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Cecil Henry Polhill: The Patron of the Pentecostals

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Abstract Cecil H. Polhill was highly significant for the development of Pentecostalism in Britain and abroad. He is particularly well known for his extensive and strategic financial donations to primary Pentecostal pioneers in Britain and Europe. However, there remains a paucity of information regarding certain periods of his life and philanthropic contributions. While his serious involvement in the Pentecostal movement began on his return to England from Azusa Street in 1908, a number of significant incidents took place during the preceding years. His recently released financial records open up a new source of data regarding both Polhill’s day-to-day life and his philanthropy. Between 1900 and 1908, Polhill was involved in the Torrey-Alexander missions, the Welsh revival, and several Keswick conventions, all of which predisposed him to be sympathetic to the Pentecostal experience that he would eventually receive at Azusa Street in 1908. Polhill’s Azusa Street experience led him to become not only one of the primary Pentecostal pioneers of Britain but also the Patron of the Pentecostals.

Affiliations: 1: Department of Theology and Religion, ERI Building, University of Birmingham Edgbaston, Birmingham B15 2TT UK


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