Samuel Walker Strickland

February 28, 2017 // Story


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One of the revivals conducted by Bro. McClurkan on his long tour back to Tennessee was

held in Meridian, Mississippi. In this revival, a South Alabama orphan boy, the Rev. R. M. Guy,
then pastor of the First Baptist Church in Meridian, was sanctified. Under the influence of Rev. R.
M. Guy’s preaching I was converted one day while plowing and praying between the plow handles
in 1905; and at a brush arbor meeting altar I was sanctified in 1906 in Northwest Florida, near
Atmore, Alabama, between Mobile and Pensacola. Bro. Guy had formerly taught school and
preached as a Missionary Baptist minister in the previously mentioned section of the country. Our
family owned and lived on Brother and Sister Guy’s old homestead across the Florida line, seven
miles south of Atmore, Alabama. After many years of a very fruitful holiness ministry in different
parts of the South, Brother and Sister Guy went to be with their Lord, and their bodies were laid to
rest in Jasper, Alabama.

When Bro. McClurkan got sanctified he withdrew from the Presbyterian Church rather than

engage in a controversy over sanctification. He was never lettered out of the Presbyterian Church.

Getting back to Middle Tennessee in 1897, Bro. McClurkan pioneered with the old-new

message of the Holiness Movement. He preached at first in all kinds of churches, under tents, brush
arbors, in deserted stores and sheds. While engaged in this last lap of his long evangelistic tour
from California to Middle Tennessee, and when hundreds were accepting Christ as their Savior
and Sanctifier, his ministry was interrupted by the sudden illness of his only son, Emmett. This
illness was so critical that the advice of specialists was needed. Bro. McClurkan came to
Nashville at once and established temporary residence, little dreaming that he and Nashville had a
work to do that would take a quarter of a century. On arriving in Nashville he continued his
evangelistic work. Some of his most successful revivals, during the early days in Nashville, were
held in a few Methodist churches whose ministers were sympathetic to the doctrine of
Sanctification or enjoyed the experience themselves. Their congenial fellowship and loyal


cooperation helped Bro. McClurkan to lay more strongly and permanently the foundation of the
modern Holiness Movement in Nashville and surrounding country.

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Source: “A New Look At J. O. McClurkan” by S. W. Strickland

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(A Collection of Holiness Experience Accounts)
Compiled by Duane V. Maxey

Vol. I — Named Accounts

Interchurch Holiness Convention

18931 Route 522

Beaver Springs, PA 17812

Phone: 570-658-1030