Talk:A. A. Allen
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A. A. on TV
I can remember clearly seeing A. A. Allen's TV series in the 50s. He would perform healing miracles in a revival tent setting. On one occasion, they wheeled in a woman on a gurney with what was described as a tumor, which appeared to be the size of a basketball, in her abdominal region, under the sheet covering her. Allen proceeded to wale away on the tumor with a Bible while praying and preaching loudly. Sure enough, the tumor shrank away to nothing under the force of his blows! Tex 21:51, 17 February 2006 (UTC)
- Yes, TV has shown a lot of amazing things. On The X-Files aliens visited the US in part of an amazing conspiracy. However, just because TV presented something does not make it true. People did look into Allen's claims, and there was never a medically documented case of his purtported abilities. Allen was discovered to have used cold reading and hot reading techniques faith healers had been using for hundreds of years. Arbustoo 02:41, 9 April 2007 (UTC)
- I see my sarcasm was not quite as obvious as I supposed. Let me say plainly that the phoniness of this so-called cure was evident even to me as a young child.
Open to all races
Previous version said:
"Allen’s revival meetings were similar to the other leading evangelists of the time (Jack Coe, Oral Roberts, and William Branham) where there would be an extended time for music and testifying, then a sermon, then an appeal for those in need to come forward and be prayed for. Allen (as did Jack Coe) opened his revival meetings to all races, and his interracial meetings drew criticism, but Allen used the criticism as a platform to preach upon."
I removed "(as did Jack Coe)" because even though all four evangelists were actually well known for opening meetings to all races, this article is specifically about A. A. Allen.
Mechobba 22:47, 11 January 2006 (UTC)
Seeeerious POV problem here
Someone should deal with this.--18.104.22.168 17:38, 4 August 2006 (UTC)
- This is yellow journalism at its worst. Allen was a sinner as ALL men are. Yet, there was and is ABUNDANT evidence that many miracles were done in his ministry and yet NOT ONE is addressed in the article. The FBI investigated Allen for mail fraud because he claimed a man (Gene Mullenax) got a new lung in one of his meetings. Allen was never prosecuted because the FBI found out it was true, yet there's no mention of this miracle or the investigation, though there was significant coverage of it.
- The source for the report that his room was strewn with pill and alcohol bottle comes from a very biased book against faith healers, so I think it would be for the best if a new source was found or this tidbit was removed entirely until we can find a reputable source. --Celtic Jobber 05:01, 27 October 2007 (UTC)
Ok, thanks. I just wanted a reputable source, and you provided one. --Celtic Jobber 10:32, 12 November 2007 (UTC)
I have made some changes throughout the whole article. I am AAAllen's great-granddaughter. The granddaughter of his first born son. I found several citations to be unfounded or inaccurate. As for the above comments, surely we shouldn't believe everything we read in the newspapers. :-) A citation was mentioned in the article that was inaccurate:
"In 1963, A. A. Allen Revivals, Inc. successfully sued the Internal Revenue Service in an attempt to get the government to refund collections of the Federal Insurance Contributions Act taxes for 1958-59.
Citation 11 was referring to Allen's successor years after he passed away. I've removed this section until someone can find useful info to write about it should they choose to. The whole article seems to have been first written by those who sought to discredit him. I'll plan to add good content and stories that are accurate in time. For now, I'm hoping people won't mind that not everything I've corrected has a citation seeming as how its family knowledge. I'll endeavor to make it more helpful and sourced in time. -JonesFam07 (talk) 22:30, 23 July 2011 (UTC)
This article has been problematic for a long time. I have watched as some aspects or parts of the article have flip-flopped from one biased interpretation to another and back again. The way this article has been edited has largely been one of either praising Allen as though he could do no wrong or lashing out against him in anger. The first thing that draws people's attention when they look at this article is currently "liver failure" and "acute alcoholism" in blue, as though this sums up this individual's life, when at one time the article cited the cause of death in nearly opposite terms.
