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A Hot Gospeller in a Cool Climate:
Aimee Semple McPherson in Britain through the lens of the British Press
Neil Hudson


The relationship between American revivalists and British Pentecostalism has been a rich and varied one in the twentieth century.  Ranging from child prodigies (e.g. Little David[i]) to evangelists who painted whilst preaching (e.g. Willard Cantelon[ii]) to regular evangelistic preachers (e.g. A.C. Valdez[iii]) to mystical prophets (e.g. William Branham[iv]), they all had their moments of public acclaim in Britain and left their mark on the development of British Pentecostalism.  Apart from the press releases prepared by the church groups receiving these individuals, few were the subject of sustained media interest.  Even in more recent days, the extreme actions of individuals such as Jim and Tammy Baker or Jimmy Swaggert, although headline news for a while, soon passed into an archive of forgetfulness.  However, during the 1920s-30s, there was one notable exception to this general rule of invisibility.  She was Aimee Semple McPherson.  This article examines the developing reactions of the secular British press to her ministry, in particular, her ministry in Britain itself.


1.  Viewed from afar

Although McPherson visited Britain in 1926, this visit was not commented upon extensively in the secular press.  The significance of her visit was more internal to British Pentecostalism.  Her meetings at the Royal Albert Hall, London, were a development in terms of the size of venue that Pentecostals might attempt to fill.  George Jeffreys, the revivalist founder and leader of the Elim Pentecostal Church in Britain, seems to have been hugely affected by McPherson.  Initially, after his visit to Angelus Temple in 1924, he returned to his own nascent denomination and adopted the Foursquare motif for his own churches and in 1926 he also hired the Royal Albert Hall for the first time, the prelude to him filling even larger halls around Britain.[v] 


Any concerns reflected in the newspapers during 1926-27 were linked to her disappearance and the ongoing court case.[vi]  At this time, she was largely unknown in Britain, being described simply as “a woman evangelist”.[vii]  Her gender was the aspect of her ministry that most defined her in the media’s mind.  The Birmingham Despatch referred to her as “an attractive widow, an eloquent speaker”.[viii] At this stage, whilst the newspapers showed some clear interest in the unfolding drama, it was too far removed for their readers to be directly involved with it.  It was in April 1928 that the newspapers took a renewed interest in the story.  The difference at this time was due to her impending visit to Britain.  Suddenly, the potential for excitement and scandal gathered the editors and news reporters to her and so began an exhausting, though entertaining, relationship between her and the British press that would last for the next six years.


2.  Britain in the 1920s

According to Lloyd, one of the results of the First World War was a deep suspicion that most people had for all institutions, but particularly for any with long traditions.[ix]  The Church of England had played a major role during the war in the perception of many by the blessing of troops who would engage in battle.  It was these troops who returned from the war confirmed in their opinion that the vast majority of the leadership in the Church of England were out of touch with ordinary people.[x]   The soldiers had been mainly of working class background, whereas the chaplains had been from the upper, educated classes.  This identification of the Church with the upper-class establishment meant that the Church was partly blamed for the apparent futility of all that the soldiers had witnessed.[xi]


Although in the immediate aftermath of the war, numbers attending church increased, by the mid-1920s all the larger, older and more institutional Church traditions witnessed steady decline.[xii]  This period was marked by spiritual uncertainty, partly the result of 'a series of violent spasms which convulsed economic and social life'.[xiii]  These convulsions were epitomised in the chronic depression culminating in an increase in unemployment in 1922, the Miners' Strike and the General Strike of 1926, and the Great Depression of 1929.  Many of the chaplains had returned home from the War suffering from “spiritual fatigue and bewilderment”[xiv] to find that people were wanting to find a place of existential security in the changed world they were encountering.  Taylor comments, “Men thought they were living in a disintegrating society.”[xv] 


Commenting on the many revivalists operating during the inter-war period, Hastings says,

In their different ways they all expressed something of a sense of the bankruptcy of conventional wisdom, secular or religious, and a rather frenetic search for new solutions.[xvi] 

