00 Introduction • E-Theses

00 Introduction

Brett Knowles, , University of Otago, Dunedin

1. Introduction

1.1. Identifying the topography: Some initial parameters

1.1.1. Makers of the Landscape: Hurricanes, Glaciers and Rivers

"And yet - it moves." Galileo's famous words are echoed by Professor E.H. Carr at the close of his final George Macaulay Trevelyan Lecture on the theory of history.1 In these lectures, Professor Carr reflected on the dynamic and interactive nature of history, describing it as a "constantly moving process, with the historian moving within it."2 The student of history observes the past from the viewpoint of a continually changing present, and the interaction between the observer's present context and the historical past is fundamental to the practice of the discipline. Our perception of the past is formed, not only by the events of the past, but also by interpretations which previous observers have placed upon them. These mould our own pre-suppositions and perspectives and in turn shape the questions which we ourselves address to the past. The practice of history is a dynamic, dialectic process, and the landscape of history can therefore never be a static one. This is particularly true in the field of religious history.

What historical forces shape the religious landscape? Martin E. Marty offers an illuminating analogy,3 using the environmental metaphors of "hurricanes" and "glaciers" to categorise the change in American religion in the fifty years from 1935 to 1985: "both hurricane and glacial forces leave altered landscapes."4 The "hurricane" represents sudden, drastic change, the product of clearly identifiable catalytic events such as, for example, the Second Vatican Council from 1962 to 1965. By contrast, the "glacier" represents a process of gradual, subtle change, which may not be attributable to any specific causative event or series of events. These "glacial" forces, representing a slow, cumulative progression of attitudes and orientations, are much more difficult to identify than those of the "hurricane," but are also more important and powerful in influencing and shaping the course of history. One is reminded of Victor Hugo's epigram "On résiste à l'invasion des armées; on ne résiste pas à l'invasion des idées."5 Indeed, Marty quotes José Ortega y Gasset to the effect that "decisive historical changes do not come from great wars, terrible cataclysms, or ingenious inventions; it is enough that the heart of man [sic] incline its sensitive crown to one side or other of the horizon."6

Marty may be correct in his view that although both catalytic events and attitudinal changes7 are factors which alter historical and religious landscapes, the latter process is the more important and powerful of the two. However, although his environmental metaphors do help us to visualise the action of historical forces in society as a whole, it could also be argued that they fail to reflect adequately the interaction between those forces and specifically localised movements such as the New Life Churches of New Zealand. It is therefore suggested that a third metaphor may be more apt, i.e. that of a "river," which both shapes, and is channelled by, the landscape. The value of this alluvial analogy is four-fold. Firstly, it alerts us to the importance of the "watershed" of a movement, i.e. the "external constituency" which is attracted to the ideology of a movement, and from which it recruits its following.8 Secondly, since all movements themselves experience change, this model enables us to visualise the various stages of the sociological and historical development of a movement. Thirdly, this metaphor puts a greater emphasis on the dialectic interaction between a social movement and the larger society within which it arises, and is therefore useful in reflecting the nature of such social or religious movements in a localised context.9 And, fourthly, it draws attention to the fact that the forces of change are not themselves constant, but vary in both degree and intensity.10

To date, the course of this "river" has remained largely uncharted, since comparatively little research appears to have been done on the New Life Churches. James Worsfold's pioneering work on the New Zealand Pentecostal churches, for example, includes only five and one-half pages on the "Indigenous Churches" (the name by which the New Life Churches were then known).11 Other, equally abbreviated, treatments include those of Peter Lineham, who gives a concise, although very fair and balanced, summary of the movement's development in his article "Tongues must cease: The Brethren and the Charismatic Movement in New Zealand,"12 and of Murray Darroch, who sets out a brief comparison of the beliefs of the Assemblies of God and the "Indigenous Pentecostal Churches of New Zealand" in his book on the various New Zealand Protestant churches.13 Apart from these published studies and the author's dissertation on the early history of the New Life Churches,14 there has been little written about the movement as a whole, although a number of congregational histories have been produced, particularly since 1987, as the various churches in the movement celebrate milestones in their history.15 Nevertheless, despite the lack of historical coverage to date, there are primary research materials available within the movement, a large proportion of which comprise oral, rather than documentary, sources. The author was able to conduct seventeen tape-recorded interviews, mostly with pastors in the movement, and obtained oral comments from a number of other people on issues which required clarification. In the case of documentary materials, several periodicals dating from the early years of the movement chronicled the period up to 1968,16 and the Majestic House Correspondence Files, containing the inwards and outwards correspondence and other records of the Christchurch New Life Centre, provided a valuable archival source for the period from 1971 onwards. Other documentary sources included scrapbooks of material relating to the early years of the Nelson New Life Centre,17 and miscellaneous documents from the correspondence files of the Word of Life Tabernacle, Dunedin.

The comparative dearth of historical research into the movement, together with the internal provenance and oral nature of much of the primary material, had several important consequences for the author's methodology. Firstly, it was decided to employ a narrative style in order to present the course of events within the movement. A corollary of this was the use of extended oral quotes, with a minimum of editing, from those who were interviewed, so enabling them to "tell their story."18 This approach did not necessarily mean that the accounts of the interviewees were accepted uncritically. These were corroborated by reference to other sources wherever possible, and the Majestic House Correspondence Files proved particularly useful in correcting and contextualising these oral narratives. The diversity of views held by pastors in the movement also helped to supply a critical balance, and documentary materials supplied by David Collins of the South Pacific Fellowship, together with interviews from two pastors from outside the New Life Churches (i.e. Ross Davies19 and Ian Clark20) provided valuable alternative perspectives on the course of events within the movement.

A second factor which had to be taken into account was the paucity of references to the movement in outside sources.21 This silence was particularly noticeable in the earlier years of the New Life Churches, and reflected their small size and sectarian status. This lack of public reaction was interpreted by the movement as evidence of society's rejection of its message. Their experience tended to support this interpretation. Rob Wheeler's magazine Bible Deliverance, for example, contains a number of references to the struggle to gain access to radio broadcasting facilities in New Zealand in the early 1960s. It was not until 1967, when Wheeler spoke on the NZBC programme "I Believe,"22 that the movement was finally able to communicate its views by means of this medium. Access to the printed media was also restricted, and references to the movement do not begin to appear in the press until the 1970s. One of the earliest such articles was that of Briar Cambourne, who wrote a two-page coverage of the Christchurch New Life Centre, of which she was a member, for Challenge Weekly in 1973.23 The emergence of references to the movement in the public media in the 1970s and 1980s appears to owe as much to the increasing social status (and in this case, involvement in professions such as journalism) of its congregational members, as to the increasing prominence of the movement itself. Nevertheless, many of the articles which profiled churches in the movement simply contained commemorative or publicity material relating to events such as the opening of new church premises.24 These articles represent, in all cases, the views of those within the New Life Churches, rather than a critical, objective, assessment of the movement from outside its boundaries.

The dearth of external testimony concerning the movement has meant that dependence upon internal sources has, of necessity, been considerable. The consequences of this have been both negative and positive. On the one hand, these internal sources are partisan, with a narrow focus on the New Life Churches and their immediate environment. The resultant perspective must therefore be a biased one, and consequently a critical approach to these sources is essential if the necessary objective detachment and analytical balance is to be achieved. Only by means of this critical approach can the historian attempt, as Fritz Stern puts it, "to penetrate beyond the descriptive fact to the causes, the material conditions, the mood, the human motives and ambitions"25 which underlie the movement's growth and development. The bias of the source materials cannot be ignored; nor, if the movement is to be allowed to speak on its own behalf, can it be avoided. Nevertheless, the variety of outlooks represented by the sources themselves assure the attainment of some degree of critical balance.

