Rev. Arthur W. Sassman
United Pentecostal Church International
Arthur W. Sassman was born in the country on December 28, 1906, in a very religious Methodist home. The Bible was read in the morning before the family atr breakfast and in the evening before they ate supper. The Sassman family prayed together! And Arthur recalled seeing his dear old dad bathe his face with tears nearly every day in prayer.
While growing up, he went regularly to the Methodist church and Sunday School. Every summer thay had what they called a revival meeting, or camp meeting. The family moved onto the campground with a covered wagon pulled by two white mules, Molly and Jack. They camped right on the ground for two weeks. They had morning, noon, and night services. There were testimononies, altar calls, praise and hallelujahs. Of course it did not affect Arthur too much. His impression of religion was that it was more or less for old folks about ready to leave. When they'd hear about Heaven they felt good enough to shout.
Arthur remembered in his boyhood days going to hear a missionary speak and tell how the heathen would throw their little babies to crocodiles. It touched his heart. He actually went to the altar and knelt down and wept and cried. He said, "Oh, Lord, if it is your will, I'm willing and ready to be a missionary to go to teach them different than to throw their babies to crocodiles.
But as he grew older the call left him and all he knew about preachers was that they were all college educated. The older he got the more he got away from feeling a call of God. He decided the only way he could get out of preaching was to quit school, so he bener finished high school. He felt he had it all whipped down and would not have to preach. But God had different ways. So finally he told his dad, "Now, Dad, I don't expect to be a farmer. I want to go to town to learn the barber trade." His dad reluctantly gave him the money and gave him leave to go learn the barber trade at the barber college in San Antonio, Texas.
After graduating from barber school, he started barbering. After working in a beauty shop with just ladies, Arthur bacame business partners with another young man as they opened their own barber shop. He met his future wife, Agnes, in a cafe. Her being a Methodist, thay shared the same background. After a courtship they got married. Every once in a while Arthur would say to his wife, "Honey, somehow or another I feel like someday I'm going to have to preach." That didn't suit Agnes at all. She had said, "There are three kinds of people I won't ever marry. One is a farmer, another is a doctor and the other is a preacher."
One day a big tabernacle was erected in San Antonio, Texas, on the street where Arthur and Agnes were living. People began to gather around and the Sassman's curiosity got to them. The preacher began preaching things Arthur had never heard of before. Divine healing, the infilling of the Holy Ghost, baptism in Jesus' name, etc. His Methodist pastor began to fight the meetings. He said, "It's of the devil, stay away from it." But Arthur kept on attending. In 1932, early one morning, they went to the Tabernacle. The preacher took Arthur's hand and looked into his eyes and said, "Young man, the Lord wants you!"
That day, Arthur and Agnes Sassman were baptized in Jesus' name! Shortly afterward he was filled with the Holy Ghost, speaking in other tongues. He realized that his time had come, and he had to fulfill his calling to preach the gospel. His first sermon was preached at a little church on Rattlesnake Hill in San Antonio. From there, his ministry seemed to take off. Brother Sassman had a dynamic faith ministry. He was an inspiration to Apostolics everywhere. His positive, faith-building message, backed by a life of prayer and dedication, inspired many. He became a renown evangelist, traveling all across the country. In the summer of 1940, Brother Sassman stretched his gospel tent on a beech tree hill in Jasper, Texas. A tall, black-haired, young man from Louisiana, hitchhiked to the meeting, with one thing on his mind. To receive the Holy Ghost. In the sawdust, flat on his back, Murray E. Burr began speaking in tongues with Brother Sassman's hand on his head. Brother Burr, in time, became a great preacher himself. Brother Sassman was licensed by the United Pentecostal Church International.
On June 26, 1986 Sister Agnes A. Sassman passed away. After many years of ministering the gospel, Brother Sassman went home to be with the Lord on July 29, 1984. He is buried in Perkins Cemetary, in Dequency, Louisiana. Audio Recordings of Brother A.W. Sassman are avalible in our audio library.