Talk:William M. Branham

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The article is strongly biased[edit]

This article is obviously biased in favour of people who support or sympathize with Branham's life of preaching to gullible, uneducated people. There is no balanced argument about a doctrine which is clearly heretical - eg: Devil's spawn (ridiculous!) - and a photo from a scratched negative which was supposed to make him a messenger of God! (ridiculous!) He predicted his own death - yet died much earlier - therefore not predicted. He gave out anecdotes about how popular he was because nobody could verify the truth. In short, he was a conman of the most despicable kind. Francis Hannaway (talk) 10:42, 21 June 2014 (UTC)

The article uses appropriate neutral Wikipedia language such as "Branham claimed ..." or "Branham believed ...". It does not state anything as a fact that is not verified by secondary sources such as Weaver, Harrell, Hollenweger and some newspaper reports.. Rev107 (talk) 01:43, 2 July 2014 (UTC)
I rest my case - Rev107 is a self proclaimed collaborator in the Branham sect. If he is an interested party, then probably most of the other editors will be blind to the neutral path of editing. Francis Hannaway (talk) 16:35, 3 July 2014 (UTC)
Your case must rest on the language used in the article, not your personal opinion of me or any other editor. Rev107 (talk) 01:51, 4 July 2014 (UTC)
I agree with Francish7. Rev107 uses wikilawyering to wear people down that disagree with him. He is strongly biased and the language of the article reflects that. Taxee (talk) 17:11, 26 July 2014 (UTC)
The point that Francish7 makes about the devil's spawn being ridiculous ignores several scriptures of the Bible. The first is that of St. John 8:33-47, where Jesus himself distinguishes between the Son's of God and the Son's of the Devil, with 'of' representing lineage and that this lineage is not in the natural but spiritual - as they were Abraham's seed in the flesh but yet were not the Seed of Abraham. Paul later explains that the Seed of Abraham are those that have the faith of Abraham. Later John also, referring to Cain in 1 John 3:12, indicates that he was 'of (again referring to lineage) that wicked one and not the son of Adam, and that there are 'children of God' and 'Children of the Devil' ( John 3:10). To say that the devil does not have any offspring is to discount the Bible, which would make any argument pointless, as all of the doctrines taught with reference to Christianity should have a biblical backing or it is not a biblical doctrine. William Branham himself indicated that every revelation and vision he received was not accepted unless it had a solid biblical foundation. The teaching of the Devil having offspring, the serpent's seed, has a biblical backing. 190.80.119.21 (talk) 00:20, 10 August 2015 (UTC)
I'm not taking sides, but if there's a neutrality dispute, that needs to be tagged at the top of the article. Stevie is the man! TalkWork 17:32, 26 July 2014 (UTC)
I removed the disputed tag because 3 weeks had elapsed since the person who started this discussion had made a contribution. The personal comments by other editors seem to be inappropriate and irrelevant in resolving a dispute. Rev107 (talk) 06:03, 27 July 2014 (UTC)
The problem with articles about such quackery is that sensible people see them for being such,and because of that they avoid editing them. Why is there no record of the photograph as being described as a scratched negative? ... because people see the scratched negative photo and think "Uh-oh! Loonies! Anyone can see that it's a scratched negative and not a halo." To say that he was uneducated - that he had dipped into varyious heretical texts - should be emphasised in this article. You could say ... it's a "made-up" religion like the ones that say the aliens are telling them what to do. Let's take the example of the "Devil's spawn" concept ... which only a fool ... I repeat, a fool, would believe. This is what is on the Wikipedia page about Devil's spawn: QUOTE Serpent seed, dual seed or two-seedline is a controversial doctrine, according to which the serpent in the Garden of Eden mated with Eve, and the offspring of their union was Cain. This belief is still held by some adherents of the white-supremacist theology known as Christian Identity, who claim that the Jews, as descendants of Cain, are also descended from the serpent. name="Borgeson">Borgeson, Kevin; Valeri, Robin (2008). "3: Christian Identity". Terrorism in America. Jones & Bartlett Publishers. pp. 52–55. ISBN 0-7637-5524-9. Retrieved 2009-02-20. ref name="Martin">Martin, Gus (2006). Understanding Terrorism: Challenges, Perspectives, and Issues (2, illustrated ed.). SAGE. pp. 453–454. ISBN 1-4129-2722-6. Retrieved 2009-02-20.  The idea has also existed in several other non-racial contexts, and major proponents include Daniel Parker (1781–1844)"Primitive Baptists". Primitivebaptist.info. Retrieved 2014-07-15.  and William M. Branham (1909–65)."Branham, W. M., ''An Exposition of the Seven Church Ages'', (Jeffersonville, Indiana: WBEA, 1965) p98". Nt.scbbs.com. Retrieved 2014-07-15.  END OF QUOTE This is just one of the doctrine that should be prominent in the article. Another is that he claimed that people were cured, even though there is evidence to say that people died after so called healings. This should also be prominent in the article. I could go on .... My point is that the article is written by Branhamists and any conflicting edits are removed. Francis Hannaway (talk) 09:11, 27 July 2014 (UTC)
I speak this from personal experience: I had suffered from a disease called Ankylosing Spondylitis. It had affected my hip joints making it difficult to move them. One day, while in a church service, I was healed. It was an experience that I felt as much as believed. I was able to walk out the church without crutches. An hour later, after being plagued by many thoughts and doubts, I was again unable to walk without crutches. So I know from experience that a man can receive healing and then lose it when his faith fails. Was there medical proof of my healing? No. But there was visible proof - my walking. 190.80.119.21 (talk) 00:20, 10 August 2015 (UTC)
Removal of a tag when there's a clear dispute is inappropriate and doesn't assist efforts in resolving it. There's no pre-requirement for an edit war to place that tag. Stevie is the man! TalkWork 11:52, 27 July 2014 (UTC)
Stevie, how long should a disputed tag remain on an article after the person who placed it there fails to respond? F H has now re-entered the dispute after five weeks but from what I see his comments are simply expressing a personal opinion about the subject and those who follow beliefs he considers to be quackery. Rev107 (talk) 02:43, 28 July 2014 (UTC)
A dispute is a dispute, and your characterization of others' opinions provides a strong indication that there continues to be one. There is no specific timetable that I know of for when a dispute has to be resolved. I would recommend that the various parties come together, decide all the passages that are in dispute, then work on each passage one by one until it's all ironed out. Of course, guidelines must be applied, and positions that are based on reliable sources must take the lead. I noticed somewhere that some sources people talked about are self-published ones -- of course, these must ordinarily be rejected as WP:OR. I'm not going to be a part of any specific discussion here, as again, I don't want to take sides. Someone has to play neutral.  :) Stevie is the man! TalkWork 20:12, 30 July 2014 (UTC)
My "characterisation" of others' comments refers to the use of words such as "fool" and "quackery". Everyone has a bias, however, the focus should not become personal but address specific changes to the article. It is very difficult to resolve an issue when the other editor is not prepared to engage in ongoing discussion. I will seek further advice on how long an article can remain tagged in the absence of the person who placed the tag. My impression is that it is 14 days. (In the absence of an ongoing discussion on the article's talk page, any editor may remove this tag at any time. Wikipedia:NPOV dispute) Rev107 (talk) 02:04, 31 July 2014 (UTC)
Francis, please edit your post to include your references with your last comment. I would prefer you avoided the use of words such as "quackery" and "fool" and concentrate on specific changes you are proposing. The "serpent seed" doctrine is included in the article, along with a source providing criticism (Weaver). The article also includes criticism from Hollenweger concerning not as many were healed as was claimed. Many people were healed in WMB's meetings and many people weren't. Peter walked on the water (some would call that quackery too :) but when he doubted he sank. Rev107 (talk) 02:59, 28 July 2014 (UTC)
You are correct that everyone has a bias and, as has been pointed out yours is unmistakable. In any event, removing a disputed tag after 3 weeks in the middle of the summer when people are on vacation is another clear sign of bias. I would suggest leaving it up for 3 months and see what happens. As indicated, I am in agreement with the dispute tag remaining and have reinstated it. Taxee (talk) 20:56, 9 August 2014 (UTC)
You seem confused as to whether you are supporting the first tag used by FH (neutrality) or the second placed by STM (factual accuracy). You have not advanced any argument that supports the tag you have used. Please read "Adding a tag to a page" at Wikipedia:NPOV dispute and Wikipedia:Accuracy dispute. I will accept another 14 days without an ongoing discussion before removing the tag. Please note that Wikipedia:Tagging pages for problems defines a reasonable time as "a few days" Rev107 (talk) 07:28, 10 August 2014 (UTC)
Given that this article is primarily based on Branham's own words, the factual basis of this article has to be questioned. Weaver clearly states that Branham's "autobiographical stories were often embellished and sometimes contradictory" (p.21.22). Taxee (talk) 14:33, 1 September 2014 (UTC)

Factual errors re "Early Life" Comment[edit]

Rev107 revised my comment on the grounds that it reflected POV. The problem with his revision is that the offending word - dubious - is one used by Weaver in his book. The original wording in the article was as follows:

At the age of twenty-two he had a conversion experience and later was ordained as an assistant pastor at a Missionary Baptist Church in Jeffersonville. When he disagreed with the pastor about the role of women preaching, William Branham held a series of revivals on his own in a tent. Later, the meetings moved to a Masonic temple until they were able to construct a building in 1933 which the congregation named 'Branham Tabernacle'.

There are a number of problems with this passage from a factual perspective. This is one of many reasons why I support the notice of dispute re factual accuracy.

The problems are as follows:

  1. Weaver's research uncovered the fact that the church pastored by Roy Davis in Jeffersonville was not a Missionary Baptist church but rather was the First Pentecostal Baptist Church. This is corroborated by advertisements in the Jeffersonville Evening News and by listings for the church in the Jeffersonville Directory.
  2. According to both Angela Smith's "Generations" book and the Jeffersonville Evening News, the original name of the Branham's church was the Pentecostal Tabernacle.

So in 3 sentences, we have 2 serious factual errors.

Rev107, since you didn't like my edit, I would invite you to edit the above 3 sentences in a manner that accurately reflects the facts. However, I do find the present wording as revised by yourself unacceptable as it does not accurately reflect the facts. Taxee (talk) 01:44, 21 August 2014 (UTC)

"The First Pentecostal Baptist Church" was a Missionary Baptist church. It is something like saying the "Cloverdale Bibleway Church" is a Message church. There were two main divisions among the Baptist churches: Missionary Baptists and Primitive Baptists. See also National Missionary Baptist Convention of America.
Roy Davis was not Pentecostal as it is understood today. "First Pentecostal" refers to the belief that their church could be traced back to apostolic times. He wrote in a letter: I had been a Baptist preacher for many years, and had been taught to disregard such ideas and concepts of spiritual things ... (Voice of Healing, Oct 1950)
WB called the church he started "The Pentecostal Tabernacle". The board of the church, with the support of the congregation, later changed it to "Branham Tabernacle". Rev107 (talk) 01:23, 22 August 2014 (UTC)
Your statement that "The First Pentecostal Baptist Church" was a Missionary Baptist church disregards the words of the letter of Roy Davis that you refer to. Roy Davis stated in that letter that:
I am the minister who received Brother Branham into the first Pentecostal assembly he ever frequented. I baptized him, and was his pastor for some two years... I was the first man on this earth whom Billy ever saw anoint and pray for a sick person. I feel I can write more intimately of Billy Bran­ham than any living minister, as he also received his Baptism of the Holy Ghost in my humble home in Jeffersonville, Indiana.
Does that sound like a classical "Baptist" church? No! The emphasis was on Pentecostalism. It is for this reason that Weaver states the following in his book:
Branham's assertion that the "holy roller" caricature was his only previous understanding of Pentecostalism is dubious. Though Branham described the Baptist church to which he belonged as the Missionary Baptist Church,... the actual name of the church was First Pentecostal Baptist. The congregation was "a Holy Ghost church where they worship God in Spirit and not the fleshly denominations."
That is my problem. As a follower, you believe every word William Branham said. Weaver looks at his statements critically. The article should reflect Weaver's doubt about William Branham's veracity on this issue. Taxee (talk) 22:25, 26 August 2014 (UTC)
Do you understand that "Missionary Baptist church" refers to a Baptist affiliation, not the name of Roy Davis's church?
All churches of every denomination believe in the baptism with the Holy Spirit in some form or other, and every denomination has always prayed for the sick, even Catholics, but they do not accept that a person received the Holy Spirit speaking in tongues which is the general belief of Pentecostalism. In the letter you refer to, Roy Davis clearly identifies himself as "a Baptist preacher for many years, and had been taught to disregard such ideas and concepts of spiritual things as visions, talking with the Lord, and kindred things."
I do not object to Weaver's opinions being included in the article as long as the comments are identified as his opinions. Weaver does not say it is dubious WB "was ordained as a Missionary Baptist" (as you wrote in the article) but rather Weaver thinks it is dubious that the Oneness Pentecostal meeting WB attend in 1936 was "his only previous understanding of Pentecostalism". Weaver includes this in a footnote as his opinion though in the text of his book he clearly states: "Branham's first exposure to Pentecostalism occurred in 1936. While on a vacation, by coincidence he attended a gathering of Oneness Pentecostals." Rev107 (talk) 02:46, 27 August 2014 (UTC)

Intro to biography section[edit]

I am proposing that an introduction to the biography section include wording as follows:

Much of the information about Branham's life and ministry seems to have been from Branham himself or one of his followers, and that different versions of the same incident that he himself told are sometimes either difficult to reconcile or are contradictory.

This is almost a direct quote from Sheryl, J.Greg, (2013, July), The Legend of William Branham, The Quarterly Journal, The Newsletter Publication of Personal Freedom Outreach, Vol. 33, No. 3, p.10.

Weaver makes essentially the same point on page 21 of his book when he states that

Branham's autobiographical stories were often embellished and sometimes contradictory. Other sources, written by his associates or followers are apologetic and hagiogroaphical in nature.

Given that the information in this article is primarily from Branham's sermons, a note regarding the potential factual problems in this information must be given to the reader. Taxee (talk) 15:51, 1 September 2014 (UTC)

Your proposed statement is POV. Reword it to be NPOV and include it in the criticism section if you must. BTW, the PFO journal is a self published source and under WP policy is only acceptable as reliable source for information about themselves. Rev107 (talk) 02:41, 2 September 2014 (UTC)
It is not POV, this is a conclusion from the journal article. Editing from a neutral point of view means representing fairly, proportionately, and, as far as possible, without bias, all of the significant views that have been published by reliable sources on a topic. The view expressed above is represented in several sources and so should be expressed. It should not be ignored.
Weaver makes the same point. If it suits you better, I will simply directly quote from the article. But it is not POV, it is a conclusion of both Sheryl and Weaver. Taxee (talk) 03:48, 2 September 2014 (UTC)
You can quote from Weaver but you cannot use the PFO journal as it is a self published source and can only be used as a reliable source in articles about themselves. Keith Morse, who is PFO’s vice-president and serves on the Board of Directors, is the journal's editor and is responsible for preparing for publication all the material that appears in this periodical. Rev107 (talk) 10:33, 2 September 2014 (UTC)
What makes a scholarly journal with an editor, numerous contributing authors, a board of directors and a separate board of reference which includes several well known theologians, a self-published source? Taxee (talk) 03:17, 3 September 2014 (UTC)
When a religious group with a very specific agenda publishes its own journal, it is a self published source and therefore not a reliable source (other than about itself) according to Wikipedia guidelines. Rev107 (talk) 09:23, 3 September 2014 (UTC)
Can you please identify and reference the specific Wikipedia guideline that states this? Taxee (talk) 15:01, 3 September 2014 (UTC)
Self-published or questionable sources may be used as sources of information about themselves, especially in articles about themselves. WP:V WP:RS Rev107 (talk) 01:02, 4 September 2014 (UTC)

In the Public Ministry section paragraph 2, should we include a link to the article in the June 2, 1933, issue of Jeffersonville Evening News identifying 14 conversions as a result of his tent meetings? Bus-stop3 (talk) 18:14, 9 September 2014 (UTC)

I've gone ahead and made this change. The newspaper article appears on at least one other website, does it make sense to reference this website as well? Bus-stop3 (talk) 19:03, 9 September 2014 (UTC)
The date of the article in the Jeffersonville Evening News that indicated 14 converts is June 02, 1933. This was near the beginning of the revival. The baptismal service was June 11, 1933. That was 9 days later, and so by that time there may have well been a significant more (even hundreds) converted and/or baptized than the 14 converts mentioned in the June 2nd article. This comment misrepresents the facts and is framed in such a way as to suggest the account of a 17th convert is not truthful, therefore the comment should be edited or removed.Electseed (talk) — Preceding undated comment added 20:08, 9 September 2014 (UTC)
Such a comment is interpretive in nature. Given the newspaper report of June 2, 1933, one would have thought that there would have been additional reports in the news if anything else significant had occurred. Taxee (talk) 17:48, 18 May 2015 (UTC)

Original name of Branham Tabernacle[edit]

The original name of William Branham's church was the Pentecostal Tabernacle. It is first referenced in an advertisement in the Jeffersonville Evening News on August 17, 1935. Rev. Wm. Branham is listed as the pastor of the Pentecostal Tabernacle. Hope Branham's obituary in the Jeffersonville Evening News of July 22, 1937 also refers to her memorial service being held in the Pentecostal Tabernacle. The 1937 Jeffersonville City Directory lists Rev Wm M Branham as the pastor of the Pentecostal Tabernacle. The "Messenger" book published by the Branham family also acknowledges on page 7 that it was originally called the Pentecostal Tabernacle.