The country seemed ready to respond to the flamboyance of the revivalists, “revivals were the fashion”.[xvii]  Anything that seemed to offer the exotic and the unknown was able to attract the attention of the public.[xviii]  In the "roaring twenties", there was an unquestionable demand for exotic religion.  Inge explained this on the grounds that the war had led to anti-intellectualism.[xix]  Landau's book, God is my Adventure reflected this interest in the esoteric.  The second edition explained the appeal of the book, suggesting that “many other people, disillusioned by the churches, were only too willing to delve into the ways and methods of unorthodox schools of thought.”[xx]  His book included descriptions of Count Keyserling, and his 'School of Wisdom', Stefan George and Bo Yin Ra, Rudolf Steiner, Krishnamurti, Sri Meher Baba, Frank Buchman, P.D. Ouspensky, Gurdjieff, and George Jeffreys, the founder and leader of the Elim Foursquare Gospel Alliance, the most significant British evangelist of the twentieth century.


Jeffreys, with his charismatic personality, his oratory and his healing ministry, obviously fitted into this context; in particular, this national sentiment would explain why Jeffreys was so keen to establish a ministerial relationship with McPherson.  McPherson's ability to draw a crowd in America was largely because, in many ways, she was a bigger star than the Hollywood film stars.  Using her rhetorical skills, her sensuality and her creative use of narrative preaching complete with tableaux, she was a 'safe' star;[xxi]  Blumhofer explains, 'she touched their (American Protestant) emotions without apparently jeopardising their souls'.[xxii] 


She visited London and spoke at Elim meetings held at the Surrey Tabernacle in March 1926,[xxiii] returning a month later to speak at the Easter conventions at the Royal Albert Hall.[xxiv]  This was the first time that Elim had booked this venue, and it is likely that it was McPherson's presence there which attracted the large crowds and consequently gave Jeffreys confidence to preach there in later years without a guest speaker.  Elim publications had given her much print-space, particularly at the time of her 'kidnapping',[xxv] even when her flamboyance was felt to be too blatant for the English church-goers.[xxvi]  However, the relationship between McPherson and Jeffreys seems to have been of great significance.  Certainly, they were close enough for McPherson's mother to invite Jeffreys to become the pastor of the Temple at the time of McPherson's disappearance.  However, the actual nature of their relationship may never be determined exactly.


3.  Press reactions to Aimee’s second visit, 1928.

For the newspapers, it was clear why she had made a second visit to Britain’s shores in 1928.  She was here to “save” England.[xxvii]  Reuters reported that she had been invited to Britain at the invitation of the “‘Foursquare Gospel and Lighthouse’, a cult founded by herself, with which she claims to have 432 churches in different parts of the world, including 130 in England alone”.[xxviii]  There was an attempt to redefine this relationship by E.J. Phillips, the Secretary-General of the Elim Church, when he was quoted as saying, “Mrs McPherson is coming here under our auspices.  Mrs McPherson shares similar views taught by our leader, Pastor George Jeffreys”.[xxix]  The press were less interested in the protocol of who invited whom, and more intrigued by the fact that this was a woman evangelist who “travels with a retinue closely resembling that of a cinema star”, prone to changing her hair colour, from red to blonde.[xxx]  Her proposed tour was reported by no less than 47 national and local newspapers in September 1928.  She had arrived and she was the star.


The Daily Express led the front page with the news that there “had been a woman preacher at a Jazz Dance”.[xxxi]  Where nonconformity had been viewed as a narrow, joyless and puritanical religion, the idea of a woman evangelist being brave enough and determined enough to go to such places was deemed worthy of headline news.  And yet, it was not simply her courage that encouraged this.  Other groups, such as the Salvation Army, had been intensely creative in their attempts to reach the masses with the gospel.  The difference this time was the way that Aimee was ‘packaged’.  Her clear-sighted, determined desire to “go to the edge of the bottomless pit to save sinners”,[xxxii] with the clear implication that a godless British nation needed saving, brought extreme defensive responses.


