God in Christ pastor, Bishop Travis B. Sipuel, who survived the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre. His story we know because of his daughter Ada Lois Sipuel Fisher, the famous Oklahoma Civil Rights leader. This is … Continue reading Bishop Travis B. Sipuel: A Pentecostal Survivor of the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre

Oral Roberts: The (almost) Missionary to Palestine

Oral Roberts has a famous life story.  In fact, he rehearsed this story over and over in his preaching and in his five autobiographies.  But there is one story that has never been told. Oral Roberts was almost a missionary to Palestine. Oral Roberts was ordained in the Pentecostal Holiness Church  by Bishop Dan T. … Continue reading Oral Roberts: The (almost) Missionary to Palestine

Aimee Semple McPherson and the Spanish Influenza In Tulsa

In conducting my earlier research on Pentecostals and the Spanish Flu in 1918-1919 (that has since gone viral around the world through Influence Magazine ), I had wondered if there was anything about the epidemic tied to Tulsa. At that point, my searches had come up empty. However, I decided to look back on some … Continue reading Aimee Semple McPherson and the Spanish Influenza In Tulsa

How Pentecostals Responded to the 1918 Spanish Influenza Pandemic

(Note: This blog was also published in Influence Magazine and can be viewed on their website https://influencemagazine.com) Hear a podcast about this topic with Steve Strang of Charisma Magazine.   Right now the whole world is feeling the effects of the Covid-19 Pandemic.  It seems like every institution in our society is closing down to protect … Continue reading How Pentecostals Responded to the 1918 Spanish Influenza Pandemic

The Origin, Development, and Future of Assemblies of God Eschatology: A PhD Thesis

Last May I completed a my journey through my PhD program.  For 10 years I have immersed myself in the world of Assemblies of God history and doctrine in order to produce the first comprehensive study of AG eschatology that looks at 100 years of official, popular and scholarly expressions of the AG's position on … Continue reading The Origin, Development, and Future of Assemblies of God Eschatology: A PhD Thesis

Reclaiming Racial Spaces in Tulsa: Oral Roberts and Beno Hall

In the aftermath of the 1921 Race Massacre in Tulsa, many of the residential areas surrounding the Greenwood District were still in ruins. Into one of those spaces, the Tulsa KKK built a giant white building in 1923 at 501 N Main called Beno Hall.  The new building that housed the 3,000 member klavern served … Continue reading Reclaiming Racial Spaces in Tulsa: Oral Roberts and Beno Hall