Jenny Helena Florence O’Hara was born in 1892 in Madoc, Ontario. She married Robert Newton Pincock in 1915. He was an osteopath. Her sister, Minnie O’Hara married Fred Maines in 1922. He was educated at Victoria University in Toronto and was an ordained minister who had served with the YMCA overseas during the First World War. In 1927, Jenny, Minnie and Reverend Fred Maines began to hold séances. They worked in collaboration with Mr. William Cartheuser who was an American medium. Jenny Pincock’s Trails of Truth documents these séances. Most of the séances took place at 47 Church Street, St. Catharines which was the residence of Reverend Maines. Participants in the séances included: poets Dr. E.J. Pratt and W.W.E. Ross and other local citizens. E. J. Pratt wrote the foreword for Pincock’s Hidden Springs. W.W.E. Ross was interested in spiritualism and automatic writing.

The Maines and Pincocks began the Church of the Divine Revelation in St. Catharines, Ontario on Sept. 6, 1930 with Fred Maines as the ordained minister. He remained in this position from 1930-1935. Dr. Anderson (in spirit form) provided instructions for the running of the church. In 1931, the United Church of Canada into which Maines had originally been ordained suspended him because of his foray into spiritualism. Maines was also ordained into the spiritualist ministry. In 1932, they established the Radiant Healing Centre which was also located in St. Catharines, Ontario. On the Radiant Healing Centre correspondence it states that the centre is “under guidance of ‘Dr. Anderson’ who manifests in direct voice through psychic powers of Dr. William Cartheuser”. William worked for the New York section of the American Society for Psychical Research. He also maintained a home at Lily Dale Spiritualist Camp, New York (southwest of Buffalo, New York). Jenny spent summers working as a librarian at Lily Dale. Officers of the Radiant Healing Centre after 1935 were listed as: Rev. Wm. Cartheuser; Mr. Ivan H. Hare, head disciple and treasurer and Mrs. Jean E. Tye, secretary.

It was thought that a séance could provide alternative medicine. The proponents of this train of thought did not believe in a division of medicine and faith. They believed in a unity of spirit, mind and body. Supposedly, voices emanated from trumpets (aluminum cones) which were used for the séances. These voices were distinctly different from the medium’s voice. The trumpets were also known to levitate. People felt as if they were being touched and taps on the table were heard. “Dr. Anderson” was an old fashioned (deceased) doctor who supposedly dispensed medical wisdom and sympathy. He gave some biographical information about himself at one session. He said that his full name was John Berry Anderson and he graduated from Pittsburgh University in the late 1700s. He then attended Columbia University in New York City. [This information does not seem to be verified].

The Spiritualists’ National Union of Canada was incorporated by the Government of Canada in 1929. This group operated out of Toronto, Ontario. The Church of Divine Revelation was an independent church even though it carried manuals from the Spiritualists’ National Union. There were no advertisements for the St. Catharines Church until October 5, 1930 when the St. Catharines Standard ran an ad for the first public services which were to be held on October 12 at the Oddfellow’s Temple on 26 James Street, St. Catharines. There was controversy between the spiritualists and the established churches of St. Catharines. In January of 1932, Evangelist O.D. Cardy spoke on Spiritualism Under the X-Ray in the King George Theatre in St. Catharines. He argued that the serpent in the Garden of Eden was the first medium and it represented Satan. In that same year, Canon C.E. Riley from St. George’s Church in St. Catharines did a speech entitled Where are the Dead. His view was that the dead enjoyed a “sphere of activity” as great as our own. There was so much controversy surrounding spiritualism that on March 28, 1932, the St. Catharines Standard declared that they didn’t have enough space to handle all the correspondence which was being sent to them. The Church of the Divine Revelation was not daunted by their opposition and on Sunday, March 11, 1934, they held an open forum at the Oddfellows’ Hall to discuss the topic of mediumship.

The spirits at the Healing Centre did not rely on direct physical contact, but worked though prescribed movements of the participants which meant that healing could take place over great amounts of time or space. When members of the church joined as a group, even in absentia, they sent forth a radiant healing light. Members of the Radiant Healing Centre were scattered throughout the world. A fee of one dollar per year was charged. This entitled the member to a quarterly issue of Progression as well as private instructions which were sent to each member. Each member would try to make a daily withdrawal into the “Silence” and twice monthly they would engage in concentration (simultaneously with the meeting of the Mother Circle). Any members seeking help for problems could send a brief note to Jenny Pincock and she would present the questions before the “LIGHT”. The healing force could be realized and dispensed by the ‘angelic helpers’. Women were particularly drawn to this spiritualist type of religion. Women were encouraged to take control over their minds and bodies whereas in biomedical circles they were deemed weak and powerless.

Newton Pincock died in 1928, but was said to perform osteopathic treatments after his death as the force of his spirit would apply itself to the body. In 1935, Jenny Pincock broke ties with William Cartheuser. She began to suspect that William had let his mind influence the messages from the spirit, but she did not doubt his powers as a medium. His mind had ceased to be passive and she called him “money crazy”.

A publication called Progression was produced by this group, with its first issue being put out in October of 1932. Publication ceased in 1938. The 1932- May of 1935 issues were edited by Jenny Pincock. Later issues were edited by Mr. F.E. Hetherington, Barrister-at-law.

Click here to view Radiant Healing Centre fonds finding aid: https://dr.library.brocku.ca/bitstream/id/52405/Radiant%20Healing%20Centre%20fonds%20-%20RG%2033.pdf

Recent Submissions

  • Progression, 1932-1938 (Volume 1, no. 4) 

    O'Hara Pincock, Jenny (St. Catharines, Ont. The Radiant Healing Centre, 1932)
    Volume 1 No 4 of the periodical Progression. Published November, February, May and August by The Radiant Healing Centre. SPCL PER BT 732 P76 V.1,1932-V.5,1938
  • Progression, 1932-1938 (Volume 1, no. 3) 

    O'Hara Pincock, Jenny (St. Catharines, Ont. The Radiant Healing Centre, 1932)
    Volume 1 No 3 of the periodical Progression. Published November, February, May and August by The Radiant Healing Centre. SPCL PER BT 732 P76 V.1,1932-V.5,1938
  • Progression, 1932-1938 (Volume 1, no. 2) 

    O'Hara Pincock, Jenny (St. Catharines, Ont. The Radiant Healing Centre, 1932)
    Volume 1 No 2 of the periodical Progression. Published November, February, May and August by The Radiant Healing Centre. SPCL PER BT 732 P76 V.1,1932-V.5,1938
  • Progression, 1932-1938 (Volume 1, no. 1) 

    O'Hara Pincock, Jenny (St. Catharines, Ont. The Radiant Healing Centre, 1932)
    Volume 1 No 1 of the periodical Progression. Published November, February, May and August by The Radiant Healing Centre. SPCL PER BT 732 P76 V.1,1932-V.5,1938
  • Two notebooks 

    Unknown author (n.d.)
    Two notebooks which cover topics including: the object of Tarot practice, the life power, self consciousness, sub consciousness, creative imagination, reason, intuition, discrimination, will power, the serpent power ...
  • Radiant Healing Centre papers 

    Unknown author (n.d.)
    Radiant Healing Centre papers which include: Dr. Anderson’s instructions, hymns, prayers and declarations and The Creative Force. Mr. I.H. Hare is listed as the president. Miss Evelyn Jones is listed as the secretary and ...

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