On the other hand, empathy with the subject matter is equally necessary. As Hans-Georg Gadamer asserts, there must be a "fusion of horizons" [Horizontverschmelzung] between the past and the present, between the subject of study and the interpreter.26 The historian must attempt to see the subjects' world as they themselves saw it, and to enter into their mode of understanding as fully as possible without, however, sacrificing his or her own critical detachment. In the case of the subject-matter of this thesis, the author's own involvement with the New Life Churches for more than thirty years has given him an understanding of, and empathy for, the movement. This thesis is therefore a history "from the inside," rather than a phenomenological study from outside the movement. Nevertheless, the author has endeavoured to combine objective historical analysis with his empathy for the movement, and to examine critically the "why" as well as the "how" of the ways in which the New Life Churches developed.

1.1.2. Where do we go from here? A preliminary look at the terrain

In the remainder of this introductory chapter, the history of the New Life Churches is briefly summarised, and what might be termed the "watershed" of the movement is then discussed. This discussion entails an analysis of what kind of people formed the constituency of the movement, the social and historical factors which influenced their world-view, and the characteristics of the movement which provided it with its attractive force. In particular, a critical evaluation is made of the "Disinheritance Hypothesis" of Robert Mapes Anderson, and, in the second chapter, an alternative hypothesis is advanced to explain the rise of Neo-Pentecostalism in New Zealand in the 1960s. The following chapter explores the theological and sociological characteristics of the movement, and, in particular, its sectarian origins and attitudes, and the distinctive doctrines and practices that it espoused. The first three chapters therefore have a sociological emphasis; later chapters focus on the historical development of the movement. Chapter 4 discusses the way in which the New Life Churches both influenced, and were influenced by, the emergence of the charismatic movement in the mainstream churches. Chapter 5 surveys the involvement of the New Life Churches with the beginnings of the New Zealand moralist movement, and this theme is continued in Chapter 6, which looks at some specific responses made by some of the New Life churches to what they perceived to be a "moral decline" in the wider society. Chapter 7 deals with the changes which took place in New Zealand Pentecostalism in general, and in the New Life Churches in particular, in the late 1970s as a result of this perception. Chapters 8 and 9 trace the changing character of the New Life Churches in the 1980s. The final chapter sets out the author's conclusions.

The New Life Churches of New Zealand27 are a loose association of approximately ninety-four autonomous Pentecostal assemblies, with an estimated total adherence, as distinct from membership, of roughly 12,500 people as at September 1987.28 Their history falls naturally into several distinct periods. The movement emerged in 1946, following a period of doctrinal controversy which ultimately resulted in a secession from the Pentecostal Church of New Zealand.29 Throughout the 1950s, this breakaway movement remained an insignificant sectarian group, struggling to survive. By 1957 it numbered only four small churches, and a handful of house-meeting groups. In late 1957, however, some sections of the movement, as well as of other Pentecostal groups, began to engage in aggressive evangelistic effort, using "Full Gospel"30 tent-campaigns patterned on the activities of Oral Roberts and other healing evangelists in the United States. Results, at first, were meagre. In 1958, however, Rob Wheeler had some success among East Coast Maori, and the momentum of the movement's campaigning began to increase. The real "breakthrough" came in the South Island, with a highly successful campaign conducted in Timaru by an independent American evangelist, A.S. Worley,31 in June and July 1960. More than 600 converts resulted from the five-week campaign, and this success led to the formation of a local "Full Gospel" church in Timaru,32 and the beginnings of the "Indigenous Full Gospel" movement in the South Island. Another "breakthrough" occurred in March of the following year, when a similar campaign in Gore, conducted by Ron Coady and Paul Collins, resulted in the conversion of some 450-500 people and the extension of "Full Gospel" evangelism throughout the south of the South Island.33 At the same time, churches were being founded in the North Island as a result of the campaigns of Rob Wheeler and other evangelists, and the movement began to expand rapidly. By November 1964, there were fourteen "Indigenous Full Gospel," or "New Life," Churches throughout the South Island, all founded in the preceding five years, and forty-four churches in the North Island wing of the movement were represented at its first nation-wide annual Easter Conference in April 1965. The number of New Life Churches had therefore increased ten-fold, from six to nearly sixty, in the five years from 1960 to 1965. 

This period of primary growth and expansion lasted until about 1967, and the movement continued to grow exponentially in both extent and influence over the next decade. Peter Lineham comments that "in the 1970s these fellowships were among the most dynamic forces in the religious life in New Zealand."34 Since 1978, however, the movement has entered a period of stasis, and, to some extent in the later 1980s, depression and disillusionment. This sense of decline was common to many areas of the Pentecostal and Charismatic movements in the 1980s, both in New Zealand and overseas. Donald Battley, for example, notes the beginnings of "a time of depression" in both the Anglican and Catholic Charismatic movements at the end of the 1970s.35 However, there were some pockets of continuing expansion. Examples of this were the Elim Pentecostal Churches, which began a period of sustained increase in the late 1970s,36 and a number of Pentecostal churches in Auckland were also experiencing vigorous and vibrant growth.37 Although some of the New Life churches shared in this spirit of exuberance, the second half of the 1980s was a period of marked change and disorientation for most of the churches in the movement, with the creation of new organisational structures, and a greater centralisation of their collective polity. These changes were not unanimously popular, and about twenty pastors seceded from the New Life Churches at the end of 1987 in protest at the new structures. 

1.1.3 Watersheds: The role of external constituencies

What was the "watershed" of the New Life Churches? What kind of people were attracted to the movement? Why were they attracted? Currie, Gilbert and Horsley, in their study of the patterns of church growth in the British Isles, suggest that

recruitment to church membership involves at least three distinct transfers of individuals: from the population as a whole (which is little disposed towards membership) to the external constituency of persons significantly disposed towards membership; from the external constituency to the internal constituency of non-member adherents who formally or publicly affirm their disposition towards membership; and from the internal constituency to membership itself.38

They further argue that

the external constituency has its origins in some historical process: a societal cleavage, the development of a sense of relative deprivation, or perhaps merely the failure of existing religious organizations to recruit populations nominally within their purview. Such a process is likely to bring into being, at approximately the same time, both a new organization's potential recruits and the organization able to appeal to the hitherto unorganized or ill-organized. This coincidence is the objective cause of the subjective sense of opportunity which buoys up so many founders of new religious organizations.39

Currie, Gilbert and Horsley's theory is based on a considerable volume of statistical data, which covers a period of more than 250 years and includes most major British churches. However, several significant modifications to their categories are necessary, in so far as recruitment to Pentecostalism in New Zealand is concerned.

Firstly, the focus of these authors is on the British Isles. Although a good proportion of their material deals with the rise of Nonconformist groups such as the early Methodists, nevertheless their ecclesiastical model appears to be essentially that of an Established Church, and in particular, the Church of England. Establishment is not, however, a feature of New Zealand religion, and no comparable formal relationship exists between Church and State in this country. Although it does have some vestiges of Establishment status, the Anglican Church is effectively one of the major Protestant denominations in New Zealand, and, as such, is subject to the uncertainties of voluntary religion, rather than enjoying the benefits of Establishment as does its counterpart in Britain. 

The authors make use of the categories of autogenous growth (i.e. recruitment from families of church members) and allogenous growth (i.e. recruitment from families of non-members) to explain fluctuations in the rate at which churches grow. The core of their argument is that high growth rates involve allogenous growth, rather than autogenous growth. However, allogenous growth is inherently unstable, since this type of convert is less likely to retain church membership.40 Periods characterised by high growth rates are therefore immediately followed by periods of decline. While this hypothesis appears to be borne out, at least in the British Isles, by the results of their statistical analysis, the "Establishment" context of British religion would tend to produce a statistical bias towards autogenous growth, since all people living in a parish are deemed to be members, at least in theory, of the Established Church. This produces a social pressure to conform, which could tend to restrict transfers to nonconformist groups. In a voluntarist society such as New Zealand, this is not so much the case. It is therefore necessary to adapt the authors' findings to the very different New Zealand context.

