Massive crowds joined the Asbury University revival which started on February 8, with long lines of people outside the chapel waiting their turn to attend services.
The small town of Wilmore, Kentucky suddenly became host to an estimated 15,000 to 20,000 people over the weekend. What started as a call to confession to university students that Wednesday became a Holy Spirit outpouring that attracted visitors not only from the U.S. but from other countries as well.
There was nothing for people to go there to other than the presence of God and what they felt God was doing in this space. —David Legge, evangelist from Ireland
Word about the “Asbury Revival” spread like wildfire after worshippers shared their amazing experiences on social media. Videos of people praying, worshipping, holding hands with strangers, and crying to worship music quickly became viral and shared with thousands of people. The hashtag #asburyrevival got over 95 million views on TikTok. The event drew national and international support that the Christian campus of 1,700 students is now being visited by large crowds everyday.
Evangelist from Northern Ireland David Legge was supposed to minister in Little Rock, AR when he heard about the revival. In an interview with The Washington Post, he said, “We arrived about 4:30 p.m. last night, got a hotel, and stood in line for an hour to get in. And the line is about double or triple the size today.”
He added, “There were no celebrity praise leaders. There were no famous names giving addresses. There was nothing for people to go there to other than the presence of God and what they felt God was doing in this space.”
Collin Hansen, editor in chief of the Gospel Coalition, explained, “What you’re seeing on social media is a real-time version of how revival has always spread in American history through accounts that inspire other people in other locations.”
With the huge number of people wanting to participate in the Asbury Revival, editor of The Asbury Collegian Alexandra Presta wrote a commentary urging guests to be mindful of everbody’s safety, especially following the shooting at Michigan State University that killed three and injured five people. She also reminded visitors to respect the students on campus.
“Classes are still occurring, because the administration recognizes our education and faith as one,” Presta wrote. “However, our focus has been deterred; our safety is becoming at risk. So, as a student leader on campus, I am asking you to remember one of the overall themes of this revival: love in action.”
With the arrival of worshippers to campus, President Kevin Brown announced that service for the general public will end on February 21 and will be held in other churches in Central Kentucky, reports The Courier Journal. Asbury will continue to host evening services for college and high school students.
“Our town’s institutions here and our town’s infrastructure, I just want to be clear, is just not in a place to absorb at this moment, the influx of the blessed guests that we have had come to Wilmore,” Brown said. “We just do not have the infrastructure to support the guests that we’re having come to Wilmore.”
Revival in Other Campuses
The Asbury Revival has influenced other campuses to hold their own spiritual revival. The Holy Spirit is at work in igniting flames at other universities, including Lee University in Tennessee, Cedarville University in Ohio, and Samford University in Alabama. These unscripted revivals started with a few students praying and worshipping inside the campus chapel. Other students who heard the worship music came and participated in hours of nonstop fellowship.
“Students are sharing from their hearts,” Beck A. Taylor, president of Samford University, wrote in a Tweet. “The gospel is being proclaimed.”