Horner, Ralph Cecil
Ralph Cecil Horner, evangelist, church leader (b in Pontiac County, Canada E 22 Dec 1854; d at Ivanhoe, Ont 12 Sept 1921). After a short, stormy career as Methodist minister, he founded and led a series of HOLINESS CHURCHES. Converted and sanctified in Methodist camp meetings (1872), Horner studied theology at Victoria College, Cobourg, Ont, 1883-85 and oratory in Philadelphia 1885-86. A powerful preacher already active in evangelistic missions, he was ordained by the Montreal Conference of the Methodist Church in 1887. Mounting criticism of his teaching and methods and failure to submit to conference discipline brought his deposition 1894-95. Taking some Methodist clergy and laity with him, he joined the Wesleyan Methodists of NY and in 1897 formed an independent Holiness Movement Church, becoming its bishop. By 1900 his movement had a Bible college and a publishing house in Ottawa, and claimed some 6000 adherents, mainly in eastern Ontario and on the Prairies. In 1916 criticism of his leadership resulted in schism, and Horner founded the Standard Church of America.