The name of the church was changed to the Branham Tabernacle at some later date. Taxee (talk) 21:23, 1 September 2014 (UTC)

This statement of yours is also POV: However, from Weaver's description of the church, it appears that it was as much or more a Pentecostal than a Baptist church. This is an interpretation of what Weaver said. Stick to the facts, keeping in mind that Weaver clearly states in the text "Branham's first exposure to Pentecostalism occurred in 1936. While on a vacation, by coincidence he attended a gathering of Oneness Pentecostals." Rev107 (talk) 02:56, 2 September 2014 (UTC)
How can stating a historical fact be POV? The church was originally called the Pentecostal Tabernacle based on verifiable historical sources. Perhaps you could explain this to me because i certainly don't understand where you are coming from on this issue. Taxee (talk) 04:03, 2 September 2014 (UTC)
I have never questioned that WB's church was originally called "Pentecostal Tabernacle". I am glad you added it to the article. My comment above refers to the nature of Roy Davis's church ("as much or more a Pentecostal than a Baptist church"). This is POV. I have reworded the article to reflect what Weaver actually says about the "First Pentecostal Baptist" church.
You have added extra information but you have still not identified anything in the article that justifies the tag disputing factual accuracy. Rev107 (talk) 11:25, 2 September 2014 (UTC)
Sorry for misunderstanding your comment. I was perhaps under the wrong impression that each discussion section dealt with a different subject.
On the issue of the factual dispute, I am just getting started. There is a new 350+ page book on Branham that was published earlier this year that contains a lot of pertinent information relating to his life as well as the journal article from 2013. The example of the name of the church being wrong is simply one example of a factual error that was never previously corrected. I previously gave up my attempts to edit this article in any meaningful way because of the constant need for dispute resolution. However, if that is the way we will have to proceed then we will take this slowly, one issue at a time until we have exhausted all of the issues. Only then will I support removing the dispute notice. Taxee (talk) 02:39, 3 September 2014 (UTC)
The article said the church was named Branham Tabernacle. That was not an error. Your addition of the original name is a minor detail that was not included previously ... and I am glad you included it as it lends support to the fact that when WB first established his church he did not name it after himself. Sorry, my friend, you have not corrected anything. Keep trying  :)
As I stated above, self published sources can only be used for information about themselves. Since Owen Jorgensen is recognized as "a dedicated member of the Branhamite sect" by BTS, among other critics, his books can be used as a source for the article. Rev107 (talk) 09:38, 3 September 2014 (UTC)
I completely disagree with your interpretation. Jorgensen's book is a perfect example of hagiography and should not be used as a reference source for this article. Taxee (talk) 15:04, 3 September 2014 (UTC)
Self-published or questionable sources may be used as sources of information about themselves, especially in articles about themselves. WP:V WP:RS
Under this guideline Jorgensen qualifies but the PFO journal does not. Primary sources can be used for simple statements (such as the name change of Branham Tabernacle) but not for "exceptional claims". You need to carefully look at how the source is being used before discounting it. On this basis I have reinstated Jorgensen's comment about the name of BT Rev107 (talk) 02:40, 4 September 2014 (UTC)
Your reasoning is not logical. Jorgensen's book is hagiographic and can't be relied on. The issue regarding who named the church is an immaterial detail that should not be in the article Taxee (talk) 21:32, 4 September 2014 (UTC)
Your reasoning is not based on Wikipedia guidelines concerning primary sources. The issue regarding the original name of Branham Tabernacle is a minor detail that did not need to be included in the article. Rev107 (talk) 01:39, 5 September 2014 (UTC)
And why is who named it more important? The issue is raised by Weaver and was important to Weaver as an indication that Branham's claims regarding the timing of his introduction to Pentecostalism was dubious (Weaver's words). Taxee (talk) 20:01, 6 September 2014 (UTC)
I did not say it was more important. I said I was glad you included the name of Roy Davis's church as well as the original name of Branham Tabernacle. These are not disputed statements. Weaver compares WB's "first exposure to Pentecostalism" (Oneness Pentecostals) with his "only previous understanding of Pentecostalism" (First Pentecostal Baptist). The article reflects that understanding so can we say this issue is resolved? Rev107 (talk) 07:32, 10 September 2014 (UTC)

Primary vs. Secondary Sources[edit]

Rev107, I think that we need to arrive at an agreement with respect to how we should move forward with this article. If we can't arrive at an agreement (which might require compromise on both of our parts), then I can't see how we can avoid a dispute.

The NRM Manual of Style states that

Articles should be based on reliable secondary sources. Wikipedians should not rely on, or try to interpret the content or importance of, primary sources. Editors also should not use primary sources for explicit or implicit advocacy for or against a new religious movement, unless they cite a reliably published secondary source using the same primary source in the same manner.
In the NRM field, primary sources include:
  • Writings or other media published by an NRM;
  • Writings or media recordings of a movement's founder;
  • Self-published writings of members and ex-members;
  • Websites of members, ex-members and critics.
Primary sources can be cited to support specific statements, but the bulk of the article should rely on secondary sources.

In my view, the article as it currently reads is based on primary sources with some commentary from secondary sources. That is problematic.

I would suggest that we work on an agreed list of reliable secondary sources and a list of primary sources and then figure out how we move forward from there. If that is not acceptable, then I would be interested in how you think we should proceed. Taxee (talk) 22:57, 3 September 2014 (UTC)

No Wikipedia guideline supports the removal of primary sources. The solution is simple: add more genuine secondary sources.
You need to remember that sources can qualify for some purposes and not for others, this applies particularly to primary sources such as Jorgensen.
With all that you have written thus far you have still not identified a single factual error in the article. The language used in the article is careful to say what WB claimed - it does not say what he claimed was true.
The best way to move forward is for you to start at the beginning of the article and identify the first disputed statement. Rev107 (talk) 03:21, 4 September 2014 (UTC)
I was quoting a wikipedia source. That's why I provided the link. Re facts, we can start with Branham's birthdate. Here is one fact that should be mentioned - William Branham listed April 8, 1909 as his birthdate on his marriage certificate to Hope Brumbach. He later changed it to 1908 as a result of a fortune teller he met. This is outlined in Peter Duyzer's new book - Legend of the Fall - which is a recently published book that is not self-published. Amazon listing Taxee (talk) 03:58, 5 September 2014 (UTC)
I am aware of the Wikipedia source you quoted. I said, and say again, no Wikipedia policy supports the removal of primary sources that are used correctly.
The two most authoritative secondary sources (Harrell & Weaver) have concluded that WB's birthdate was April 6, 1909. (BTW, other critics do not agree with your dates! Don't you know the latest "discovery" is March 10, 1907? Time you guys got your story straight ... LOL)
ISP is hardly in the same league as Harrell's & Weaver's publishers and Duyzer is far from being a third party - he has an obvious conflict of interest that precludes his book being used as a reliable secondary source. (See Wikipedia:Identifying and using primary and secondary sources).
Next "error" please. Rev107 (talk) 10:44, 5 September 2014 (UTC)
Duyzer's book is from a recognized publisher and is not a self-published source. Weaver wrote a recommendation of the book which appears on its back cover. The issue relates to Branham signing his marriage certificate with a date in 1908 and then later changing that birthdate because of the comments of a fortune teller. Taxee (talk) 15:29, 5 September 2014 (UTC)
Bergen & Collins also recommend Duyzer's book but they claim a different DOB. ISP is for books that reputable publishers won't touch. Duyzer is not a third party because he is a disaffected "Branhamite" and because he has a conflict of interest he is not a reliable secondary source. The consensus of Harrell & Weaver settles the question for the purposes of this Wikipedia article. Move on. Rev107 (talk) 01:26, 6 September 2014 (UTC)
What Bergen & Collins think is irrelevant to this discussion. What is relevant is that in a well-researched book by Peter Duyzer, a copy of Branham's marriage license is reproduced which his signature attesting to the fact that his birthdate is different from that used in the Wikipedia article.
Independent Scholar's Press is not listed in the Wikipedia list of list of self-publishing companies. Furthermore, other books published by Independent Scholar's Press are listed as references in other Wikipedia articles. So your claim above, is completely baseless.
The primary problem with this article is that it relies PRIMARILY on primary sources. This is against "no original research" Wikipedia policy which states:
Policy: Wikipedia articles usually rely on material from reliable secondary sources. Articles may make an analytic or evaluative claim only ifthat has been published by a reliable secondary source.
Policy: Unless restricted by another policy, reliable primary sources may be used in Wikipedia; but only with care, because it is easy to misuse them.
This is my major concern with this article and why I believe that there are factual problems. Taxee (talk) 14:51, 6 September 2014 (UTC)
What you believe is not relevant. You must identify and substantiate specific errors.
I have added Weaver's comment to the criticism section where it belongs.
You cannot ignore the consensus of Harrell & Weaver regarding WB's DOB.
Duyzer's book is not published by a well recognized publishing company - even ISP admit this on their website. And he is not a third party.
Please identify a paragraph in the article you think relies too heavily on primary sources so we can address a specific problem? Rev107 (talk) 05:45, 7 September 2014 (UTC)
I repeat my concern with this entire article. There is a relegation of secondary sources to the criticism section while primary sources predominate the article itself. Weaver's conclusion should not be in the criticism section. It is a conclusion that he reached regarding the Branham's primary source material. That belongs front and center, not as a postscript.
It is Wikipedia policy that articles come primarily from secondary sources which is again being ignored. Taxee (talk) 13:10, 7 September 2014 (UTC)
Your opinion about the use of primary sources in this article is meaningless without the identification & substantiation of specific examples and specific paragraphs. It is the same with "factual errors". And let me remind you yet again you still have not identified & substantiated a single error.
Weaver's comment is a criticism and belongs in the criticism section. Rev107 (talk) 01:09, 8 September 2014 (UTC)
What is the motivation for relegating secondary sources to the criticism section? Weaver puts it in his book as a clear warning about the nature of the biographical material. Taxee (talk) 04:49, 9 September 2014 (UTC)
Show me one precedent for what you are trying to do. Criticism belongs in the criticism section.
If you want to remove primary sources concerning WB's claims then you will need to remove this recently added comment:"Branham claimed that this event happened while he was baptizing his 17th convert"; however, the Jeffersonville Evening News reported only 14 converts as a result of his meetings..
It has been established in previous discussions on this Talk page that primary sources are reliable sources for claims that a person has made. Take this to a WP noticeboard for resolution and place a link to your action here. Rev107 (talk) 01:49, 10 September 2014 (UTC)
What transpired previously on this talk page is irrelevant if it is not in line with clear Wikipedia policy. If you aren't willing to even discuss how we can bring this article in line with the Wikipedia policies that I referenced above, then I suppose the only option is to engage in dispute resolution. Taxee (talk) 14:58, 10 September 2014 (UTC)

To put it short, the problem of this entire article is that it is highly biased. There are mainly two types of books, those written by harsh critics ("enemies") and those written by followers or admirers ("friends"). Since you are not allowed to quote "friends", you are left with "enemies" - and anyone knows that an article written by an enemy will never be neutral. And here we are today, left with an article almost solely based upon a baptist theologian's work, a book that is everything but objective. Eforsund (talk) 14:45, 18 May 2015 (UTC)

I assume from your comments, Eforsund, that you are a follower of Branham. And to a follower, an objective analysis of Branham's life and ministry will seem critical because it looks at the facts and not the views of Branham or his followers. I appreciate that may be problematic to someone who's worldview is based on Branham being a "biblical" character. However, it is important to understand how articles on Wikipedia should be written.
This article should not be based on primary sources, which includes self-published websites that are highly critical of Branham or websites that are glowingly positive. similarly, hagiographic, self-published books (the books of Lindsay, Stadsklev, Vayle, and Green) cannot be used as a basis for this article. The article must be based on secondary sources and we must restrict any analysis to those independent sources. Taxee (talk) 16:41, 18 May 2015 (UTC)
This article is largely based on a highly critical book about William Branham written by a baptist theologian. It goes without saying that his personal faith and connections to the baptist denomination will heavily impact his level of objectivity. His negatively loaded language is a clear giveaway. To put it another way, it would be like letting the pope write Jeanne d'Arc's biography, had Wikipedia been around in those days. The result is the direct opposite of a hagiographic text, which is just as big a problem. Do you see my point? Eforsund (talk) 21:36, 18 May 2015 (UTC)
I deleted the material referenced to Oosthuizen and Crowder as it is not properly referenced and therefore cannot be validated. As such, it must be assumed to be a primary source.
Taxee: In what way are these sources not properly referenced? Eforsund (talk) 07:46, 19 May 2015 (UTC)
With respect, the book by Weaver must be considered the most reliable source of information on the subject of William Branham. The most reliable sources are:
  • Peer-reviewed journals
  • Books published by university presses
  • University-level textbooks
  • Magazines, journals, and books published by respected publishing houses
  • Mainstream newspapers
You may not like Wikipedia standards and policy but that is what an encyclopedic article must be based on. Weaver's book is published by a university press and that fact that you don't like his analysis does not give you the right to exclude it. Taxee (talk) 22:27, 18 May 2015 (UTC)
Taxee: I am discussing these policies with you now. Is there really no policy that considers balance? When more than 50% of sources come from one book, the balance is no longer there. Is there really no policy that also allows one to question or critic sources? Eforsund (talk) 07:46, 19 May 2015 (UTC)
Re: "the book by Weaver must be considered the most reliable source of information on the subject of William Branham", and given that a large degree of sourcing comes from the book, wouldn't that come into conflict with WP:RS and WP:UNDUE? It's not like Weaver has some kind of special right to "hold the floor" on this subject, right? As for balance that Eforsund speaks of, there should be well-referenced representations of what the subject thought of himself, as long as it's secondary, or written by the subject himself. It's not hagiographic to present someone's views, even if most considered such views flawed. Stevie is the man! TalkWork 13:25, 19 May 2015 (UTC)
Stevie is the man!, if primary sources from the pro-Branham side are included then one must also include primary sources that are highly critical of Branham (there are plenty of them). The article in its present state avoids both of these extremes. This problem is clearly spelled out in the NRM Manual of Style which states that "Wikipedia's articles on new religious movements (NRMs) have frequently proved contentious. The key to stable, neutral articles in this contentious field is good sourcing: focus on using the best, most reputable sources, above all scholarly sources, and avoid the use of primary sources – both movement and countermovement sources." This is even more critical here because Branham is not well known; hence the dearth of good materials.
One must also pay attention to the Wkipedia policy that any exceptional claim requires multiple high-quality sources. For example, the followers of William Branham claim that a picture was taken of Branham with a supernatural being hovering over his head. Opponents to Branham challenge that claim. The policy on exceptional claims states that one must use extra caution when challenged claims are supported purely by primary or self-published sources. That is the case here. Weaver and Harrell deal with this issue objectively, which is the proper treatment.
There are really only 2 academic books that devote significant attention to Branham, Harrell and Weaver. Weaver is the only in-depth analysis. BUT there are 16 other secondary sources on the subject of Branham and, while they only devote a couple of pages to Branham, none of them contradict or are opposed to Weaver's conclusion and many of them reference him as a reliable source.
The only other solution would be to significantly scale back the article in such a way as to keep the details regarding Branham to the minimum found in all of the secondary sources. That would probably be more in keeping with Branham's importance in 20th century Pentacostalism but may not be acceptable to Eforsund.
I am certainly prepared to leave the article as is or to work with Eforsund to scale it back. But I think it would be in opposition to Wikipedia policy to simply allow this page to be based on primary sources favorable to Branham while not allowing the opposing view. That is a slippery slope that will lead to a common outcome on NRM pages. The NRM topic area is among a very small number of topic areas consistently generating several intractable disputes per year that require the intervention of Wikipedia's arbitration committee. As a result of these arbitration cases, over the years dozens of editors – both committed members and committed opponents of new religious movements - have received topic bans, even site bans. I really don't want to go there. Taxee (talk) 15:08, 19 May 2015 (UTC)
I think it's rather simple. Let a minimal piece of the article be Branham speaking for himself -- after all, he's the subject. I'm not talking about what others said of him, pro or con. You don't have to have directly challenging information against what the subject says about themselves -- you're just presenting their views. We have other articles reproducing quotes and thoughts of their subjects, and this article should be no different.
Also, I don't think we should pretend to be comfortable with the apparent lack of secondary sources, and we shouldn't be giving extra-heavy weight to one person's analysis, even if one thinks it's spot on. Stevie is the man! TalkWork 17:25, 19 May 2015 (UTC)
Thank you, Stevietheman and Taxee. It seems like we are moving in the direction of a more balanced biography that also allows the subject to speak for himself. What we have right now is "Branham according to Weaver", and the whole article is heeling over. Please advise on how to proceed further. Thanks! Eforsund (talk) 21:16, 19 May 2015 (UTC)
Stevietheman, your suggestion is unlikely to work for the simple reason that Branham made a significant number of exceptional claims about himself. An article solely based on Branham's claims would be hagiographic in nature. That's not the point of articles in Wikipedia. This is the primary area of dispute in all NRM articles. If Eforsund is prepared to accept an article with zero exceptional claims, then it may work but I don't expect that this would be acceptable to him. That is precisely the value of secondary sources, they look at exceptional claims objectively. I would think that a better approach would be to eliminate much of the detail on Branham's life and ministry and only include those exceptional claims that are dealt with in multiple secondary sources, including Weaver and Harrell. As I indicated, we have 18 secondary sources listed, however, virtually all of them restrict the comments on Branham to a few paragraphs because in the grand scale of things he is not particularly relevant. If that is acceptable to Eforsund, then we can probably make it work. Taxee (talk) 05:07, 20 May 2015 (UTC)
First, please stop pinging me, as I watch this page, and this convo isn't exactly high-priority for any reason. Secondly, it doesn't matter if Branham's claims about himself are exceptional -- if he said them about himself, and he's notable enough for an article, a summary of them should be included. It's not hagiographic to say what a notable person said about themselves in their own writing. Also, it isn't entirely necessary that the limited secondary sources respond to all of his claims. Respect the intelligence of the reader to sort it out. Stevie is the man! TalkWork 11:40, 20 May 2015 (UTC)
Pinging you? Not me. I didn't even look at the talk page until last night. I don't even know how to ping someone . I don't really understand how it's beneficial to ignore basic Wikipedia policy in an article and go with primary sources. Do you have a reference to a policy so that I can understand where you are coming from, particularly given the NRM manual of style? Taxee (talk) 12:10, 20 May 2015 (UTC)

Branham and Jim Jones[edit]

The article fails to mention that Branham helped start the ministry of Jim Jones. Jones and Branham shared the pulpit in June 1956. This is detailed in Raven: The Untold Story of the Rev. Jim Jones and His People by Tim Reiterman. Taxee (talk) 15:02, 6 September 2014 (UTC)

And this somehow makes WB responsible for what happened in 1978, does it? Rev107 (talk) 06:11, 7 September 2014 (UTC)
I never said that. It is, however, an important fact that is missing from this article. Taxee (talk) 13:05, 7 September 2014 (UTC)
How is it important to WB's life? Rev107 (talk)
How is it important? Are you serious? He helped launch Jim Jones and you don't think that it's important? Go read the Jim Jones article, they reference Branham and this article. It is an important fact related to Branham's life and ministry. Taxee (talk) 05:38, 8 September 2014 (UTC)
William Branham held meetings and had contact with literally thousands of ministers/churches, and it is not pertinent to this article to name them. This comment makes Jim Jones the subject instead of William Branham and therefore is not fitting. It is rightly left to the Jim Jones article. That he helped "launch" Jim Jones is an opinion. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Electseed (talkcontribs) 11:38, 8 September 2014 (UTC)
Taxee, I asked how is it important to WB's lfe? Whether WB was important in JJ's life is debatable but there is no evidence that JJ was important in WB's life. Rev107 (talk) 01:13, 9 September 2014 (UTC)
An important aspect of the article is the impact that Branham had on Christendom and on the US. There is no question that he had a significant impact. The question is what was the extent of that impact. The fact that he helped to launch Jim Jones is not insignificant given Jones later history.
Are you aware that Jones referred to what he was saying as "the Message"? Given the historical importance of both Jones and Branham in American history, this is a fact that should be included in this article. Remember that the article should be based on secondary sources whereas it is still based primarily on primary sources. Taxee (talk) 02:20, 9 September 2014 (UTC)
Are you aware that John referred to what Jesus said as "the Message?" (1 John 1:5, 3:11) There is no connection to be drawn between JJ and WB based on Jim Jones use of the phrase. There is no evidence that Jim Jones had any impression or impact in the life or ministry of William Branham therefore the comment is not appropriate. Furthermore, there is no evidence to suggest Jim Jones was impacted by William Branham. The fact that William Branham ministered at this certain meeting where Jim Jones was present does not establish what you are seeking to establish. William Branham was in meetings with perhaps millions of people and tens of thousands of ministers over his lifetime, and so to reference Jim Jones on that bases—that inturn makes him the subject of this article, is out of order. Nevertheless, if there is information that Jim Jones was someway effected by William Branham, then the proper place to establish that is on the Jim Jones article. Electseed — Preceding unsigned comment added by 173.187.108.116 (talk) 15:23, 9 September 2014 (UTC)
I agree with the above comment. Section removed. Rev107 (talk) 01:30, 10 September 2014 (UTC)
Why is everything that is negative about Branham removed or moved out of the main section on his biography even though is it confirmed in multiple secondary sources? Why is the emphasis on primary sources and not on secondary sources? Taxee (talk) 03:57, 10 September 2014 (UTC)
It is not an issue of negative or positive - it is an issue of relevance and importance.
You deleted the section on the "seven seals" when Weaver states: "The most significant experience of the 1960's was Branham's opening of the seven seals of Rev 6-8". I have now included his reference. Rev107 (talk) 07:10, 10 September 2014 (UTC)
I deleted the paragraph because the references were only to primary sources. If the information is backed up by secondary sources, then there is reason to include it. Given the new reference to a secondary source, I have no reason to exclude it (subject to verifying that the secondary source is correct). My concern is when, as was the case here, the only references are primary sources. The content that I deleted was only referenced to primary sources. Primary sources are to be used for illustration only, according to Wikipedia guidelines. Taxee (talk) 14:53, 10 September 2014 (UTC)
Your edit reinstating the paragraph with a link to Weaver as a secondary source highlights the essence of my concerns. You use primary sources for the material and then put in the secondary source as a reference but the material is not changed to reflect what the secondary source actually says about the material. I have revised the paragraph (which probably needs a bit more work to accurately reflect what Weaver says about the subject of Branham's series on the seven seals but it now includes Weaver's analysis of the subject. The picture painted is much different than that derived from the primary sources. Taxee (talk) 15:13, 13 September 2014 (UTC)

The information included on Jim Jones in the article is from a secondary source. In accordance with Wikipedia policy, if a quote of Jim Jones (i.e. a primary source) is included in the article it should be used to make straightforward, descriptive statements of facts. The quote that I removed was used in a way that constituted original research. Jones' comments are difficult to interpret and therefore should be excluded and only referred to through the analysis from secondary sources. Taxee (talk) 16:56, 18 May 2015 (UTC)

Article Tag[edit]

This article has been tagged since 21 June. Since that time not one disputed statement has been identified & substantiated. Only two disputed statements have been raised and both have been resolved: (1) WB's date of birth has been established by 2 authoritative secondary sources (Weaver & Harrell), and (2) the name of the church in which WB was ordained has been clarified (the name was "First Pentecostal Baptist" church which was a Missionary Baptist church).

