Chapel continues in Hughes
WILMORE, KY—(Feb. 7, 2006) Monday morning the student body gathered for Chapel at 10 a.m. and the student-led chapel continues. Hundreds of students, faculty and staff, and even members of the surrounding community and Asbury Theological Seminary joined the praise, worship and prayer.
Students are committing their lives to Christ for the first time and scores of others are rededicating themselves to the Lord. Jesus is at the center of it all.
Wilmore freshman Michael spent a total of 11 hours in Hughes Auditorium, praying and worshiping. Michael said that he and several other students have been meeting independently since early last term to pray for the college and for the Holy Spirit to move on the campus.
Asbury House of Prayer started in the original Asbury building on campus where generations of Asbury students have waited on God. Students have gathered and signed up to pray for the college independently. Currently, students have committed to more than 40 hours of prayer each week interceding for the college community
“My brother Travis [a senior] felt strongly that something great was going to happen and yesterday God’s will just broke out. People were just yearning for God. I can’t even describe it.” Michael said. “I didn’t want to leave until I felt the Lord was in me the way He needed to be.”
College President Dr. Paul Rader and his wife, Dr. Kay Rader, stayed in Hughes until after midnight. When they left, Dr. Rader said hundreds of students were still praying and praising.
“Following the morning chapel the altar was crowded with students seeking the Lord—two and three deep, with people praying in groups around the auditorium,” he described. “Throughout the day there has been a beautiful awareness of the Holiness of God. Many students took off their shoes with a sense of standing on Holy ground. God is answering the passionate and persistent prayers of committed students who have been fasting and praying for weeks for this kind of spiritual breakthrough. We are all rejoicing in it.”
Stu Smith, associate dean for campus ministries and campus chaplain, said that news of the chapel service spread throughout the surrounding areas, high schools and other local colleges. Students called friends and relatives throughout the world to have them pray for Asbury College.
“People were praying all over the world as God was moving here,” Smith said.
Michael said he even heard that people off the streets of Wilmore just heard the music and were drawn to Hughes. “People want to be transformed and that’s what attracted them to Hughes.”
The music didn’t stop. Smith said that when one group of students would tire from leading the worship another would move into their place. Nothing was coerced or planned.
Fitch’s IGA in Wilmore and others in the community sent food and water for the students who couldn’t leave.
Atlanta sophomore Hannah who spent several hours in Hughes yesterday said she didn’t want to leave either. She says that God spoke to her in a different way. Typically not very outspoken, God told her that it was OK to be open about her faith and tell other people about Him.
Sophomore Ben from Ada, Mich., spent most of the day in Hughes. He said, “When God moves, you have to respond. There’s nothing else you can do when you meet your Creator face to face like we did yesterday. There’s nothing else that could bring that many people together from so many different backgrounds. And the fact that it is still going on now speaks volumes.”
Lisa Harper, director of communications and Transforming (class of 2007) advisor said,
“It was incredible to be in the midst of it all, praying with the students at the altar and witnessing the joy and sweet peace. If that’s not what we’re about here then I don’t know what we’re about.”