Dr. David G. Roebuck will present the sixth annual Azusa Lecture, “Hastening the Gospel to Every Land: Church of God Pioneers and the Great Commission,” on Tuesday, October 18. The lecture will be at 7:00 p.m. in the North Cleveland Church of God’s Bryant Fellowship Hall. Following Roebuck’s presentation, the Spirit of Azusa Award will be presented to the Reverend Margaret Gaines for her life-long contribution to the Pentecostal movement as a missionary. The lecture and a reception for Gaines are free and open to the public.
Dr. Roebuck is an historian, teacher, author and ordained bishop in the Church of God. He serves as the director of the Hal Bernard Dixon Jr. Pentecostal Research Center and as church historian for the Church of God. He is an Assistant Professor of the History of Christianity at Lee University and an adjunct member of the Pentecostal Theological Seminary faculty. Roebuck regularly contributes to books and periodicals about the Church of God and the Pentecostal movement. He currently edits two columns for the Church of God Evangel: “Church of God Chronicles” and “Where Are They Now?” Recent publications include “Preserving and Sharing our Heritage: The Biblical and Institutional Mandate” (with Darrin J. Rodgers) in Spirit-Empowered Christianity in the 21st Century, edited by Vinson Synan; and “Great Cloud of Witnesses: Church of God History and the Great Commission” in The Great Commission Connection, edited by Raymond F. Culpepper.
Roebuck is currently board chairman of the Consortium of Pentecostal Archives, which is producing a website that will include primary resources for the study of the Pentecostal movement. He recently completed an eight-year tenure as executive director of the Society for Pentecostal Studies and a two-year tenure as president of the Tennessee Theological Library Association. He is an active participant in the American Academy of Religion, the Society of American Archivists, and the Society of Tennessee Archivists. He was the founding president of the Society of Church of God Movements and has been a member of the Church of God Historical Commission since 1996.
A reception honoring Missionary Margaret Gaines for her lifetime of ministry will follow the lecture. Gaines began her missionary ministry in Tunisia in 1952 and later served in France. In 1964 the Church of God World Missions Board appointed her to Jerusalem. While there she established a church and school in the village of Aboud, where she served as pastor until 1992. She is currently pastor of the Church of God in Wattsville, Alabama.
The Azusa Lecture is sponsored by the Dixon Pentecostal Research Center, the International Center for Spiritual Renewal, and the North Cleveland Church of God. This year’s lecture is also being supported by the Pentecostal Theological Seminary as part of their annual Ray H. Hughes Sr. Evangelism Week. Other events scheduled for Evangelism Week at the seminary include Gaines speaking in chapel on Tuesday at 11:00 a.m. and Dr. R. Lamar Vest speaking in chapel on Thursday at 11:00 a.m.
The purpose of the Azusa Lecture is to highlight the rich heritage of the Pentecostal movement and to provide the Cleveland community an opportunity to celebrate the legacy of the Pentecostal revival. The Dixon Pentecostal Research Center launched the annual lecture in 2006 on the occasion of the centennial of the revival that began in Los Angeles in 1906. Church of God historian Charles W. Conn noted that the Los Angeles revival, which lasted from 1906 to 1909, “is universally regarded as the beginning of the modern Pentecostal movement.”
For more information about the Azusa Lecture contact the Dixon Pentecostal Research Center at 614-8576.