Shouting Grandma


grandma-boehm3

Mintie Jane

The story is told that in 1913 a young 10 year old by the name of Mintie Jane Jervis was walking through the meadow from her house to her great-grandmother’s house in Floyd County, Kentucky. Her parents had told her for some time, “don’t be surprised if you go to visit grandma and she is dead.” But nothing had prepared Mintie for this day.

Mintie (Janie) ran home so fast that she did not even touch the three steps going into her house. “Momma, momma, something is wrong with grandma! Something is wrong with grandma!”

They figured that this day would come. Grandma, Evey Burchett Jervis, was 90 years old, born in 1823, the wife of a Civil War doctor. They were pioneers of this part of the country, a gift from the government for her husbands service. This was the ground where he trained soldiers.

But what they did not understand was that Grandma was not dead. She was very much alive. “Something is wrong with Grandma! I saw here on the front porch waving her hands in the air and crying, ‘Thank you Jesus. How wonderful You are.'”

Dad, George Washington Jervis, was a tall, lanky redhead Church of Christ evangelist. He was very familiar with the group of Baptist that his grandmother had been worshipping with in the local school. He grunted, “Oh, she is just shouting. We don’t do that kind of thing.”

“I want to be just like her when I grow up,” Janie said.

“Well, lost another one,” her dad grunted back. I sure would have loved to have know what he meant by that. What was going on in that county. That same type of thing was going on 100 years earlier in Kentucky from which his church was born out of. What made the change in 100 years?

And become like Grandma she did. Mintie Jane married Gilmer Boehm and at the age of 24grandma-boehm-cooking she and her mother-in-law began a church in their home in a West Virginia coal mining camp. The first night they had 8 who showed up. The second week there were so many that people were standing outside on the porch.

That little ten year old was my grandmother, my dad’s mother, and this story was captured on video in 1993 when she was 90 years old, my shouting grandmother. Because of her love for Jesus she is credited for the many pastors, missionaries and church leaders that came out of her family.

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Jacob Boehm, Running For Your Life


Pietists

Pietists

After learning a trade Jacob Boehm traveled, as was custom, as a itinerant journeymen for three years.  The purpose was to make him a finished workman.  In his wanderings Jacob fell in with a people called Pietists.  In many respects they resembled the Puritans.  He was converted among them.  The change was so great when he returned home, his language so strange, that his friends could not understand him.  His singular experience, his exposure of formal religion, his boldness in reproving sin, raised a storm of persecution.  The minister withstood him, and denounced him as a heretic.  His answers were so pertinent that his father gave him a severe reprimand.  The Church exercised civil as well as ecclesiastical authority, and young Boehm was convicted of heresy, and sentenced to prison.  An elder brother was appointed to conduct him to the prison-house.  He did not watch his brother closely, and as they were near the line that separated Switzerland from France the prisoner crossed over, and was forever free from his domestic and priestly persecutors.

He journeyed along the banks of the Rhine till he entered the Dukendom of Pfaltz.  This was the Palatine bordering on Belgium.  From this region were the ancestors of Philip Embury.  There young Jacob became acquainted with a people called Mennonites.  They took their name from Menno Simon, who was contemporary with Luther.  They were a simple-hearted people, and he united with them, and became a lay elder.

By the way, this is a relative of mine in which I am proud of.

Jakob Boehme


Jakob Boehme

Jakob Boehme

Jakob Boehme was born in the year 1575 in a village near Gorlitz, and died in Silesia in 1624. He had but little schooling and was apprenticed at an early age to a shoemaker. He later became a journeyman shoemaker, married and had four children.

One day while tending his master’s shoe shop, a mysterious stranger entered who, while he seemed to impoverished, appeared to be most wise and noble in his spirit. The stranger asked the price of a pair of shoes, but young Boehme did not dare to name a figure, for fear that he would displease his master. The stranger insisted and Boehme finally placed a value which he felt was all that his master possibly could hope to secure for the shoes. The stranger immediately bought them and departed.

A short distance down the street the mysterious stranger stopped and cried out in a loud voice, “Jakob, Jakob, come forth.”