I am especially concerned about the issue of the cause of death. I have interviewed individuals associated with Allen's ministry and have examined large numbers of documents, newspaper articles, and other materials associated with this man's ministry. I don't know the truth about the cause of death, but I believe that the article should at least simply reflect the fact that it is a matter of controversy. Yes, a number of newspaper articles (which use the same sources) cite alcoholism as the cause of death, and the death certificate cites cirrhosis of the liver. The article should at least mention, however, that the cause of death is seriously questioned by some, and denied by others. I am not in a position to judge the accuracy or credibility of these claims (which concern allegations of lies and falsifications), but the fact that these claims exist should at least be mentioned.
Instead, we have had a situation where one editor says that Allen died because of alcoholism - period - then another editor comes along and says that the evidence is against that - period - then another editor returns to the first position. I don't think the article needs to take ANY position, but that it should mention that this is a matter of controversy. This is a subject that draws intense emotional responses, but they shouldn't color the objectivity of the article. As long as editors take the stance indicated by the above remark ("His addictions were well known" - period - no citations, end of discussion) this article will never reflect either accuracy or objectivity.
In addition, the "jumped bail" remark in connection with Knoxville is extremely misleading. The entire Knoxville incident is another matter of extreme controversy, and the article should here as well reflect this. After examining ordinarily closed files at the Assemblies of God, conducting interviews, and examining other materials, I would say that this is a matter that cannot be accurately summed up in just one and a half sentences, certainly not with the phrase "jumped bail" included.
The entire "kept drinking" sentence is also extremely problematic in that other evidence is against this, the claim is flat-out denied, and the way it's worded makes it sound as though Allen was habitually drunk. The late Paul Cunningham, who worked closely with Allen and who appeared on the platform with Allen in many of the latter's TV programs, told me that Allen's work and sleep schedule were extremely demanding to the point that it precluded any possibility of an alcoholism issue.
Then the rest of the article degenerates into the sort of standard, cliche treatment of TV evangelists that have been applied to everyone from Oral Roberts to Joyce Meyer: He owned expensive things, he faked healings. Can't this section maintain some degree of objectivity? Even the article itself states that audiences were confused about the presence of people in wheelchairs, then calls this "trickery" rather than "confusion." Why call it anything?
If this article is going to allege that Allen hired "goon squads" to "punch out" reporters, this is a very serious allegation. It requires more substantiation than the fact that someone said it in a book. Can we assume, then, that when, for example, he was covered by Life or Look magazine, that the reporters involved were "punched out"? A number of newspaper articles covered Allen's meetings, yet I haven't run across one in which a reporter alleges that he or she was "punched out."
The overall tone of this article reflects anything but objectivity. Instead, it appears to be a list of any and every possible accusation that anyone could possibly come up with against this man.
I would insert some mitigating statements in the article in an attempt to create greater objectivity, but I don't think they would remain.
Some other minor points: What is meant by saying that he "became a Pentecostal" in a Methodist church? Is this referring to Pentecostal experience rather than Pentecostal denominational affiliation, or was this, somehow, a Pentecostal Methodist church?
I doubt that "Healing Revival Campaigns" in the "Early Life" section is a proper noun that requires capitalization.
Is "prosperity cloths" Allen's term? I've watched probably several hundred hours of video of his meetings and don't recall coming across that term. If this isn't Allen's term, then it shouldn't be placed in quotation marks. Unless Allen called them that, I wouldn't use the phrase at all. In addition, using the term "selling" in connection with these cloths is yet another biased assessment.
The reference to the separation from Lexie "with whom he had four children" is also problematic in that it seems to suggest some sort of moral failing on Allen's part. My understanding is that there were extreme issues behind this separation, issues that are not even mentioned.
The reference to "Nineteen cds . . . and nine dvds" is, frankly, ridiculous. First of all, those formats post-date Allen's lifetime. Secondly, I have at least ten times that much DVD video material in my collection. Searches of copyright records at the Library of Congress appear to suggest that most of the Allen material is not under copyright, and various people have been releasing VHS tapes, CDs, and DVDs for years.
The discography should reflect format (in this case LP) and should also reflect which albums contained Allen speaking as opposed to music by others in his ministry organization or some other content (e.g. "Crying Demons"). In either case, the discography is incomplete.
