|Champion Forest Baptist Church Christmas Spectacular concert. Source: Baptist Press|
Over a five-day period, December 8-12, more than 1,000 people gave their lives to Christ after the Christmas Spectacular concert at Champion Forest Baptist Church.
Each night when Pastor Jarrett Stephens would come on stage after the concert asking individuals to signal their salvation prayer by holding up the flashlight on their phone, it would begin as one light, then another, and another, before lights illuminated the room of the church’s auditorium.
Stephens said the official count for this year’s program total 1,114 persons praying the prayer of salvation for the first time.
Stephens introduced the practice to Champion Forest from another congregation where he had previously served on the ministry team, Prestonwood Baptist Church.
This year’s Christmas Spectacular concert series marks the return of an annual tradition that was suspended in 2020 due to concerns amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
Stephens said, “God is moving and to Him be the glory. It is all about Him. I’m amazed and our team is blown away by the response.”
The performances of the Christmas Spectacular occurred nightly over a five-day period that included one weekend with two additional concerts in Spanish on Saturday and Sunday.
The church’s decision to have the concert in another language that was not English was not a decision the congregation made lightly because of the logistical difficulties associated with teaching worship music in a language many participants in the choir were not familiar with.
Two choir members in their 70s, Gary and Nancy Pollard however answered that challenge as part of what they believed was a call to extend the gospel beyond their comfort zones. Nancy Pollard said, “When you get to our age and have spoken only one language in your life, it’s a challenge, but I would do it again in a heartbeat.”
Pastor Stephens noted the church’s decision to have a multilingual event showcases the multiple “languages” Champion Forest speaks to its community through the ministries it offers.
To help the congregation connect with the persons who made salvation decisions a team of volunteers has been involved in a massive outreach initiative aimed at helping the new persons transition into the community.
“Our team has been knocking it out of the ballpark and stayed late to make those phone calls. They let people know they rejoiced in their decision and wanted to answer any questions. We’ve had a lot of great conversations out of that,” Stephen said.
“You’re receiving the light of the world into your life,” Stephen recalled telling one new disciple during a follow-up call, “and now we want you to show that light.”
Source: Baptist Press