In amazement and fright, Boehme ran out of the house. The strange man fixed his eyes upon him. He took the boy’s right hand and addressed him as follows: “Jakob, thou art little but shall be great, and become another Man, such a one as at whom the World shall wonder. Therefore be pious, fear God, and reverence His Word. Read diligently the Holy Scriptures, wherein you have Comfort and Instruction. For thou must endure much Misery and Poverty, and suffer Persecution, but be courageous and persevere, for God loves, and is gracious to thee.”

Martin Boehm


Henry Boehm

Henry Boehm

Martin Boehm was born in 1725 and lived in Lancaster, PA where he was a farmer and was appointed as pastor of his Mennonite parish. But something began to happen at prayer meetings in his home and he was asked to leave. These prayer meetings would have as many as 50 to 100 people packed into their farm house.

Here is an excerpt found in his son’s book, Henry Boehm, which is listed below. His son lived 100 years and traveled with Francis Asbury and records some outstanding works of God. The book can still be purchased at http://www.boehmschapel.org/ where the family has had it republished.

“Mr Abbott wrote his life, and in it he describes his visit to my father’s, his preaching, and the wonderful results that followed.  I prefer he should give it in his own peculiar style.

At Boehm’s we found a large congregation.  When I came to my application the power of the Lord came in such a manner that the people fell all about the house, and their cries might be heard afar off. This alarmed the wicked, who sprang for the doors in such haste that they fell over one another in heaps.  The cry of mourners was so great that I though to give out a hymn to drown the noise, and desired one of the English friends to raise it; but as soon as he began to sing the power of the Lord struck him, and he pitched under the table, and there lay like a dead man.  I gave it out again, and asked another to raise it.  As soon as he attempted he fell also.  I then made the third attempt, and the power of God came upon me in such a manner that I cried out and was amazed.  I then saw that I was fighting against God, and did not attempt to sing again.

Mr Boehm, the owner of the house, and a preacher among the Germans, cried out, ‘I never saw God in this way before.’  I replied, ‘This is Pentecost, father.’  ‘Yes, be sure,’ said he, clapping his hands, ‘pentecost, be sure.’  Prayer was all through the house, up stairs and down.  I desired Mr Boehm to go to prayer.  He did so, and five or six of us did the same.

…seeing no prospect of this meeting being over, although it had begun at eleven o’clock (am), I told Mr Boehm we had best quietly withdraw from the meeting-house.  When we had got out of the door a young man came out and laid hold upon the fence to support himself from falling and there cried amain for God to have mercy upon him.  ‘To be sure,’ said Mr Boehm, ‘I never saw God in this way before.’

I took the old gentleman by the arm, and we went quietly to the house to get some dinner.  About five o’clock a messenger came from the preaching house requesting that I would go there immediately, for there was a person dying.  We went without delay.  I went up stairs, and there lay several about the floor in like manner.  I then went to see the person said to be dying.  She lay gasping.  I knelt down to pray, but it was instantly given me that God had converted her soul, and therefore, instead of praying for her deliverance, I gave God thanks that he had delivered her, and immediately she arose and praised God for what he had done for her soul.

…In the morning I found the people were still engaged, and had been all night.

We set out with about forty friends to the next appointment.  The people being gathered, after singing and prayer I began to preach, and God laid to his helping hand.  Many cried aloud for mercy. One young man being powerfully wrought upon retired up stairs, and then thumped about on the floor, so that Mr Boehm was afraid that he would be injured in body.  ‘To be sure,’ said he, ‘I never saw God work in this way before.’…”

Boehm’s Reminiscences, by Henry Boehm; 1865, p20-24

By the way, this is a relative of mine of which I am proud of.

Boehm’s Chapel


Picture 23There are landmarks throughout the world that tell of the wonderful power of God and the experiences of man. One such place is a small chapel just south of Lancaster, PA. It still stands today with a beautiful restoration back in the 1990’s. Although the meetings that once influenced a whole generation no longer are conducted, it presence remains to draw us back to that place.

