International Church of the Foursquare Gospel


International Church of the Foursquare Gospel
   The International Church of the Foursquare Gospel is a Pentecostal church that was founded by noted evangelist Aimee Semple McPherson (1890-1944). McPherson's message, the foursquare gospel, was a Pentecostal variant of the fourfold gospel of Benjamin Albert Simpson, founder of the Christian and Missionary Alliance. In her version of this Christ-centered theology, MacPherson emphasized Jesus Christ as Savior, Baptizer with the Holy Spirit, Healer, and Coming King. Over the years, the church has made common ground with the other large Pentecostal bodies in the United States.
   Even before World War II, the church began to develop a global missionary program. Today, less than 10 percent of the membership is found in the United States. The church now includes 3,331,561 members in 26,139 churches and meeting places in 107 countries.
   The church actively supports the Pentecostal World Fellowship. Rolf McPherson (b. 1913) followed his mother as president of the church from 1944 to 1988. He was succeeded by John R. Holland (1988-97), Paul C. Risser (1997-2004), and Jack Hayford (2004- ).
   See also Pentecostalism.
   Further reading:
   ■ Edith L. Blumhofer, Aimee Semple McPherson: Everybody's Sister (Grand Rapids, Mich.: William B. Eerdmans, 1993)
   ■ Daniel Mark Epstein, Sister Aimee. The Life of Aimee Semple McPherson (New York: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1993)
   ■ Aimee Semple McPherson, This Is That (New York: Garland, 1985).

Encyclopedia of Protestantism. . 2005.

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