The editor currently maintaining the tag is not discussing disputed statements. He/she is only adding new material and discussing the use of sources. In these circumstances the tag cannot be maintained. The tag is not used to indicate an editor's reservations about the use of primary & secondary sources. Rev107 (talk) 02:37, 10 September 2014 (UTC)

I restored the tag. If other editors involved in recent disputes will report here that they have been resolved, then it will make sense to remove it. Stevie is the man! TalkWork 02:59, 10 September 2014 (UTC)
If you carefully examine the above discussions you will see that there is no ongoing discussion regarding any specific disputed statements as required by the tag. The current discussions concern sources and additional information, not factual accuracy. In the absence of an ongoing discussion related to factual accuracy the tag can be removed. By removing the tag I am attempting to force any "factual inaccuracies" to be clearly stated so they can be addressed. It is patently unfair to replace the tag without clearly identifying the specific statements in the article that are being challenged for factual accuracy. Wikipedia:Tagging pages for problems Rev107 (talk) 10:46, 10 September 2014 (UTC)
The tag is placed via common sense. There are obviously ongoing recent disputes about the content continuing to happen. I am not going into any details because I am not going to become part of the disputes. As I said before, somebody has to play neutral -- it's either me or some other third party. I would characterize the disputes as supporting the inclusion of the tag. But I'll tell you what -- as long as nobody else seriously challenges your removal below or starts a new topic that supports the tag, I won't restore it. Otherwise, I will, and I will seek admin assistance to make it stick. Stevie is the man! TalkWork 11:29, 10 September 2014 (UTC)

Support or Oppose removal of factual dispute tag[edit]

Here is a place where recent disputants can either Support or Oppose removal of the tag that begins with "This article's factual accuracy is disputed." I will not be a participant. Please explain why you support or oppose. Stevie is the man! TalkWork 11:40, 10 September 2014 (UTC)

I oppose the removal of the tag - This article contains many statements, "facts" and conclusions drawn from primary sources. The problem with these sources are apparent from the comment in Weaver's book:
The reliability of William Branham's biographical material should be viewed with caution. This is because Branham's autobiographical stories were often embellished, and sometimes contradictory. Other sources, written by his associates or followers, are apologetic and hagiographical in nature.
There is not dissimilar comment in the July 2013 article on Branham by J. Greg Sheryl in the Quarterly Journal of the Personal Freedom Outreach. So we have scholars saying that the primary source material is suspect. As a result, the quality of this article is also dubious and should be tagged as such. I am willing to work towards ensuring that this article is based on secondary sources and maintains a NPOV.
The manual of style for new religious movements states that:
In the NRM field, primary sources include:
  • Writings or other media published by an NRM;
  • Writings or media recordings of a movement's founder;
  • Self-published writings of members and ex-members;
  • Websites of members, ex-members and critics.
Primary sources can be cited to support specific statements, but the bulk of the article should rely on secondary sources.
This is also mandated in the Wikipedia policies on no original research.
Wikipedia recognizes that the NRM topic area is among a very small number of topic areas consistently generating several intractable disputes per year that require the intervention of Wikipedia's arbitration committee. Given the most recent comments by Rev107 suggesting that I need to deal with this through dispute resolution, I expect that our current problem is insoluble and I will need to head down the path of dispute resolution. I had hoped that compromise was possible and that I could work together with the other editor to ensure that the article was based on secondary sources, but that increasingly appears to be unattainable. Taxee (talk) 15:10, 10 September 2014 (UTC)

I oppose the removal of the tag - "Facts must always be presented to counter Branham's fiction." User:Vindicated1 — Preceding undated comment added 16:45, 10 September 2014 (UTC)

I oppose the removal of the tag. The source documents from which this information is taken are taken primarily from the words of William Branham himself. Yet, when these words are closely examined, a pattern of inconsistencies between them and the known facts are observed, as well as a tendencey to extremely exaggerate and embellish the accounts. Extensive research has been done recently and is published on several websites that demonstrate this. These websites include www.believethesign.com, www.seekyethetruth.com, and www.searchingforvindication.com. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Truth or Fiction (talkcontribs) 17:20, 10 September 2014 (UTC)

I OPPOSE THE REMOVAL OF THE TAG. Almost all of the biographical material is drawn from Branham's own telling of his life story. The telling of his life story changes dramatically from account to account, and is embellished dramatically. Most of the third party references on the site do not independently verify his claims, but rather assume his telling of his biography is accurate and reference his claims verbatim. For example, the Biography section claims that he had a boxing career and was a cowboy in Arizona. However, the boxing records from the locations, time periods and the weights he said he fought in contain no record of him. His claims of being a cowboy in Arizona conflict with instances where he claims to be a cowboy in Kansas. His stories from this period are suspiciously similar to the plots of popular western shows of the time. There are various websites such as www.searchingforvindication.com and www.believethesign.com and others that have worked hard to reconcile his stories with historical records such as newspaper clippings and birth and marriage certificates, that show his Wikipedia biography to be significantly inaccurate and factually incorrect. These websites have become more accurate in compiling a biography that matches (and is based upon) recorded and documented history. Bus-stop3 (talk) 18:01, 10 September 2014 (UTC)

I oppose the removal of the tag William Branham's own words often contradict each other and his stories change over time. There is legal documentation proving that he lied about his birth date, the church he attended, and many statements he made concerning events in his life. You may view the documents at www.searchingforvindication.com. Blittzer (talk) 19:37, 10 September 2014 (UTC)Blittzer

Tag Removed[edit]

I have removed the tag based on the edits over the past 2 months which relates everything in the article to secondary sources, primarily Weaver and Harrell. Taxee (talk) 19:50, 11 November 2014 (UTC)

Dispute resolution[edit]

I tried editing this article in 2013 but gave up after being embroiled in a dispute over content. I ended up with the distinct feeling that one needed to be a lawyer to edit anything on Wikipedia. So I walked away.

I came back recently after reading a new book on the subject of Branham that was published earlier this year which contained a lot of information on Branham that had not previously been published. It became readily apparent after a short time that things had not changed with trying to edit this article. While I wish compromise could be reached, it does not appear that this is likely to happen without third party intervention at some level.

I should also add that, while I formerly attended a church that followed Branham, my aim is to present a fair and balanced picture of Branham. I do appreciate that Wikipedia is not a place for advocacy in favour of or in opposition to a movement. What I would like to see is a neutral, balanced and careful summary of the existing literature of Branham. I do not believe that the article currently reflects this.

I have done a fair amount of reading of the relevant Wikipedia policies and believe that to make this article factually correct and NPOV, we need to arrive at a reasonable consensus on the following:

  • The article should conform to the NRM manual of style (NRMMOS).
  • As outlined in the NRMMOS, the article should be based on reliable secondary sources. IMHO, the article as it stands needs a thorough review to ensure that this is the case.
  • As also outlined in the NRMMOS, editors also should not use primary sources for explicit or implicit advocacy for or against a new religious movement, unless they cite a reliably published secondary source using the same primary source in the same manner.
  • The NRMMOS also recommends that an article on the founder of a religious movement should cover at least the following points:
  1. Biography, including important events in the movement's history
  2. Teachings
  3. Reception of the founder and her or his movement
Nowhere is it suggested that any negative analysis from secondary sources should be excluded from the relevant section and relegated to a "criticism" section.

If Rev107 is willing, I would like to suggest trying the use of a third opinion. This is neither mandatory nor binding. Rather, it is a voluntary, nonbinding, informal mechanism through which two editors currently in dispute can request an opinion from an uninvolved third editor.

Trying to edit the article in any reasonable fashion is a complete waste of time if the majority of substantive edits are simply reverted without any willingness to compromise or undertake a reasonable discussion on the merits of the edit. Taxee (talk) 04:00, 11 September 2014 (UTC)

Footnotes[edit]

I am going to clean up the footnotes in the article which could take some time. The current footnoting style makes editing the article difficult. Using a bibliography and small footnotes will make editing easier and should also help those that are interested in doing further research.

I have started with Weaver (as he was the first footnote) then will go through the entire article. I will not be making any edits other than the footnotes while doing this.

I will also be going through the article and removing embedded links in the footnotes. Embedded links are to be avoided as outlined in Wikipedia:Citing sources#Avoid embedded links:

Embedded links to external websites should not be used as a form of inline citation, because they are highly susceptible to linkrot. Wikipedia allowed this in its early years... This is no longer recommended. Raw links are not recommended in lieu of properly written out citations, even if placed between ref tags... Taxee (talk) 03:05, 17 September 2014 (UTC)

William Branham[edit]

I have noticed that the William Branham page has been edited over the past year or so and articles and negative opinions have dominated the page. The original page which was likely written by his family or people who knew and loved him. Since the recent edits have been placed into the page the true story of the man and his ministry have been clouded by skepticism and borderline hate literature. One must understand why certain people would be motivated to write a book or a chapter of a book to discredit the ministry of William Branham it is because William Branham disagreed with what that person believed. Any person could write a book or an article and self publish it which neither makes the book true or false, it is just merely one person's opinion put into writing. So to constantly quote a book written by Weaver who was an obvious critic of the man and to imply that because it came from a book it must than be true would be naive. The page now is riddled with skepticism and needs to taken down and rewritten. There have risen certain groups of former followers of the message of William Branham that have made it their mission in life to discredit this man and his ministry. They have been allowed a free for all on the page. — Preceding unsigned comment added by B.G. Perkins (talkcontribs) 00:06, 6 May 2015 (UTC)

I haven't been involved in any of the content development of this article, but it's important to understand some things:
  • This is an encyclopedia article that discusses notable facts and reported public discourse (positive or negative) about a subject, not a page devoted only to praising the subject (i.e., a hagiography).
  • Articles ordinarily should not be written by people close to the subject (family, close friends, etc.) as that poses a conflict of interest.
  • The article should have only secondary sources such as newspapers and non-self-published books. If you can identify a citation that comes from a self-published book, feel free to disclose it on this talk page, and people who work on this article should address it. If any content (positive or negative about the subject) is based on a self-published book, it should be ordinarily be removed, perhaps unless it is material that discusses how the subject views himself in his own published works.
  • There is nothing essentially wrong with skepticism that is cited from respected publications and maintains a significant proportion of thought about the subject. Of course, there could possibly be issues with balance. If you want to argue that the skepticism is WP:UNDUE, that is, given too much weight, it would be helpful to identify particular parts of the article where you find this to be the case, so that can be addressed.
  • I don't see a reason to take the article down, per se. We ordinarily do not do that in the Wikipedia except for two reasons: If the content was copied/pasted from copyrighted work or if the subject is not notable. If you have specific parts of the article to contest, this talk page is the place to discuss.
I've tried here to explain how the site works and what the expectations are. I hope this helps. Stevie is the man! TalkWork 10:15, 6 May 2015 (UTC)

This article is extremely biased[edit]

I am an avid user of Wikipedia, which I believe is a fantastic project that provides Internet users with unbiased information on a vast range of topics.

I was therefore surprised to find the opposite when I read this article about William Branham, which could be best described as a synopsis of Douglas Weaver's book: "The Healer-Prophet".

The current article has no less than 49 references to Douglas Weaver's book, which in itself is not the problem, although these references account for more than half of the references put together.

The problem is that Douglas Weaver is not a reliable source of unbiased information.

The mere fact that he is a baptist theologian (and former baptist pastor) working as a professor in a private Baptist university (Baylor) implies that his agenda would be to defend the baptist faith, theology and tradition in an apologetic manner.

Take into account that Wililam Branham started out as an independent baptist minister and later left the denomination.

In light of this:

In its current state this article is heavily biased against William Branham, it is based on highly biased sources and should be taken down and rewritten.

Eforsund (talk) 06:45, 13 May 2015 (UTC)

We don't "take down" articles in the Wikipedia unless there is copyright infringement. If you want to improve the article, have at it as long as wiki guidelines are followed. Stevie is the man! TalkWork 15:44, 13 May 2015 (UTC)
Baylor is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools(SACS) is one of the six regional accreditationorganizations recognized by the United States Department of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation. Dr. Weaver is a respected academic so the comment on bias should be validated by another secondary source if it is to be viewed as credible.
Wikipedia articles should be based on reliable, published secondary sources and, to a lesser extent, on tertiary sources and primary sources. There is a list of secondary sources in the article and Dr. Weaver's book is the only one focused solely on William Branham that was published by a university press. His book is well footnoted and referenced to primary sources and he interviewed a number of William Branham's associates. If you have a better secondary source or other secondary sources that are not referred to in the article, please reference them. Taxee (talk) 01:38, 15 May 2015 (UTC)
I made a significant edit to the article which involved removing original research as well as improperly referenced material and NPOV information. Using primary source material to derive conclusions is considered “original research” and is not appropriate in Wikipedia articles. Also, Harrell's excellent work on the healing revival which devotes over 20 pages to Branham must be tempered by the later, more extensive (192 page) work by Weaver. Removing Weaver's analysis and replacing it with hagiographic material is even more inappropriate. Additionally, removing a quote from a secondary source and replacing it with something from a hagiographic source is also inappropriate.
I would suggest in the future that any significant edits, particularly those using primary sources (which generally end up in original research) should be discussed on the talk page first. Taxee (talk) 00:29, 18 May 2015 (UTC)
I apologize for those of my contributions have been contrary to the best practices for Wikipedia articles. It was never my intention. I also thank for constructive feedback from Taxe regarding this. Nevertheless, the article is in its current form is anything but objective. Information that was deleted in the latest revision has removed important information such as:
  • The result of the IRS 's investigation of Branham
  • The conclusion of the investigation of the photo that was taken in Houston, Texas
(In addition to other important and updated information)
Why is this deleted? If formatting of sources is not done in a proper way, please point it out. We do not want a hagiographical article, but nor do we wish an article that omits important information like the kind mentioned above.
I will therefore remit this information, unless you have reasons I do not know of, that would suggest otherwise. Eforsund (talk) 13:10, 18 May 2015 (UTC)
The article must be based information on secondary sources (see discussion above). Regarding the Houston photo, the comments from Sims book are appropriate (as it is a secondary source) but those from Lindsay's book are not as it is a primary source. Taxee (talk) 17:18, 18 May 2015 (UTC)
Taxee: It is quite strange that Weaver never mentions the outcome of the examination of the photograph, but it might be an outcome he didn't like. George J. Lacy was a respected examiner of questioned documents, and this document exists and has been referenced to in many books. If you are really interested in an informative and correct article, how would you suggest we solve this?Eforsund (talk) 07:51, 19 May 2015 (UTC)

Actually when you compare Branham's stories all through his sermons, you will find the man contradicted himself many times.A good indication he was making things up. You only have to look at his complete different life stories . One version is that he was raised to a young man in the mountains of Cumberland,Kentucky together with his siblings . In another version he says the Branhams moved to New Albany,Indiana when he was still very little (about 290 km/180 miles westward!). And was raised there , which is confirmed by US census records.He was 3 years when they moved to Indiana! This is something we see going on with all his stories. Also the miracle healing stories. A good example is the king George VI case. There's nowhere any record of him visiting the king or the king suffering from multiple sclerosis . In fact he had arteriosclerosis and died in 1952. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/George_VI . Here we see Branham was confusing names of diseases , probably had read about the king somewhere. After the king's death he still claimed he was healed by his prayer.Argus52Genesis (talk) 20:17, 18 May 2015 (UTC)

Whose comment is this? No signature? 86.62.143.189 (talk) 19:59, 18 May 2015 (UTC) Sorry I'm learning to work with this Argus52Genesis (talk) 20:18, 18 May 2015 (UTC)

Very Narrow View; We Need More Information![edit]

This article has become a battle field of opinion due to it's conflicting nature. I would like to suggest we add substantial information to this article and allow the reader to decide what he/she would like to read about William Branham. If an Individual is looking for something to criticize William Branham on then they will find it here. On the other hand if someone is looking for a more positive read on his life they will also find that here. This never the less is only possible if we stop fighting and allow both Positive and Negative things to appear on this page for the Reader to find. If neither side is willing to compromise in this way this page might as well be pulled from Wikipedia altogether. Thank you for Considering this Idea--Footprints on the Sands of Time (talk) 02:28, 12 August 2015 (UTC)

@Footprints on the Sands of Time:, it's not as straightforward as balancing positives and negatives. I will welcome you to the Wikipedia on your talk page with some helpful links to pages that you can read to see what we're trying to accomplish in this and other articles. Stevie is the man! TalkWork 13:19, 12 August 2015 (UTC)
The article is currently based on secondary sources as outlined in the NRM manual of style. Articles should be based on reliable secondary sources and wikipedians should not rely on, or try to interpret the content or importance of, primary sources. Editors also should not use primary sources for explicit or implicit advocacy for or against a new religious movement, unless they cite a reliably published secondary source using the same primary source in the same manner.
Primary sources can be cited to support specific statements, but the bulk of the article should rely on secondary sources. This is what the current article was based on. The most significant secondary sources are the books by Harrel, Weaver and Duyzer. Basing the article on primary source material from both pro and anti-Branham sources would result in an article that is clearly outside of the NRM manual of style. Taxee (talk) 01:50, 13 August 2015 (UTC)
This is all very fine; but may I point out that this page is about William Branham and not a New religious movement. --Footprints on the Sands of Time (talk) 01:39, 14 August 2015 (UTC)
@Footprints on the Sands of Time:, the NRM manual of style is based on the overall principles of Wikipedia and covers articles on the founders of new movements, which Branham is. The reason for the NRM manual of style is the often contentious nature of articles about NRMs and their founders. The three core content policies of Wikipedia are "NPOV" (representing fairly, proportionately, and, as far as possible, without bias, all of the significant views that have been published by reliable sources on a topic); "verifiability" (information must come from a reliable source) and "no original research" (no analysis or synthesis of published material that serves to reach or imply a conclusion not stated by the sources).
A comprehensive list of secondary sources is provided in the article on Branham. Those reliable sources are what the article should be based on according to Wikipedia policy. Taxee (talk) 17:52, 14 August 2015 (UTC)

Recent reverted edits[edit]

Instead of engaging in an edit conflict, I'm going to list problems with the content/headings being added back:

  • The section "Ordained a Baptist Minister" is not referenced at all and refers to the subject as "Billy". Generally, we refer to subjects by their last name, and subsequently in a paragraph, use a pronoun, in this case, 'he'.
  • Many of the headings don't reflect their content. A couple examples:
    • "Pillar of Fire Appears While Baptizing" -- there is a bright light reported, but no "pillar of fire", in the content as written. Editors aren't allowed to read in their personal thoughts into what happened.
    • "Stunts of the Devil" and "Devil Uses the Government" -- these couldn't be more obviously POV. An editor must keep the content and headings factual and neutral. Especially in these cases, there seems to be no interest in being objective.
  • Most of the headings don't use the wiki heading style, with non-proper nouns lower-cased, and we use 'and' instead of '&'. This is a minor concern compared to the above items.
  • Also, it's unusual to break sections like this into single paragraphs with headings. It looks unprofessional and not serious.

