Opening night, some 27 years later, and this statement could not be truer. On a Monday night, 1 July, over 20 000 people packed out both Allphones Arena - Sydney Olympic Park and an overflow with a sense of expectation for what God would revive within their lives. "You cannot market what God has been able to do through the years. This (Hillsong conference) is the largest annual conference in Australia by the Australian Tourism Board!" – Brian Houston (Senior Pastor of Hillsong Church)
This night coincided with Hillsong' new church album "Glorious ruins" and the new single highlighting the upcoming sound for this generation, "Alive" by Young & Free. "This conference has always been and is about all of us running in our lanes and spurring one another on and our job is to reach the generations." – Joel Houston (Hillsong United)
Despite the impeccable music and lighting, it was the volunteers that have come out in force once again in the thousands to set the tone for this conference which its theme is "This is revival", where the personal responsibility is highlighted through the catchy yet powerful social media line #revivalstartswithme both before and during conference.
The Hillsong conference has always been about the "gathering of the church which becomes scattering of the church. This will translates into changed lives" - Bobbie Houston (Senior Pastor Hillsong Church)
On opening night the spirit of conference could not have been more prevalent. The service was closed at 8:30pm yet, with an option for people to stay was presented. This praise and worship with Brooke Ligertwood, better known as Brooke Fraser left an arena three quarters full of people 'til well after 9pm.
This is revival and this is only the start of Hillsong conference 2013.
Meenal Chandra is a Sydney based writer who well and truly does not think over 20,000 people in an arena on a Monday night for worship is normal and is expectant for more.
Meenal Chandra previous articles may be viewed at www.pressserviceinternational.org/meenal-chandra.html