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Collection 389 Papers of John A. Huffman, Sr.

Identifier: CN 389

Scope and Contents

Oral history interviews, correspondence, films, negatives, photographs, and radio programs which document the life and ministry of John A. Huffman, Sr. The materials cover his presidency of the Winona Lake School of Theology dealing mainly with the work of the students and faculty. There are some materials on the relationship of the School with Fuller Theological Seminary, films about Islam, the WLST tour of Israel and over two dozen radio programs of Great Moments with the Master and Commentary on the News.


  • Created: 1934-1988

Conditions Governing Access

Folder 19-4 is closed until December 31, 2036.

Biographical Information

Full Name: John Abram Huffman, Sr.

Birth: February 12, 1912, in Dayton, Ohio

Death: May 22, 2004


Parents: Jasper Abraham and Elizabeth (Lambert) Huffman, both active members of the Mennonite Brethren in Christ Church, which later, after mergers with other denominations, became the Missionary Church

Siblings: D. Paul (nine years older), Lambert (four years older)

Marital Status: Married in 1935 to Dorothy Bricker

Children: John A. Huffman, Jr., Miriam.

Conversion: At the age of 8


1929 Marion College Academy (Marion, Indiana), graduated

1933 Marion College, graduated with a BA and BS

1933 Winona Lake School of Theology, graduated with an MA in Theology

1939 Boston University School of Theology, graduated with a Bachelor's of Sacred Theology

1950-1951 Harvard Divinity School - two years of Ph.D. graduate study

1951-1952 Boston University School of Theology - two years of graduate study at the doctoral level

1957 Asbury Theological Seminary, honorary Doctorate of Divinity


1934-1972 Ordained minister in the Missionary Church

1937-1939 Park Street Congregational Church, Boston, associate minister

1939-1951 Wings of the Morning, daily program, broadcast over WORL/WHDH, Boston and the New England Network

1940 Prospect Congregational Church, Cambridge Massachusetts (this church became the Cornerstone Church of Cambridge in 1941)

1941-1953 Cornerstone Church of Cambridge, senior minister

1942-1952 The Evangelical Hour, WBZ-WBZA Boston

1943-1963 Las Alas del Alba, Cuban CMQ network radio

1944-1954 Youth for Christ, founding member of the Boston chapter in 1944 and director of the Boston Youth for Christ

1950-1953 Winona Lake School of Theology, faculty member and administrator

1953-1970 Winona Lake School of Theology, president

ca. 1963-ca. 1964 Commentary on the News, Huffman served as announcer on the program hosted by Howard Kershner and produced by the Christian Freedom Foundation

1963-1965 Great Moments with the Master, Mutual Broadcasting System. Huffman produced the program and gave a brief message and Jerome Hines sang hymns or other religious classics. The program was carried by 368 stations.

1968 First Missionary Church of Chicago, interim pastor

1971-1979 John Huffman Talk Show, WIOD Miami,

1971-1973 Westminster Presbyterian Church of Miami, interim pastor

1973-1975 Key Biscayne Presbyterian Church, assistant minister

1975-1976 First Presbyterian Church of Miami, associate minister

1976-1978 Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church of Fort Lauderdale, Florida, minister of counseling

1979-1984 St. Andrew's Presbyterian Church of Newport Beach, California, minister of visitation

1984-1986 First Presbyterian Church of River Forest, Illinois, parish associate

1987-? First Presbyterian Church of Glen Ellyn, Illinois, associate pastor

Other significant information:

Grew up in Ohio and Indiana. Father became President of the Winona Lake School of Theology (Winona Lake, Indiana) in 1928.

Member of the National Association of Evangelicals, founding member and first editor of the NAE's magazine, United Evangelical Action


8.60 Cubic Feet (19 Boxes (19 DC), Audio tapes, Films, Negatives, Photographs)

Language of Materials


Arrangement of Materials

[NOTE: In the Arrangement section, the notation "folder 2-5" means box 2, folder 5.]