Stevie is the man! TalkWork 01:54, 14 August 2015 (UTC)

@Footprints on the Sands of Time:, in addition to the above issues I outlined, I want to address the edit summary you last used: "These Headings are very useful and don't break any rules". Some of them actually do break one of the pillars of Wikipedia called WP:NPOV, also a core content policy. As I stated above, a couple of them are so subjective that in no possible way will they stay in this article. Also, your added paragraph breaks another core content policy called WP:V. You may want to read the pages I've linked to, as they are very important to this encyclopedia. And that's no matter what I have written on my user page about guidelines. We're not talking mere guidelines -- we are talking the hard policies of this site. Stevie is the man! TalkWork 02:13, 14 August 2015 (UTC)

@Stevietheman:Your right. Sorry to cause problems with your policies. I also apologize for being so biased I see your point there too.--Footprints on the Sands of Time (talk) 02:22, 14 August 2015 (UTC)

William Branham's 7 Visions of 1933[edit]

It has been proposed that the following addition be made to the article:

The seven major events of the 1933 vision were:

  1. Mussolini would conquer Ethiopia, but then die a horrible death at the hands of his own people.
  2. America would be drawn into a world war against Germany which would be headed up by the Austrian, Adolph Hitler, who would be vanquished and come to a mysterious end.
  3. Nazism and Fascism would come to nothing but Communism would flourish.
  4. The fourth vision indicated the advance of technology, showing an egg-shaped car with a glass bubble roof which drove itself as the passengers played some kind of game.
  5. The fifth scene had to do with the disappearance of modesty. He saw a woman, fully dressed at first, but her clothing became increasingly revealing until she was wearing nothing but “a little fig leaf type apron.”
  6. There will arise over America a beautiful but cruel woman of great power and terrible splendor. Branham suggested three interpretations of this femme fatale: 1) The Roman Catholic Church, 2) a female president, 3) a symbol of womankind overthrowing God-ordained gender roles and dominating men.
  7. “In the last and seventh vision I heard a terrible explosion. As I turned to look I saw nothing but debris, craters and smoke all over the land of America.

Reference provided is ”Branham, W,, Exposition of the Seven Church Ages, William Branham Evangelistic Outreach, 1965" with no page number.

There are several problems with this proposed edit:

1. It is based on primary source material

2. Because the primary source material disagrees with itself in several places, listing this material without listing the other versions of these visions is inappropriate.

3.. This primary source material is not a direct quote. Therefore, given that other primary source material is at odds with this information, the proposed edit must be considered original research. Original research is not permitted per Wikipedia policy.

4. Given that these "prophecies" are dealt with in Weaver's secondary source material, that is where the information in the article should come from.

Taxee (talk) 00:47, 19 March 2016 (UTC)

That does seem to be the biggest issue with proposed additions to the article - they've mostly been based on primary sources with questionable reliability. While that last vague tidbit about a female president is somewhat interesting, I would argue for maintaining the status quo for now. Unless any of his revelations or sermons can be found to be clearly relevant to his Teachings or his Legacy - as established by secondary sources - they should not be included. <> Alt lys er svunnet hen (talk) 05:17, 4 September 2016 (UTC)

Is Weaver unreliable?[edit]

As I have reverted changes I thought I have started a discussion. (I have no opinion) Red Jay (talk) 11:29, 21 January 2017 (UTC)

@Taxee: I think you are best suited to answer this as I remember you advocated for this source previously. Stevie is the man! TalkWork 17:43, 21 January 2017 (UTC)
Wikipedia's content is governed by three principal core content policies: neutral point of view, verifiability, and no original research. Verifiability means that other people using the encyclopedia can check that the information comes from a reliable source. Academic and peer-reviewed publications are generally the most reliable sources. With respect to William Branham, we have two such sources that are significant - David Harrell's book, All Things Are Possible: The Healing and Charismatic Revivals in Modern America, (Indiana University Press, 1978) and Douglas Weaver's book, The Healer-Prophet: William Marrion Branham (A study of the Prophetic in American Pentecostalism) (Mercer University Press, 2000). Harrell's book devotes a portion of several chapters to Branham whereas Weaver's book is focused solely on Branham.
Based on the Wikipedia essay on writing articles on new religious movements, articles on new religious movements (NRMs) have frequently proved contentious. The key to stable, neutral articles in this contentious field is good sourcing: focus on using the best, most reputable sources, above all scholarly sources, and avoid the use of primary sources – both movement and countermovement sources. That is what the article on William Branham is based on - the best, most reputable, scholarly sources. However, Weaver's book is viewed as unreliable by William Branham's followers precisely because it is a peer reviewed objective analysis of Branham's life and ministry.
Neutrality requires that the article should fairly represent all significant facts and viewpoints that have been published in reliable sources, and should do so in proportion to the prominence of each. Due weight is established by secondary sources. Prominent topics in self-published sources (movement and countermovement) may not be prominent in third-party sources (such as scholarly works); but it is the latter which establish due weight in articles on new religious movements. Wikipedia is not a place for advocacy in favour of or in opposition to a movement. I think that the current article is a neutral, balanced and careful summary of the existing secondary source material on William Branham. However, I do appreciate that both supporters and detractors of Branham may disagree with Weaver, but that doesn't mean Weaver is unreliable. Based on my research, it is the most reliable secondary source in existence. It is an independent, peer reviewed, academic publication and so must be given appropriate weight. Taxee (talk) 19:03, 21 January 2017 (UTC)
Weaver has proven unreliable because of his putting his own opinion in his book rather than the facts. For one thing, the "Halo" photo was examined by George J. Lacy, an expert in questionable documents, and he said the light did strike the negative. Weaver says it is an obviously scratched negative. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 184.63.76.237 (talk) 13:54, 22 July 2017 (UTC)
Have you read the Weaver book? If so, could you please provide me the page on which he states that the negative was obviously scratched? I actually don't think you have read the book because I have searched it and can't find the passage you are referring to. Darlig Gitarist (talk) 14:08, 23 July 2017 (UTC)

NPOV dispute -Biography[edit]

Wikipedia's NPOV section states under "Assert facts, not opinions" : When a statement is an opinion (e.g. a matter which is subject to serious dispute or commonly considered to be subjective), it should be attributed in the text to the person or group who holds the opinion. Thus we might write: "John Doe's baseball skills have been praised by baseball insiders such as Al Kaline and Joe Torre.[1]". We do not write: "John Doe is the best baseball player". The inclusion of opinions is subject to weight policy, and they should be backed up with an inline citation to a reliable source that verifies both the opinion and who holds it.

The statement "The reliability of William Branham's biographical material should be viewed with caution. This is because Branham's autobiographical stories were often embellished, and sometimes contradictory." Is a assertion of opinion, and although it is a cited opinion it is asserted as fact. This is not dissimilar to the statement "John Doe is the best baseball player" in the example above. Instead it should includes the words "According to Weaver" or other such inline attribution.

That is an overly biased statement that could be asserted to any religious leader of any religion who has had biographical work written about them. This statement also tells the reader what attitude to take towards the material of unsaid number of books. The term "biographical material" could encompass every book ever written on the man and any future books to be written. This is a biased and unfair generalization. The statement "This is because Branham's autobiographical stories were often embellished, and sometimes contradictory" makes a unneccessary point with no citation to specifics. By saying "often embellished" are we to assume the author has omnipotent information of every autobiography written or will ever be written on the man? How does he know? What does he mean by "often"? These are natural objections. Without specifics this opinion is not verifiable. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Zionram (talkcontribs) 21:48, 14 June 2017 (UTC)

The fact that you disagree with the research and conclusions of secondary source material does not mean that the secondary source material is NPOV. Well researched opinions of seconday sources hold weight on Wikipedia.
To repeat what is stated earlier in this talk page, Wikipedia's content is governed by three principal core content policies: neutral point of view, verifiability, and no original research. Verifiability means that other people using the encyclopedia can check that the information comes from a reliable source. Academic and peer-reviewed publications are generally the most reliable sources. With respect to William Branham, we have two such sources that are significant - David Harrell's book, All Things Are Possible: The Healing and Charismatic Revivals in Modern America, (Indiana University Press, 1978) and Douglas Weaver's book, The Healer-Prophet: William Marrion Branham (A study of the Prophetic in American Pentecostalism) (Mercer University Press, 2000). Harrell's book devotes a portion of several chapters to Branham whereas Weaver's book is focused solely on Branham.
Based on the Wikipedia essay on writing articles on new religious movements, articles on new religious movements (NRMs) have frequently proved contentious. The key to stable, neutral articles in this contentious field is good sourcing: focus on using the best, most reputable sources, above all scholarly sources, and avoid the use of primary sources – both movement and countermovement sources. That is what the article on William Branham is based on - the best, most reputable, scholarly sources. However, Weaver's book is viewed as unreliable by William Branham's followers precisely because it is a peer reviewed objective analysis of Branham's life and ministry.
Neutrality requires that the article should fairly represent all significant facts and viewpoints that have been published in reliable sources, and should do so in proportion to the prominence of each. Due weight is established by secondary sources. Primary sources (in this case, both pro-Branham and and anti-Branham) do not establish due weight; only secondary sources can be used to establish due weight in articles on new religious movements. Wikipedia is not a place for advocacy in favour of or in opposition to a movement. I think that the current article is a neutral, balanced and careful summary of the existing secondary source material on William Branham. However, I do appreciate that both supporters and detractors of Branham may disagree with Weaver and/or Harrel, but that doesn't mean Weaver is unreliable. Based on my research, Weaver is the most reliable secondary source in existence. It is an independent, peer reviewed, academic publication and so must be given appropriate weight. In other words, it cannot be ignored.
Putting up a tag to try to push an agenda is not responsible tagging. It is much easier and less time-consuming for an experienced Wikipedian to identify and label an article's problem than it is to actually fix the problem. I have removed the tag, and replaced it with the edit you suggested. That is what you should have done. Taxee (talk) 22:13, 14 June 2017 (UTC)

GA Review[edit]

This review is transcluded from Talk:William M. Branham/GA2. The edit link for this section can be used to add comments to the review.

Reviewer: Display name 99 (talk · contribs) 16:35, 4 July 2017 (UTC)

I know you've waited a while, but I'm starting this now.

General

  • There are plenty of photographs of Branham available on the Internet. Images do much to increase the quality of an article. At least one of these should be included. Display name 99 (talk) 16:35, 4 July 2017 (UTC)
How does one deal with the issue of copyright with respect to pictures? You are correct that there are a lot of pictures on the internet but there is a question as to whether they are in the public domain or not. Darlig Gitarist (talk) 14:48, 19 July 2017 (UTC)
Cite the name of the author, if possible. Always provide a URL. Basically, fill in as much information as you can. Display name 99 (talk) 13:00, 21 July 2017 (UTC)
Added iconic photo to infobox under Wikipedia fair use policy. Darlig Gitarist (talk) 17:09, 29 July 2017 (UTC)

Lead

  • I don't see the need for there to be so many citations in the lead section. The lead is supposed to be a summary of what is in the main body, and it's presumed that whatever is there will probably be explained in more detail below. So it generally isn't supposed to have a citation unless the citation is in support of a specific statistic or quote. Display name 99 (talk) 16:35, 4 July 2017 (UTC)
This has been fixed. Darlig Gitarist (talk) 14:48, 19 July 2017 (UTC)

Biography

  • The introduction to this section is needlessly cryptic and would likely cause the reader to doubt the reliability of the information he is about to read. That should not happen. The questions regarding reliability could probably be reduced to a single sentence in the lead. Whenever potentially dubious information is mentioned in the article, it should come with an appropriate disclaimer. Display name 99 (talk) 16:35, 4 July 2017 (UTC)
I moved the caution on primary source material to the Bibliography section which is probably the better place for it.Darlig Gitarist (talk) 14:48, 19 July 2017 (UTC)
  • I personally recommend getting rid of the "Biography" header and making full sections out of the things which are now-subjections. This is partially because the "Public ministry" section is very long and should itself probably be divided into sub-sections. Display name 99 (talk) 16:35, 4 July 2017 (UTC)
Done Darlig Gitarist (talk)
  • The matter of Branham allegedly being born into poverty should be explain more deeply, I think. Display name 99 (talk) 16:35, 4 July 2017 (UTC)
Added section on "Early Life" Darlig Gitarist (talk) 02:49, 3 August 2017 (UTC)
I have several problems with this section now. (1) The second sentence, concerning light, is completely without context. (2) Did the family actually move? (3) The article previously stated that his "claims of poverty have been called into question." Now, the article says nothing about these claims being questioned, and even takes the opposing view by saying that he grew up in "abject poverty." (4) When was he officially ordained? (5) What was the fact that the previous church was a "Holy Ghost church" have to do with anything? How is that connected to Pentecostalism? (6) The article doesn't bother to explain who Oneness Pentecostals are or why Branham joined them. Display name 99 (talk) 20:46, 4 August 2017 (UTC)
In response to your comments:
(1) I have added that his claim was in respect of his birth.
(2) Added a reference to the fact that he claimed that they moved the same year.
(3) Added a reference to his purchase of a new car at age 18.
(4) There is no record of the date of his ordination that I could find.
(5) Clarified this by changing the wording
(6) Added a brief explanation of Pentecostalism and Oneness Pentecostalism. Darlig Gitarist (talk) 01:10, 24 August 2017 (UTC)
I wasn't asking for an unsourced two-sentence explanation. A sentence about why Branham was attracted to them, with a passing summary of their beliefs in the same sentence, would be better. Speaking of sources, the last sentence in that section is conspicuously without one. Display name 99 (talk) 20:32, 24 August 2017 (UTC)
I took the statement from the intros to the Wikipedia articles on Pentecostalism and Oneness Pentecostalism. Since it was linked to that article, I assumed it was OK. I have replaced it with other sources. Darlig Gitarist (talk) 05:11, 25 August 2017 (UTC)
Fixed Darlig Gitarist (talk) 02:57, 3 August 2017 (UTC)
Removed Darlig Gitarist (talk) 23:21, 29 July 2017 (UTC)
  • "He returned home when his brother died and Branham began a search for God."-You ought to be more specific. Display name 99 (talk) 16:35, 4 July 2017 (UTC)
Expanded Darlig Gitarist (talk) 02:56, 3 August 2017 (UTC)
  • Why is it important that he was exposed to Pentecostalism? Display name 99 (talk) 16:35, 4 July 2017 (UTC)
I have tied this into the death of his wife and daughter which he claimed was punishment for his failure to join Pentecostalism. Darlig Gitarist (talk) 04:37, 3 August 2017 (UTC)
It still doesn't say when exactly he officially joined the Oneness Pentecostals. And it doesn't say why he interpreted it that way. Display name 99 (talk) 20:46, 4 August 2017 (UTC)
Weaver infers this was an embellishment in order to enhance his relationship with the Pentecostals, who were the only group that really accepted him. I also don't think Branham ever "officially" joined the oneness fraction as he took great pride in not belonging to any organization. In essence, Branham converted to Christianity in a Pentecostal church. That is where he started and he effectively stayed with that group his entire life. Not sure there is any reason that he "joined" Pentecostalism other than that. It appears from Weaver's comments that Branham's stories were simply a way to win favor with the Pentecostals who tended to be the majority of people who attended his meetings. Darlig Gitarist (talk) 07:42, 25 August 2017 (UTC)
This section was a little confusing so I reworded it slightly to more clearly connect the dots. I think it is sufficient now.  Doctor (talk) 00:09, 31 August 2017 (UTC)
  • "which he also believed was the same day that the State of Israel became a nation." Well it wasn't. Why did he think that? Also, the "State of Israel" did not become a nation in 1948. Firstly, this is because the word "nation" refers to any group of people united by shared ethnicity, religion, etc., which Israel was long before 1948. Secondly, prior to being an official country it was not called a state. Display name 99 (talk) 16:35, 4 July 2017 (UTC)
This has been clarified and wording changed. Note that Branham used the word "nation" but I have now put this in quotes to clarify this. Darlig Gitarist (talk) 16:22, 3 August 2017 (UTC)
Changed Darlig Gitarist (talk) 01:39, 24 August 2017 (UTC)
  • Why did he leave the Baptists and become Pentecostal? Display name 99 (talk) 16:35, 4 July 2017 (UTC)
He didn't. The first church he attended was a Pentecostal Baptist church. He was effectively a Pentecostal from the time of his conversion to Christianity. I have added a statement to this effect. Darlig Gitarist (talk) 01:39, 24 August 2017 (UTC)
  • "although again the actual facts surrounding the event must be discounted."-Why? Display name 99 (talk) 16:35, 4 July 2017 (UTC)
Clarified. Darlig Gitarist (talk) 01:43, 24 August 2017 (UTC)
  • The second to last paragraph in "Public ministry" is very confusing. Display name 99 (talk) 16:35, 4 July 2017 (UTC)
I have tried to clarify this, although to be honest, his teaching on these issues are very difficult to understand because of the language he uses. Those that are not familiar with the Bible will have a hard time understanding this but I have added a couple of biblical references as an aid to those that want to understand where he was coming from. Darlig Gitarist (talk) 02:05, 24 August 2017 (UTC)

