The Battle Cry movement begins its second round of what Time magazine called "Gospel rallies MTV style" this month. Evangelicals have designated September "National Youth Awareness Month" (NYAM) which will kick off an entire school year of rallies where teens will make gospel cries from coast to coast.
The stadium rallies that drew some 75,000 teens in three cities last spring will see tens of thousands of more young Christians make their stand against MTV culture and for Jesus Christ in nearly 40 cities this year. Teen Mania's Acquire the Fire events are being held nearly every weekend during the upcoming school year and already more than 124,000 people have signed up.
"We’re telling teens they don’t have to do the crazy things the world says are cool like wearing trashy clothes, having sex, and doing drugs and alcohol," said Amanda Hughey, a former cocaine user and "cutter" who helped launch the Battle Cry movement.
Teen Mania founder Ron Luce is calling church leaders and youth to wake up to the staggering statistics of youths who are "hurting" and falling away from Christ this month. A NYAM resolution passed by NAE (National Association of Evangelicals) churches in partnership with Teen Mania is challenging churches to bring awareness to the "crisis" of this generation where only four percent is projected to remain as Bible-believing Christians in the future. It was drafted "to achieve widespread evangelization of our teen population and ... effective youth ministry in the 21st century."
Teen Awareness Month is part of the overall Battle Cry campaign with highlights including the Sept. 22 launch of the Acquire the Fire season.
"We connect with teens through culturally-relevant rallies that include top artists, edgy messages, eye-popping images, even pyrotechnics – but we deliver a radically different, counter-culture message,” said Luce, in a released statement. “We are equipping teens to lead passionate, character-filled lives; finding their sense of purpose in God, not in society or culture."
Featured bands throughout the Acquire the Fire tour include P.O. D., Mercy Me, Fly Leaf, Pillar, Skillet, Kutless, Thousand Foot Krutch, Casting Crowns, Jeremy Camp, Hawk Nelson, KJ-52, Grits, and others.
Near the end of the tour, tens of thousands of teens will join massive Battle Cry rallies next spring with reverse rebellions planned in San Francisco, Detroit and Baltimore.
"They're (rally participants) cool because God loves them - that's what we want teens to know," said Hughey.