Series: Audio Visual Materials

Arrangement: Oral history interviews first, followed by Commentary on the News, Great moments with the Master, and Fuller Theological Seminary Board Meeting

Date Range: 1963-1988

Volume: 0.58 cubic feet

Geographic coverage: United States

Type of material: Audio tapes

Notes: The material in this collection consists of a series of tapes of oral history interviews with Huffman and some tapes from radio programs he was associated with in the mid-1960s. The radio programs were Commentary on the News and Great Moments with the Master. The former program consisted of commentary by Dr. Howard Kershner on recent news stories, with a Bible reading by opera singer Jerome Hines and announcements by Huffman. Kershner reviewed events from an anti-large government, pro-free market perspective. The latter program consisted of two or more hymns or spirituals sung by Hines and a brief message by Huffman. Folder 1-1 contains some of the scripts for Huffman's messages.


Series: Paper Records (Box List)

Arrangement: Boxes 1-9 alphabetical as arranged by John A. Huffman, Sr. Boxes 10-19 placed in alphabetical order by the archivist.

Date Range: 1934-1988.

Volume: 9.5 cubic feet, Boxes: 1-19

Geographic coverage: United States

Type of documents: Articles, booklets, correspondence, film script, financial records, minutes, manuscript, newspaper clippings, postcards, thesis

Correspondents: James R. Adair, W. E. Biederwolf, Baron William Frary von Blomberg (president of World Fellowship of Religions), J. (James) Oliver Buswell, Jr. (president of Wheaton College), Delbert B. Flora (dean of Graduate School of Ashland College & Theological Seminary), Gerald A. Foster (vice president of WLST), Charles E. Fuller, Daniel P. Fuller, Armin R. Gesswein, Rabbi Arthur Gilbert (Anti-Defamation League of B'nai B'rith), Billy Graham, Howard Hendricks, Milford Henkel (registrar and professor of Christian education at WLST), Carl F.H. Henry, Donald E. Hoke (president of Japan Christian College, Tokyo), Jasper A. Huffman, John A. Huffman Sr., Bob Jones Jr., Stanley S. Kresge, Alvin Kropf (treasurer of WLST), Harold Lindsell, Martyn Lloyd-Jones, Norman Vincent Peale, J. Howard Pew, Dick Ross (president of World Wide Pictures formerly Great Commission Films), J. Stratton Shufelt, Paul B. Smith, Oswald J. Smith, Wilbur M. Smith, Robert Lee Stuart (president of Taylor University), Merrill C. Tenney (dean of Wheaton Graduate School), Charles Troutman, George W. Truett (pastor of First Baptist Church, Dallas), J. Christy Wilson

Subjects: Christian education, preaching, Flying Seminar Tours, Fuller Theological Seminary, Winona Lake School of Theology

Notes: The collection consists of materials from John A. Huffman's presidency of the Winona School of Theology and dealing mainly with the work of students and faculty. Also some materials on the relationship between WLST and Fuller Seminary (the WLST for a brief time was part of the Seminary). Some of Huffman's correspondence include answering inquiries from prospective students (folder 9-33 to 9-41, 16-1 to 16-4), appeals for grants for the seminary from the individuals and foundations such as the Lilly Foundation (folder 7-1), Kresge Foundation (folder 14-3), and Pew Foundation (folder 15-4). The financial problems the school experienced are seen in Huffman's letters for support and grants.

Exceptional items:

Folder 1-1 - Radio sermon scripts, 1963-1965

Folder 1-6 - Script to film Assignment Jerusalem (see film F1)

Folder 1-16, 1-17, 2-1, 2-2 - Correspondence and minutes related to the WLST Board of Directors meetings

Folder 3-12 - Article by John A. Huffman for Christianity Today, "Adolph Eichman: Man or Coward?"

Folder 4-2 - Correspondence related to request to teach at WLST summer session. Carl F.H. Henry, Wilbur M. Smith, Merrill C. Tenney, J. Christy Wilson,

Folder 4-8 to 4-14, 5-1, 5-2 - Brochures, correspondence, course assignments, invoices, lists, and travel itineraries for the Flying Seminars Tours to the Bible Lands

Folder 5-5 - Letter from Rabbi Arthur Gilbert of the Anti-Defamation League of B'nai B'rith wishing to "Engage in some communication and dialogue with Evangelical Protestant theologians"

Folders 5-7, 8-15 - Correspondence about free travel to Billy Graham 1957 New York City Crusade. Also a generic letter from Graham asking for prayer for the meetings. Letter from Billy Graham about appearing on the Town Meeting program (folder 8-15)

Folder 5-11 - Correspondence between Jasper A. Huffman and his son related to school and family matters. John's April 15, 1961 letter he describes his trip to Egypt and the Middle East including Israel where he attend the Adolf Eichmann trial. Jasper wrote to his son in October 1964 advising him to "attached yourself to some good institution, college or seminary, enabling you to carry on WLST, and to continue as long as God enables you to carry on for Him."