Teaching

  • Why did he baptize people in the name of the "Lord Jesus Christ" if he rejected Trinitarianism? Display name 99 (talk) 16:35, 4 July 2017 (UTC)
Added Weaver's explanation of the issue. Darlig Gitarist (talk) 02:13, 24 August 2017 (UTC)
  • " A woman's place was in the kitchen." The article should not interpret or speak on behalf of Branham. This should be reworded. Display name 99 (talk) 16:35, 4 July 2017 (UTC)
I understand that it may be hard to believe, but this is what Branham actually said on multiple occasions. it is not an interpretation, it is simply referred to by Weaver. I can provide a direct quote if that would be more appropriate. Darlig Gitarist (talk) 17:13, 3 August 2017 (UTC)
If he actually said it, than yes, it needs quotes. If he said something similar, you should either add that direct quote or choose a different method of paraphrasing. Display name 99 (talk) 02:18, 17 August 2017 (UTC)
I have put it in quotes as Weaver included that exact phrase and Branham repeated it at least a half dozen times. Darlig Gitarist (talk) 02:19, 24 August 2017 (UTC)
  • Same with "They were the tools of the Devil." Display name 99 (talk) 16:35, 4 July 2017 (UTC)


  • ", age immediately preceding the rapture, whose characteristics were all strikingly compatible to Branham's personality."-How? What does this mean? Display name 99 (talk) 16:35, 4 July 2017 (UTC)
  • " the opening of the seals revealed very little new doctrine..."-This takes place in the Book of the Apocalypse. Wikipedia should not make such a claim about a passage in the Bible. Display name 99 (talk) 16:35, 4 July 2017 (UTC)
Changed the wording to be clearer that the reference was to Branham's teaching on the subject. Darlig Gitarist (talk) 07:37, 25 August 2017 (UTC)
I reworded this last piece to make it clear that Branham thought they were living in the age when the rapture would occur. I think this is good now as well.  Doctor (talk) 00:21, 31 August 2017 (UTC)

Sourcing

  • This should've been done already, but fix the Harvard errors.
I think these are all fixed now. Darlig Gitarist (talk) 00:34, 29 August 2017 (UTC)
Take a look at the article! They're obviously not all fixed. Display name 99 (talk) 00:45, 30 August 2017 (U
Sorry, but I feel like I am going blind. I am totally unfamiliar with Harvard citations and not sure who started it. They take a lot of time to do properly. I think I have figured them out and hope they are all done now but if not, you may need to be a bit more specific about what the problem is. Darlig Gitarist (talk) 06:17, 30 August 2017 (UTC)
The Harvard errors are those red messages that appear in the referencing section. Basically, the point of the Harvard referencing style is to allow readers to click on a citation and be taken directly to the source. For this reason, it is, in my judgment, the best citation style on Wikipedia. But this cannot work if the name and year in the citation do not match the name and year in the "Bibliography" section. For this article, there are several cases in which these do not match. For instance, with Harrell, his name is given only one l in the citations. But his name has two ls in the Bibliography section and in real life. So that needs to be fixed. There are others. Display name 99 (talk) 14:07, 30 August 2017 (UTC)
Red messages? That's probably the issue as I don't see any. Are you using a special tool to view the reference section? I've looked that the section in both Safari and Chrome and there is no red coloring at all in the ref section. Darlig Gitarist (talk) 23:02, 30 August 2017 (UTC)
Alright I am, because when I logged out I saw nothing. I did have one installed on my account a while back, although I underestimated how much of what it allowed me to see was not visible to others. I'm sorry, Darlig Guitarist, for the tone of my above comment. I've fixed most of the errors myself. Display name 99 (talk) 01:36, 31 August 2017 (UTC)
No problem. Can you tell me the tool you are using. This has been very frustrating trying to fix errors that I couldn't see (and taken way too much time as a result). Thanks! Darlig Gitarist (talk) 02:04, 31 August 2017 (UTC)
  • Also, be consistent. Don't use Harvard style referencing for most of your book sources but then leave just a couple without it. Display name 99 (talk) 16:35, 4 July 2017 (UTC)
All non-Harvard footnotes have been replaced. Darlig Gitarist (talk) 00:34, 29 August 2017 (UTC)
  • The "cite web" template is the best format to use when citing Internet sources. Display name 99 (talk) 16:35, 4 July 2017 (UTC)
Done Darlig Gitarist (talk) 02:49, 16 August 2017 (UTC)
  • In "The Decline of the Healing Revival," what happened to his tax evasion charges? ?Why do two sentences look weirdly different? Display name 99 (talk) 20:32, 24 August 2017 (UTC)
Not sure what happened that caused the accidental deletion but it has been fixed. Darlig Gitarist (talk) 05:04, 25 August 2017 (UTC)
OK. Now what about the tax evasion part? Display name 99 (talk) 00:45, 30 August 2017 (UTC)
Sorry, I misunderstood your comment. The settlement of the tax evasions charges has now been added. Darlig Gitarist (talk) 03:18, 30 August 2017 (UTC)
I think this is sufficently covered and referenced now. Doctor (talk) 23:57, 30 August 2017 (UTC)


  • In the infobox, his parents and children are listed with their YOBS and YODs. This is information that should be included in the article but, for the most part, is not. At the very least, the years should be taken out of the infobox. At present, it looks a bit cluttered. Display name 99 (talk) 20:32, 24 August 2017 (UTC)
I copied the basic format from another page. The infobox should now be much cleaner. Darlig Gitarist (talk) 05:04, 25 August 2017 (UTC)
Still no source for the information. Display name 99 (talk) 14:10, 25 August 2017 (UTC)
I found a source for most of the info at findagrave.com. Finding the few bits that aren't there may take a bit longer. Darlig Gitarist (talk) 00:32, 29 August 2017 (UTC)

Notes

Darlig Gitarist, I'm writing to remind you that, since this review began one week ago, you have not responded to any of my concerns on the talk page. You've made some changes to the article, but they don't seem aimed at implementing my suggestions. I'm going to give you 3 more days to respond to this review. If you do not respond, I will fail the article. Display name 99 (talk) 19:23, 11 July 2017 (UTC)
Display name 99, thank you for taking the time to do such a detailed review. Unfortunately, I just saw your review for the first time today when you pinged me. I understand that the system should have given me a notification when you posted your review, but it didn't. I will start working on it but it will take a while as I am traveling. I will post comments as I work through your issues and would appreciate if I can interact with you about them. I suspect it may take me until the end of the first week of August to get to all of these. But I will try to get some of them dealt with this week. Thanks again! Darlig Gitarist (talk) 23:32, 11 July 2017 (UTC)
OK. Take your time. Display name 99 (talk) 01:14, 12 July 2017 (UTC)
Darlig Gitarist, since making your last post here on July 11, you have made some edits to the article and to its talk page, but none in response to the points which I have raised. I've also taken a look at the recent content disputes and edit-warring, and I certainly can't say fornow that the article meets the stability requirement for GAs. I'm not far from failing it. So please get back to me about the review within the next couple days. Display name 99 (talk) 15:48, 18 July 2017 (UTC)
Display name 99, as I indicated I am traveling and so couldn't devote any time to this article until late next week. I had a chance to do some minor edits relating to your recommendation to remove the references from the lead section. I have also done some work on trying to figure out what photograph of Branham I can use as there is no indication on the photographs online as to whether they are copyrighted or not.
It is interesting what a single obstreperous editor can do to an article when they don't respect the general Wikipedia guidelines. I do intend to get to this at the latter part of next week and the first week of August. Thanks for your patience. Darlig Gitarist (talk) 03:07, 19 July 2017 (UTC)

Darlig Gitarist, I see you said that you hoped to get to this in early August. You did a few things on August 3, and a couple more on August 16. But there are still plenty of things that need to be done. Since August 16, I haven't seen much of anything on the article aside from some edit wars. (Maybe applying for semi-protection wouldn't be a bad idea if all of the IP edits are disruptive.) Any idea when you can get to this? Display name 99 (talk) 01:13, 23 August 2017 (UTC)

Display name 99, things rarely seem to go according to plan. However, we just said goodbye to some visiting relatives so I should be able to give this some attention tomorrow. Thanks for your patience. Darlig Gitarist (talk) 07:08, 23 August 2017 (UTC)
@Display name 99: and @Darlig Gitarist:, I have done extensive reseach on Branham and may be able to help you out, but I don't want to step on your toes or mess up anything you are currently working on. So, give me something to do and I'll jump right in. Doctor (talk) 02:06, 30 August 2017 (UTC)
If you have something that you feel would be helpful, go ahead and share it. I didn't know anything about Branham before starting this review, so I might not be the best to judge the content except by how its inclusion conforms to WP guidelines. But please feel free to assist in any way you like. Display name 99 (talk) 03:05, 30 August 2017 (UTC)
@Display name 99: I made a few notes here as I think a lot of your concerns have been taken care of. Can you take some time to strike through anything you agree has been fixed so we know where to focus our energy next? Thanks!  Doctor (talk) 00:29, 31 August 2017 (UTC)
I've decided that this article now meets GA criteria. Good work Darlig Gitarist and, in your late assistance, DoctorG. Display name 99 (talk) 01:36, 31 August 2017 (UTC)
Glad I could add some minor assistance. Doctor (talk) 15:48, 31 August 2017 (UTC)

Newspaper reference[edit]

The following was deleted but should be placed back in the article if it can be verified:

The Durban Sunday Times showed the picture of 16-year-old Ernest Blom, who had been crippled for 12 years, who raised up and walked with no difficulty.

This reference to a newspaper article is apparently from the November 11, 1951 issue of the Durban Sunday Tribune.

Danpeanuts, can you please provide the URL of the online archive source so that I can verify the report by reading what the newspaper actually reported?

Thanks! Darlig Gitarist (talk) 20:39, 13 July 2017 (UTC)