Secondly, as Currie, Gilbert and Horsley themselves point out, peaks in membership figures do not necessarily indicate peaks in adherence or involvement. The authors refer to a peak in church rolls in Britain in 1960, and comment that this peak is not found in the nonconformist figures (i.e. Baptist, Methodist, Congregationalists, etc.) and in fact represents a peak in church rolls, not in participation.41 Church membership does not necessarily imply church participation. In the New Zealand context, J.J. Mol has conducted research into the relationship between these categories. In a Social Research Project conducted in Christchurch in 1962 by a team from the Departments of Psychology and Sociology at the University of Canterbury, he found that Anglicans had the lowest rates of church attendance (i.e. 11% of the nominal membership).42 Mol reiterates this point in his other writings: "the Church of England suffers the most from purely nominal attendances."43 His findings have been reinforced by a recent survey published by The New Zealand Society of Values.44 On the basis of the results of this survey, the proportion of Anglicans who actually attend church each week would stand at a possible maximum of about 14.0%.45 Thus statistical growth in church membership rolls does not necessarily indicate the quality of that membership commitment, as reflected in, amongst other things, frequency of church attendance.

Thirdly, the churches with which Currie, Gilbert and Horsley are dealing are well-established, well-defined and clearly identified institutional groupings. By contrast, the forerunners of what were to become the "New Life Churches" were a very ill-defined group in the early 1960s. It was not until 1965 that the movement held its first National Convention, by which time more than fifty churches had sprung up over the previous five years. This was part of a wider growth in "Independent" Pentecostal churches at the time, although not all of these came to associate themselves with what eventually became the "New Life" movement. The growth of the "New Life Churches" therefore represents a gradual gravitational accretion of small like-minded local groups, rather than any linear development and expansion from a single, clearly-defined starting point. Despite, or perhaps because of, the "spontaneous combustion"46 of the growth of the movement, the groups that were to become churches associated under the umbrella of the "New Life Churches" were varied, both in ancestry, as well as in orientation and personal relationship with other ministries and churches.47 The "Bethel Temple" origins of the early leaders in the movement represented only one strand in a network of interconnections, and, in fact, belong more to the movement's proto-history than to the period of growth which marked its emergence in the late 1950s and early 1960s. This "Bethel Temple" element apparently became submerged in the larger influx of new converts, all with their own previous alliances and orientations. The newly-emergent movement, as such, was never well-defined, since the boundaries of belonging were fluid, and as Hodgkinson points out, not all the "independent" Pentecostal churches (i.e. those not associated with the "Big Four" of Apostolic, Assemblies of God, Elim and Christian Revival Crusade) came into the orbit of the "New Life Churches."48 The somewhat fluid character of the "New Life Churches," lacking a single, identifiable, institutional centre, is therefore markedly different from that of the British churches with which Currie, Gilbert and Horsley are dealing.

Fourthly, Pentecostal churches in general, and the New Life Churches in particular, tended to lay little stress on church membership as distinct from church adherence. For them, the first priority is one's relationship with Christ as personal Saviour. This individualistic orientation towards personalised religious experience produces a corresponding devaluation of church membership: as far as being on a church roll is concerned, "you might as well have your name on a sausage roll for all the good it will do you."49 This anti-ecclesiastical stance is, in part, a product of the anti-denominationalism that characterised the New Life Churches and, to a lesser extent, Pentecostal churches in general, from their earliest beginnings. Consequently, the terms "internal constituency" and "membership" would tend to be congruent for the New Life Churches, and the four-stage transfer process postulated by Currie, Gilbert and Horsley therefore becomes a three-stage one, i.e. from general population to external constituency, and from external constituency to member/adherent.

In explaining the origin and development of religious movements, Currie, Gilbert and Horsley place the emphasis on the historical process as well as the social matrix. They argue that a church's external constituency has its origins in "some historical process" which is "likely to bring into being, at approximately the same time, both a new organization's potential recruits and the organization [itself]."50 This stress on "historical process" offers a corrective to an over-emphasis on the role of sociological factors in the origin of Pentecostalism, since these origins have usually been interpreted as a social process, with less emphasis on historical factors. This, however, is not to argue that social factors are unimportant, but rather to recognize that the process of change is both social and historical. A movement is a product of its time as well as of its social context.

1.2 Vision of the Disinherited?51

A number of sociological hypotheses have been offered to explain the rise of Pentecostalism.52 These fall into three major categories,53 i.e. theories of Social Disorganization,54 theories of Psychological Maladjustment,55 and (the most prominent of these groupings) theories of Social Deprivation, of which Robert Mapes Anderson's Vision of the Disinherited is perhaps the best known example.56 Anderson argues that the poor and the deprived comprise the "external constituency" of Pentecostalism and that the movement represents an "other-worldly" religious response to socio-economic or "status" deprivation. In his view,

status deprivation...has...[predisposed] most of the recruits to the neo-pentecostal movement....Pentecostals, old and new, have typically testified that before their conversion to Pentecostalism, they felt empty and hungry for something they could not articulate. In short, they felt deprived.57

Anderson's argument has a long history. It is the most recent re-statement of a hypothesis originally advanced by H. Richard Niebuhr in 1929.58 Working on the ideas of Max Weber and Ernst Troeltsch, Niebuhr emphasised the role of social and economic factors in the rise of new religious movements, and asserted that

all major religious movements during the Christian era grew up as solutions to lower class frustrations. The simple and direct grasp of faith by the poor has shunned the religious relativity and qualifications which the more sophisticated find necessary.59

However, a movement, by definition, is not a stable, static, unchanging phenomenon. Thus the congruence of the new religious movement with its lower class roots changes with the passage of time:

The social character of sectarianism...is almost always modified in the course of time by the natural processes of birth and death, and on this change in structure changes in doctrine and ethics inevitably follow. By its very nature the sectarian type of organization is valid for only one generation.60

Consequently, according to Niebuhr, the character of the new movement changes from sect to church and ultimately to denomination,61 and, as it does so, its constituency moves upwards into a more prosperous and stable middle-class respectability. Later social theorists extended and modified Niebuhr's theory. Liston Pope,62 for example, disagreed with him to some extent, arguing that the sect-to-church progression was not always congruent with an upward movement from the ranks of the poor into the middle class. Pope argued that in economic terms, the social movement was towards a more efficient working class, rather than into the ranks of owners and managers, and listed twenty-one indices which marked the progress from sect to church to denomination.63 Pope saw the Pentecostals as being at the "sect" end of the continuum, with Roman Catholicism at the "denominational" end.

The earlier sociological arguments, however, tended to combine two separate, though related, issues: firstly, the social origins of a movement such as Pentecostalism, and secondly, the change in character from sect to church which takes place in that movement over the passage of time. In the early 1960s, however, a return to an emphasis on the sociological origins of Pentecostalism was made by scholars such as Charles Glock64 and David Aberle,65 who described deprivation in relative terms as the "difference between an anticipated state of affairs and a less agreeable reality."66 The idea of "deprivation" as a causative social factor in the formation of a religious movement is therefore a long-standing one, and has undergone many permutations and combinations since the era of Weber, Troeltsch and Niebuhr. Anderson's restatement of the "Disinheritance Hypothesis" therefore represents a reversion to earlier theories of predominantly economic, although relative, deprivation.

Although Anderson attempts to reinforce his argument by pointing out that "the Deprived are not always at the bottom of the social order," his hypothesis is, in my view, overstated. I offer several reasons for this evaluation.

Firstly, Anderson's hypothesis is not applicable to all types of Pentecostalism. An occupational analysis of such Pentecostal church membership lists as are available will demonstrate that not all Pentecostal adherents come from the ranks of the disadvantaged,67 nor do they appear to be the victims of a perceived relative deprivation (i.e. "a negative discrepancy between legitimate expectation and actuality"68). 

