According to reports in early papers printed on Azusa Street, Florence Crawford made trips to Canada, visiting Vancouver, British Columbia, and Winnipeg, Manitoba, while she was still with the Azusa mission. She maintained connections with individuals and groups across Canada after the work was established in Portland. In 1910, tent meetings were held in Vancouver by workers from Portland. In a personal letter dated February 24, 1917, Florence Crawford wrote of leaving for Toronto and Winnipeg for an evangelistic tour that was to last “a few weeks.”
People who received the literature began meeting in small groups here and there throughout the country. In September of 1945, a band of believers who had been gathering in Calgary, Alberta, moved to Vancouver, to start a church in that city. Cottage meetings were held at first, until the crowd became too large for the home.
A remodeled house was the next facility. A few years later, the city wanted to purchase that property for a new roadway, so arrangements were made to trade it for a lot at Kingsway and Rupert. The congregation worked diligently for many months constructing a church building on the new site. At this same time, the missionary vessel, Lower Light, was making its annual trip up the West Coast to Alaska. Upon the vessel’s return, the new building was complete enough for the crew to stop in the port city of Vancouver and assist with the dedication of the new church.
In 1945, a sign was erected proclaiming, “Jesus the Light of the World.” This colorful sign drew lost souls into the Light of the Gospel. It was used as a landmark for many to find their way into the city of Vancouver and also into the arms of the Savior. After the church building was sold and the congregation relocated, this sign was
donated to the Vancouver museum for display with other collectable neon signs. There, the message, “Jesus the Light of the World,” continues to be proclaimed.
Across the continent on Canada’s eastern seaboard, a single Gospel paper from Portland was the starting point for another branch of the Apostolic Faith work. In Newfoundland, a postmistress gave an unaddressed Apostolic Faith paper to a man she knew had an interest in religion. That man, Gideon Hancock, was so impressed by the doctrines that he retained the publication, even though he was at that time actively involved with another religious organization. Two years later, when he and others were locked out of their church because of their belief in the baptism of the Holy Spirit, he remembered that paper, and the little group contacted Portland. That was in November of 1942. In 1943, the first Apostolic Faith cottage meetings were held in Roddickton, Newfoundland. In 1949, a church building was dedicated, and this became the headquarters of a work that has branched out into a number of other locations in Newfoundland. In July of 1989, the first Apostolic Faith youth camp was held in that province. Currently, approximately one hundred teenagers attend the one-week session held each summer.
A snowstorm in April of 1981 prevented a minister of the Apostolic Faith work in Newfoundland from returning home after a business trip to Goose Bay, Labrador. While waiting out the storm at a hotel, he was met by two men who already knew of the Apostolic Faith work and wanted to be affiliated with it. That Sunday evening, a service was held in a house basement with about twenty people present. Subsequent cottage meetings were blessed by God, and in 1982, a building was renovated to become a church. Though the group there is not large in number, God continues to bless with His sweet presence.
In 1913, a woman in New Brunswick was healed of tuberculosis of the spine when a prayer request was sent to the Apostolic Faith Church in Portland, Oregon. Later, that woman’s daughter attended the Apostolic Faith camp meeting in the United States. Visitors then traveled to the family’s home in Fredericton to hold cottage meetings. In 1979, a couple from Vancouver came to that location and started a church. Assisted by members of the churches in Newfoundland, a place of worship was constructed.
In the 1990s, workers began praying that a door would open for the establishment of an Apostolic Faith Church somewhere between Vancouver, British Columbia, and Fredericton, New Brunswick. In 1992, a work was begun in Kitchener, Ontario, in a rented building, and the Lord blessed. A church building became available in 1995, and God put His seal of approval upon the purchase when He led the owners to reduce the asking price by nearly thirty percent to accept the purchase price offered.