March 4, 2008
The city wide crusade was held at Ellis Auditorium in spring of 1989. T. L. Lowery was the guest preacher. I was appointed the chairman of the usher committee. The auditorium had 5000 seats. We had to assist people to find a seat, receive the evening offering and get a head count. I had forgotten to get a head count and was asked by the finance committee members for the count. So hasitly we went back into the auditorium to get a head count. We counted less than 300 and it wasn't a precise count, since everyone was scattered in a 5000 seat auditorium.
I personally checked and double checked and could not come up with a number reaching 300.
I went back and told the men that there was 275 and they laughed knowing I had forgotten to get a precise count. I hadn't taken my job seriously and so I said OK, there maybe 300!
At the Tennessee State Campmeeting in Chattanooga the following May Orville Hagan, the state overseer (pictured above) reported on the success of the tri-city wide crusades the past spring and he said Memphis had over 500 in attendance! I thought to myself "where did he get that figure?"
The following year was the 1990 Church of God International General Assembly in Dallas, Texas. Once again Orville Hagan reported to the assembly the success of the tri city crusades and there were more than 1000 in attendance. I was amazed that the number had increased so dramatically!
This is what is refered to as evangelistic estimating. It is OK because it is for the kingdom of God! The altar committee got a count of the number that was slain and piled in the Spirit!