Secondly, Anderson's hypothesis is expressly applied to "the making of American Pentecostalism" in the period up to the 1930s. While it may adequately explain the nature of American Pentecostalism at that stage of its history,69 the hypothesis is bounded by a specific set of historical and geographical parameters. It is imperative to recognise that sociological hypotheses must fit the historical time-frame, geographical provenance and social matrix of the movement which they seek to explain. Kilian McDonnell points out that

social theories arise out of observed events, conditions, patterns and out of conclusions which are observed therefrom. Because grounded empirically, they belong to history and geography. They are rooted in moments and places....Because so grounded they must not be universalized, divorced from moment and place. The test of a social theory of movements is not its universal applicability, but its adequacy within a limited framework....Social theories belong to history.70

McDonnell therefore argues that while the identification of American Pentecostalism with the dispossessed (i.e. the lower classes), appeared to remain valid up to the 1940s,

during the war classical Pentecostalism ceased to be identified with the lower socio-economic levels of American society and became middle-class America. It became increasingly difficult to identify speaking in tongues with the kind of sectarian behaviour one came to expect from the lower socio-economic groups. In the late fifties and early sixties....The older theories of economic and cultural deprivation as a way of explaining glossolalic behaviour no longer seemed so convincing.71

Consequently, he says, many modern scholars are now "clearly unimpressed with the deprivation theories [since]....The new Pentecostal-charismatic population [is] well-educated, affluent, in positions of power in business and industry as well as in some churches."72 The character of the Neo-Pentecostal movement in America and elsewhere is now acknowledged as essentially middle-class, with an upper-class component being increasingly noticeable from the early 1960s onwards.73 There has therefore been a substantial shift in the constituency of the Pentecostal movement, which has become much more attractive to those beyond the boundaries of its traditional lower-class recruitment base. This shift of constituency has rendered the disinheritance hypothesis inadequate as an explanation for the current expansion of Pentecostalism. Thirdly, Anderson's hypothesis has geographical limitations. The Pentecostal historian Walter Hollenweger, for example, comments that the hypothesis "that the sects are the expression of economic deprivation...applies only to...America,"74 and similarly, Bob Thompson, in his article "Sects in New Zealand," refers to two extended reviews75 of Anderson's book which cite "sociological studies that prove that the [Pentecostal] movement began in the higher echelons of the working class not the very lowest."76 He further argues that the character of New Zealand as a nation of "do-it-yourselfers" was unlikely to be affected by the phenomenon of American-style "disinheritance."77 Thompson's latter comment raises a further, more specific objection to the "disinheritance theory": it does not explain why New Zealand Neo-Pentecostalism should have begun its greatest expansion at the end of the 1950s, when, in the words of Sir Keith Sinclair, this country was in the middle of a period of

over twenty years of prosperity, a prolonged boom which...continued into the early nineteen-seventies....This prosperity was the all-pervasive fact in New Zealand life for the first two post-war decades; it was the dominant influence on social attitudes and on politics alike.78

This "all-pervasive prosperity" raises considerable doubt as to the applicability of Anderson's hypothesis to the New Zealand context. Nor can a claim of "relative deprivation" be invoked in this case, since the homogeneity and general egalitarianism of New Zealand society rendered it a less receptive host to "movements of the poor" such as Anderson believes the Pentecostal movement to be. The reasons for the success of Pentecostalism in this country, particularly in the 1960s and 1970s, must be sought in other factors.

Although Pentecostalism in New Zealand was initially a "lower-class" movement, it had begun to expand by the early 1960s, and, like its American counterpart, to become increasingly middle-class in character. Ian Clark comments that the Pentecostal movement in New Zealand in the 1950s was 

a very small and a very ingrown movement. They were making all sorts of efforts to break out of a very constricted kind of a mode, but I think in modern terms, they were totally irrelevant. That would be a good way of describing it. Nice people, who met in little upstairs halls above a butcher shop (things like that)....[They] met at Oddfellows' Halls and that sort of thing, and it really was pretty grotty....It was like David: all those who had a grudge, or owed money, or trouble with the law; they would join themselves to him.79 But [now] there's been a transformation: you get people from many different professions in [the Pentecostal movement] today.80

This "very constricted...mode" was not entirely due to the sectarian ethos and social composition of the Pentecostal movement. Of equal importance was the sometimes strenuous opposition which it encountered from other churches, including the evangelical groups with which it had much in common. Bryan Gilling quotes Rev. J.A. Clifford as saying that in the 1959 Billy Graham Crusade, the Pentecostals "were carefully excluded....If anybody had Pentecostal leanings they weren't allowed to be in on counselling or anything like that."81 Other examples of this policy of exclusion may be cited. In Timaru, for example, Pentecostal young people were not permitted to join the local "Youth for Christ," which was, at that stage, dominated by Baptist and Brethren leaders, until well into the mid-1960s, despite their strong support of many "Youth for Christ" functions.

Notwithstanding the marginalised status of the Pentecostal movement up to the end of the 1950s, a change in constituency appears to have taken place in the 1960s. Ian Clark's reference to the "transformation" of the movement is echoed by Ron Coady, who had assisted A.S. Worley in the highly successful Timaru campaign in 1960, and who observes that the converts of that campaign "were all kinds...from every [part of the] spectrum. The wealthy, the poor, the middle class, the upper class, teenagers."82 It is difficult to corroborate these statements, since the churches which resulted from campaigns such as these did not keep church rolls or address listings. Consequently, there is little material for this period (such as lists of converts, etc.) which could be analyzed to produce a sociological profile for the movement. However, it was possible to identify some of the members of the Timaru church83 from photographs,84 newspaper reports,85 magazines86 and minutes of the church's business meetings,87 and to produce an occupational analysis of these by means of the Elley-Irving Indices.88 The results of this analysis are set out in Table 1.1 on page 26, Table 1.2 on page 27, and Figure 1.1 on page 28. Of the 114 "members" who were successfully identified89 from these sources, 79 (i.e. 69.3%) appeared on the Electoral Rolls for either 1960, 1963 or 1966.90 These comprised 31 males, of whom 29 were employed in various occupations91 (the exception being 2 retired men), and 48 females. Of these 48, only 2 were employed, while the rest were listed as "married," "spinsters" or "widows." A Control Sample was taken from the 1960 Electoral Roll to enable comparison with the local occupational matrix. This sample totalled 161 people (i.e. 1% of the Roll), and comprised 78 males and 83 females. Of the females, only 3 were employed. However, while the lack of female congregational members in the work-force therefore appears to be typical of the Timaru area in the early 1960s, rather than a product of religious belief, the sample is too small to permit any reasonable conclusions to be drawn.

The results of the analysis show a weighting on the traditional constituency of Pentecostalism (i.e. Levels 5 and 6: Semi-skilled and Unskilled "Blue-Collar" workers). Fifteen (or 51.7%) of the male adherents in employment fell into this category, compared with 21 (or 38.2%) of those from the Control Sample. In both cases, these figures were higher than the New Zealand and urban averages (i.e. 30.5% and 30.0% respectively). However, there was also an over-representation at the opposite end of the scale (Levels 1 and 2: Professional and Semi-Professional). Congregational representation at this level totalled 17.3% (compared with 9.1% for the local Control Sample); this falls within the range for the New Zealand and urban averages (i.e. 13.7% and 18% for these two categories). Apart from the mysterious lack of Skilled White-Collar Workers (Level 3), the congregational listing, within the limits of the smallness of the sample, appears to comprise a general cross-section of the population. However, two factors tend to weight the analysis towards its lower end.