In the religious press, it was the Methodists who were most outspoken about her, hoping that her visit would not be an “inauguration of such scenes of ‘religious’ hysteria and spectacular display as have been witnessed in connection with her meetings in California and elsewhere”.  This aversion was not primarily based on her appearance or financial arrangements, but on the basis of the vulgarity of the expression of her faith, the “emotional orgies and spectacular extravagances formerly associated with the ‘Holy rollers’”.[xxxiii]


The secular press seemed to be equally dismissive of her approach to evangelism that they saw as sensationalism.  The press became the defenders of ‘cool’ religion, upholding a stereotypically British approach to any religion that veered towards engaging the emotions, and more particularly, anything that was American in origin.  The fact that she was Pentecostal, American and an attractive woman with a chequered past must have seemed like an editor’s dream.  The sneering of the British press at Americans was rarely so evident.


The Southern Daily Echo commented, patronisingly, “In this country, although we are not averse from a certain amount of sensationalism in religion, we are inclined to smirk at some American methods.  Yet we fall victim to them from time to time”.[xxxiv]  The local Brighton newspaper, hearing she planned to visit the town, recognised that, “She will have a fair hearing in Brighton, the town of many strange campaigns”.  Having said that, the newspaper recognised that the town’s citizens would not accept her wholeheartedly, recognising, “Our ‘Americanisation’ is not so fanatical that it has bereft us of common sense”.[xxxv] 


However, when the possibility was raised that she would not be allowed re-entry to England, the media suddenly became defensive of her right to evangelise.  After all, her presence would help to sell newspapers.  Representations had been made to the Home Office arguing that as a person promulgating controversial views, she should be refused admittance.  To put this in context, it is to be noted that in the autumn of 1928 of the 122,000 foreigners that had arrived in Britain, only 531 had been refused entry.  The groups attacking her were led by Rev. A. Carter, a minister of an independent church in Hounslow, and Rev. W. Pietsch, another American evangelist based in Los Angeles touring Britain at that time.[xxxvi]  E.J. Phillips, responding to the criticisms, was quoted as saying, “jealousy on the part of certain sections of the Christian church is alone responsible for this attempt to keep her out of the country”.[xxxvii]


The press began to express a unified call to allow McPherson’s visit, declaring no fears that people would be in any danger of being duped.  The Evening Standard wrote, “We are not such a nation of half-wits that misery will come to our homes or discord to our churches because an American performer with a choir of 60 girl angels, with harps appear in the Albert Hall.”[xxxviii]  The Liverpool Courier summed up the ambivalence of many of the reports, “At present we share with her detractors the feeling that Aimee is a faker, and that she is no holier than any other showman.  But we feel that with so many other fakers at large, she has a moral right to step on stage and do her stuff”.[xxxix]  The press was confident in the superiority of the discernment of their English readership: “It is a queer world and the woman ought to be given her chance.  That she has her detractors is nothing against her; every evangelist appears in a shower of stones.  And, after all, we are not children and not wholly without discrimination.  Shams do not last long in England”.[xl]


Perhaps unsurprisingly, her meetings were reported as being less than successful affairs.  The Daily Telegraph noted that there were hundreds of empty seats at the meetings at the Royal Albert Hall.[xli]  Incidents that were designed to embarrass her were reported at length.  An interruption occurred during a service in London at the climax of the service.  At a time “when a dozen converts were on their feet and Principal George Jeffreys, head of the British Foursquare Movement, was leading the rest of the congregation in prayer”, a woman called out questioning McPherson about the kidnapping incident.  “The silence for a few moments could be felt”, before Jeffreys led them in a hymn, “Just as I am”, and ignored the woman completely.[xlii]  It seems evident that she had been affected by the press reports and had attempted to tone her ministry style down in order to be accepted by the British.  Later, she recorded publicly that this had been a mistake.  She left London intending never to be so “restrained” again.[xliii]  Her subsequent meetings were not reported in the secular press, McPherson only being news when mockery or comedy were involved.


