Skip to content
Independent Holiness Churches of Canada


Independent Holiness Churches of Canada

Our Short History

It was in August of 1960 that the Independent Holiness Church received its identity from the government, with a purpose to follow their parent church, The Holiness Movement.

The Holiness Movement, was part of the Methodist Church, begun in the late 1700’s under the leadership of Revs. John and Charles Wesley, clergy in the Anglican Church, who challenged the church with the message of Entire Sanctification. [sometimes called Perfect Love]

This Holiness Movement began in our capital city region, about 1900 as the Methodist Churches, along with others, were laying the foundation for the United Church of Canada. Under the leadership of Rev. R. C. Horner, The Movement spread rapidly through most of Canada, and some of the norther USA states. They also established mission fields in several countries, the largest was in Egypt. History records that the Holiness Movement was the fastest growing church that Canada had ever seen, establishing more than 60 churches, and beginning missions work in
several countries in the first five years.

  • The spiritual emphasis of this movement was…
  • Salvation by faith in Jesus Christ
  • Sanctification [holiness of heart and life]
  • The baptism or infilling of the Holy Spirit
  • The Holy Bible is the final authority

In 1959, The Holiness Movement in Canada voted to join with the Free Methodist Church, which at that time was not a Canadian General Conference, but was under the strong leadership of the USA Free Methodist Church. There were a few churches who wanted to retain their identity as a Canadian Church and continue as The Holiness Movement. This was not possible as the Holiness Movement Name was now part of the
Free Methodist Church. These few churches were granted the name, Independent Holiness Churches by the Ontario government.

As Independent Holiness Churches, we trace our roots through Anglican, to Methodist, to Holiness Movement, to Independent Holiness with a desire to promote Salvation to all through faith in Jesus Christ, and call our people to Holiness of heart and life through the cleansing power of Jesus sacrifice on Calvary, and the fullness of the Holy Spirit which began at Pentecost.

Presiding Bishop
Rev. R.E. Votary

 click here for a PDF version