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Nazarene Roots


A Message from Bob Broadbooks

Director, USA/Canada Office, Church of the Nazarene

Someone once said that looking at your denominational roots is like looking into a rearview mirror. If you look too long, you may bump into something ahead of you. However, if you fail to look backward, you may get hit from behind. For this reason, it is important to look into our past as we head into our future.

In 2008, we celebrated our centennial year. Since that time, we’ve worked to help Nazarene clergy reflect on the meaning of our 100-year journey and get better acquainted with our faith story. This has been accomplished through the Nazarene Roots Project , which is a partnership between the Nazarene Archives and the USA/Canada Office, aimed at helping pastors and church leaders better understand our faith tradition. The Nazarene Roots Project website will have materials added periodically that will not only help pastors understand their history, but also stimulate continuing holiness evangelism efforts.

Some of the resources we’ve developed are a CD that includes foundational documents (such as early Nazarene Manuals), books, articles, and a curriculum for pastors on the lessons they can learn from their faith tradition. We’ve also developed a DVD of a panel discussion entitled, “Reflecting on our Nazarene Heritage,” which is available to clergy as a part of this effort. The panel includes Paul Bassett, Stan Ingersol, Janine Metcalf, and Tom Noble. We cover a series of topics based on questions we have received from Nazarene clergy, which include: The Church’s Genesis, Founders and Shapers, Theological Vision, Major 20th Century Challenges, Holiness and Spirituality, Church Polity and Structures, The Church and Compassion, Internationalization, and Nazarene Identity (challenges and opportunities).

I would encourage you to peruse all of these materials and let us know what you think of them. We are here to support your work on the front lines of ministry, and we deeply appreciate all you do on behalf of the Church of the Nazarene and the larger body of Christ.



“This is a marvelous little book. Stan Ingersol’s work sheds light on our denominational DNA through a survey of key women and men who shaped the Church of the Nazarene for over a century. Challenging, fascinating, insightful, and wise, this book sheds helpful light on the Wesleyan-Holiness movement and reminds us to continue the trajectories blazed by our forebears.”

—Jay Akkerman, Associate Professor of Preaching and Missional Theology, Northwest Nazarene University

“Just the title of this book, Nazarene Roots, is an encouragement to me as a Nazarene pastor. God forbid that we would ever forget where we came from, because if we do, we won’t know where we’re going, and we won’t know who we are when we get there.”

—Kerry W. Willis, vision pastor, Harrisonburg, VA, First Church of the Nazarene

“Every Nazarene should read Stan’s new book about our holiness roots! From the founding of Providence, Rhode Island, to how the Lillenas Publishing Company became part of Nazarene Publishing House, you will find these pages filled with dozens of stories that have directly affected us all. Once you start, you won’t want to put it down.”

—Larry McKain, executive director, New Church Specialties

Read More Praise for Nazarene Roots



Foreword by Jesse C. Middendorf

A Message from Bob Broadbooks
Director, USA/Canada Office, Church of the Nazarene

Chapter 3 - Spirit of the Founders
Introduction and part of the chapter.

Chapter 4 - Shaping the Nazarene Way
Introduction and part of the chapter.





Nazarene Messenger Online

View issues of this early Nazarene periodical in your browser.






Voices from the Past

Listen or download these audio presentations that were originally developed by Neil B. Wiseman for the Minister's Tape Club.