Here is a brief look through the portals of history. It has been captured in the book, Reminiscences of Rev. Henry Boehm (p 30) who lived between 1775 to 1875.

“Boehm’s Chapel was erected in 1791, the year in which Shadrach Bostwick, Joshua Taylor, and other strong men of our Israel were received on trial. The house was on a hill, from which there is a fine view of the neighborhood country, and was surrounded by trees, which still remain, adding to the beauty of the scene. The house was built of limestone; was forty feet deep and thirty-two wide, and had galleries. It was called ‘Boehm’s Chaple,’ because it was built upon Boehm’s land in Boehm’s neighborhood, and because the different families of Boehms did much toward its erection, and were regular attendants there.

“There were wonderful gatherings at Boehm’s Chapel. The bishops and the great men of Methodism found their way there, and preached the word. At quarterly meetings the people came from Philadelphia and the Eastern Shore of Maryland and the Western Shore from Watters’s neighborhood. Boehm’s Chapel was a great center of influence. Several itinerant ministers were raised up and went out from the neighborhood of Boehm’s Chapel to preach the Gospel. Ten I now think of, and there may be others: Joseph Jewell, who was Nathan Bangs’s first presiding elder in Canada; Simon Miller, Riehard Sneath, William and James Hunter, James and William Michel, Thomas and Robert Burch, and Henry Boehm. David Best and James Aiken were from the circuit. It is singular they were all from Ireland except Jewell, Miller, and myself.

Great quarterly meetings were held in this house. I will notice one held in 1798. Thomas Ware was the presiding elder, William Colbert and William P. Chandler the circuit preachers. The meeting began on Saturday, and while the presiding elder was praying the Holy Ghost filled the house where they had assembled. The work of revival commenced, and such were the cries of distress, the prayers for mercy heard all over the house, in the gallery as well as the lower part, that it was impossible for Mr. Ware to preach. He came down from the pulpit, and the brethren went to the penitent ones, as they found them in different parts of the house, and pointed them to Jesus, and prayed with them. They were assembled in different groups praying for the brokenhearted, and one after another found redemption in the blood of the Lamb. It was impossible to close the meeting, so it continued all day and most of the night. Sunday morning came, and they attempted to hold a regular love-feast, but all in vain. The cries of mourners, the prayers for mercy, and shout after shout as one after another passed from death unto life, made it impossible to proceed.”

To find out more about this chapel go to http://www.boehmschapel.org/

Debtors Prison, Robert Morris


Robert Morris

Robert Morris

The economy of the United States banks on the multitudes being in debt loans and credit cards. There was a day that you would be thrown into prison for not being able to pay your debts.

Here is an excerpt from the book, Reminiscences of Rev. Henry Boehm, (page 162) which is very sobering to know that fate of someone who had greater riches than our own country and funded our revolutionary war. Henry Boehm lived from 1776 to 1876. He is writing from his accounts.

“People were in those days imprisoned for debt, and as there were many in debt, so there were many prisoners. ROBERT MORRIS, a signer of the Declaration of Independence, the intimate friend of Washington, one of the framers of the Federal Constitution, and the great financier of the Revolution, whose credit for a time was better than his country’s, lost all his property and became bankrupt, and was confined in this very prison for debt for a long time, to the shame of the city of brotherly love and to the shame of his country. But the year before I was there death came to his relief, on May 6, 1806. He died in poverty at the age of seventy-three.”

Robert Morris, known as the “Financier of the Revolution,” was more than just a contributor of money.

  • signer of the Declaration of Independence
  • signer of the Articles of Confederation
  • signer of the United States Constitution
  • elected to the Pennsylvania Assembly
  • chairman of the Pennsylvania Committee of Safety
  • member of the Second Continental Congress where he served as the Chairman of the Secret Committee
  • member of the Committee of Correspondence
  • served as Superintendent of Finance
  • was Agent of Marine without pay, controlling the Continental Navy
  • was one of Pennsylvania’s original pair of U.S. senators
  • went bankrupt because of his generosity
  • died in a debtors prison

It is a strange thought that Robert Morris died in prison for going into such deep debt for our freedom from England. He is an unsung hero.