Firstly, there was a large number of young people in the congregation: of the 35 (30.7% of the congregation) not listed on the Electoral Roll, 26 (22.8% of the congregation) fell into the category of young people who had not yet left secondary school, or who had started work, but were not yet on the Electoral Rolls. This youthful constituency (which does not include those children under secondary school age) tends to weight the composition of the congregation towards those who were not yet employed, or worked in comparatively low-level and low-income jobs. This comparative youthfulness is reinforced by the fact that while only 2 retired men (4.4% of the total) appear in the male congregational analysis, the Control sample contains 21 (26.9% of the total). A similar proportional difference occurs in the analysis of female members (i.e. 2 (3.1%) and 12 (14.5%) respectively). Secondly, a number of the lower-category workers were employed at the local Woollen Mills. The Accountant of the Mill was a member of the congregation, and the fact that a number of their fellow-believers were employed there tended to increase the attractiveness of the Woollen Mills as a place of employment for members of the church. This factor also helped to produce a weighting towards the lower occupational levels.

It is recognized that the subject of this analysis is only one amongst a number of churches in the movement, and further, that the numbers involved in the congregational sample are so small that a variation in the occupational ranking of a single individual would produce a radically different sociological profile. The paucity of material available for analysis therefore renders the results of this analysis less than conclusive. It can be no more than a "straw in the wind." All that this data can show is that converts to Pentecostalism in the early 1960s appeared to come from the upper levels of the socio-economic continuum as well as from the movement's traditional lower-class constituency. This trend was reinforced in the later 1960s by the emerging Charismatic movement.92 It is evident, therefore, that other explanations must be sought for the expansion of the Pentecostal movement in the 1960s.

In its later stages, the movement has become much more middle-class, and, since the early 1980s, increasingly upper-middle-class. This is evident from the glossy periodicals and advertising circulars put out by various churches and para-church agencies within the movement.93 It is confirmed by the results of an analysis of the congregational occupations in five selected New Life Churches in the late 1980s.94 These show that the occupational mix within the New Life Churches is at a significantly higher level than those within a representative sample, taken from the electoral rolls, of the local population as a whole. The Pentecostal movement appears to have now become a "yuppie" movement, particularly in the Auckland area. It therefore would appear that it can no longer be described as a "vision of the disinherited" and indeed, the author considers it unlikely that the movement has ever functioned in this way in the New Zealand context, at least since the 1950s. New explanations must therefore be sought for the rise and expansion of Pentecostalism in the 1960s and 1970s. These form the subject of Chapter 2.


1 E.H. Carr, What is History? The George Macaulay Trevelyan Lectures delivered in the University of Cambridge, January-March, 1961 (Harmondsworth: Penguin Books, 1986), p.156.

2 Ibid., p.133.

3 Martin E. Marty, "Introduction: Religion in America 1935-1985," in Altered Landscapes: Christianity in America 1935-1985, ed. David W. Lotz, Donald W. Shriver, Jr., and John F. Wilson (Grand Rapids, Michigan: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1989), pp.1-16.

4 Ibid., p.1.

5 Victor Hugo, Histoire d'un Crime: Conclusion: La Chute, vol.36 (Paris: Edition Nationale, 1893), chapter 10, p.649, cited in Stevenson's Book of Quotations: Classical and Modern, 9th ed., edited by Burton Stevenson (London: Cassell and Company, 1964), p.2298, para.4. A number of English translations of Hugo's aphorism are extant. The best known (although somewhat adapted) versions are: "There is one thing stronger than all the armies in the world; and that is an idea whose time has come" (The Nation, 15 April 1943, cited in Stevenson, Quotations) and "There is nothing in all the world so powerful as an idea whose time has come" (Martin Luther King).

6 José Ortega y Gasset, quoted by Karl J. Weintraub, Visions of Culture (Chicago: University of Chicago, 1966), p.269; and thence by Marty, "Introduction," in Lotz et al., Altered Landscapes, p.2.

7 These "attitudinal changes" are themselves a product of changes in the social context within which they arise. The recognition that human consciousness is determined by social and economic factors (i.e. the social environment) was, perhaps, one of Karl Marx's most permanent contributions to modern thought.

8 Robert Currie, Alan Gilbert, and Lee Horsley, Churches and Churchgoers: Patterns of Church Growth in the British Isles since 1700 (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1977), pp.42-43.

9 The "river" analogy is also apt, given the propensity within the New Life Churches to use hydrological similes (such as "flowing together" or "flowing with" as descriptive terms for the relationships between ministers and churches, and the use of "our stream" as a shorthand title for the movement as a whole).

10 As an example of this process, one might trace the development and changing functionality of the idea of "anti-communism" from the McCarthy era of the 1950s to the Gorbachev era of the late 1980s.

11 James E. Worsfold, A History of the Charismatic Movements in New Zealand (Bradford: Julian Literature Trust, 1974), pp.297-302. The "Indigenous Churches" (or "Indigenous Pentecostal Churches of New Zealand") changed their corporate title to that of "New Life Churches of New Zealand" in 1988.

12 Peter J. Lineham, "Tongues must cease: The Brethren and the Charismatic Movement in New Zealand," Christian Brethren Research Journal 34 (November 1983): 7-52.

13 Murray Darroch, Everything you ever wanted to know about Protestants but never knew who to ask (Wellington: Catholic Supplies, 1984), pp.131-140.

14 Brett Knowles, "For the Sake of the Name: A History of the `New Life Churches' from 1942 to 1965" (B.Theol. (Honours) Dissertation in Christian Thought and History, University of Otago, 1988). 

15 Examples of these are Mary Henderson, From Glory to Glory: A History of the Timaru New Life Centre 1960-1980 (Timaru: Dove Print, 1980); Tauranga Christian Fellowship, "Tauranga Christian Fellowship: Jubilee Reunion 1939-1989," Tauranga, 1989. (Mimeographed.); Motueka New Life Centre, "New Life Centre: A History," Motueka, n.d. [circa 1987]. (Mimeographed.); Bethel New Life Centre, "25th Jubilee Celebrations," Invercargill, September 1987. (Mimeographed.); and Word of Life Fellowship, "Newsletter," Dunedin, 2 June 1991. (Mimeographed.)

16 These included Rob Wheeler's magazine Bible Deliverance, published from April 1959 to March 1966; Ron Coady's Revival News, issued from March 1962 to December 1966; an in-house magazine known as Church Bells, which covered a period from June 1966 to September 1968, and a short-lived periodical called Gospel Truth, printed by the Timaru Missionary Revival Centre from June 1964 to April 1965.

17 The author is grateful to Bernie McNabb of Richmond, Nelson for an extended loan of these materials, and for a tape-recorded interview. 

18 In some cases, italics are used in the oral quotes to indicate a significant verbal stress by the interviewee.

19 Davies was the pastor of the Alive Christian Fellowship in Whangarei, and had resigned from the New Life Churches in 1986 in protest at the increasing institutionalisation of the movement. He was instrumental in the setting up of a new grouping of Pentecostal churches the following year, the South Pacific Fellowship.

20 Clark represents an external, although parallel, view, since he was an Assemblies of God pastor, and was General Secretary of the Assemblies of God in the 1970s. He had served overseas in the New Zealand Diplomatic Corps in the late 1960s.

21 For example, a search of the Dunedin newspaper article index held in the McNabb Library, Dunedin, revealed no articles at all on the local New Life church (the "Word of Life Tabernacle"). There were, however, several articles on the early evangelistic healing campaigns conducted by Ron Coady in Gore and elsewhere ("Religious Upheaval caused in Gore by Claims of Divine Healing," Otago Daily Times, 24 March 1961, p.1; "Two yards of `music'," Otago Daily Times, 17 April 1962, p.5). A search was also made of the Press [hereafter cited as Christchurch Press] article index in the Christchurch Public Library. Although a number of the citations in the index proved to be inaccurate, several references to the New Life Churches in Canterbury were obtained. However, only two of these articles gave any details of the beliefs and practices of the movement. The first was on the New Life Fellowship Church in Rangiora, which was about to build a Christian School in the town ("To set up school with Bible based curriculum," Christchurch Press, 1 November 1977, p.13). The second article dealt with complaints made by two parents over the content of a "childrens' holiday programme" conducted by the Woolston New Life Centre ("Holiday `confessions' upset children," Christchurch Press, 1 September 1980, p.4). However, this appears to have been an isolated incident, and the article includes a rebuttal of these complaints by the organisers of the childrens' programme.

