Originally published in Charisma News
Thousands of Spirit-empowered Christians from around the world are converging on Jerusalem this week for the Empowered21 Global Congress. The Congress, which is being held May 20-25, is a call to all believers from around the world to celebrate Pentecost in the land of Pentecost.
The historic gathering began Wednesday night with a grand opening celebration in Jerusalem in front of almost 4 000 attendees from more than 70 nations. Approximately 5 000 people from 65 countries viewed the opening session via live stream on empowered21.com. Millions more watched live through networks including GOD TV, TBN Australia and TBN Russia. They filled the Pais Arena to witness worship, pageantry and the Word of God. A global worship team led the crowd in amazing time of singing praise to the Lord. William M Wilson, Empowered21 president and global co-chair and president of Oral Roberts University welcomed the crowd to the congress. Wayne Hilsden, pastor of King of Kings Community in Jerusalem, gave the opening message. Delivering the keynote address was George O. Wood, co-chair of Empowered21 and general superintendent of the Assemblies of God USA and the chairman of the World Assemblies of God Fellowship.
“This was an amazing night as we saw the world enter into the Jerusalem Pais Arena! You can sense that the attendees are passionate about seeking a fresh outpouring of the Holy Spirit in their lives. I believe we will see great works of God this week,” said Wilson.
The event includes 130 noted leaders from the Pentecostal/Charismatic movement who will be speaking and teaching during the five-day event.
Thursday will feature two general sessions and focused tracks including: Next Gen Trending, Values and Ministry, How to Pray and Intercede Effectively, Prophecy and the End Times, scholars gathering and paper presentation, Effective Ministry, Spirit-Empowered Discipleship, Exploring the Land of Pentecost, Signs, Wonders and Healing, Business Leadership God’s Way, Leading, Planting and Prospering the Church Today, Happening Now: The Book of Acts, True Religion: Compassion, Leading Effective Praise and Worship, The Creative Path: Creating and Producing Effective Television Media, “How Shall We Talk Between Cultures?,” The Word of the Hour, Israel and the Church Today, Your Sons and Daughters and Communicating the Word: Publishing, Media and the Arts.
On Friday, May 22, an outdoor worship event will be held in Manger Square in Bethlehem. This will be a time of praise, prayer and preaching focused on the coming of Jesus in Bethlehem.
There will be a special service on Saturday, May 23, at the Jordan River at the spot where it is believed that Jesus was baptized by John the Baptist. This part of the river also narrowly divides the nations of Israel and Jordan. Christians will gather on both sides of the river to pray and worship God together in unity.
Sunday, May 24, attendees will spend the day in continuous worship and prayer at several points around the city of Jerusalem including the King of Kings Community.
The Global Congress will end Sunday night in a full-throttle Pentecost celebration at the Pais Arena. Believers from around the world will unite to ask for a fresh outpouring of the Holy Spirit to reach the ends of the Earth. This event is the celebration of Shavuot, occurring the same day as Pentecost Sunday on the Western calendar.