However, she had made her mark on public consciousness.  During 1928, the Prime Minister, Stanley Baldwin, visited Aberystwyth, a town in Wales, to be granted the freedom of the borough.  This ancient form of honour is normally a very sober, civic affair.  However, on this occasion, one man who greeted the Prime Minister added spice to the proceedings. He was dressed in a ‘Sister Aimee’ gown and led a ‘choir’ in song.[xliv]  Later, when she visited the Glasgow University student union, she was invited to speak to a thousand students; some sat in front of the platform provocatively playing pontoon, whilst someone else had replaced her glass of water on the podium with a glass of beer.  As she walked to the platform, they sang “Oh Aimee, we love you so”, to a hymn tune.  To her credit, Aimee was well able to handle situations like this, and “after considerable uproar Mrs McPherson was given a courteous and quiet hearing”.[xlv]


4.  Her Effect on British Pentecostals

George Jeffreys and the Elim Pentecostal Church had taken a considerable risk in inviting her and being so closely identified with her. The Church had only been operating in London since 1922, its early years since 1915 being confined to Ireland.  Whilst it is clear to see how useful McPherson could be to such a young movement, in the light of her approach to evangelism and the reactions it evoked, the backlash could have been enormous.  It is noticeable that the ‘official’ line that E. J. Phillips wanted to hold was that Elim was simply assisting the evangelist on her itinerary.  However, the evangelist herself was repeatedly reported in such a way that confused the relationship.  The Manchester Evening News reported that the “matinees” would be “devoted to fellows of my church, the Foursquare Gospel, many of whom have come from far-off lands.  We now have more than 100 affiliated churches in all parts of England under the guidance of Brother George W. Jeffries (sic.) of London”.[xlvi]  This may have been a misunderstanding on the part of the paper or, equally possible, it could have reflected her more naive belief that they were part of the same church in the wider ecumenical sense.  She may have believed that since they shared the same values, purposes and direction.  Equally, the confusion could have emerged from her desire to appear to be more connected to the British churches than she actually was.


Whatever the actual reason, it became clear that the Elim Church was going to attract charges of profit making because of her activities.  Manchester was informed of “the comfort of Elim Woodlands” (Elim’s Headquarters) which, allied to the “style of life kept up there [would suggest that] the Four Square Gospel alliance does not lack funds”.[xlvii]  This is typical newspaper talk.  Elim did have money, but by no stretch of the imagination could charges of luxury be laid against them. However, when the paper referred to the fact that “Mrs McPherson is a very expensive revivalist – she is reported to draw more than Ł1000 per month”, it was clear that the record needed to be set straight.  The Daily News reported that the newspaper had received letters from Rev. Thompson Eade, who, with his wife, were members of McPherson’s travelling entourage.  He revealed that the members of Angelus Temple had paid for all the travelling expenses and that Elim would only be responsible for the cost of the Royal Albert hall, albeit it at a vast sum of Ł180 per day.[xlviii] 


5.  The Extent of Her Nonconformity

McPherson’s willingness to go outside of the bounds of conventional society did not help the British Pentecostals’ image.  There was one particular event during her time in England that was extraordinary.  Tallulah Bankhead, an actress of some notoriety, was one of the people who visited her in the Albert Hall, attending out of a “spirit of curiosity”.[xlix]  Rather incongruously, she contacted E.J. Phillips, the reserved, somewhat aloof co-leader of Elim, to ask him to introduce her to McPherson at the close of the service.  She welcomed Bankhead into the dressing room and during the ensuing conversation Bankhead invited her to a party she was hosting.  Bankhead was surprised to find that McPherson was not only willing to attend but when she was there was able to fit into the environment with surprising ease.  She would recall, “Aimee entered into the spirit of the thing, charmed everyone by her manner and displayed an unsuspecting sense of humour.  Beatrice Lillie and Trevor Howard were there I remember.  She seemed so utterly sincere that no one could possibly have made fun of her.”[l]