22 The text of this address is to be found in R.B. Wheeler, "Indigenous Full Gospel Assemblies," Church Bells, July 1968, pp.32-33, and in idem, "I Believe," Church Bells, September 1968, pp.33-34. While Wheeler's broadcast was regarded as a "break-through" by the "Indigenous Full Gospel Assemblies," his appearance on the programme (which also featured the views of various sects and cults) indicated that the movement was regarded as a "fringe," rather than a "main-stream," religion by the broadcasting authorities.

23 Challenge Weekly, 15 December 1973, pp.6-7. This article appears to parallel a reference to Peter Morrow and the Christchurch New Life Centre in a feature on the Charismatic Movement which had appeared in the Christchurch Star seven weeks previously (Gaynor Loryman, "Growth of the Pentecostal Movement: A new relationship with Christ," Christchurch Star, 27 October 1973, p.7).

24 Examples of these are full page spreads headed "New Life Centre Complex opens this Saturday," Timaru Herald, 12 October 1981, p.12; and "Timaru New Life Centre Feature," Christchurch Press, 12 November 1980, p.35. Several similar newspaper articles are reproduced in the "Tauranga Christian Fellowship: Jubilee Reunion 1939-1989" booklet.

25 Fritz Stern, ed., The Varieties of History From Voltaire to the Present (New York: Meridian Books, 1956), p.25.

26 Anthony C. Thiselton, The Two Horizons: New Testament Hermeneutics and Philosophical Description with Special Reference to Heidegger, Bultmann, Gadamer and Wittgenstein (Grand Rapids, Michigan: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1980), p.307.

27 Although the name of "New Life Churches" was not officially adopted by the movement until 1988, it is generally (in the interests of simplicity) used throughout this thesis as a descriptive label for these churches, except in those instances where other titles appear in quoted materials (as, for example, in Worsfold's book). There is, admittedly, an element of anachronism in this usage, since it implies that the movement was a coherent, clearly identifiable entity from its beginnings. Such was not the case, since, in its earlier years, the movement was simply a gravitational accretion of like-minded believers rather than a formally-organised body, and was known by a variety of names, such as "Full Gospel Churches," "Indigenous Churches," "Indigenous Full Gospel Churches," "Indigenous Pentecostal Churches," and "Indigenous Pentecostal Churches of New Zealand." Nevertheless, in the author's opinion, the greater simplicity achieved by using this title outweighs the risks of possible historical error. 

28 Wolfgang D. Fernández, Institutional Analysis: Initial Findings (Waikanae: DAWN Strategy New Zealand, [1987]), p.11.

29 The Pentecostal Church of New Zealand was founded following the campaigns of Smith Wigglesworth in the 1920s. Following a merger with the Elim Church of Great Britain in 1953, it was renamed the Elim Church of New Zealand.

30 So called because it emphasised the full power of the Gospel (i.e. the practice of healing and of the baptism of the Holy Spirit). See John Thomas Nichol, The Pentecostals (formerly Pentecostalism), rev. ed. (Plainfield, New Jersey: Logos International, 1971), pp.7-8.

31 A somewhat uncritical "authorized biography" of Worley is Robert E. Grice, Apostle to the Nations: An Authorized Biography of A.S. Worley, a Man of Faith and Miracles (Walhalla, South Carolina: Faith Training Center, n.d. [1990]). This biography appears to be based on Worley's recollections, but is quite confused on the sequence of events during his ministry in New Zealand.

32 Then known as "Timaru Christian Fellowship Mission" and later as "Timaru Missionary Revival Centre"; now called "Timaru New Life Centre." See Henderson, From Glory to Glory, for the history of this local church up to 1980.

33 The early converts in Southland were (and still are, in some cases) known by the pejorative title of "Coadyites." This was a reference to Ron Coady, whose campaigns spear-headed the growth of the movement in the South Island.

34 Lineham, "Tongues must Cease": 16.

35 Battley summarises the development of the New Zealand Charismatic renewal in his article "Charismatic Renewal: A View from Inside," Ecumenical Review 38 (January 1986): 48-56.

36 See Yvonne Dasler, "Then they came to Elim...," New Zealand Listener, 24 April 1982, pp.18-21, for an account of the Elim movement in Blenheim and Marlborough.

37 See Jack Leigh, "Getting Religion," New Zealand Woman's Weekly, 8 July 1985, pp.59-62 for a report on the Pentecostal churches in Auckland. Three of the five pastors featured by Leigh were affiliated with the New Life Churches (David McCracken, Bob Horton and Terry Calkin), and the remaining two were the pastors of the large Assemblies of God churches at Beaumont Street (formerly referred to as Queen Street Assembly of God, since their meetings were held in the Auckland Town Hall) and at Takapuna.

38 Currie et al., Churches and Churchgoers, pp.42-43.

39 Ibid., pp.67-68.

40 Ibid., pp.43ff.

41 Ibid., p.35.

42 J.J. Mol, Church-Attendance in Christchurch New Zealand: A Social Research Project (Christchurch: Department of Psychology and Sociology, Canterbury University, 1962), p.4. Mol's results show 11% church attendance for the Anglican church for both males and females; Presbyterian attendance was slightly higher at 15% for males and 21% for females; that for the Methodist church reached 21% and 29% respectively, while Catholics were highest attenders at 66% and 69% respectively. Interestingly, although Mol's team specifically excluded Pentecostalists from their analysis (since only three respondents were identified as such, and the sample was therefore too small for accurate analysis), "it appeared that members [of this group] were very active": all three of the Pentecostalists interviewed had attended church on Sunday, 24 June 1962, the date on which the attendance survey focused (Ibid., p.2). (It should be noted that this survey was conducted before the major impact of the Pentecostal/Charismatic movement was felt in Christchurch.) Mol concludes that "it seems to be true in general that whenever a denomination is further removed from establishment and closer to a minority status its hold upon a less diffuse and heterogenous membership seems to increase. The greater vitality of the Roman Catholic church in the U.S.A., Australia New Zealand, the Netherlands etc. as over against Italy, France and Spain is a case in point" (Ibid., p.15).

43 J.J. Mol, "Religion in New Zealand," Extrait des Archives de Sociologie des Religions 24 (1967): 127.

44 Alan C. Webster and Paul E. Perry, The Religious Factor in New Zealand Society: A Report of the New Zealand Study of Values (Palmerston North: Alpha Publications, 1989). This report attempts to study the quality of New Zealand religion, by analysis of respondents' value-systems and belief-structures. Although the results are presented in a somewhat indigestible and inaccessible form, Webster and Perry found that "when the percent `religious' is corrected for frequent sense of a spiritual presence or for weekly attendance, it comes to 15-17%. By these criteria, the evangelical sects, while being nominally one in ten in the population make up one in three of the `religious.' The Catholics and the evangelical sects make up two out of three weekly worshippers. Anglicans make up less than one in five of the weekly attenders and the Presbyterians somewhat less. There is clear evidence of the mythical nature of the belief in the domination of religion in New Zealand by the mainline non-Catholic churches" (Ibid., p.22). However, Peter Donovan has criticised the basis on which Webster and Perry have conducted their analysis, since the 1986 Census (upon which their research was based) contains some changes in format from previous Censuses which have biased the data in favour of the five major churches (i.e. the Catholic, Anglican, Presbyterian, Methodist and Baptist churches). These five churches were indicated in the Census by a box, which merely had to be ticked to indicate adherence. Members of other groups had to write their identification in the space marked "Other Religions." Donovan's argument is that this has "skewed" the Census results on which Webster and Perry had based their work (Peter Donovan, Open lecture, Religious Studies Department, University of Otago, 19 June 1990). 