Darlig, I don't know how to get URL's of the Durban Sunday Times. Julius Stadsklev put pictures of the entire article in his book "A Prophet Visits South Africa" on page 76, if you would like to read it.
Also, since no other Wikipedia Christian leader has a biography section and this one is clearly slanted to tell people what to think, I'm deleting it as suggested in the above article, which I repeat below: ```Danpeanuts
Biography
• The introduction to this section is needlessly cryptic and would likely cause the reader to doubt the reliability of the information he is about to read. That should not happen. The questions regarding reliability could probably be reduced to a single sentence in the lead. Whenever potentially dubious information is mentioned in the article, it should come with an appropriate disclaimer. Display name 99 (talk) 16:35, 4 July 2017 (UTC)
• I personally recommend getting rid of the "Biography" header and making full sections out of the things which are now-subjections. This is partially because the "Public ministry" section is very long and should itself probably be divided into sub-sections. Display name 99 (talk) 16:35, 4 July 2017 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by Danpeanuts (talkcontribs)
Stadsklev book is a primary source which precludes it from any weight in the article. There are also questions that have been raised about its reliability as there are reported factual inaccuracies in it. With respect to documentation of miracles and people being resurrected from the dead, please read WP:EXTRAORDINARY to understand my concerns. If you are unable to reference the actual newspaper article such that it can be verified, then it should not be included.
I indented your comments above (which you should learn how to do as well as how to sign your comments if you are going to be active in Wikipedia). Darlig Gitarist (talk) 16:44, 14 July 2017 (UTC)
Darlig, Why do you keep removing the documented newspaper articles that I have put in? Wikipedia calls this "warring" and will block one or both of us if this continues. Weaver has put in his own opinions rather than fact in more than one place. His book shouldn't be used at all. If you want to put in negative comments, why not list them on the bottom of the article on Branham in a separate place and let those who want to know about the man stand alone for those who want to know about the ministry. You realize that no one has ever done the same things that Jesus did until Branham came on the scene. 184.63.76.237 (talk) 14:02, 22 July 2017 (UTC)22 July 2012
For an example, please look at Kenneth Copeland's wikipedia site. It has the official information first and then controversies afterwards. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Danpeanuts (talkcontribs) 16:27, 22 July 2017 (UTC)
In response to 184.63.76.237, Weaver is a secondary source. You don't appear to understand the difference between primary and secondary source material (although this has been made clear above). Please take the time to understand this issue. A secondary source provides an author's own thinking based on primary sources, generally at least one step removed from an event. It contains an author's analysis, evaluation, interpretation, or synthesis of the facts, evidence, concepts, and ideas taken from primary sources. The only way you can show your edit is not original research is to cite a reliable published source that contains the same material. Even with well-sourced material, if you use it out of context, or to reach or imply a conclusion not directly and explicitly supported by the source, you are engaging in original research; see below. In general, the most reliable sources are, peer-reviewed journals, books published by university presses and university-level textbooks. Weaver's book is published by a university press and so is considered reliable (even if you don't like his conclusions).
I would refer you to the following articles on Wikipedia - WP:NOR and WP:EXCEPTIONAL.
One must also pay attention to the Wkipedia policy that any exceptional claim requires multiple high-quality sources. For example, you would like the article to say that a newspaper stated that someone was raised from the dead. The policy on exceptional claims states that one must use extra caution when challenged claims are supported purely by primary or self-published sources. That is the case here. Weaver and Harrell deal with this issue objectively, which is the proper treatment.
Danpeanuts, have you taken the time to understand these issues? You refer to the Kenneth Copeland article which I have read. You will note that there are no claims about people being healed even though he and his followers would make these claims. Also, he is still alive which makes his biography a bit more complicated. The issues are different when you are dealing with a person who is still alive. A better article to look at is that of Oral Roberts. You will find no specifics of anyone being healed, although his ministry is comparable to Branham's in the view of Harrell.
I want the article of Branham to be high quality and I am prepared to work with you to get it that way BUT I and others on Wikipedia will revert any edits that violate the policies of Wikipedia and most of your edits, in the view of myself and others, have violated that policy. You will accomplish much more by working together with those of us that do try to uphold Wikipedia's policy and that will involve coming to an agreement here on the talk page prior to making the edits on issues that can be controversial. The question is whether you want to work together?
Look at my last edit which was to delete an obviously derogatory comment about Branham. I want the article to be balanced and neutral but that does not mean that the article should contain unverified material on exceptional claims or info based on primary source material.Darlig Gitarist (talk) 14:05, 23 July 2017 (UTC)
Darlig, It looks like we do need to decide what to write before we write it. To be an accurate account, the miracles should be included. I would like to put the newspaper articles back in, but if you wish to leave one or more out let me know. I notice that T. L. Osborne's Wikipedia article was mostly all positive. Harrell gives a good un-biased report, while Weaver gives a very biased report and even adds lies and his own opinions (Like where he said the picture of a Halo was an obviously scratched negative--even though an expert who examined it said the light struck the negative (Probably because he is Baptist and the many miracles and God speaking directly through a man offended him). There are numerous testimonies on YouTube that back up the accuracy of the discernment. I have even spoken to some of them myself. On page 38 of Harrell's book he also admits that the discernment appeared to be 100% accurate. What do you suggest that gives a balanced report? Danpeanuts (talk) 02:57, 24 July 2017 (UTC)Dan Holt, 23 July 2017
A couple of questions:
1. Danpeanuts, have you read the Weaver book? If so, could you please provide me the page on which he states that the negative was obviously scratched? I actually don't think you have read the book because I have searched it and can't find the passage you are referring to. Weaver is actually very unbiased. But he includes the negatives and the positives as any balanced analysis by a researcher would be expected to be. If you haven't read Weaver's book, you can't comment on it with any sense of credibility.
2. How many people are indicated to be healed in the Osborn article? Answer: Zero. You still have not read the articles I referenced and, therefore, I don't think you understand what Wikipedia is about. There are arbitration routes that I will pursue if you will not abide by Wikipedia's policies. I don't think you will be happy with the outcome.
3. Branham was much more controversial than Osborn and both Harrell and Weaver talk about it. Are you aware that Harrell wrote the preface to Weaver's book? They are both university professors. The issues they raise set the weight of the article.
4. Do you understand WP:NOR and WP:EXCEPTIONAL? Can you please explain to me the difference between primary source and secondary source material and why Wikipedia relies on secondary sources? If you can't, then there is not point in discussing anything.
I am happy to try to reach an agreement on what should be included by discussing it on the talk page. That is what is supposed to happen. But if you violate Wikipedia policy, then I am not the only one that will revert your edits. Go look at your edits that were previously reverted. I certainly did not do all of them. If you can't come to an understanding of Wikipedia policy, then you will constantly see your edits reverted. Darlig Gitarist (talk) 05:00, 24 July 2017 (UTC)
Darlig, I really didn't want to buy Weaver's book. I have Harrell's 1975 book. I deleted Weaver's statement about the scratched negative about 2 edits back. If it's possible to retrieve it, you can read it for yourself. To me, it seems that the books like "Prophet Visits South Africa" is a secondary source because it was written by an eye-witness who was a second person. I know I would have more confidence in the Bible written by actual witnesses than by someone else--especially someone who didn't believe. In a court of law they also only want eye-witnesses. If the only articles allowed are people who weren't there, then I would favor Harrell's book. The only thing is that not only the negative thoughts should be in Wikipedia, but also the positive ones. Here's a statement from Wikipedia's WP:NOR: "To demonstrate that you are not adding OR, you must be able to cite reliable, published sources that are directly related to the topic of the article, and directly support the material being presented. (This policy of no original research does not apply to talk pages and other pages which evaluate article content and sources, such as deletion discussions or policy noticeboards.)"
Here's a few examples: 1. Arrangements were made to have the Halo photo examined. It should say that it was examined by an expert and found to be authentic. 2. An unnamed minister in Saskatchewan, Canada stated that many pronounced as healed, later died, etc. For one thing, all will die, also, that's why I wanted to put some of the newspaper articles in to balance the subject so it wouldn't look like all of those prayed for died and that it wasn't fake. 3. Kenneth Hagin prophesied that Branham would die for his disobedience. Why was Hagin even mentioned? His own 1997 prophecy of St. Louis failed to come to pass. 4. Why were only the bad people influenced by Branham mentioned (Jim Jones, Schaifer), and not the successful ones (T.L. Osborn, Jack Coe, Oral Roberts, etc.)?
Danpeanuts, it's fine if you edited out the comment on Weaver but that does not negate the fact that you were posting things that were not true. Do you know what that does to your credibility? I have done a lot of research on Branham and own all of the books in both the primary and secondary source list. There are errors in Stadsklev's book. Are you aware of them?
There was a very balanced paragraph on the Houston photo at one time but someone messed it with the fallacy that Weaver said the negative was scratched and in edit battle to ensure the statement was truthful, the entire paragraph was deleted.
I want the statements to be balanced and the article to be neutral but that will require the negative to come out as well as the positive. If you are not prepared to have the article look at Branham as the academic community views him, then you don't understand what Wikipedia is about. It is not an apologetic for Branham. It looks at him from a neutral perspective, and that includes all of his problems. Weaver talks about Hagin and Lindsay and their interaction of the Pentecostal community with Branham.
You want to quote newspaper articles but you cannot even verify them. How do I know they are not like your Weaver research on the scratched negative? Do you understand why I (and many Wikipedia editors) will have a problem with sources that cannot be verified? Did you even read the article on "Exceptional Claims Require Exceptional Sources"?
I am going to spend some time next week going through the article in detail and trying to answer all of the reviewers comments and, while I am doing that, will relook at Weaver's book and ensure that we do include his positive comments. If I post anything you don't like, we can discuss it here. Darlig Gitarist (talk) 14:34, 24 July 2017 (UTC)
Darlig, I am not aware of any errors in Stadsklev's book, nor am I aware of anything I posted that was not true. I do know that there are a few people who were raised in the faith who have departed and are doing all in their power to discredit Branham. As far as I know he is probably one of the few who preached true bible holiness. You may have noticed that even in the church you attend, the women are wearing immodest clothing, men's clothing, cutting their hair and many things that they didn't do in the past. Men tell off-color jokes, use profanity, etc. Not all, but some; and the pastor is afraid to say anything about it. Perhaps where you attend is an exception, but there is a great falling away from what the church fathers taught. We needed someone to restore all things (Matt. 17:11). Would you tell me of an important error in Stadsklev's book? Also, why do you feel that you are the only person who can write about Branham and that you have a perfect understanding--even though you never knew the man or any of his family or people who witnessed the discernment and miracles?184.63.76.237 (talk) 22:07, 24 July 2017 (UTC)24 July 2017
Darlig, I notice that nothing has changed. Why do you want to completely control this site? You and Weaver continue to promote your own views and leave important facts out. This is like CNN and the Clilntons giving a report on Donald Trump. I have found other newspaper articles on the web telling of the many miracles that were done in the Branham campaigns and they need to be told. If you continue your grip on this site, I'm going to a third party. Let me repost the statements above:
I am requesting this also184.63.76.237 (talk) 12:08, 25 July 2017 (UTC)25 July 2017
Since I'm on Social Security, I don't feel able to pay the price to get the original news articles, so would at this time like to remove Weaver's opinion about Branham making up a story about the light and voice that came when he was baptizing. His opinion should not outweigh what Branham said: "Given the lack of corroborating evidence for this supposed supernatural event, Weaver’s opinion is that it is possible that Branham later embellished the incident by 'remembering' the forerunner message when he was achieving success in the healing revival."[1].
Weaver looked at the evidence. That's what researchers and academics do and from that they form opinions based on the evidence. Wikipedia does not allow original research. But opinions of academics carry weight on Wikipedia. That's the way Wikipedia works. Again, have you read the Wikipedia articles I referenced?
I have actually looked for corroborating evidence which should be easy to find given that Branham said that it was all over the newspapers across North America. There is only one newspaper report and it only mentions that 14 people were converted, nothing else. If you could find a newspaper report that was verifiable, I would support referencing that in the article.Darlig Gitarist (talk) 14:17, 26 July 2017 (UTC)
Darlig, There doesn't seem to be any place where you can obtain a list of all newspaper articles. The Newspaper Archive has been kind enough to let me have a free trial, but I see that they only have a few newspapers that they have copies of. Lee Vayle said that he saw a small article about the light and the voice that said "As John the Baptist was sent..." in a Canadian newspaper. That's what got him interested in Branham in the first place.
Thanks for putting Branham's picture back on the site with the halo or logos over his head. I have some newspaper articles of a couple of healing testimonies, including the page numbers of the newspapers and the names that I would like to put back in after the nay-sayers. Also, I would like to put back the article from the Durban Natal Mercury. A photo of the article appears in Stadsklev's book, unless you can prove that he is a liar and made a fake photo. I will try to get something from the newspaper too, but need to know exactly what you need to see and then your promise to leave it alone. Most newspapers don't want to write about the works of God, so only a few will do it. There are hundreds of witnesses of these miracles. I've heard many of them personally.
I didn't put Branham's picture back on the site. It was never on the site.
The newspaper articles have to be verifiable, i.e. someone other than you has to be able to examine the articles to ensure that what you are posting is factual. Stadsklev's book is not a valid source as it has been proved to have serious errors in it. Please compare Stadsklev's story on pp. 43-44 from "A Prophet Visits South Africa" with the story as described on page 6 of the Nov. 1954 Voice of Healing magazine. You still don't seem to understand the phrase "Exceptional Claims Require Exceptional Sources". This is Wikipedia policy and, as a result, any edit that violates that policy will be reverted by Wikipedians that understand the policy.
I would suggest this as a compromise. Please take whatever it is that you are going to use as proof for divine healing in the Branham article and insert it as an edit in the article on Faith healing. If it is not removed from that article by someone other than myself, then I will allow it to remain on this page. But it must use the same wording. That will remove it solely from the discussion here to something more general. But as and when it is removed from that article, it will be removed from this article. Agreed? Darlig Gitarist (talk) 01:42, 3 August 2017 (UTC)
Darlig, Did you block me from using Wikipedia? I have talked to Senzo Mkhize, the archives man for the Natal Mercury newspaper and he is sending the article about the mass healings in Durban, S.A. and I also have other newspaper stories about other people who have been healed. I want to at least insert 1, 2, or 3 of them, because you and Weaver are spreading lies about Branham. At least Harrell gave an honest report in his book and what he said about the healings should be included in Wikipedia. I believe the people who said they didn't believe should be removed, because the proof is there that multitudes were healed. In looking for "As John the Baptist was sent.." I found a prophecy that was given in 1958. Here's part of it: “Yea, and so even unto those whom he hath come; yea, they have assembled together, yea, they have met in their council chambers. Yea, the leaders of my people have counciled together; and they have passed judgment even upon him. They have said in their secret chambers: ‘We shall reject him; yea, we shall search out a fault with him. Yea, we shall find many faults with him, and we shall teach our people. Yea and we shall tell them, that this also is Be-elzebub. Yea, it is not the Spirit of the Lord that has sent Him’.”[2]User:Danpeanuts 4 August 2017 —Preceding undated comment added 00:09, 5 August 2017 (UTC)
Danpeanuts, are you saying that people that disagree with you should be removed from Wikipedia? Darlig Gitarist (talk) 04:05, 5 August 2017 (UTC)
That's not what I'm saying at all. You have in the article one unnamed person who (in his opinion) thought nearly no one was healed. Also, the Canadian Assembly of God leader who (In His Opinion) thought it was fake. These are only opinions, why not the facts? True--not everyone gets healed, but a large number do, and a few newspapers tell about it. When Jesus was here, I think 10 lepers were the most that He healed at the same time. At the Durban meeting, truckloads of wheelchairs, crutches, etc. were carried off the racetrack. This was newspaper headlines. Why do you want to just list all the negatives that you can find about what Jesus did in 1951? Why must the truth be suppressed? Do you realize that this is not honest? As a Christian, we are supposed to tell the truth even when goes against our personal religion. Please let there be balance. User:danpeanuts 06:05, 5 August 2017
Also, why does the reference to Jim Jones keep getting put in here? The article from the University of San Diego about JJ was written by Mr. Collins, who also has a website called "Seek Ye the Truth" where he does nothing but bash Branham. He is totally unqualified to be writing for the University of San Diego or Wikipedia. I'm asking again that the association of JJ and Branham be removed. It's obvious that you are using JJ to stain the reputation of Branham. Here's the last request for removal from a previous post: Are you aware that John referred to what Jesus said as "the Message?" (1 John 1:5, 3:11) There is no connection to be drawn between JJ and WB based on Jim Jones use of the phrase. There is no evidence that Jim Jones had any impression or impact in the life or ministry of William Branham therefore the comment is not appropriate. Furthermore, there is no evidence to suggest Jim Jones was impacted by William Branham. The fact that William Branham ministered at this certain meeting where Jim Jones was present does not establish what you are seeking to establish. William Branham was in meetings with perhaps millions of people and tens of thousands of ministers over his lifetime, and so to reference Jim Jones on that bases—that inturn makes him the subject of this article, is out of order. Nevertheless, if there is information that Jim Jones was someway effected by William Branham, then the proper place to establish that is on the Jim Jones article. Electseed — Preceding unsigned comment added by 173.187.108.116 (talk) 15:23, 9 September 2014 (UTC)
I agree with the above comment. Section removed. Rev107 (talk) 01:30, 10 September 2014 (UTC) User:danpeanuts 10:30 p.m. 8 August 2017
In order to have a balance, after the 2 people who were critical that Weaver mentioned, there should be something telling of the thousands who really were healed in this ministry. I have the newspaper articles and page numbers (The Durban Natal Mercury isn't digitized, but Senzo, their archives man, will gladly send a picture of any article you ask for, as he has done for me). I would like to add this paragraph (Let me know if there are any changes that would make it better):
Perhaps the largest number of mass healing miracles in the world came at Branham's meetings in Durban, South Africa in 1951. One newspaper had the heading “Cripples Rise from Wheel-Chairs and Walk” “There were scenes of mass-healing of cripples and stretcher cases getting up and walking” following Branham’s prayer. A huge crowd came forward: crippled women and children threw down their crutches and leg irons; mothers wept as children took a few steps, for some the first time in their lives. Twisted bodies were made straight, deaf and dumb were healed. There was a TB and Cancer case mentioned which were both healed.[3] An 18-year old deaf girl was healed in Winnipeg,[4]. An arthritis patient walked onto the stage with help and then walked lively away in El Paso.[5]
Weaver appears to be a deceiver. I want to ask again that his opinions be removed--They are not fact--only opinion, and do not qualify to be in Wikipedia (like his opinion that Branham made up the story about the light and the voice and that the income tax case had something to do with his drop in popularity. Harrell told the truth about that--Branham said 1956 was the year that America would either accept or reject Christ. After they rejected, his sermons included rebukes for unbelief like women cutting their hair, etc.). I do want to thank you for not re-posting Weaver's opinion that the halo was a scratched negative. Also, would like to delete John Collin's opinion that tries to make him associated with Jim Jones killing the people.
One more request: Can we tell about the 2 signs that the Angel told him he would receive--the hand vibrations, and knowing the secrets of hearts: how God was able to speak directly through his mouth and tell people the secrets of their hearts, diseases they had, and if they needed to confess any sins to God? user: danpeanuts 6:30 p.m. 9 August 2017 —Preceding undated comment added 13:35, 9 August 2017 (UTC)
You mentioned above that Stadsklev's book had serious errors in it. I looked at both articles and the only thing different was that one said they prayed for Florence Nightengale in a hotel and the other in a house. That is only a minor thing. They both agreed that she was later completely healed. Also, the newspaper clipping of the mass healing in Stadsklev's book is exactly the same as I got from the newspaper archives. Stadsklev's book seems reliable. Why all the doubt? — Preceding unsigned comment added by Danpeanuts (talkcontribs) 16:30, 10 August 2017 (UTC)
Thousands of people healed? This specifically disagrees with the comments of Pentecostal historican Walter Hollenweger. He specifically states that William Branham had a good diagnostic gift but very few people were healed. As i said previously, if you can get your edits to be accepted in the article on Faith healing, then I will agree to accept them here.


Weaver's book is secondary source material. Are you aware that Harrell wrote the preface to Weaver's book? They are both university professors. I am sorry but the article on William M. Branham must be balanced and weighted according to secondary source material. Darlig Gitarist (talk) 03:21, 14 August 2017 (UTC)Darlig Gitarist (talk) 03:16, 14 August 2017 (UTC)
Darlig, It is not right that you have complete control over this site as you show bias against this man. The newspaper articles I have quoted from have also been witnessed by thousands of other people--some still alive today. I can understand why you don't want others to see the results from the South Africa campaign because they go against the picture you are trying to paint. Harrell may have written a preface to Weaver's book, but I am not interested in Weaver's book because of the obvious bias and the opinions he gives instead of facts. Weaver may have written a book, but Weaver is not an honest man. Harrell at least tried to represent the truth to the best of his ability.
Since you didn't answer the questions above, I went ahead and posted the newspaper articles. I, personally want to see at least actual facts presented that shows the gift worked and not only opinions from people with opposing beliefs. I asked you before and I'm asking again: What would you like to see changed about the South Africa campaign? It is a major happening in this ministry. The newspaper articles are verified by other newspapers in the area too. I can get the page numbers, etc. or whatever you want from them too. Why try to hide the truth just because it doesn't agree with what you think? For one thing, your denomination teaches that women should wear a man-made covering, while St. Paul said her (long) hair is given her for a covering (I Cor. 11:15b) and if she doesn't have it to shave it all off (11:6). The reason this man was sent was to restore our faith in the Word of God. I'm asking you as a Christian: Will you allow the truth to be told? — Preceding unsigned comment added by Danpeanuts (talkcontribs) 13:31, 14 August 2017 (UTC)
Darlig, Here's the information again with confirmation by historian Donald Gee. If I don't hear from you, I'll go ahead publish it:
Perhaps the largest number of mass healing miracles in the world came at Branham's meetings in Durban, South Africa in 1951. Thousands were healed at the same time. A sea or people stood to give their hearts to Christ — Many times the 3,000 at Pentecost. Two newspapers carried the story: One had the heading “Cripples Rise from Wheel-Chairs and Walk” “There were scenes of mass-healing of cripples and stretcher cases getting up and walking” following Branham’s prayer. A huge crowd came forward: crippled women and children threw down crutches and leg irons; mothers wept as children took a few steps, for some the first time in their lives. Twisted bodies straightened up, club feet, deaf and dumb were healed. There was a TB and Cancer case mentioned in which both were healed.[6][7] Danpeanuts14:10, 8/15/2017

References

  1. ^ Weaver 2000, pp. 28–29.
  2. ^ Cedar Rapids Gazette|Jan. 18, 1958|p.3
  3. ^ The Natal Mercury, Durban, Nov. 23, 1951, p.12
  4. ^ Winnipeg Free Press|7/15/47|p=3
  5. ^ El Paso Herald Post|12/17/47|p=7
  6. ^ The Natal Mercury, Durban|11/23/51|p=12
  7. ^ Donald Gee |Wind and Flame |(Pentecostal Pioneers book 41) |accessed 8/15/2017 |Kindle Location:3467

Discussion about references[edit]

I have seen this article evolve and there are a great number of edits which get added to essentially give credibility to a man whose works and statements are at best questionable, and are at worst dubious. There have been many sources which are not credible when speaking to the events which are presented as fact concerning William Branham's healing ministry and his acceptance in the community. The newspaper articles which have been cited do not exist in some cases, particularly those of the generally available print media concerning Branham's healing campaigns and public meetings. The articles which do exist do not contain any relevant first party verifiable information. Having written Press Releases in the past, the articles which do exist and which have been printed rely heavily on the information provided by Branham's own magazine for which he served as editor. This it seems to me is not a credible independently verifiable record. TIMKRAUS

Use of the word "halo"[edit]

Darlig, Do you realize that you are warring? This site does not belong to you! It is for others to add information too. Harrell said that it wasn't just a light, but a "supernatural halo light" over his head. I left out the word "supernatural" just so you would leave it alone (You went ahead and reverted everything back to what it said before anyway (light instead of halo light), In fact, you have deleted every post I've made). You are trying to misrepresent the statements of the historians with your own fake information. I deleted Weaver's reference because Weaver is always critical of Branham. In fact, I notice that about half of all the new references say: Weaver, Weaver, Weaver, Weaver. There are others who wrote more balanced information. This site had balanced information on it a few years ago and now you, and I don't know who else, have slanted much of it to be critical rather than just state facts. Weaver's beliefs should be left completely out since he wrote a very critical report with his opinions rather than the facts. Danpeanuts (talk) 19:35, 28 August 2017
I am not the one who has been taken to task by other editors for your failure to adhere to Wikipedia's policies. I am happy to have you quote Harrell PROVIDED you don't delete Weaver. As I said, Harrell wrote the preface to Weaver's book. But if you delete Weaver's info then I will not support your edit. Darlig Gitarist (talk) 02:59, 29 August 2017 (UTC)
Ok, I've removed the Help request for now. I believe the original wording said "halo light" and not just "light". Were you the one that removed the word "Halo" in the first place? Please allow it to be put back. Also, since you commented in my talk with Bonadea, you probably noticed that she said the statement about checking the picture could be removed since there is no basis for it. George J. Lacy, who often examined documents for the FBI gave it every scientific test he had and verified that the "halo" light did strike the lens. He even made the statement that it was probably the only photograph ever taken of a supernatural being. I still say that all the edits of Weaver's statements are to discredit the man, since he is a Baptist and doesn't believe in Divine healing. Can we come to a compromise? Danpeanuts (talk) 04:31, 29 August 2017
The problem i have is that you make statements that have no source and cannot be backed up. Did Lacy make "every scientific test he had" and did he state that the light was a "halo"? If so, where did he state this? Does Harrel call it a "halo"? If Lacy is not mentioned in any of the secondary sources then he should not be mentioned. That is the way Wikipedia works, even if you don't like it. I don't have Harrel's book in front of me as I am travelling but will by week's end. Weaver is objective and so is Harrel. If Harrel calls it a halo then I am happy to include the reference, but if he does not, then it should not be included because it adds something to the article that cannot be found in the secondary sources. I have deleted Weaver's statement. Darlig Gitarist (talk) 18:19, 29 August 2017 (UTC)
Yes, there is a source to my statements. Here's where I read that Lacy had made every scientific test that was available to him in 1950:[1][2] George J. Lacy, Investigator of Questioned Documents, and often hired by the FBI in that capacity, subjected the negative to every scientific test available. At a news conference, he stated, “To my knowledge, this is the first time in all the world’s history that a supernatural being has been photographed and scientifically vindicated.” Mr. Lacy added, “Rev. Branham, you will die like all other mortals, but as long as there is a Christian civilization, your picture will live on.” The original of this photograph is kept in the archives of the Religious Department of the Smithsonian Institute, Washington, D.C.
The word "Halo" needs to be put back in place where it was. Were you the one that deleted it? This is a quote from David Harrell: "A shot taken of Rev. Branham upon development showed a supernatural halo of light above his head."[3] . Since both Harrell and the document expert used the words "supernatural", what's wrong with using the same words? Why use "fake" information from bias people? Danpeanuts (talk) 19:02, 29 August 2017
You still don't understand what a reliable source is. Neither of the websites you refer are reliable sources. If you use the word "supernatural" it will get reverted and not by me. Someone else will revert it. That is what happened to a number of your edits. Secondary sources establish due weight and not any editors opinion. Darlig Gitarist (talk) 03:11, 30 August 2017 (UTC)

Hope it's ok to start without indenting because we're running out of room. It's good that you added the tax case was settled out of court. It would be best if the whole story was told about him not using the money on himself. Here's the rest of the story from "Epherma of William Branham" from Billy Graham's archives: "By 1955, Branham's teaching and preaching ministry came under severe attacks over doctrinal disagreement with the pentecostal denominations that had previously supported him. Also at this time, the IRS accused him of evasion of taxes on gifts he had been receiving, although he had not kept the money for himself. Eventually, the case was settled out of court. However, Branham continued his work despite the criticism until 1965, using a blend of preaching and healing services. In one year alone, he reported over a half-million conversions -- thirty thousand in one meeting in Durban, South Africa. Thousands of supporters believed in his ability to heal, foretell the future, and even raise the dead."

