Tasmania Celebrates Hope in Christ
After 2 years of delays and uncertainty, the Tasmania Celebration started in the same way all Celebrations do, with prayer. Since 2019, over 140 churches across Hobart and Launceston have come together in prayer and partnership to pronounce ‘There is Hope’, the theme of the Celebration in Australia’s island state.
Families with young children were invited to join KidzFest events with performing artist Dan Warlow and Will Graham presenting a unique and exciting video Gospel presentation grounded in biblical truth called ‘The Quest’.
Each Celebration was then accented by high-energy worship for all ages, led by local artists CASS and Planet Boom, and headlined by Texas-based band The Afters, who have accompanied Will across the globe celebrating the love of Christ with their music ministry.
Following the spirited worship session, Will Graham presented the Jesus’ story of the Prodigal Son, a young man who ran away looking to find happiness—but found nothing.
“Many people try to avoid pain, they try to avoid it through alcohol, drugs, sex, money or even by doing good things. But it doesn’t fix it, does it? The only way you can fix the problems in your life is to get to the heart of the problem—and that is sin. That’s why Jesus came in the first place, for one purpose—to die for you. To rescue you.”
Throughout the Tasmania Celebration in both cities. over 750 people made decisions to follow Christ, this was highlighted by hundreds of young people and children giving Christ charge of their lives, making up two-thirds of all who came forward.
Scott recommitted his life at the first event in Hobart and shared with our team following the event.
“I just want to keep presenting myself, as a reassurance that I’m standing up, to the God that I believe in. I believe my Heavenly father has been working on me for a long time, early on, my life was very destructive and I’ve been a work in progress over the last 15 years when I returned to church. I enjoyed the company of being with those who are searching out Christ, we’re united and stepping up together.”
The following Friday, Will spoke to 3,600 people over 3 days in Launceston.
Caleb, a young man who responded to a calling in his heart to come forward and inquire in Launceston took time after the event to share with us his experience and decision. He was looking for an alternative to a path of drugs and alcohol during his late teens that continued to plague him into adulthood. Asked about his experience leading up to today.
“Lots of drugs and lots of bad decisions, I’ve taken various amounts of different things, and they all have the same effect in one regard, the lowness you feel when you don’t have it.”
“It was inspiring…I thought he was speaking directly to me, to come up on stage. His emphasis on that [God] could bring out the good in people, makes me want to do the same.”
“Now the door is right Infront of me and I haven’t opened it yet, so to speak. I’d love to live a drug-free life, it feels impossible so [tonight] it’s a step forward and as big a step as I’ve ever taken.”
Carmen who was invited by her neighbour, re-instated her commitment to Christ during the first celebration evening in Launceston.
“I saw the ad on TV and thought at first that’s Billy Graham’s son! Fancy him coming to little old Launceston! No way I was going to miss that opportunity.
“It really opened me up to Jesus, I really let him into my heart like an open-heart surgery, come in Lord I said. It was unforgettable.”
Inmates Seek Redemption Through The Cross
Following the Hobart event at MyState Bank Arena, I took a unique opportunity to share the Gospel at Risdon Prison Complex in Hobart, which houses over 200 inmates. Reaching lost souls in prisons is close to the heart of BGEA ministry and was symbolised by a casket built by Louisiana State Penitentiary Inmates for my grandfather Billy Graham in 2018. Under strict supervision, several individuals prayerfully made decisions to point their lives towards Christ and were prayed for and ministered to by Prayer Volunteers.
We got to see God do some amazing things in these wonderful meetings, God has been so good to us, we’ve seen so many lives change here, a huge percentage of first time decisions for Christ, probably some of the most ever seen at a Celebration.
All this is possible because of what God has done, God changes people’s lives and we are so grateful for the churches of Tasmania coming together to work together to see their neighbours come to know Christ. Thank-you for praying, thank-you for your support, we have a lot of rejoicing to do.