45 This percentage is calculated as follows: 17% of "Religious" (as per Webster and Perry, Religious Factor, p.22) divided by 5 ("less than one in five of the weekly attenders") = 3.4%. Since Anglicans nominally comprise 24.3% of the population as per the 1986 Census, the percentage of "Religious" Anglicans is therefore 3.4 divided by 24.3, i.e. 14.0% of the church's membership.

46 The phrase is Rob Wheeler's (Rob Wheeler, Interview, Waikanae, 22 September 1987).

47 Rasik Ranchord clearly recognised this variety, when, during the course of discussions which led to the adoption of the title "New Life Churches" for the movement, he jocularly suggested that it be called "the Liquorice Allsorts Churches"! (Ranchord, quoted by Wheeler in Ibid.). The origins of the individual churches were extremely varied. The Tauranga Christian Fellowship, for example, was founded in 1939 (i.e. seven years before the "official" beginning of the movement with the secession from the Pentecostal Church of New Zealand). This local assembly owed its origins to converts of the A.H. Dallimore campaigns in Auckland in 1932. (See "Tauranga Christian Fellowship: Jubilee Reunion 1939-1989" for an account of its history.) The Timaru New Life Centre was the result of a specific evangelistic campaign (the "Worley Revival") held in Timaru in 1960 (Henderson, From Glory to Glory, p.4). By contrast, the Fairlie New Life Centre was, in effect, a charismatic ex-Brethren Assembly; likewise, the two Palmerston North New Life churches (i.e. the Palmerston North Christian Fellowship and the Christian Community Church) are descended from the Awapuni Baptist Church, which split from the Baptist Union in 1966 over the issue of the Baptism of the Spirit (Eric Hodgkinson, "The Independent Pentecostal Movement" (Research Essay in New Zealand Religious History, Massey University, 1989. (Handwritten.)), p.9). It was for this reason that Shaun Kearney made the comment at the Melbourne Conference in 1973 that "you Australians have all one `father'; the churches in New Zealand have many `fathers'" (Knowles, "For the Sake of the Name," p.24).

48 Hodgkinson, "Independent Pentecostal Movement," passim.

49 Statements like this were actually made during the early days of the movement!

50 Currie et al., Churches and Churchgoers, pp.67-68.

51 The remainder of this chapter, together with most of chapter 2, has been published as Brett Knowles, "Vision of the Disinherited? The growth of the Pentecostal Movement in the 1960s, with particular reference to the New Life Churches of New Zealand," in "Be Ye Separate": Fundamentalism and the New Zealand Experience, Waikato Studies in Religion, vol.3, ed. Bryan Gilling (Hamilton: University of Waikato and Colcom Press, 1992), pp.107-141.

52 See Michael Hill, A Sociology of Religion (London: Heinemann Educational Books, 1973), especially chapter 3, "Church and Sect," pp.47-70, and Kilian McDonnell, Charismatic Renewal and the Churches (New York: Seabury Press, 1976), chapter 2, "Disorganization and Deprivation: Movements and their causes," pp.17-40. These summarise the historical development of sociological theories on the origins of Pentecostalism and on the concept of sect-to-church development. McDonnell was a member of the research team whose work was published as Luther P. Gerlach and Virginia H. Hine, People, Power, Change: Movements of Social Transformation (Indianapolis: Bobbs-Merrill Company, 1970), a major study of the ways in which "movements are both cause and effect of social change" (Ibid., p.xiv). Also see Nola Ker, "Religion and Society in Interaction in New Zealand" (M.A. Thesis in Sociology, Victoria University of Wellington, 1984), which deals with the sociological origins of the Charismatic movement within the mainstream churches in New Zealand.

53 McDonnell, Charismatic Renewal, pp.20-21.

54 As, for example, those of Anton Boisen, who posited that "religious experience is rooted in the social nature of man [sic] and arises spontaneously under the pressure of crisis conditions" ("Economic Distress and Religious Experience," Psychiatry 2 (1939): 193; idem, The Exploration of the Inner World: A Study of Mental Disorder and Religious Experience (New York: Harper and Row, 1936); and idem, Religion in Crisis and Custom (New York: Harper and Row, 1945), cited in McDonnell, Charismatic Renewal, pp.21-22). A similar approach is that of John B. Holt, who argued that Pentecostalism was a response to social disorganization, and particularly to the "culture shock" of urbanisation ("Holiness Religion: Cultural Shock and Reorganization," American Sociological Review 5 (1940): 740-747, cited in McDonnell, Charismatic Renewal, pp.22-23).

55 The emphasis of theories on the origins of Pentecostalism has shifted from the social to the psychological in the 1960s and 1970s (McDonnell, Charismatic Renewal, chapter 5). Examples of these later theories, which tend to echo Durkheim's concept of "anomie," are those of Poblete and O'Dea, who argue that sects represent a way out of anomie (Renato Poblete and Thomas O'Dea, "Anomie and the `Quest for Community': The Formation of Sects Among the Puerto Ricans of New York," American Catholic Sociological Review 21 (1960): 29, cited in McDonnell, Charismatic Renewal, p.24), and of Wood, who categorises Pentecostalism as "a potential solution to some of the personality problems which are a by-product of certain conditions, namely sociological disruption, low social status [and] general dissatisfaction (William W. Wood, Culture and Personality Aspects of the Pentecostal Holiness Religion (The Hague: Mouton, 1965), cited in McDonnell, Charismatic Renewal, p.25). McGuire's theory of "affective deprivation" (i.e. "the difference between the affection, or emotional satisfaction, one has versus that which he [sic] thinks he should have") would also come into this category (Kenneth McGuire, "Affective Deprivation as a Factor in Crisis Movement Formation: A Current Example," paper presented at the meeting of the Society for the Scientific Study of Religion, San Francisco, 1973; and idem, "People, Prayer and Promise: An Anthropological Analysis of a Catholic Charismatic Covenant Community" (Ph.D. Dissertation in Anthropology, Ohio State University, 1976), cited in McDonnell, Charismatic Renewal, pp.25-26, note 25).

56 Robert Mapes Anderson, Vision of the Disinherited: the Making of American Pentecostalism (New York: Oxford University Press, 1979).

57 Ibid., p.229.

58 H. Richard Niebuhr, The Social Sources of Denominationalism (New York: Meridian Books, 1959).

59 Ibid., cited in McDonnell, Charismatic Renewal, p.18. I am indebted to McDonnell for much of the following summary of the historical development of sociological theories relating to Pentecostalism. 

60 Niebuhr, Social Sources, p.19.

61 Max Weber's concept of the "routinisation of charisma" is also a component of this process of change. For a definition of this concept, see Max Weber, "The Nature of Charismatic Domination," in Max Weber: Selections in Translation, ed. W.G. Runciman, trans. E. Matthews (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1978), pp.226-250. This specific passage was selected by the editor from Max Weber, Wirtschrift und Gesellschaft [Economy and Society], vol. 2, 4th ed. (Tübingen, 1956), pp.652-679. This work, the best-known of Weber's writings, was originally published posthumously in 1922, two years after his death.

62 Liston Pope, Millhands and Preachers (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1942), cited in Hill, Sociology of Religion, pp.65ff. 

63 Ibid. Some of the more significant of these are:

a. From non-cooperation or ridicule of established religious institutions to co-operation with them.

b. From a psychology of persecution to a psychology of success and dominance.

c. From emphasis on death and a future in the next world to emphasis on life and a future in this world.

d. From a high degree of congregational participation to delegation of responsibility to a small minority.

e. From fervour and activity in worship to restraint and passivity.

f. From a comparatively large numbers of religious services to a programme of regular services at stated intervals.

g. From emphasis on religion in the home to delegation of responsibility to church officials and organization.

64 Charles Glock, "The Role of Deprivation in the Origin and Evolution of Religious Groups," in Religion and Social Conflict, ed. Robert Lee and Martin E. Marty (New York: Oxford University Press, 1964), cited in McDonnell, Charismatic Renewal, p.25.

