Asbury Hosts 1970 revival anniversary celebration
Asbury Hosts 1970 revival 50th anniversary celebration
From staff reports
On a wintry morning in 1970, revival broke out in Hughes Auditorium at Asbury University as students, faculty and staff joined together in spontaneous worship, prayer, confession and testimony for eight days and eight nights.
Classes were cancelled as the community responded to the presence of God on campus.
Though 50 years have passed, the effects of that week can still be felt on campus and in the lives of Asbury alumni today.
This winter, the university will gather together for the 1970 Revival 50th Anniversary Celebration. Alumni, friends and guests are invited to campus Feb. 2 through Feb. 3 for two days of communal prayer and worship to celebrate the anniversary.
The event will kick off at 6 p.m. on Feb. 2 with a special screening of the documentary “When God Comes” in Hughes Auditorium. Following the screening, a night of prayer and remembering will be held. The events will continue with a special two-hour Chapel service at 10 a.m. on Feb. 3, followed by lunch and testimonies. The anniversary events will close out with a Revival Hymn Sing and Stories at 7 p.m. in Hughes.
Jeannine Brabon and Judge Tim Philpot will speak in Chapel. Brabon currently serves as a missionary in Colombia with One Mission Society and as a professor at Seminario Biblico de Colombia (the Biblical Seminary of Colombia). Philpot has served as a family court circuit judge in Fayette County since 2004.
Many alumni are looking forward to returning to campus for the 50th anniversary celebration. Those who were present at the 1970 Revival still reflect on the ways in which it ignited change on campus, in the world and in their personal lives.
For Becky Brittain, the revival impacted and continues to impact her spiritual life today.
“At first, I thought it was just a really, really good Chapel service,” Brittain said. “As it progressed, it quickly became evident that God was present in a most unusual way, manifesting Himself in a way that is rarely experienced. Words always seem inadequate to describe the 1970 Revival.”
For Yvonne Moulton, who was teaching in the English department at the time of the 1970 Revival, the 50th anniversary represents a time to reflect and focus on the ways that God has shown up at Asbury and in lives of others.
“There’s always a need for revival and it comes more deeply when we admit our need, confess our need and seek Him with our whole hearts,” Moulton said. “It’s the verse, ‘With all your heart, you truly seek me, you will ever surely find me.’ That was absolutely characteristic of that revival. I think the anniversary will bring people who are interested in that revival and are praying that God will come again.”
Sharon Bryson acknowledged the tumultuous times the country was facing leading up to the revival and how it was a pivotal moment for so many amidst those dark times. Bryson is looking forward to reminiscing and reconnecting with those she was with during the revival.
“You have this experience with the Lord, but you can’t live in isolation in that,” Bryson said. “So, [I’m looking forward to] reconnecting with a lot of my friends who were here and sharing stories about it.”