Although society luminaries might have been seduced by McPherson’s social ease, others misunderstood her motives.  It gave the papers what they had been looking for; the evangelist had flown too close to the flame and now seemed to have tinged her wings.  The conservative readers of the Bournemouth Daily Echo were greeted with the morning headlines “Falls from Grace” and with a grave warning that after having spent all night in a car journey to the south coast with Tallulah Bankhead, “Mrs McPherson is in serious danger of being misunderstood”.[li]  Bankhead was a regarded as a dangerous woman.  In the same way that the Home Office had been warned of McPherson and threatened to stop her entering the country, so the Home Office attempted to evict the actress from Britain on the grounds of her being a threat to public morality.   MI5, Britain’s secret service agency, investigated charges against her and came to the conclusion that the rumours that she was “an extremely immoral woman” were true.  According to information presented to MI5, she was a lesbian, having been in such a relationship in America in 1925 and in Britain during her stay.  It was, the report continued, “The considered opinion of the more respectable American actresses in this country that she was doing them a great deal of harm as people might be inclined to think that they were tarred with the same brush.”[lii]  The report included the fact that she had also seduced a number of boys from the Eton School.  That she was known to be a lesbian was one thing; that she was in the process of being able to damage the future reputations of the great and the good of British society put her in a different category altogether.  With these incidents in the background and whispered about, it was easy to see how and why the media were ready to stir the gossip once it was reported that McPherson had spent all night on a car journey with Tallulah to say farewell to Beatrice Lillie who was about to embark for America. The reason it took all night to cover 100 miles was later explained by Bankhead.  The car had broken down and they had also got lost in the fog.  Apparently, the companions spent the night singing together and that was all there was to it, though even Bankhead recognised the incongruity of the situation.  “Nothing very wild or terrible, but we all thought that Aimee on an evangelistic mission, would hardly want to be associated with an all-night joy-ride.”[liii]


6.  How can the press reactions be explained?

Aimee Semple McPherson confused the press.  Firstly, she was an attractive woman at various stages of marriage and singleness.  The papers, reminiscent of contemporary tabloid journalism, spent much time debating the colour of her hair, the gowns she wore and her use of cosmetics.  She shattered the conception that Christian women should stay away from fripperies and fashion on the grounds that these would lead the devil to their doorsteps.  She saw no contradiction between her attention to her looks and her vocation.  She believed there was “no good reason why the outward and physical husk through which the light must perforce shine should not be made as attractive as possible”.[liv]  Possibly with tongue in cheek, a journalist described her at the Royal Albert hall in stunning imagery, “And did she look sweet! Oh boy! White silk from head to foot, with a cloak around her shoulders, which, when she spread her arms abroad, suggested wings; and her wonderful golden head”.[lv]  This was a woman who looked powerfully in control of her own image.  The evangelical picture of the meek, nurturing woman had been replaced by the harder, film-star look.  It was inevitable that the media would be attracted by this.


Secondly, she was a most spectacular revivalist.  It was “the old fashioned gospel” that she preached, but it was in novel clothing.  The dramatic tableaux that illustrated her sermons provided outlets for her thespian desires, but also gave the congregations vicarious thrills. For Pentecostals, the theatre had been firmly eschewed in favour of the drama of preaching.  Now the two had been brought together.  For a media who operated with presuppositions regarding how religion ought to appear, Aimee Semple McPherson was only too willing and able to shatter them.  This, allied to her willingness to go into any context to preach, gave the media plenty to ponder.  For Aimee nowhere was out of bounds.  She would share the gospel wherever there was a gathering willing to listen.  For some this was the antithesis of true religion and it was easy to portray her as a female Elmer Gantry.  For McPherson, however, her intentions were completely honourable: “Some people think I’m merely a clown who makes a mock of religion, but I’m not that.  Everything I do is sincere.”[lvi]


The overriding impression in dealing with the media’s reaction during this time was that any suggestion that Britain needed ‘saving’ by an American and an American theatrical female evangelist in particular, was deemed to be outrageous.  This reflects the era in which she was operating.  Britain, yet to lose its empire, continued to consider itself as the premier missionary-sending country.  It was felt that it was foreigners that needed the liberating news of the gospel, not the British. The anti-Americanism was self-evident.  The editorial in The Bookseller is a good example, “One gets so tired of the American novels and the American strain of thought which is permeating our business life these days  ... the country which can produce women like Texas Guinan[lvii] and Sister Aimie (sic) is capable of anything”.[lviii] This trait of mistrusting American generated religion still continues.


Aimee Semple McPherson remains an attractive enigma.  Ready to court the press, she was lionised by them from time to time.  However, many adoring people found in her message the hope that God would work miracles in their situations.  Consequently, regardless of the press reactions, many stayed loyal to her because of the fact that they had encountered God powerfully through her ministry.