65 David F. Aberle, "A Note on Relative Deprivation Theory as applied to Millenarian and other Cult Movements," in Millennial Dreams in Action: Essays in Comparative Study, ed. Sylvia Thrupp (The Hague: Mouton, 1962), pp.209-214. Aberle argues that there are four types of deprivation, i.e. possessions, status, behaviour and worth.

66 Ibid., cited in McDonnell, Charismatic Renewal, p.25.

67 Brett Knowles, "Vision of the Disinherited? An examination of the expansion of the Neo-Pentecostal and Charismatic Movements in the 1960s and 1970s and a suggested hypothesis for the social causes of their growth," paper presented at Post-Graduate Seminar, Department of History, University of Otago, 4 October 1989.

68 Aberle, "Note," p.209.

69 For a contrary view, see H.R. Jackson, Churches and People in Australia and New Zealand 1860-1930 (Wellington: Allen and Unwin/Port Nicholson Press, 1987), p.56, which points out that "historians of religion in America, who have looked into the matter thoroughly, have found revivals [i.e. the contextual matrix and ethos of Pentecostalism] occurring in conditions of both economic buoyancy and depression." Although the sources quoted by Jackson specifically refer to revivalism in the 19th Century, his point remains that the deprivation theory does not adequately explain the origins of revivalism (or Pentecostalism) even in America.

70 McDonnell, Charismatic Renewal, pp.39-40.

71 Ibid., pp.14-15.

72 Ibid., p.34.

73 "Protestant Neo-Pentecostalism [i.e. the Charismatic Movement] has been recognised as essentially middle class with some inroads into the upper class since the beginning of the 1960s" (Ibid., p.111).

74 Walter J. Hollenweger, The Pentecostals, trans. R.A.Wilson (London: SCM Press, 1972), p.465. Yet note Jackson's statement that this theory is inadequate to explain the phenomenon of Revivalism even in America itself (footnote 69, supra).

75 Grant Wacker, "Taking another look at the `Vision of the Disinherited'," Religious Studies Review VIII (1982): 15-22; Timothy L. Smith, "The Disinheritance of the Saints," Religious Studies Review VIII (1982): 22-28.

76 Bob J. Thompson, "Sects in New Zealand," in Towards an Authentic New Zealand Theology, ed. John M. Ker and Kevin J. Sharpe (Auckland: University of Auckland Chaplaincy Publishing Trust, 1984), p.93. 

77 Ibid.

78 Keith Sinclair, A History of New Zealand, rev. ed. (Harmondsworth: Penguin Books, 1984), p.288.

79 The reference is to 1 Sam.22:2: "And every one that was in distress, and every one that was in debt, and every one that was discontented, gathered themselves unto [David]; and he became a captain over them" (King James Version: hereafter cited as KJV).

80 Ian Clark, Interview, Auckland, 28 February 1990. Clark was specifically referring to the Assemblies of God (of which he was for some years General Secretary). His observation is, however, valid for the whole Pentecostal movement.

81 Rev. J.A. Clifford, cited in Bryan D. Gilling, "Retelling the Old, Old Story: A Study of Six Mass Evangelistic Missions in Twentieth Century New Zealand" (D. Phil. Thesis in History, University of Waikato, 1990), p.253. Clifford was principal of the Baptist Bible College from 1961 to 1973.

82 Ron Coady, Taped interview in response to Questionnaire, Davis, California, 24 March 1988.

83 This church, which was founded as a result of the Worley campaign, was originally known as the "Timaru Christian Fellowship Mission." In 1962, two-thirds of the members of this church split away to form the "Timaru Missionary Revival Centre," later renamed "Timaru New Life Centre." The Christian Fellowship Mission eventually went into recess in the late 1970s. See Henderson, From Glory to Glory, for the history of the Timaru New Life Centre up to 1980.

84 These photographs come from the following sources: 

a. Henderson, From Glory to Glory.

b. Missionary Revival Centre, "Missionary Revival Centre," Timaru, n.d. (Mimeographed.) From various references and photographs in the booklet itself, it appears to be dated circa March/April 1965.

85 "Parents Say Prayer Transformed Boy's Twisted Foot; Now Walks Unaided," Timaru Herald, 6 July 1960, p.12.

86 Gospel Truth, June 1964-April 1965.

87 Christian Fellowship Mission, Timaru, Minutes of Business meetings, 9 December 1961 and following. (Handwritten.)

88 W.B. Elley and J.C. Irving, "A Socio-Economic Index for New Zealand based on Levels of Education and Income from the 1966 Census," New Zealand Journal of Educational Studies 7 (1972): 153-67; idem, "Revised Socio-Economic Index for New Zealand," New Zealand Journal of Educational Studies 11 (1976): 25-36; J.C. Irving and W.C. Elley, "A Socio-Economic Index for the Female Labour Force in New Zealand," New Zealand Journal of Educational Studies 12 (1977): 154-63; cited in Francis Buttle, The Elley-Irving Socio-Economic Indices: Practical Problems in their Use, Research Report No. 26 (Palmerston North: Market Research Centre, Massey University, [May 1980]). Buttle discusses some of the problems inherent in the use of the Elley-Irving Indices: categories such as "student," "retired," "housewife" etc., are not included in the Indices. Furthermore, these deal only with the 25-44 age group; other age groups are "non-appearers" (Buttle, Elley-Irving Indices, p.20). It is not possible to ascertain the correct level for these. Like all statistical data, the Elley-Irving indices are capable of misinterpretation. However, not withstanding Buttle's caveats, they do provide a useful statistical tool for sociological analysis.

89 Not all "members" could, in fact, be identified. Some photographs were too distant to permit accurate identification; and some surnames were listed without Christian names, making it very difficult to isolate the appropriate entry in the Electoral Rolls. Consequently, the 114 "members" do not necessarily comprise a complete listing of the congregation. A further factor is that these sources are spread over a period of five years between 1960 and 1965, and therefore include people who may have been in the congregation for only part of this time (i.e. new arrivals in Timaru, etc.). However, since this analysis is an attempt to identify the socio-economic composition of the early Pentecostal converts, adherents as identified from the 1960 sources, and also those joining the movement slightly later, are both included. 

90 Of the 35 not appearing on the Electoral Rolls (14 Males and 21 Females), 26 (10 Male, 16 Female) were young people who had not yet reached the voting age; 8 (4 Male, 4 Female) appeared to be either short-term residents or else were not New Zealand citizens, and 1 Female could not be identified in the Electoral Roll.

91 The 29 employed male church "members" codified by means of the Elley-Irving Indices were employed in the following occupations:

Level 1 (1 employee) : Accountant (1).

Level 2 (4 employees): Engineer (1), Insurance Company manager (1), Pastor (1) and Pharmaceutical Chemist (1).

Level 3 (2 employees): Clerks (2).

Level 4 (7 employees): Baker (1), Builder (1), Carpenters (2), Engine Driver (1), Furniture Dealer (own business) (1) and Watersider (1).

Level 5 (7 employees): Bushman (1), Garage Attendant (1), Glass Worker (1), Glazier (1), Master Painter (1), Slaughterman (1) and Weaver (1).

Level 6 (8 employees): Drivers (2), Farm Labourer (1), Freezing Worker (1), Labourers (2), Railway Employee (1) and Service Car Driver (1).

92 Nola Ker comments (in the context of the Charismatic Renewal of the 1970s and 1980s) that "this time it is difficult to explain the current upsurge of interest in religion in terms of deprivation theory" (Ker, "Religion and Society in Interaction," p.vi).

93 Jack Leigh has captured something of the sense of prosperity and drive which characterised the Auckland Pentecostal churches in the mid-1980s. See Leigh, "Getting Religion," pp.59-62.

94 Knowles, "Vision of the Disinherited?" (paper presented at Post-Graduate History Seminar), passim.



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