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Foursquare Gospel

The Foursquare Gospel Denomination was founded by Aimee Semple McPherson. Aimee came up with the name while preaching in Oakland, California in 1922. She wanted Foursquare to "represent that which is equally balanced on all sides, established and enduring". Her vision for the Foursquare Gospel was to give everyone no matter what their race, culture, or nation, the "love and forgiveness" of Jesus Christ Gods son. Each of the sides of the square was to represent Jesus Christ as "The Savior, The Baptizer with The Holy Spirit, The Healer and The Soon Coming King".  ("Our History"), ("The Foursquare Name").

The Angelus Temple, which Aimee had built in 1923, was the founding church of the Foursquare Gospel. In 1919 the corner lot across from Echo Park located on Glendale Boulevard in Los Angeles, California was purchased for the future site of the Temple. Aimee wanted a place where all could worship, and to train those that wanted to minister the teachings of the Foursquare Gospel. The Temple was built purely from contributions, which averaged to only two cents per contributor. The total cost of the Temple came to 1.2 million. The designer of the Angelus Temple was Brook Hawkins. He designed the Temple to be fireproof b building it entirely out of concrete and steel. In the center of the 125-foot building was an unsupported dome. The inside of the dome was plastered with ground abalone shells that gave it a luminous quality. The ceiling was painted by the artist Anne Henneke. She painted it to represent a view of heaven through a panorama of clouds. The Temple also contained eight stained glass windows that illustrated Christ birth through his death and rising. George Haskins created the stained glass for the windows. The Temple was built to hold up to 5,300 worshipers. The building only took three years to complete. On the day of its dedication Aimee entered a smaller version the Angelus Temple as a float that was covered with roses and carnations in the Pasadena Rose Parade. The float received the Grand Marshals Award and was the talk of the town.  ("Our History"), (United States).

On December 30, 1927 the denomination for the Foursquare Gospel was incorporated and registered in the state of California as the "International Foursquare Gospel". Its mission was and is to "spread the Bible message to as many people as possible". In 1944 when their founder Aimee Semple McPherson passed away, there were a total of "410 churches in North America, 200 mission stations, and 29,000 members". Aimee’s son Rolf continued to lead the organization and the church for forty-four years after her death. Today John Holland leads the ICFG (International Church of the Foursquare Gospel) and Matthew and Carolina Barnett are the pastors of the Angelus Temple, which was designated a National Landmark on April 27, 1992. Membership to the Foursquare today is now at "3,587,835 worshipping in 29,973 churches and meeting places in 123 countries with 48,271 ministers and workers".  ("Our History"), ("Today").

Page by, Kristen Dirksen
Copyright © 2003
Revised: 12/15/03.