The Topeka Outpouring
~January 1, 1901~
After the trifled experience of losing his Healing Home to so called friends, brother Parham went to his room to fast and pray, and be alone with God, that he might know His will for his future work. In his own words, Parham wrote, "Many of my friends desired me to open a Bible School, and by a series of wonderful miracles, we were enabled to secure what was then known as 'Stones Folly' a great mansion patterned after an old English Castle, located just one mile west of Washburn College in Topeka, Kansas.
Stones Folly is the name given to the mansion built at a cost of about $40.000 in boom days by a wealthy Englishman named E.R. Stone. Stone made considerable money in the boom of Topeka real estate, built the mansion modeled after the medieval castles he had seen in Europe.
The grounds of Stones Folly covered ten acres, planted in evergreens, and fruit trees. The interior was finished throughout with no two rooms being trimmed with the same variety of wood. Mahogany, Rosewood, Magnolia, Walnut...Black and White, Curly Pine, Birds-Eye Maple, Butternut, and Oak, came from all parts of the country are said to have been used in the inside decorations.
Outside, the house was striking in appearence. It was of three-stories, surmounted with towers, and battlement. The walls were of heavy studding with a brick veneer, and stone cornices. Mr. Stone could not keep the pace he had set, and when the boom broke, he was forced to part with his pretentious dwelling. After the Stone family left, several tenents tried to occupy the place, but it was too large for the use of an ordinary family, and was finally closed up. Eventually, the Parham School of Tongues procured the building, which was then owned by the American Bible Society.
Sarah Parham wrote, "We opened the Bible School at Topeka, Kansas in October, 1900 to which we invited all ministers, and Christians, who were willing to forsake all, sell what they had, give it away, and enter the school for study, and prayer, where all of us together might trust God for food, fuel, rent, and clothing. The purpose of this school was to fit men and women to go to the ends of the earth to preach the gospel as a witness to all the world before the end of the age."
There were about forty students that made the decision to give up all, and follow after the will of God for their lives, and ministries. Their purpose in the Bible School was not to learn the things of God in their heads only, but to have each thing in the Scriptures wrought out of their hearts, and that every command that Jesus Christ gave should be literally obeyed. This can especially be seen in the way that Charles Parham baptized his converts. He came to understand that the command to baptize was prolific, and could not be anything less than what Jesus demanded.
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