The entire section titled "After Death" Is confusing and hard to read. The grammer needs serious rivising, and the information overall needs needs editing and clarification. The section reads like an 8th grade student wrote it. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 22.214.171.124 (talk • contribs)
Further editing issues
Sorry to go on and on, but this article is a major mess.
The reason for Allen's leaving the Corpus Christi church doesn't match what other primary sources say.
I would like to see a reference for the cost of the original tent in order to verify its accuracy.
The statement in the 2nd para. under "Revivalist" about the format or order of events in Allen's meetings is absolutely inaccurate. It's also extremely inaccurate to imply that Branham, Coe, and Roberts used the same format. This isn't what Allen did. It certainly isn't what Roberts did.
What in the world is meant by saying that Allen "claimed to communicate with the demon world' over the airwaves"? At best, this is a quote taken out of context. At the least, it's so poorly worded as to literally be saying that Allen used the radio to communicate with demons.
To amplify what I said earlier, "kept drinking" implies continuously, when much evidence says this didn't occur at all. "Would be too drunk," again suggests a continual practice.
"Was" 2,400 acres is poor English.
The circulation figures for Miracle Magazine are inaccurate according to Allen's own testimony.
The extended sentence about the recording of a deed "in the Cochise County Courthouse," and this occurring "within days" sounds, frankly, stupid. That's what normally happens when someone sells land.
The "Revivalist" section contains an early unsourced statement claiming that Allen was "one of the first evangelists to call poverty a spirit." Then the issue is totally dropped for several paragraphs. Then the writer returns to "His teachings on prosperity were a major theme." No, they weren't. They were a theme, but certainly not a major theme. Read his books and watch a hundred hours or more of his TV programs, as I've done, and you'll find a mention every once in a great while. It's COMPLETELY INACCURATE to refer to this as being a major theme of Allen's ministry.
Then the writer returns to Allen having "visions, divine voices, and prophecies." First of all, you don't "have" a divine voice. Second, I thought it had already been stated earlier in the article that Allen was Pentecostal, so, duhhhh... What did you expect? If this is a Pentecostal ministry, then there has to be something to make it Pentecostal. Pentecostals, not just Allen, claim visions, prophecies, and healing.
The "heavy drinking binge" statement is made so matter-of-factly in the "Death" section, with little support, that it bothers me. No one was present with Allen when he died.
Doesn't some of the "After death" section merely duplicate what's in the Don Stewart article? Shouldn't some of this be moved out and into that article?
I don't know why it's important that "ten people" representing Harter's ministry came to look over the Miracle Valley property. Since it is mentioned, why is there no indication of whether Harter was among them? Why is there no source so that we can know if it really was 10 people?
The term "classical Pentecostal theology" toward the end of the article may be problematic in that there are different Pentecostal denominations with radically different beliefs. What constitutes "classical Pentecostal theology"?
This article needs to be deleted
Regarding editing this article, I give up. I believe this article should removed from Wikipedia, because it cannot be maintained in a manner that even begins to approach any level of objectivity. Any time any information is added or edited regarding the cause of death, that information is removed. The article then reverts back to saying that he died of alcohol abuse - period. I don't think anyone carefully studying the coroner's report and more up-to-date information on physical reactions from prescription pain reliever drugs would make that statement, but the level of apparently vindictive hostility against this man, even after 43 years, is unbelievable. Someone is intent on making the statement that Allen was an alcoholic and died an alcoholic, and does not intend to give up making his or her polemic point. I understand that widespread intense hostility exists that is directed against "healing evangelists" in general and, seemingly, especially against this man. I have no vested interest any way or the other, but I had hoped that since this is supposed to be a wiki, this article could be edited on a community basis and could represent an attempt to construct an accurate and unbiased account. Instead, this article only serves a polemic purpose. My edits did not say that he was not an alcoholic. My edits did not say that alcohol was not a factor in his death. My edits merely stated that at the time of Allen's death he was taking four dangerous prescription drugs for knee pain, that no alcohol bottles were found in his room, and that these factors may have had something to do with his death. That objective information, taken from the coroner's report, was removed simply because someone didn't want it that way. This article is no longer a wiki article. This article is now simply someone's personal opinion about A. A. Allen. Mtnbuilder (talk) 12:49, 13 January 2013 (UTC)