Springing from humble beginnings among a handful of believers just over a century ago, the modern Pentecostal/charismatic movement has grown to a powerful worldwide force more than 600 million strong. The Spirit-filled church is the fastest-growing segment of Christianity globally.
But in a world that is constantly changing—and fast—how is the movement poised for the future? How does the Pentecostal/charismatic community address the issues facing the 21st-century Spirit-filled church? And what can be done to establish Spirit-filled living and release of ministry in the next generation?
These and other crucial questions resulted in the formation of Empowered21: Global Congress on Holy Spirit Empowerment in the 21st Century. Facilitated by the International Center for Spiritual Renewal (ICSR) in partnership with Oral Roberts University (ORU)—and with the participation of all major Pentecostal denominations and charismatic groups—Empowered21 is a live event taking place April 8-10, 2010, in Tulsa, Okla., with the goal of helping “shape the future of the Spirit-empowered movement around the world.”
“With more than 100 years behind us since the Azusa Street Revival and a new century before us, the time is now for a serious conversation on the future of the movement,” said Billy Wilson, executive director of ICSR, in a press release. “Our hope is that … new generations will experience the power of the Holy Spirit. They in turn will impact the nations of the earth and bring the greatest number of people to Christ in the history of the world.”
Among the many leaders involved with this important global conversation will be Foursquare’s own Pastor Jack Hayford, who will be serving as a moderator and helping to lead the discussions in April. Sterling Brackett, chief operating officer of The Foursquare Church, serves as the chair of ICSR and has represented the denomination leading up to the event in Tulsa.
The Foursquare Church is encouraging all district supervisors as well as other interested ministers and church leaders to attend Empowered21 in April. The discussions will be of great benefit and—among the many purposes noted in the conference materials—”will call the international body of Christ to unite together in an intergenerational gathering for the purpose of seeking a fresh empowering of the Holy Spirit for 21st-century life; discover contemporary methods and vocabulary needed for engaging new generations in Spirit-empowered living; and present an opportunity for greater dialogue and cooperation between new emerging ministries and historic Spirit-empowered movements in hopes of greater Kingdom advancement and impact.”
For more information and to register, log on to www.Empowered21.com.
By: Bill Shepson, a Foursquare credentialed minister and freelance writer in Los Angeles.