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El avivamiento espontáneo en la Universidad de Asbury entra en la segunda semana

Por Josh Pastor
asbury revival
On February 10, 2023, students and visitors participate in a revival service held at Hughes Auditorium at Asbury University in Wilmore, Kentucky. (Photo: Sarah Thomas Baldwin / Facebook) 

A week after a chapel service at Asbury University sparked what’s been called an ongoing revival, thousands of people from across the region have flocked to the Kentucky school to participate in the “prayer, praise, and preaching” experience. 

“The line of cars to get into the small town of Wilmore has been crazy,” said Fiona Morgan, an Asbury alum and local journalist in the region. Worship and prayer have continued non-stop for nearly a week, with crowds growing as images of students weeping and sharing testimonies spread through social media channels.

“We are just sitting with Him,” dijo Asbury student body president Alison Perfater. “It’s just deeply gentle and deeply loving; a glimpse of what I think heaven will look like.”

It began last Wednesday at Asbury’s historic Hughes Auditorium, which has a capacity of 1,489 seats. By Sunday night, it filled completely and two other nearby venues—Estes Chapel and McKenna Chapel, across the street at Asbury Theological Seminary—were opened for people to come and participate in services. 

The local fire marshal has helped campus leaders seeking to create a safe worship environment, said James Hampton, professor of youth ministry at the seminary. “It could have been really easy to come in and shut things down,” he told El Informe Roys (TRR). “But instead they’ve (given) us advice on how to handle this.” 

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asbury revival
On February 13, 2023, students and visitors wait outside to enter revival services at Hughes Auditorium at Asbury University in Wilmore, Kentucky. (Photo: Ryan Worthen / via Twitter)

Alexandra Presta, executive editor of student paper The Asbury Collegian, explained that people can still “worship freely.” As an example of fire marshal precautions, she said a group of people who were “jumping in the balcony” during worship were asked to move to the floor level.

“People are still able to come to the altar and are not restricted to their seats,” said Presta, who also authored an op-ed about safety in worship. “But when it becomes that crowded and congested, it’s just a fire safety hazard.”

Peak crowds—reportedly over 5,000 people—have overwhelmed even overflow spaces, according to multiple sources. “Once you make it on campus, there were like 250 people outside waiting to get into the services,” said Morgan. 

Hampton noted they had a contingency for those in long queues. “They began actually putting speakers outside of Hughes, so those out on the lawn could still listen, participate, pray, and join with the others.”

Stewards of the experience

Campus leaders have given brief words of exhortation and helped shepherd times of students leading prayer and sharing testimonies. 

They include campus pastor Greg Haseloff, itinerant minister Zach Meerkreebs—an Asbury graduate who entregado the sermon that preceded the revival—as well as Dr. Sarah Thomas Baldwin, dean of student life at Asbury, and Jeannie Banter, director of The Christian Life Project at Asbury. 

Fundamentalist critics have señalado Asbury “promotes women in the pulpit.” Seminary professor Hampton responded that affirming the preaching ministry of both women and men is “part of our ethos.”

“Asbury historically has always affirmed that God calls both men and women to his leadership,” Hampton said. “We’re strong believers that Scripture makes it clear that women have every bit as much calling to roles of leadership, including pastoral ministry, as men do.” 

Students from more than 20 universities have participated in the on-campus services, according to a correo from Baldwin.

asbury revival
On February 12, 2023, students and visitors participate in a revival service held at Hughes Auditorium at Asbury University in Wilmore, Kentucky. (Photo: Evan Guse / via Facebook)

Some online have pointed out the revival appears to be a white-majority worship experience. “As a minister of color, it’s hard not to miss the ethnic homogeneity of the videos and pictures we’re seeing,” tuiteó Caleb Saenz, a pastor in San Antonio, Texas. 

The meetings reflect the rural region, as most of Kentucky is not ethnically diverse outside of a few urban centers. Still, Presta noted some meetings have represented a diversity of cultures.

“We’ve had people get up and pray and read scripture in different languages, and it has been absolutely beautiful,” she said. “I’ve seen those lines and divisions that we like to focus on in our culture be completely just reunited.” 

Hampton added that their student body has a “significant percentage from outside the U.S.” but he’s found in conversations that revival services are unfamiliar to them. “We’re finding (that) they’re genuinely interested and curious, but it’s outside their own realm of experience,” he said.

Safeguarding from outside agendas

On social media, a few outside groups have announced plans to participate in the revival. 

Firebrand Tennessee pastor Greg Locke reportedly had a busload of congregants headed to the services. Disgraced charismatic preacher Todd Bentley, who has faced allegations of predatory behavior, also Anunciado plans to travel to Asbury. 

james hampton
Prof. James Hampton (Courtesy Photo)

The university did not directly address specific inquiries about certain individuals. However, seminary professor Hampton related his account of an incident that he said occurred “Friday or Saturday night.” He prefaced it by saying he would not name the persons involved.

Hampton said: 

We had a group who came in that had a very specific agenda. They had announced it publicly through their social media feeds and others had promoted that for them. So we were aware that the group was coming. Our faculty, staff, and our security were all prepared to meet them. 

The amazing thing was: we never had to. Because a group of students took it upon themselves to meet these folk when they arrived and to remind them that this was God’s work. It was not the students’ agenda. It was not the faculty’s agenda or any outsider’s agenda. This was God’s work. And if these folk were willing to come in and sit and listen and worship God and grow in that experience, they were completely welcome. 