[i]   “Little David” was David Walker, a boy who began  preaching at the age of 9 and at the age of 14 preached in the Royal Albert Hall, London for two weeks.  J.A. Hewitt, “Walker, David Davillo”, S.M. Burgess, G.B. McGee, P.H.Alexander (eds), Dictionary of Pentecostal and Charismatic Movements (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1988), 876-877.

[ii]   For details of two of his visits to the UK, see “Easter Monday”, Elim Evangel, 21 April 1952, 241; “Largest Attendances at Elim Meetings in the Royal Albert Hall since the War”, Elim Evangel, 18 April 1953, 181.

[iii]  J.R. Zeigler, “A.C. Valdez”, in S. Burgess, E. van der Maas, (eds) New International Dictionary of Pentecostal and Charismatic Movements (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2002), 1169.

[iv]  D.J. Wilson, “William Branham”, Dictionary (1988),440-441.

1                    [v] E. Blumhofer, Everybody’s Sister (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1993), 279-280,  cf D. Cartwright, The Great Evangelists (Basingstoke: Marshall Pickering, 1986), 80.  E.C.W. Boulton, Elim Supplement October 1924, 47 reported the visit made by George and Stephen Jeffreys, Boulton, Robert Darragh and James McWhirter, members of Jeffreys’ Revival Party,  to the Angelus Temple, where they heard her preaching the 'foursquare gospel'.

[vi]   For details on this see Blumhofer, 281-301and D.M. Epstein, Sister Aimee (Orlando: Harcourt and Brace, 1993), 296-316.

[vii]    See, for example, “Woman Evangelist to be arrested”, Birmingham Despatch, 17 September 1926; “Wealthy Woman evangelist”, Evening Standard, 17 September, 1926.

[viii]   Birmingham Despatch, 17 September 1926.

1                    [ix]   R. Lloyd, The Church of England, 1900-1965 (London: SCM, 1966),  242.

2                    [x]   H.L. Peacock, A History of Modern Britain, 1915-1979 (London: Heinemann, 19804), 205.

[xi]  A. Wilkinson,  The Church of England and the First World War (London: SCM, 1978), 131.

[xii]  Between 1921-1927 non-conformist church membership increased from 1,962,000 to 2,015,000.  However, from 1928-1940, they declined to 1,874,000.  The figures for Easter communicants within the Anglican churches numbered 2,410,000 in 1920, and increased to 2,662,000 in 1927.  However, by 1940 they had declined to 2,255,000. R. Currie, A. Gilbert, L. Horsley,  Churches and Churchgoers, (Oxford:  Oxford University Press, 1977), 31.

[xiii]  C. Wilson, First with the News (London: W.H. Smith, 1985), 297.

[xiv]   Lloyd, 245.

1                    [xv]   A.J. P. Taylor, English History, 1914-45 (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1965), 177.

[xvi]   A. Hastings,  A History of English Christianity, 1920-90 (London: SCM, 19913), 289.

[xvii]  R. Graves and A. Hodge, The Long Weekend: A Social History of Great Britain, 1918-1939 (London: Sphere, 1991), 142.

1                    [xviii]For example, Sadhu Singar Singh, the convert to Christianity was very popular when he visited Britain in the 1920's. In February 1920, he spoke at Westminster Chapel, Metropolitan Tabernacle, St Bride's, Fleet Street and St Matthew's, Westminster.  He also preached to 700 clergy, including the Archbishop of Canterbury, at Church House.  Later that year he also spoke at The 'Keswick' Convention in Llandrindod Wells.  F. Heiler,  The Gospel of Sadhu Sundar Singh (E.T.: London: Allen & Unwin, 1927) 80, 85. Spiritualism also increased in popularity during this period.  Krishnamurti, an Eastern syncretistic guru, also attracted a 'large following' in Britain at this time.  Graves and Hodge, 201.

[xix]  W.R. Inge, Lay Thoughts of a Dean (London: Hutchinson and Sons, 1926), 304.

[xx]  Ibid., 7.

[xxi]   M. Taylor, Publish And Be Blessed (PhD Dissertation, University of Birmingham,1994), 105. Taylor relates that he saw rare film footage of McPherson preaching at the Angelus Temple in 1936 and was struck by her 'powerful oratory and striking beauty'.

[xxii]  Blumhofer, (1993), 230.

