Personal Testimony of being the first person to Receive the Holy Ghost at "Stones Folly" in Topeka, Kansas. (January 1, 1901)
Printed in the Apostolic Faith April - 1951
Agnes N. Ozman
We will let one of the students, Mrs. N.O. LaBarge, formerly Miss Agness N. Ozman, who was the first to receive the baptism of the Holy Ghost in the school, give her testimony:
"I had been a Bible student for some years and had attended T.C. Horton's Bible School at St. paul, Minnesota, and A.B. Simpson's Bible School at New York City. Foir some time I had been doing mission work. In the fall of 1900 I was in Kansas City and heard that a bible School was to be opened at Topeka, Kansas. I had a desire to go to this school, and asked the Lord that it it was His plan for me to go, to provide the fare. A sister gave me more than enough to pay for my fare and so I felt assured it was God's will for me to go. I was living by simple faith in the Lord, trusting Him to supply all my needs according to Phil. 4:19.
It was in October 1900, that I went to this school which was known as Bethel Bible college. We studied the Bible every day and did much work down town at night. Prayer was offered night and day continually in a special tower. I had many blessed hours of prayer in this upper room during the night watches. As we spent much time in the presence of God, He caused our hearts to be opened to all that is written.
I had some experience with the Lord, and tasted the joy of leading some souls to christ, and had some marvelous answers to prayer for guidance and in having my needs supplied. I was blessed with the presence of the Lord, who, in response to my prayer, healed some who were sick. like some others, I thought that I received the baptism of the Holy Ghost at the time of consecration, but when I learned that the Holy Ghost was yet to be poured out in greater fullness, my heart became hungry for the promised comforter and i began to cry out for an enduement with power from on high. At Times I longed more for the Holy Spirit to come in than for my necessary food. At night I had a greater desire for him than for sleep.
We were admonished to honor the blood of Jesus christ to do its work in our hearts, and this brought great peace and victory. A text often used was this, 'Now the God of peace has brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great Shepherd of the sheep, thru the blood of the everlasting covenant, make you perfect in every good work to do His will, working in you that which is well pleasing in His sight, thru Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen' (Hebrews 13:20-21)
As the end of the year drew near some friends came from Kansas City to spend the holidays with us. On watch night we had a blessed service, praying that God's blessing might rest upon us as the New Year came in. During the first day of 1901 the presence of the Lord was with us in a marked way stilling our hearts to wait upon Him for greater things. The spirit of prayer was upon us in the evening. It was nearly seven o'clock on this first of January that it came into my heart to ask Brother Parham to lay his hands upon me that I might receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. It was as his hands were laid upon my head that the Holy Spirit fell upon me and I began to speak in tongues, glorifying God. I talked several languages, and ir was clearly manifest when a new dialect was spoken. I had the added joy and glory my heart longed for and a depth of the presence of the Lord within that I had never known before. it was as if rivers of living waters were preceeding from my innermost being.
The following morning I was accosted with questions about my experience of the night before. As i tried to answer i was so full of glory that i pointed out to them the Bible references, showing that i had received the baptism according acts 2:4 and 19:1-6. I was the first one to speak in tongues in the bible school and it seemed to me that the rest were wanting to speak in tongues too. But i told them not to seek for tongues but to seek for the Holy Ghost. I did not know at that time that anyone else would speak in tongues. I did not expect the Holy Spirit to manifest Himself to others as He did to me.
On january 2, some of us went down to Topeka to a mission. As we worshipped the Lord I offered prayer in English and then prayed in another language in tongues.A Bohemian who was present said that he understood what I said. some months later at a school house with others, in a meeting, I spoke in tongues in the power of the spirit and another Bohemian understood me. since then others have understood other languages I have spoken.
The hearts of other students were made hungry for the holy Spirit and they continued to tarry befor the Lord. On the 3rd of January some of the students went to the mission and others gathered in prayer at the Bible School praying for the holy Spirit. God answered their prayers by pouring out His Spirit and one after another began speaking in tongues and some were given interpretation."