Just stepping out of a global outreach in Atlanta with more than 23,000 students, the Passion team will literally reach out to the world next year in a 15-nation tour.
For the first time, the national Passion conference is making a global tour in 2008 after years of drawing tens of thousands of students to one national venue. Next year's plan is to visit 20 cities across 15 nations in an estimated $4 million tour.
At Passion 07 last week, students converged from 33 countries to encounter God and hear such speakers as Passion founder Louie Giglio, John Piper and worship artists Chris Tomlin and Matt Redman. And a new global initiative – Do Something Now campaign - opened the window to eight different opportunities to aid people around the world.
"Through a window in the Georgia World Congress Center, I could see that they stopped letting people go into the Global Awakening area until others came out," said Louie Giglio in a released statement. "How many places do you see a thousand people waiting in such a line?"
The Global Awakening: The World Mobilization Area served as a hub for the campaign, giving students the chance to explore different outreaches including purchasing water wells in Africa and pledging for New Testament translation for the Dela people of Indonesia.
Donors at Passion 07 exceeded the goal of 11 wells, which cost a total of $33,000, by purchasing 38 water wells, each of which provide clean water for life and help prevent the spread of HIV/AIDS.
Additionally, 100 sponsors committed to fund surgeries for children in South/Central America. All 100 sponsorships were also matched by a donor, thus doubling the number of life-changing surgeries.
As students were encouraged to extend their reach to people groups across the globe, Passion in 2008 will further take the gospel to the people directly.
"There is a massive worldwide after-party. It’s called heaven," said Giglio at a Passion 07 session. "The invitations are going out in every single language, and those who have the story need to take the story to the nations, to the 6,800 people groups that don’t yet have the gospel. God is asking many of us to pack up the ‘American Dream’ and is extending the invitation to go to the unreached people groups of the world."