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Date Posted:31/03/2010 7:33 AMCopy HTML

The National Revival Crusade (NRC) Becomes the Commonwealth Revival Crusade (CRC)

By Troy Waller


For most of 1953 both Longfield’s and Foster’s assemblies were operating under the name National Revival Crusade.   During the split, Thomas Foster was advised by his solicitor to register the name and draw up a constitution.

The bank made it clear that they would not “unfreeze” our accounts until after the matter was settled legally as to who had authority - Tom Foster or Lloyd Longfield.  This meant that that we had to have legal advice, seeing that we had as yet no Constitution.  The Solicitors - Braham & Pirani - requested the Minute Book for the Assembly Special meeting, which they examined and found it in order.  They then drew up a Constitution which also would require Registration under the Companies Act.   The bank examined these documents, found them correct and the “unfroze” our Bank Accounts for our use. [1]

This made it illegal for Longfield’s group to operate under the name and so they adopted the name Commonwealth Revival Crusade.  A somewhat bitter sounding statement appeared in The National Revivalist,

Readers are advised that the brethren with whom we once had fellowship have now registered, in Victoria, the name under which we were once united, thus making it illegal for us to continue using this name in Victoria.

As we are not prepared to challenge this act of  infringement, nor to become in any way associated with the non-Scriptural claims and extravagances held by these brethren, it has been decided to change our Victorian name from National Revival Crusade to COMMONWEALTH REVIVAL CRUSADE.

...Our associate Assemblies in Victoria will be known as Commonwealth Revival Assembly,

            GEELONG     BALLARAT     BENDIGO.   [2]

It was not until January, 1954 that The National Revivalist magazine also changed its name and became The Commonwealth Revivalist.

The Victorian assemblies aligned with Leo Harris and the South Australian assemblies and pulled together after the split with Foster and Dawson.  They successfully continued on with the original vision of the National Revival Crusade.  In a show of support, Harris visited Victoria and ministered in various assemblies whilst Les Harris, father of Noel and Kevin Hollins,  represented Victoria by preaching in the Adelaide assembly.[3]  The work in both sates continued to grow and The National Revivalist gave regular encouraging reports of such.

Lloyd Longfield’s Melbourne assembly did take some time to stabilise.  One report in The National Revivalist showed both Longfield’s determination to proceed and conviction that his actions were justified.

Although the times of testing have been severe during the past two months, we are praising God for a real period of consolidation and blessing here in Melbourne.  God has opened up new meeting places to us when it appeared humanly impossible to locate the required halls...  We have also taken over the 3BO Bendigo session of “British and American News in Bible Prophecy” which had temporarily passed out of our control.  We believe that God is here honouring our stand for the truth and already He has wonderfully vindicated His word in our midst. [4]

Longfield began to see himself as the head of the Victorian assemblies and took a greater involvement in their affairs than Foster had.  Longfield began to develop a stronger unity amongst the groups than had existed before.  In March 1953, he organised a meeting of the Victorian pastors in which unity was affirmed and plans were laid for an interchange of ministry between the assemblies.

The meeting was blessed in the mutual exchange of confidence and satisfaction of the policy of the Victorian stand to continue the work now laid upon us.  We look forward to gathering together in such manner again in three months time. [5]

In September, 1953 another pastor’s meeting was held in which Longfield gained an even greater control of the Crusade work in Victoria.

During the month a meeting was held of representatives from all Assemblies of the Commonwealth Revival Crusade in Victoria.  Full support was given to the recognition of the Melbourne headquarters as the centre of co-ordination for all the Victorian Assemblies.  Whilst the aim for local Assemblies was for self governing, self-supporting status, a whole-hearted support was given to the formation of this Representative Co-ordinating Group to give oversight and direction throughout the state.  The chairman at this meeting was Pastor Lloyd Longfield.  (emphasis theirs) [6]

By October, 1953 Longfield was named the Victorian State Co-ordinator of the Commonwealth Revival Crusade. [7]  When perusing CRC magazines of the 1950s, one can see that Longfield’s talk of assembly autonomy seemed to be only talk.  He was slowly setting himself up as the head a new movement which would be one day called the Revival Centres.

Meanwhile the Geelong assembly was seeing less of Lloyd Longfield, due to his commitment to the new assembly in Melbourne.  Whilst Jack Clay’s role was increasing, visiting speakers such as Les, Kevin and Noel Hollins often took the meetings.  Noel began to take a more active role in the Geelong assembly and whilst still living in Ballarat.  Noel’s assembly in Ballarat was not showing the growth experienced by other Victorian assemblies.


Footnotes

[1] Letter from Tom Foster dated 30/04/1990.

[2] The National Revivalist #132. Sept, 1953. p20.

[3] The National Revivalist #125. Jan-Feb, 1953. p5.

[4] ibid #126. March, 1953. p11

[5] ibid #127. April, 1953. p9

[6] ibid #133. October, 1953. p19

[7]ibid p19.

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Re:1952 to 1958 - The National Revival Crusade (NRC) Becomes the Commonwealth Revival Crusade (CRC)

Date Posted:31/03/2010 7:36 AMCopy HTML


The National Revivalist Reports the Name Change




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