But if they were only there to push an agenda that did not match what God was doing in the midst of this, then they were going to be asked to kind of leave. And, to their credit, they left.

Sources contacted by TRR did not respond to inquiries seeking specifics about this incident. 

‘The beginning stages’

Several leaders who have participated noted the historic nature of what they’ve observed. 

Longtime Arkansas pastor and OneCry prayer leader Bill Elliff visited on Saturday and ha escrito about the experience. He tweeted: “God is here. Very real. I very quickly turned from spectator to broken participant. How can you not in God’s manifest presence?”

Author Shane Claiborne, known for his activism on immigration and other social issues, has highlighted the revival in several videos en línea. “I believe in social transformation,” he said in a recent interview. “I also believe in personal and spiritual transformation.”

H.B. Charles Jr., pastor of a multi-ethnic Southern Baptist congregation in Florida, stated he has been watching the meetings online and llamado it a “revival of prayer, praise, and preaching.” He stated he observed, “No high-profile leaders. No programmatic strategies. No multimedia props. Just students crying out to God with devotion, humility, and repentance.”

Some reports have además emerged of similar, smaller-scale revival services at Lee University, located 220 miles south in central Tennessee. 

Addressing expectations, Hampton said they’re only in “the beginning stages” of this spiritual awakening.

“Revivals don’t fully transcend or automatically renew culture,” he said. “They don’t automatically end injustices. That’s the ongoing work of Christian discipleship that occurs as a result of revivals. Eugene Peterson described it as ‘a long obedience in the same direction.’”

Student editor Presta said this week has felt different among students, as spiritual disciplines of prayer and worship have become more common outside chapel. “We’re now unafraid to speak about our testimonies and then reconcile—not only with each other, but faculty and people whom we might have had a conflict with.” 

Recent Asbury graduate Morgan said she understands how some want to “wait and see” regarding the results of this revival. But she said there’s a reason the crowds are growing. 

“What’s happening now is really powerful,” she said. “Experiencing such a powerful presence is going to have fruit in many different ways—I hope and pray, including in my own personal life.” 

This article has been updated to accurately state Professor Hampton’s title.

Periodista independiente Josh Shepherd escribe sobre fe, cultura y políticas públicas para varios medios puntos de venta Él y su esposa viven en el área de Washington, DC con sus dos hijos.

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14 Respuestas

  1. I’ve longed to see God move upon his people in this way for many years. No partisan politics. No sniping at those with whom we disagree. No celebrity pastors and leaders. No agenda, except the people of God coming to our Triune God in prayer and repentance. May the Spirit work throughout our land.

  2. sounds a lot like other “revivals” such as azusa street. these things are rarely, if ever, anything more than an unbiblical emotional experience. when you have people like the heretic todd bentley showing up you should see red flags everywhere.

    1. Simon the sorcerer showed up in Acts 8… just bc Simon’s “conversion” didn’t stick, doesn’t mean we throw out everything in Acts… instead pray for Todd, etal…

    2. Let’s wait until we see the long lasting change from this revival.

      In the meantime let’s hope the leadership of the college, the students, faculty and visitors will exercise discernment regarding outsiders who seek to harm and inject their own agenda into this revival.

    3. Or .. maybe … just maybe, he’ll show up and the Holy Spirit will convict him of his sin and false belief and he’ll repent. But I guess you don’t believe the Holy Spirit can do that, do you?

  3. PTL! Have Your way Lord! HalleluYAH!

    for the skeptics… I have been profoundly changed in a “revival” that had a lot of baggage… The Lord still shows up for those earnestly, eagerly seeking His face, His heart, His Presence… I cannot deny the life changing impact of how God used even a flawed “revival” to powerfully change me… I experienced a deep metanoia process that I cannot ignore…

    Do it again Lord!!!

  4. How much of this “revival” is emotionalism and attention. 2 Chronicles 7 :14 says–If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.”
    Revival is for believers-are these folks turning from their evil ways?

  5. Spontaneous Revival at Asbury University Enters Second Week (MORE ABOUT THE AFTERMATH) Many returned to Christianity. Many were saved. Many were healed.
    This Spontaneous Praise is for our God. HE instigated it, poured out His Spirit to lead mostly youth back to Him. Asbury was only the first. The 2nd was in Tennessee, and from there it spread across the USA and around the world.

    THIS WAS AN IMPRINT (OR AN INTRO) OF WHAT IS COMING, AS MANY MANY MORE WILL BE SAVED ONCE THEY FEEL THE OVERWHELMING LOVING PRESENCE OF OUR GOD. This is why parents brought their lost family members. MANY were saved. Some of the preachers who were saved in the 60s & 70s JESUS MOVEMENT, say this movement is like that.

    Also, flocks of sheep moved in circles, and cows lined up along fences head to tail – WITHOUT MAN’S PRODDING OR INTERFERENCE. See the videos on my wall or at youtube.

    Also, the LORD said that we can have revival anywhere 2 or more are gathered in His name. Many houses will have Church for God. But, the Lord hopes to see revival in the streets too. You’ll see it coming! I hope to meet you there or in the air.

    ~ Respect2Glory

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Su donación deducible de impuestos ayuda a nuestros periodistas a informar la verdad y responsabilizar a los líderes y organizaciones cristianos. Haga una donación de $30 o más a The Roys Report este mes y recibirá una copia de “¿Y si Jesús hablara en serio acerca de la Iglesia?” por Skye Jethani.