I may go ahead and put the extra info there myself about him not using the money if you don't mind. Also, I'll ask you again: were you the person that deleted the word "Halo" from the report? I want to put it back and I'm asking you to leave it alone. I won't say "Supernatural".

Since you or someone put so many Weaver opinions on this site and he says that Branham Embellished things, didn't tell the truth, can't be trusted, and so many other accusations, I would also suggest we add "In Weaver's opinion" to all of the places where he expressed his opinion. Please check Wikipedia’s NPOV section under “Assert facts, not opinions”: "When a statement is an opinion, it should be attributed in the text to the person or group who holds the opinion. Also, it needs to be backed up with an inline citation to a reliable source that verifies both the opinion and who holds it." Danpeanuts (talk) 06:33, 30 August 2017

Please do not add more minor details, and definitely do not add editorial comments such as "In Weaver's opinion" - attributing opinion does not mean saying "this is an opinion", it means making it clear what the source of something is. In any case, why do you believe that Weaver's statements are "opinions" to a greater extent than other assertions (such as those of Branham's followers)? What is your source for that? --bonadea contributions talk 19:57, 30 August 2017 (UTC)
Danpeanuts, you still do not understand what secondary references are, even though I have repeated this multiple times. Please look at Wikipedia:No original research and try to understand what it says. This is a direct quote from the article - "Policy: Wikipedia articles usually rely on material from reliable secondary sources. Articles may make an analytic, evaluative, interpretive, or synthetic claim only if that has been published by a reliable secondary source." Here is another quote - "In general, the most reliable sources are... Books published by university presses..." Both Weaver and Harrel's books are published by university presses. But you don't seem to understand that, as such, they carry weight, even if you don't like them. Darlig Gitarist (talk) 22:37, 30 August 2017 (UTC)
First, Bonadea, Why am I not to add reliable secondary source material and you and Darlig can? Do you have exclusive rights to this site? I suspect that Darlig is the person who deleted the word "halo" in the first place and I should have a right to put it back. In fact this entire site has been filled with Weaver's comments and opinions and many are just that--opinions that misrepresent the man and just plain call him a liar. There must first be proof that he practiced not telling the truth before any such statement should be made. It was after a debate with another Baptist theologian (like Weaver) that the "Halo" picture was taken in the first place. I'll admit that I'm new to Wikipedia, but am trying to learn. I originally asked you for help and didn't know your views.
Darlig, I'm asking the 4th time: Are you the one that deleted the word "halo"? Danpeanuts (talk) 16:47, 26 August 2017
Danpeanuts, you do not seem to understand what reliable secondary source material is. That is one reason why so many people revert your edits. I give up trying to explain this to you. I'm not sure why you don't understand it but you clearly don't.
I have made so many edits to this page as a result of the GA review that I can't remember if I reverted the word halo or not. Why is the word halo so important? I will check to see what Harrel says but give me a day or so. Darlig Gitarist (talk) 00:53, 31 August 2017 (UTC)
What is the GA review? I think I understand Wikipedia policy now--I just added Billy Graham foundation's comments for you to see, because they respected each other and tried to be truthful about their fellow-laborers in the Gospel.
The "halo" was a sign to the world that this man was in God's favor and the religious expert wasn't (should show that Divine healing is from God).
In the Bible, Jesus just went around doing good and healed many people. The common people loved Him, but the religious people hated Him. I can't understand this. Here's someone who did the same things and religious people like yourself have contempt for him and can't find enough bad things to accuse him of. Why? Danpeanuts (talk) 05:29, 31 August 2017
Danpeanuts has been warned about not assuming good faith from other editors. @Danpeanuts: Do not make assumptions of other editors' beliefs or values, and please take some time to read and understand the information about verifiability and sources that has been provided to you. While it is important to respect the personal beliefs of all editors, it is equally important that those beliefs do not unduly influence article content. As for GA, it means Good Article, which in turn means that the article has been reviewed according to a specific set of criteria on Wikipedia. If you look at the top of this page you'll see a link to what that means. --bonadea contributions talk 12:49, 31 August 2017 (UTC)
Danpeanuts, in response to your suggestion that the word "halo" be used in the article, I do not think this is a good idea. I looked at Harrel's reference to this and he is simply quoting someone who's view of Branham could be described as hagiographic. It is not a description that Harrel uses himself with respect to the photograph. Because the word "halo" has a specific connotation in religious iconography. I do not think its use in the article is warranted. Darlig Gitarist (talk) 01:40, 1 September 2017 (UTC)
@Darlig Gitarist: who was Harrel quoting in this statement? Doctor (talk) 19:49, 12 September 2017 (UTC)
@Doctorg:, he was quoting Gordon Lindsay who wrote a self-published book on Branham in the early 50's. The problem with the book and other primary sources is that they all tend to be hagiographic. They assumed Branham was telling the truth and simply repeated his claims verbatim. But the bloom went off the rose, so to speak in the latter part of Branham's ministry and most of his supporters distanced themselves. I think it is appropriate as Weaver and Harrel have done to talk about the photo but they are both careful not to ascribe supernatural attributes to the photo. Darlig 🎸 Talk to me 22:29, 12 September 2017 (UTC)
Agreed. I'm very familiar with Branham. He has some issues later in his ministry. Where do we stand on the use of the halo word? Did we agree to use it as a "claim?" Doctor (talk) 22:46, 12 September 2017 (UTC)
Darlig, How do you know why Harrell chose the word "halo"? That is also the word used in the description to the man who worked for the FBI ("a streak of light in the position of a a halo above his head") and it's also what nearly anyone else viewing the photo would say. "Halo" is the word the historian used and no one has the right to change it because "the photograph became perhaps the most famous relic in the history of the revival".[4]
Please put the word "halo" back where you deleted it from or I am going to do it and report a dispute if you take it out again. To me, this is like bleaching out Hillary's emails for her. Bonadea says I must use good faith, so I want to believe that you have only made a mistake and that your beliefs don't unduly influence article content. Danpeanuts (talk) 05:43, 1 September 2017
As I stated above, I think the word "halo" has religious iconographic connotations which are inappropriate. Harrel does not use the word himself but rather quotes someone who believed it to be a supernatural halo. But Harrel does not say that it is. I would suggest we ask some of the other editors to comment. I am happy to live with the consensus of some of the other editors that have been involved in this article recently if they think it appropriate to add. @Bonadea, Cullen328, Doctorg, and Dammitkevin: Would any of you care to comment? Darlig 🎸 Talk to me 03:54, 3 September 2017 (UTC)
I am completely opposed to using the word "halo" in Wikipedia's voice. A halo in this sense is a supernatural phenomenon and there are no reliable sources that say that halos actually exist. The article can say that certain persons believed it was a halo but others were skeptical and believed that is was lens flare or some other mundane cause, as long as those statements are properly referenced. No editor's personal beliefs should shape article content and that includes you as well, Danpeanuts. Cullen328 Let's discuss it 05:04, 3 September 2017 (UTC)
I agree that the article could include something similar to what @Cullen328: suggested. It's such a polarizing event/photo that the halo piece is worthy of mentioning in some format. Doctor (talk) 21:20, 12 September 2017 (UTC)
Neither Harreell or Weaver refer to it themselves as a "halo". I think it is important when using Wikipedia's voice that we don't use wording that the secondary sources themselves don't ascribe to it. Darlig 🎸 Talk to me 22:29, 12 September 2017 (UTC)
I fear we are falling back to where this discussion was a few days ago. I joined in because you mentioned that you would be happy to live with the consensus of some of the other editors that have been involved in this article recently if they think it appropriate to add. Maybe I misunderstood @Cullen328:, but it seems we are both saying the same thing about the halo. Doctor (talk) 23:09, 12 September 2017 (UTC)


This wording claims that there was a halo, not that some commentators believed that there was one, and as such it is not acceptable. Since there are apparently no secondary sources commenting on this except to quote primary/affiliated sources, I would not include the word at all, even with a more neutral phrasing. The next sentence tells the reader that Branham thought it was a supernatural light, and there are mentions of the photographer's reaction. Dwelling more on the picture would give it undue weight. --bonadea contributions talk 06:04, 3 September 2017 (UTC)
Just FTR, I removed a sentence about the photo which failed WP:NPOV and also misrepresented the source - the whole sentence was a quote, not just the noun phrase which had been placed inside quotation marks. As such, the claim would have to be placed in context, and since the context is that this is a claim made in one source, and there was (IMO) already undue weight on the photo, removing the sentence appeared to be the best solution to fix the NPOV issue. --bonadea contributions talk 19:46, 3 September 2017 (UTC)
@Danpeanuts:, it would probably be worthwhile for you to read Wikipedia:Consensus, which outlines the primary way decisions are made on Wikipedia. You may have an opinion that differs from mine but the way edits are accepted depends on reaching consensus. This is what has been demonstrated through the comments above. I appreciate that you may not agree with the decision but it is consensus. The community decides which edits are acceptable: not me or any other individual. Darlig 🎸 Talk to me 20:05, 3 September 2017 (UTC)
@Bonadea, Cullen328, Darlig Gitarist, and Dammitkevin: What a fun conversation! OK, I am travelling at the moment but I do have a stack of books in my library at home about Branham. I'll see if I can find a better reference for this image. But, in keeping with NPOV standards, I think it is wise, as someone else already suggested, to state something to the effect of, ...the photo was examined by an expert who reported the light in the photo was legitimate, but others have asserted there was likely a scratch on the lens...something similar to this would provide for both points of view and that would be the most appropriate. I'll look for some references when I get home, I think I have one specifically on this topic, but it will be a few days. On a side note, I personally think the light was a manifestation of the angel standing next to him, and I think that is probably what the references I have at home say, but I need to double check it. Doctor (talk) 23:45, 3 September 2017 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────Doctorg, when you write "I personally think the light was a manifestation of the angel standing next to him", I surely hope that you realize that your personal religious beliefs have no place in this article. The problem with a formulation like "the light in the photo was legitimate" is that there are countless possible explanations for this "light" other than tampering with the negative, and other than the light being a supernatural halo. Another problem is the credibility of the "expert". Who was this person, what was their training, what other unusual photos did they analyze, and was there any expert criticism of their work? In other words, any source used to say that a supernatural event took place must be subject to rigorous review. The same thing applies to the book that Julius Stadsklev wrote about Branham's trip to South Africa. Who was Julius Stadsklev, and what was his training and education? Why should anyone accept him as an expert on healing? What else did he do other than write this book? Who was the publisher of the book and what is the reputation of that company? Was this book widely reviewed, and if so, what did those reviews say? My Google search did not answer those questions, but I am willing to evaluate offline sources. Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence, and so far the evidence looks really weak to everyone except true believers.

To whoever wrote the above comment. I was not suggesting that my personal opinion be added to the article. Doctor (talk) 19:56, 12 September 2017 (UTC)
It's a good thing this is the talk page where we can discuss the article, good references, etc. without arguing with each other. Notice I said I have some references at home that I think point to the angel theory and that I will look them up in a few days. I'll wait until then to comment any further. Doctor (talk) 13:20, 4 September 2017 (UTC)

A minor but significant problem here is that these talk page sections are excessively long and are meandering to new topics. Going forward, editors should stick to the topic of each thread as identified in its header, and start new threads to discuss new issues. Cullen328 Let's discuss it 03:26, 4 September 2017 (UTC)

Doctorg, try doing a google search on - branham houston photo - and you will find some interesting research on the subject that debunks the "angel" theory. Darlig 🎸 Talk to me 02:13, 5 September 2017 (UTC)
And yet the angel piece, as part of the story of his life and ministry, is a central part. Some of the material I have read regarding the Bosworth debate mention that the light moved from the balcony down to the stage where Branham was standing just before this photo was taken; but it wouldn't be a good source for Wikipedia. Doctor (talk) 21:04, 12 September 2017 (UTC)
I don't think that even Branham claimed to have seen the light, so I am not sure where your reference is coming from. In fact, Branham claimed that all of the negatives on the camera were blank except for the picture of the light but this is clearly an embellishment given my research on the subject (there are other pictures from the debate). I think there is a good case to be made that the light appearing over Branham's head is simply a floodlight. It's a great shot that apparently even surprised the photographer but, to the best of my knowledge, there is no "evidence" that it was supernatural. Darlig 🎸 Talk to me 22:29, 12 September 2017 (UTC)
I'm surprised at what you said, Darlig, because you say that using an unreliable source is taboo. The article you are referring to was written by Jeremy Bergen, who is openly a Branham hater the same as Collins, who wrote the Jim Jones article that you have posted. If you will take a close look at the photos you will see that the basketball player's hand was high in the air to be able to see the horizontal lights in the top of the coliseum, while the picture taken of Branham wasn't up in the air and the light was at a 45 degree angle. Sorry to have to debunk your debunk, but this man is doing all in his power to discredit Branham. The man who scientifically examined the photo was often hired by the FBI to examine their documents. He was the expert in his field--not Bergen. Danpeanuts (talk) 06:10, 5 September 2017
I have not used any of the sites that you refer to in the article and I am not advocating to do so. But being aware of them is beneficial just as being aware of the hagiographic material is beneficial. Being aware of it does not mean that I advocate using the information in the article However, I also don't think you understand photography. The focal length and aperture of the lens, the angle of the shot, the dynamic range of the film used, these factors all go into what a photograph ultimately looks like. To say that the Branham photograph was supernatural or thatit was a "halo" is simply not warranted based on the secondary sources. The primary sources are on both sides of the issue - some say that is was a flood light and others say that it was a supernatural being. Occam's razor would argue for a non-supernatural cause. Darlig 🎸 Talk to me 17:53, 5 September 2017 (UTC)
All this talk seems fruitless. You seem to know more than George J. Lacy, the man the FBI uses for these cases. He should know a flood light from a scratch on a negative so I have filed a dispute. There are several other matters that you and the other 2 wont allow to be told by deleting nearly everything I post. There are a lot of positive things that the historians have written that need to be told. Danpeanuts (talk) 05:15, 9 September 2017 == Hello! There is a DR/N request you may have interest in. ==
Peacedove.svg

This message is being sent to let you know of a discussion at the Wikipedia:Dispute resolution noticeboard regarding a content dispute discussion you may have participated in. Content disputes can hold up article development and make editing difficult for editors. You are not required to participate, but you are both invited and encouraged to help this dispute come to a resolution. Please join us to help form a consensus. Thank you!

The dispute was closed for two reasons:
"The first is failure to provide the proper notice. The second is that the discussion on the article talk page doesn't seem to focus on what changes should be made to the article. The discussion seems to consist of one editor saying that the subject was a holy man or miracle worker, and other editors discussing the need for extraordinary proof of extraordinary claims. (Anyway, any statement in the voice of Wikipedia that the subject worked miracles would be contrary to Wikipedia policy.)"
Based on the above, I do not think there is any support for having Wikipedia state that Branham worked miracles or had a "halo" over his head. There was a light on the photograph but making supernatural claims in respect of Branham is not something that Wikipedia can or will do. Darlig 🎸 Talk to me 15:51, 8 September 2017 (UTC)
I admit that I don't understand many of Wikipedia's policies and therefore didn't file the above dispute correctly. Also, I wrote to Doctorg on his own page. I thought I could talk to other editors on their personal page, but according to Bonadea, I can't ask for help there either. Since Bonadea says she took out the statement that "the photograph became perhaps the most famous relic in the history of the revival", can it be reworded and then put the ref. and page number after it? This photograph with the light in the position of a halo is probably the most important relic of the entire revival, and to take that information out is definitely not right. The photo is at the upper right hand corner of the William Branham page and is used all through many Christian books and literature. In fact, it's even on the cover of Weaver's book.
This is not the only problem with this Wiki site: Jim Jones is mentioned here too that infers that because he spoke at the same tabernacle that Branham spoke at, that makes Branham responsible for what Jones did. In all the recorded sermons of Jones that the FBI has, he only mentioned Branham once and that was in a derogatory way along with Oral Roberts and Billy Graham. Why are not the people who really were influenced by Branham mentioned, like Oral Roberts, Jack Coe, T. L. Osborn, and several others? When you read all the articles above you'll see that I'm not the only one who noticed the strong bias on the Branham site. Here's just one of the quotes above:
This article is extremely biased
I am an avid user of Wikipedia, which I believe is a fantastic project that provides Internet users with unbiased information on a vast range of topics.
I was therefore surprised to find the opposite when I read this article about William Branham, which could be best described as a synopsis of Douglas Weaver's book: "The Healer-Prophet".
The current article has no less than 49 references to Douglas Weaver's book, which in itself is not the problem, although these references account for more than half of the references put together.
The problem is that Douglas Weaver is not a reliable source of unbiased information.
The mere fact that he is a baptist theologian (and former baptist pastor) working as a professor in a private Baptist university (Baylor) implies that his agenda would be to defend the baptist faith, theology and tradition in an apologetic manner.
You know, anyone can write a book, but that doesn't mean what they write is the truth. Over half the references on Branham's page are Weaver's. To me, this is plain deception and trying to have me blocked (as Bonadea suggested) isn't going to fix it. Someone needs to go through the entire page and put in the correct, unbiased information. Weaver's opinions can be listed too, but his thoughts shouldn't be the main emphasis.Danpeanuts (talk) 07:08, 12 September 2017
You can of course talk to other editors on their user talk pages, but when a content discussion is carried on in several places at the same time, it becomes difficult to follow, and it means that most of us will not see the parts that don't happen here. I asked you to come here and discuss, I did not mean to imply that talking to other editors elsewhere isn't allowed (it would be very inappropriate for me to try to prevent anyone from doing that!) Thank you for re-joining the discussion here. --bonadea contributions talk 14:22, 12 September 2017 (UTC)
There are 2 issues here, Danpeanuts.
1. The way an article is written is based on this policy - Wikipedia:Consensus. The majority of editors here are in agreement that the article, as is, is a good article. That is consensus.
2. The article is based on secondary sources. This is critical because the article is a biography of the deceased founder of a new religious movement. NRM articles are often contentious and the key to a stable, neutral article in this contentious field is good sourcing: focus on using the best, most reputable sources, above all scholarly sources, and avoid the use of primary sources – both movement and counter-movement sources. There are 2 key secondary sources on William M. Branham - Harrel, whose treatment of Branham is quite short as he deals with multiple individuals in his book, and Weaver, whose book focuses on Branham. Both of these books are scholarly secondary sources published by university presses Harrel wrote the preface to Weaver's book. Because Weaver's treatment of Branham is much more detailed, it contains commentary and analysis on issues that Harrel did not have the time to deal with. The point is that both Harrell and Weaver are reliable sources by Wikipedia standards.
I think the article is balanced and neutral, dealing with both sides of the various issues. So does the reviewer who did the GA review. So do the majority of editors that you have discussed the article with. I really am quite sorry that you can't seem to see our point of view. I would suggest that you try editing other articles as this will help you become familiary with Wikipedia's policies. I also agree with Bonadea that you should discuss any issues relating to the article on its talk page. Darlig 🎸 Talk to me 15:16, 12 September 2017 (UTC)

