News

Azusa revival promotes unity

LOS ANGELES —

Christians from diverse ethnic and denominational backgrounds gathered in the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum on April 9 for Azusa Now, an event to pray, worship and call for revival in America.

The Call, an organization founded by Lou Engle, started a movement of prayer and fasting on Sept. 2, 2000. At the first Call in Washington D.C., 120,000 people fasted, worshiped and prayed during a 12-hour meeting.

A total of 115,000 people registered to be part of this year’s 15-hour rally in the Memorial Coliseum, according to the Christian Post. Some traveled internationally to make get there.

Representatives from different churches and denominations gathered to pray and intercede. Different languages were spoken as people from different nations and ethnic backgrounds took the stage to pray and worship in their own tongue and style.

“We came here because of the Azusa revival,” Bishop Vladimir Ashaev from Siberia, Russia, said. “What happened a hundred years ago, we believe that God will do it again.”

Bishop Ashaev said that Russia is getting ready for what he described as a huge revival. “We believe for revival all over Russia and all over the world,” he said.

Dorothy Hammond felt led to take a flight from Atlanta, Ga. to Los Angeles, Calif. in order to attend Azusa Now. She described the event as “a historical moment in the body of Christ.”

“The Lord is about to do something new and different, and bring a refreshing and reviving to the body of Christ and I wanted to be a part of it,” she said.

Sylvia Bolden from San Diego, Calif. compared the Azusa Street Revival of 1906 with the event at the Memorial Coliseum, noting how people from all races and different denominational backgrounds came together to worship and serve “one true God.”

Bishop Ashaev referred to the unity of the church experienced at Azusa Now as “one big family.”

“We pray to God for unity in the church of Russia and America because in Christ there is no nationality; we are all one,” Ashaev said. “We believe that the church as a united church will influence the whole world.”

The atmosphere at Azusa Now was one of unity. The day was also filled with forgiveness and reconciliation among groups who have been in conflict for a long time.

People cheered and clapped every time a representative from the African-American or the Latin-American community forgave and asked for forgiveness to the representatives of the white community, or as the representatives of the Catholic Church kissed the feet of the representative of the Protestant Church.

Evangelist Robby Dawkins made a call for college students. “It’s time that we put Jesus on display, and campus ministries are the most crucial places to do that.”

According to Dawkins, college campuses are important in outreach efforts because they provide an opportunity to reach students that are vulnerable and because young people take more risks.

“Faith is spelled R-I-S-K and faith is risk. In order to have faith you got to take risks,” he said. “Risk is crucial in seeing the supernatural happen.”

“There is a story about our lives that the author and finisher of our faith has written and I know the title of my story is revival,” said Lou Engle in an interview before the event explaining the heart behind Azusa Now. “I don’t want to read about revival. I want to see it with my own eyes. I want my kids to live in historic revival.”