Folder 6-5 - Correspondence between Carl F.H. Henry & Huffman about an article Henry published in Christianity Today which Huffman felt harmed his relationship with the University of Chicago Center for Continuing Education

Folder 6-8 - Correspondence between Huffman and Bob Jones, Jr. about not allowing WLST to do a presentation on Bob Jones University campus

Folder 8-13 - Letter of J. Oliver Buswell, Jr. in which he expresses his appreciation of the WLST

Folder 10-5 - List of WLST alumni, 1920s-1958

Folder 12-1 - Presentation visual folder for the film Crescent and the Cross (see film F2) Contains photos of scenes from film and one photo of John Huffman, Georgia & Ralph Hoops, and Richard Rossignol standing by TWA airplane on tarmac. Loose photos have been place in Photo File: Crescent and the Cross (Film). Film is a dramatized story about a couple who visit an Islamic country and discuss the Muslim beliefs.

12-13, 13-1 - Fuller Theological Seminary Board: correspondence, financial records, minutes, reports

Folder 13-7 - Letter from Norman Vincent Peale to Huffman

Folder 13-11 - Jasper A. Huffman's lecture notebook, 1936-1952. Some subjects include Holy Spirit, Word of God, Deity of God, Romans, John

Folder 14-3 - Correspondence with Stanley S. Kresge about grants from the Kresge Foundation for WLST

Folder 14-9 - Incomplete manuscript for a book Great Moments with the Master. The author is not listed but probably was by Huffman

Folder 15-3 - Correspondence between David Peters, attorney for WLST, and Huffman about legal matters including settlement with Fuller Theological Seminary over the indebtedness of WLST to Fuller. Also copy of Harold Ockenga's letter to Huffman about this matter.

Folder 15-5 - Materials about the Presidential Prayer Breakfasts (1954-1964) including brochures, booklets, programs

Folder 15-15 - The Amazing Growth of Fifty Dollars story about the start of the Speicher Student Loan Fund which students at WLST benefitted from

Folder 17-1, 17-2 - Papers of WLST students mostly about the theology of John Wesley and George Whitefield

Folder 17-6 - D. James Kennedy 1969 thesis, The Coral Ridge Program of Evangelism

Folder 19-1 - A copy of A Comprehensive System of Christian Doctrine by Jasper Abraham Huffman in Japanese. The English version of the book have been given to the Wheaton College Buswell Library.

Folder 19-2 - Audio tapes box Great Moments With The Master (tape missing) with photo of Jerome Hines and John Huffman on cover and inside a description of the tape "Joyful, Joyful, We Adore Thee" a life situation drama.

Folder 19-3 - Two copies of Mastering the English Bible by John A. Huffman and Ward M. Shantz, a joint thesis published by Full Gospel Publications in 1934 and The Standard Press in 1946. The 1934 book has the following inscription on the flyleaf: "Joint Thesis by John Abram Huffman and Ward M. Shantz. Accepted as part Requirement for Degree of Master of Arts (in Theology), Aug. 1934." The inscription in the other book is: "To John Abram, Jr. From His father the author. 2/22/54."

Folder 19-4 - Correspondence and WLST personnel record forms

Accruals and Additions

The materials in this collection were given to the Billy Graham Center Archives by John A. Huffman Sr. in April, May and November 1988 and July 1989.

Accession 88-38, 88-57, 89-76

April 12, 1995

Robert Shuster

K. Cox

Accession 89-77

May 13, 2009

Wayne D. Weber

H. Hunt

Collection 389 Papers of John A. Huffman, Sr.
Bob Shuster
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the Evangelism & Missions Archives Repository

501 College Avenue
Wheaton IL 60187 US