References

  1. ^ https://iconicphotos.org/tag/george-j-lacy/
  2. ^ http://people.delphiforums.com/johnk63/Lacy.jpg
  3. ^ Harrell|All Things are Possible|Indiana University Press|1975
  4. ^ Harrell |All Things are Possible |Indiana Univ. Press | 1975 |p.35


Durban Sunday Times?[edit]

There has been a lot of discussion about a supposed 1951 article in the Durban Sunday Times. I have been unable to verify that any such newspaper has ever existed, although The Sunday Times (South Africa) has been published in Johannesburg since 1906. I see no evidence that any editor commenting here has actually read this article. Unless we can review the actual article, it is a waste of time to discuss it further. It seems that some editors believe that it reports on faith healing events that Branham held in South Africa . So what? We already know from many other reports that Branham held many such events. Suppose this newspaper article says he actually healed people. So what? Why would a random Durban newspaper article published in 1951 in racist South Africa be a reliable source for such an extraordinary claim? We would need multiple sources of vastly better reliability to make such a claim in Wikipedia's voice. There is a really big difference between saying that "Joe Smith reported that Branham healed people although Jack Jones disagreed", and saying in Wikipedia's voice that "Branham healed people". That second type of claim is completely inappropriate for a Wikipedia article. Cullen328 Let's discuss it 06:37, 1 September 2017 (UTC)

I completely agree. Darlig 🎸 Talk to me 15:36, 1 September 2017 (UTC)
@Cullen328: I don't think I have ever read this article (or this paper) and agree we would need multiple mainstream sources to validate an exceptional claim. Though I'm not sure what bearing racism has on this discussion, unless the paper was known for being racist (I don't think a racist nation automatically disqualifies its newspapers). At any rate, I checked the Library of Congress's microfilm collection of foreign newspapers and they don't have this one listed so it's probably a moot point. Doctor (talk) 13:31, 13 September 2017 (UTC)
Here's the address of the Sunday Tribune in Durban, S.A. that had the story of the cripple that walked normally for the first time in his life.[1] Since it is probably not digitized you will need to have the archives man get the article for you the same as the Natal Mercury archives man did for me with the story of the mass healings. It is exactly the same story that you can see in "A Prophet visits South Africa" p.125. Just curious: Why try to disprove everything concerning this man? Danpeanuts (talk) 11:55, 1 September 2017
Danpeanuts - one more time - Wikipedia policy requires that any exceptional claim requires multiple high-quality sources. Please see WP:EXCEPTIONAL. A single newspaper article that an editor like myself or Cullen328 can't not easily verify does not qualify as multiple high=quality sources. If Harrel and Weaver agreed on an issue like this, that would qualify as multiple high-quality sources. We don't have that. So since we do not have multiple high-quality sources, it can't be accepted as an edit under Wikipedia policies. It's that simple. Darlig 🎸 Talk to me 21:27, 1 September 2017 (UTC)
Danpeanuts, the term "disprove" is not present in my Wikipedia vocabulary. All I care to do is to summarize what the full range of reliable sources say about a topic. Wikipedia will not state in its own voice that Christian miracles or Muslim miracles or Hindu miracles or Jewish miracles or Buddhist miracles are true. No reliable source on the question says that any of these "miracles" ever happened. On such matters, we neutrally summarize what advocates and adversaries say, as reported in reliable sources. The one thing that I can assure you is that this article will never be transformed into a Branham tract. Not gonna happen. Cullen328 Let's discuss it 05:14, 2 September 2017 (UTC)

References

Additional sources[edit]

While reading through the talk page, I think I saw several mentions of needing more references or of locating some newspaper articles. I will be in the Library of Congress in a few weeks, so if anyone is looking for a particular source for a reference, please let me know and I will try to find it, and snap a photo for you. Doctor (talk) 20:04, 12 September 2017 (UTC)

Doctor G. I can't think of any American papers that would be helpful on this matter. When the mass healings took place in Durban, South Africa, all the local newspapers carried the story and I can get the pages. It's also in Donald Gee's book (at least 3 verified witnesses). I really don't think it would do any good though, because Darlig says he doesn't believe it anyway and would likely delete it because it doesn't appear in either of the 2 books he chose. Thanks for your willingness to be of help. Something does need to happen to bring this page back into balance like it was 3 years ago. Will you help?Danpeanuts (talk) 18:40, 12 September 2017
Danpeanuts, it is not whether I believe it or not. It is what the secondary sources say. Additionally, you have heard repeatedly from multiple sources that Wikipedia will not post something advocating supernatural miracles. So whether I believe them or not is irrelevant. As I indicated, I suggest you post something that attempts to prove miracles on the article on Faith healing. If you can get your info on that article, it would logically follow to put it here. With respect to Donald, Gee's book, one would have to determine whether it was secondary or primary source material. Given that the article on Donald Gee does not have his books in the reference source, I assume they are primary source (and the books used for his article are secondary source. Darlig 🎸 Talk to me 03:28, 13 September 2017 (UTC)
Danpeanuts, I have been looking at the page's history from 2014; a lot happened to it then and it would be helpful to know which version you refer to. As you already know, there is an existing consensus that the page is currently unbiased and balanced. It went through a Good Article review only a couple of weeks ago, after all. As regards newspaper sources reporting on faith healings and other miraculous events, I don't see how those can be useful because they would be primary sources in this instance. Wikipedia cannot claim that actual healings took place, that would violate several policies (I do not agree that you should try to insert such claims in any other articles either, because it would violate policy regardless of where it was added - but you are of course welcome to discuss it on that article's talk page as long as you read up on earlier discussions first). What can be mentioned is that healing meetings took place, and possibly that newspapers reported on miracles; if secondary scholarly sources (which would exclude any books written by religious preachers to evangelize) discuss such newspaper reports, Wikipedia could include a mention of that discussion. --bonadea contributions talk 04:09, 13 September 2017 (UTC)
@Bonadea: Mainstream newspapers are considered to be among the most reliable, see this for that info. If the New york Times printed a story about a miracle, it would be a reliable source (same for any other main stream newspaper). I don't know about the South Africa one that has already been discussed here, but if someone knows of a mainstream US newspaper that printed such an article, let me know, it is very likely that I can get a look at it. As far as considering newspapers as a primary source, that's an untennable argument. Mainstream newspapers have a reputation for checking facts and printing reliable information. The journalists write their articles based on what they know to be factually true, and/or what they have collected from multiple sources. The journalists sources are the primary sources, but the newspaper article would be secondary (A secondary source provides an author's own thinking based on primary sources. Doctor (talk) 13:44, 13 September 2017 (UTC)
Doctorg; Thanks for your input. Now we seem to be getting somewhere. I understand that you are partly responsible for getting the GA on this page. Do you really feel that this is a good article, considering all the untrue and slandering information on it? Also, do you know for sure that Wikipedia doesn't allow anyone to tell of actual healings, miracles, or supernatural events? Danpeanuts (talk) 07:05, 13 September 2017
@Danpeanuts: I'm not here to take sides, just want to bring some balance to the conversation. I do think this is a good article but a good article isn't a perfect article, it can still be improved upon. I wasn't the primary reviewer, I just stepped in to help because it appeared to be stuck in the process. Though, if I was aware of the ongoing edit war, I would have recommended failing it since the lack of edit warring is part of the good article criteria. As far as miracles go, I am not aware of a specific Wikipedia policy that states miracle's can't be discussed. There are articles about the Miracles of Jesus and a Eucharistic miracle with examples and references. The biggest thing is to make sure you have reliable secondary or tertiary sources, this policy defines what those are. It seems most of the arguments on this talk page revolve around the reliable source issue, which can be easily resolved if everyone would read through the policy again. I have a PhD in a scientific field so I take reliable references very seriously. But my standard is higher than Wikipedia's, so sometimes I have to dial back my standard and re-read the policy myself to see what can be included (I think all passionate editors probably fall into this trap). If the edit warring continues, I may put the article in for a reassessment of it's good article status. Doctor (talk) 14:27, 13 September 2017 (UTC)
@DoctorG: I am reasonably well acquainted with the verifiability policy and WP:SECONDARY ;-) That's why I said that a newspaper report would be considered a primary source in this instance. The specific case I'm thinking of is the report mentioned on this page, where a regional newspaper in the 1950s printed a story about a healing and reported it as if it were an actual case of healing. As I said, it would be perfectly fine to include text about such reports, as long as they are based on secondary sources - but a source cannot be a source for itself! ("Newspaper [x] reported that [y] happened" should not be based on the report in Newspaper [x]. And that's not because it is a question of faith healing, by the way - in the same way, a Wikipedia article about a scientist does not rely on the author's own publications, as those are primary sources for that article, even in cases where that scientist's publications can be used as reliable sources for other articles). As an aside, it is not the case that any article in New York Times is automatically considered a reliable secondary source, either, it would depend on which section of the paper it was printed in. --bonadea contributions talk 14:33, 13 September 2017 (UTC)
Great, I'm glad we are on the same page. I just want to make sure everyone's suggestions get a fair shake, in accordance with Wikipedia policies. Doctor (talk) 15:14, 13 September 2017 (UTC)
Also, off the top of my head, I think the only sections I would consider unreliable in a mainstream newspaper would be any article not written by a journalist employed by the paper (opinions section, classifieds, etc.). I don't know where the article appeared in the SA paper, so I can't make a judgement on that (which I think was probably the consensus in these talk pages...I agree with that). Doctor (talk) 15:18, 13 September 2017 (UTC)
@DoctorG:, this isn't an edit war as much as it is a single editor that has had a problem with the consensus view. This is common on NRM articles because followers often believe the founder to be above reproach. It is interesting that the article on Oral Roberts, who had a ministry similar to Branham, has no specific references to healings from newspaper sources. But my bigger problem was the attempt to exclude a secondary source because someone disagreed with its conclusions (when they admittedly hadn't even read the book).
With respect to the history of the article, it used to be an apologetic for Branham, based entirely on primary sources. I was quite shocked when I read it the first time. So myself and a couple of other editors improved it over time. I personally bought a bunch of books on the subject of Pentecostalism and my general theological library is now quite extensive. This is the first article that I have applied for GA status and I plan to start on my next article in the not too distant future. I tend to focus on one issue at a time, although I do have a wide range of theological and NRM articles on my watchlist. It is critical that Wikipedia articles are based on secondary sources. Darlig 🎸 Talk to me 17:13, 13 September 2017 (UTC)
This is not the case of a single editor: Since Darlig changed the whole page in 2014 to reflect Weaver's opinions, is when this talk page became very active with other people who saw the misinformation and have posted their complaints as well. I can understand now why he watches over the page like a hawk to keep positive information off the page. It seems to me, this page should be called "William M. Branham according to Douglas Weaver" and then another new page started for just Branham, for people who want to know facts about the man without a skeptics opinion.
Below is my change for the 2 sentences for the halo and the sentence Bonadea deleted. Go ahead and comment and suggest reasonable edits:
The photograph showed a light appearing above Branham's head.[24][25] The photograph was examined by George J. Lacy, Examiner of Questioned Documents, Houston, TX, who gave it every scientific test available and affirmed that it was his definite opinion that the light above Branham's head in a halo position was caused by light striking the negative. Some people say they think it was a lens flare or a scratch on the negative. The photograph became likely the most famous relic of the entire revival.[1] Branham believed the light was supernatural and was a divine vindication of his ministry.[24] Danpeanuts (talk) 19:15, 13 September 2017
@Danpeanuts:, the only issue I have with your proposed edit is this statement: "The photograph was examined by George J. Lacy, Examiner of Questioned Documents, Houston, TX, who gave it every scientific test available and affirmed that it was his definite opinion that the light above Branham's head in a halo position was caused by light striking the negative. Some people say they think it was a lens flare or a scratch on the negative." Where did the information come from? It is not in Harrel's book nor in Weaver's. If it is from another secondary source, it needs to be referenced. If it is from a primary source, it should not be part of the proposed edit. Darlig 🎸 Talk to me 02:40, 14 September 2017 (UTC)
I honestly can't locate a secondary source except for [2] which calls it a Supernatural being. There are several sources on the web where one can read the report. Otherwise, I can use a quote from one of Branham's own statements if that would be better: "Self-published or questionable sources may be used as sources of information about themselves, especially in articles about themselves." WP:V WP:RS Danpeanuts (talk) 06:05, 14 September 2017
The website you referred to above is not a secondary source. If the info isn't in a secondary source, then it has to be used with a great deal of caution. Did you ever read the article on making exeptional claims? Primary sources cannot be used for making such claims, regardless of how many you have. The article specifically states that William Branham believed the light to be supernatural. How would quoting him improve on that? Darlig 🎸 Talk to me 15:27, 14 September 2017 (UTC)
Ok, since self-published material may be used as sources of information about themselves, let's use this instead:
By 1950, the Branham team included F. F. Bosworth. On the night of January 24, 1950, a photograph was taken of Branham during a debate between Bosworth and a Baptist minister regarding the biblical justification for healing.[24] The photograph showed a light appearing above Branham's head.[24][25] Branham said that the picture was examined by George J. Lacy, who was an examiner of questioned documents, and Lacy verified it to be genuine and the only picture ever taken of a supernatural being as far as he knew.[3] Branham believed the light was a divine vindication of his ministry.[24] The picture is available from the Library of Congress.[4] Danpeanuts (talk) 11:35, 14 September 2017
Neither Harrell nor Weaver mention Lacy. It was not important to them. Secondary sources, not primary sources, provide due weight in Wikipedia. Branham also said that Lacy was head of the FBI. Primary source material is simply not reliable. I think the section is fine as is. Darlig 🎸 Talk to me 20:28, 16 September 2017 (UTC)
Agreed, and in addition WP:ABOUTSELF would not apply because it is a) an exceptional claim and b) information about a third party. I'm afraid it is a clear-cut case of an instance where a self-published source cannot be acceptable, per the policy on reliable sources. --bonadea contributions talk 20:44, 16 September 2017 (UTC)
Harrell said in his book that Gordon Lindsey reported the startling results of the photo in the Voice of Healing magazine, so he didn't need to repeat everything in his book; also that "the photograph became perhaps the most important relic in the history of the revival".[5] Bonadea deleted this statement also, and it needs to be here because of it's importance. I'm asking you, DoctorG, because you know more about Wikipedia policies than I do, and I think you can see what's happening here; is this true? After all, Branham told about the angel of the Lord commissioning him and several other things that no one else witnessed. Dr. Bosworth took the photo to Lacy, who also did work for the FBI. Even if Branham didn't understand it exactly, what difference does that make? There are people who have spent thousands of hours combing through everything Branham said just to find any minuscule error that they could accuse him of because of their hatred for holiness and what he stood for. Danpeanuts (talk) 16:18, 16 September 2017

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────Wikipedia articles may not include copyright violations, which was why the sentence about "important relic" was removed in this edit. Harrell's book says on page 35: "The photograph became perhaps the most famous relic in the history of the revival." I don't have access to the physical book, but it is searchable through the wonder that is Google Books. I might suggest a writing on the lines of "It was characterised by historian Edwin Harrell as "perhaps the most famous relic in the history of the revival"", which would correctly attribute it and remove the copyright concern, and still be faithful to the original statement. (The faculty page at Auburn University calls him "Ed Harrell" so maybe that is better than "Edwin" - I have no opinion on that.) --bonadea contributions talk 05:06, 17 September 2017 (UTC)

Bonadea, I read in the rules that you can quote a short statement from the book as long as you put it in quotation marks, so this should have been ok, as written, but if it would keep you from deleting it again, we could rephrase it, but it does need to be there because of importance. Isn't this like trying to split hairs? Danpeanuts (talk) 05:15, 17 September 2017
Yes, it is fine to include a short quote, but it is important that it is attributed. As I said, one of the problems here (and the reason it had to be removed as it was so as not to violate the copyright policy) was that the entire sentence was an exact quote, but only the last noun phrase was marked as a quote, with quotation marks. In addition, and forgive me if I am repeating myself but it doesn't seem like I was clearly understood before, the previous phrasing made a claim in Wikipedia's voice rather than identifying the claim ("perhaps the most famous relic [etc]") as coming from one specific source. I would be perfectly happy leaving the sentence out, but needless to say I am equally happy to include some version of it, provided there is consensus in favour of doing so, and provided the text doesn't violate policy. --bonadea contributions talk 12:47, 17 September 2017 (UTC)

I'm gathering some other quality secondary sources so we can expand the content a bit and get this article to FA status. I have found a few newspaper references that are interesting so I will look those up when I am at the Library of Congress, and I also know of a few great historical encyclopedias they have (that I can't seem to find in bookstores anywhere) that I think have a few pages of content on Branham as well. I'll let you all know what I find. Doctor (talk) 13:14, 17 September 2017 (UTC)

DoctorG: That's great! Anything you can find that will improve this article will be helpful.
Bonadea, I believe that statement ("perhaps the most famous relic..." has been there for years. Would it be ok to just put it back like it was and put the quotation marks in the right place?
Also (Darlig), there are a couple more things that are Weaver's opinions that need to be identified as "his opinion" or left out. At the beginning of the article (Early Life) it says: The only available newspaper report of the event was that of the Jeffersonville Evening News on June 2, which indicated that the Branham campaign reported 14 converts.[10] Given the lack of corroborating evidence for this supposed supernatural event it is possible that Branham later embellished the incident by "remembering" the forerunner message when he was achieving success in the healing revival.[11]
The newspaper article was dated June 2, at the beginning of the revival, which lasted for several days. By the end of the revival there were some 130 people baptized in water[6]. Also, it is Weavers OPINION that Branham embellished the incident and it needs to say so, otherwise it's in Wikipedia's voice that he embellished it.
Here's another "Embellishment" from Weaver plus Duyzer: Branham's wife, Hope, died on July 22, 1937 and their daughter died four days later (July 26, 1937) after the Ohio River flood of 1937. Branham interpreted their deaths as God's punishment for his resistance to joining the Oneness Pentecostals, something he felt God had wanted him to do. This appears to have been an embellishment to enhance his relationship with the Pentecostals.[13][14] (Harrell is listed here as a reference [13], but that's not what Harrell wrote).
God had not wanted him to JOIN the Oneness Pentecostals (He taught that denominations are the (Roman Catholic) Harlots of Rev.17:5 that will lead to the mark of the beast). He said that he felt God wanted him to "Conduct Revivals" in their churches. These "embellishment" statements need to be identified as Weaver's opinion or left out. Can we try to correct some of these statements? Since you were probably the one who put this information here, Darlig, would you please correct it? Danpeanuts (talk) 06:33, 18 September 2017
I still don't think you understand what secondary sources are. I have posted the references to the Wikipedia policies on secondary sources a number of times. Secondary sources will contain the analysis and opinion of the authors. Those opinions and analyses should be reflected in the article. If it is in Wikipedia's voice, it should not be a direct quote from the secondary source, in which case it should be in quotes. I will take a look at the references you relate above and will ensure they are correct. Darlig 🎸 Talk to me 17:47, 18 September 2017 (UTC)