[xxiii]  C. Kingston, "Mrs. Aimee Semple McPherson in London."  Elim Evangel, 15 March 1926, 61.

[xxiv]  Blumhofer, (1993), 280.

[xxv]  G. Jeffreys,  "A Tribute to Sister McPherson", Elim Evangel 1 June 1926, 122;  "Aimee Semple McPherson Kidnapped", Elim Evangel 15 September 1926,  206-216;  "God's Mighty Deliverance", Elim Evangel 1 February 1927,  41.  News reports appeared in the Foursquare Revivalist on 14 September 1928, 4, "A great woman's tribulation" ;  21 September 1928, 1, "Great American Tribute to Sister McPherson"; 5 October 1928, 6, J.B. Denney, "The Real Perjurers Unmasked"; 19 October 1928, 1, "Close of a Triumphant Week in London"; 16 November 1928, 1, "Closing days of a Great Campaign".

[xxvi]For example, Albert Edsor, a member of Jeffreys’ Revival Party, related how Jeffreys had to stop her throwing flowers out to the congregation during one of her sermons.  Interview with author, 23 October 1996, London.

[xxvii]   “Woman to ‘save’ England”, Daily Express, 12 September 1928; “To ‘save’ Britain”, Eastern Evening News, 11 September 1928.

[xxviii]   Ibid.

[xxix]  “Preacher as ‘Star’”, Glasgow Record, 12 September 1928.

[xxx]   Daily Express, 12 September 1928.

[xxxi]   Daily Express, 20 September 1928.

[xxxii]   Daily Express, 20 September 1928

[xxxiii]   “A Visit or a Visitation”, Methodist Times, 20 September 1928.

[xxxiv]   “A Study in Contrasts”, Southern Daily Echo, 21 September 1928.

[xxxv]   “Lightening Lady at Brighton”, Sussex Daily News, 22 September 1928.

[xxxvi]   “’Jix’ and the Woman Evangelist”, Evening Standard, 1 October 1928; “Home Office asked not to 

      admit Mrs McPherson”, Reynold’s, 30 September 1928.

[xxxvii]    “Mrs McPherson’s Appeal: ‘Please let me rest’”, Daily Express, 3 October 1928.

[xxxviii]   “Advertising and Evangelist”, Evening Standard, 1 October 1928.

[xxxix]   “Let Aimee in”, Liverpool Courier, 1 October 1928.

[xl]   “ Mrs McPherson’s visit to England”, Daily Express, 1 October 1928.

[xli]   “I hope I’m a sport”, Daily Telegraph, 9 October 1928.

[xlii]   “England’s many sinners: Sister McPherson eager to start campaign”, Manchester Evening News, 22 September 1928.

[xliii]   “Mrs McPherson’s mistake”, Leeds Mercury, 9 October 1928.

[xliv]   “ ‘Sister Aimee’ sings to Mr Baldwin”, South Wales Echo, 24 October 1928.

[xlv]   “Mrs McPherson ragged”, Daily Mirror, 20 October 1928.

[xlvi]   “England’s many sinners ...”, Manchester Evening News, 22 September 1928.

[xlvii]  “Mrs McPherson in hiding”, Manchester Daily Dispatch, 3 October 1928.

[xlviii]  “Mrs McPherson is here”, Daily News, 3 October 1928.

[xlix]  “Tallulah”, Sunday Dispatch, 22 April 1934.

[l]  Ibid.

[li]  “Falls from Grace”, Bournemouth Daily Echo, 19 October 1928.

[lii]  “MI5 memo”, 29 August 1928, reprinted in The Guardian, 2 March 2000 on the occasion of the files being made public for the first time.  Accessed at www.guardian.co.uk/Print/0,3858,369691.html.

[liii] “Tallulah” Sunday Dispatch, 22 April 1934.

[liv]   “The Outward Grace”, Evening News, 27 September 1929.

[lv]   “Sister Aimee at the Royal Albert Hall”, Daily Star, 15 October 1928.

[lvi]  “With Aimee in her castle”, Empire News, 28 August 1932.

[lvii]   A publicity seeking night club owner.

[lviii]   Editorial, The Bookseller, 8 June 1931.


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