Establishing the Ministry – Colombo


Walter & Viola Clifford

Walter & Viola Clifford



Walter Clifford – 1923 (at this time an AG missionary appointed to North India) first arrives in Ceylon, as part of a month-long healing mission tour of South India (including Bangalore, Salem and Tuticorin) and Ceylon. His first public meeting is held at the Jampettah (Methodist) Church. He ministers in Colombo, Jaffna and Madampe, and a number of remarkable healings and deliverances take place. While on furlough in 1924, Walter Clifford receives a definite invitation to return to Ceylon and in 1925 with an AG missionary appointment to Ceylon he returned with his wife Gertrude and their 3 children to Colombo.

Grave Site

Grave Site

In 1927 Clifford’s wife Gertrude dies aged 41, followed a month later (June 23) by his eldest daughter Queenie aged 8. (They had already lost their first baby in India in 1917). He is left alone with 3 small children aged 5, 3 and 1. Grieving and seriously ill, he takes a break at Landour in North India where he meets Viola May Nourse, an American missionary whom he marries there later the same year (November 1st).

14Colombo Gospel Tabernacle 1936

Colombo Gospel Tabernacle 1936

Walter Clifford saw the church in Kandy as established by him. The Cliffords took charge of the work in Colombo, where the Colombo Gospel Tabernacle was built at Wellawatte in 1936.


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