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Led by The Spirit: Interned by the Japanese

At Bilibid, little Margaret Joy was still recovering from dengue when liberation came. When the internees looked out and saw that U.S. tanks were surrounding them, they went wild with joy and apparently were not afraid that the rescuers might accidentally shoot them. The Japanese guards chose to fight rather than surrender. They were eventually subdued, and the internees were rescued. They were brought to an abandoned shoe factory where they were fed their first square meal in a long time. In the aftermath, Leland Johnson even had the chance to shake hands with MacArthur!

While the war lasted several months more, it was over for the missionaries. On March 10, all of them boarded a military transport plane for Leyte. From there they were put on a U.S. Coast Guard ship bound for San Francisco. Their reunion with their families must have been heaven on earth. The long-term effects of the suffering the missionaries had endured would affect some of them for the remainder of their lives, with most being unable to return to missionary service. By the grace of God, they had endured and survived. The long nightmare had ended.



This chapter is an excerpt from Dave Johnson, Led By The Spirit: The History of the American Assemblies of God Missionaries in the Philippines (Pasig City, Philippines: ICI Ministries, 2009). Used with permission.



Notes for Chapter 2: Interned By The Japanese

1 Elizabeth Galley Wilson, “War Reaches Baguio, Philippine Islands,” Assemblies of God Heritage, Winter 2001–2002, 12.

2 Rena Baldwin Lindsay, “Peace in the Day of Trouble,” Pentecostal Evangel, July 9, 1967, n.p.

3 Most of what follows is drawn from Leland Johnson’s book, I Was a Prisoner of the Japs, 18–145. With the exception of direct quotes, no further citation will be given.

4 John W. Kennedy, “P.O.W.,” Pentecostal Evangel, November 10, 2002, n.p.

5 Wilson, “War Reaches Baguio,” 13.

6 Lindsay, “Peace,” n.p.

7 Ibid., n.p.

8 Kennedy, “P.O.W.,” n.p.

9 Ibid., n.p..

10 Inez Sturgeon, Give Me This Mountain (Oakland, CA: Hunter Advertising, 1960), 56.

11 Lindsay, “Peace,” n.p.

12 Johnson, I Was a Prisoner, 69.

13 “From Japanese-Occupied Territory,” Pentecostal Evangel, July 17, 1943, n.p.

14 Johnson, I Was a Prisoner, 71

15 Rena Baldwin and Blanche Appleby, “Our Remarkable Deliverance From Los Baños Internment Camp,” Pentecostal Evangel, June 16, 1945, 2.

16 Elizabeth Galley, “Interned Missionary Writes Home,” Pentecostal Evangel, March 18, 1944, n.p.

17 Wayne E. Warner, “A Christmas Surprise in a World War II Prison Camp,” Pentecostal Evangel, December 24, 2000, 28.

18 Galley, “Interned,” n.p..

19 Kennedy, “P.O.W.,” n.p.

20 Annette Newberry, “The Miracle Cow,” in Gary B. McGee, People of the Spirit: The Assemblies of God, (Springfield, MO: Gospel Publishing House, 2004), 253–4.

21 Johnson, I Was a Prisoner, 82.

22 Wayne E. Warner, “1945 Liberation,” Assemblies of God Heritage, vol. 5 no.1 Spring, 1985, 9.

23 Johnson, I Was a Prisoner, 127.

24 Ibid.

25 Ibid.

26 Lindsay, “Peace,” n.p.

27 Karnow, (In Our Image: America’s Empire in the Philippines), New York: Ballantine Books, 316.

28 Ibid, 321.

29 Lindsay, “Peace,” n.p.

30 Ibid. n.p.


Further Reading:

Read Malcolm Brubaker’s review of Led by the Spirit in the Summer 2010 issue of The Pneuma Review:


Download the full book (in PDF) at:


Find more excellent books from APTS Press, home of the Asian Journal of Pentecostal Studies.


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Category: Church History, Winter 2020

About the Author: Dave Johnson, M.Div., D.Miss. (Asia Graduate School of Theology, Philippines), is an Assemblies of God missionary to the Philippines. Dave and his wife Debbie have been involved in evangelism, church planting, and Bible school and mission leadership. Dave is the Managing Editor of Asian Journal of Pentecostal Studies, the director of APTS Press in Baguio City, Philippines and coordinator for the Asian Pentecostal Theological Seminary's Master of Theology Program. Facebook Twitter

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