“Houston shall be saved!” reverberated throughout the BBVA Compass Stadium.

As Evangelist Reinhard Bonnke made this declaration, hearts of believers were stirred with confidence. Through intercession and intervention, the Church of Houston continues mobilizing to reach her city. What began in homes and houses of worship decades and even generations ago continues today.

The Bonnke team came to invest in and serve the city at their own expense, and what a blessing they were. With fresh vigor and vision, the Bonnke Crusade, held at the BBVA Compass Stadium February 20-21, 2015, has spurred the Body of Christ in Houston to reach out even more.

Doug Stringer, recognized for his years of investment in the city, was asked to serve as local chairman of the Crusade Committee. Leading up to the crusade, 400 churches encouraged participation as four citywide prayer gatherings were held throughout the Greater Houston area. Believers from across the city joined together in prayer. Trans-generational, multi-ethnic, and multi-denominational, the Church worshipped and cried out together for souls.

Doug also felt inclined to call the Body together in December 2014 for “21 Days of An Appeal to Heaven for an Awakening” (see The Lion of Lyons Avenue for one of many highlights from this initiative). Churches across the Greater Houston area as well as believers in other cities and countries joined in agreement. Various churches held subsequent 21 Days of Prayer and Fasting in January 2015. There was a stirring before and in anticipation of the Crusade.

When the time arrived, more than 27,000 men, women, and children gathered those two nights, in spite of rain and threatening storms, and over 2,700 people gave their lives to Christ! Rededications and testimonies of healing attest to the restoring hand of God in hearts and lives. Yes, there is a harvest, and it’s continuing.

Many recognized that the Crusade served as a renewed catalyst for the Church in Houston to unite in prayer and in reaching the city. Collaborative cross-denominational prayer networks and evangelistic networks are now strategizing together.

“It’s beautiful to see how the Body is coming together to pray and reach out. This kind of unity is one fruit from the crusade,” shared Stephanie Vigers. She and her husband, Pastor Donnell Vigers, were instrumental in presenting the opportunity for the Bonnke Crusade to the city’s pastors and ministry leaders. They are also encouraging churches across the area to participate in Celebration Sundays on the fifth Sundays during the year, with the focus on an evangelistic/salvation message as church members pray for friends and family and invite them to the service.

The momentum from the Crusade is continuing and building upon the foundations laid in Houston by many churches, ministries, and believers through the years. Ministries such as YWAM Houston, which is part of the Somebody Cares Houston network, are weekly reaching out to those in the Lower Westheimer area through Street Church, leading the lost to Christ and building on the foundati Save & Exit on laid years ago by Turning Point and Somebody Cares in the 1980s.

Churches and ministries like these serve their communities continually. Through service at local schools, with area police and sheriff’s departments to the business sector, evangelistic efforts are again increasing.

“Pray Houston” is an initiative based on 2 Chronicles 7:14 calling believers across the city–from small groups meeting in homes, lunchrooms, churches, retirement homes, wherever gathered–to pray based on this foundational scripture. Weekly, monthly, or as the group decides, the goal is to engage in prayer. This is one of several groups who are seeking the heart of God for a Spiritual Awakening.

The Prayer Team for the Bonnke Crusade coordinated by Ps. Gabi Soltau continues to meet and undergird citywide prayer and evangelism initiatives. “The team consists of leaders and pastors from around the city. Each is serving their community, and the collaborative efforts are impactful. It’s an honor to serve alongside them,” Gabi shared.

Reinhard Bonkke felt a strong inclination for Houston, Texas to be one of the host cities for crusades across America, and this crusade has had the largest response to date. And, as Evangelist Bonnke shared, “America shall be saved.”

“Because Houston was recently named the most ethnically diverse city in America, and with the diversity of industries, what happens in Houston has global implications,” Doug Stringer has stated at various gatherings across the region.

As the city continues on the journey to community transformation, impacting the various sectors of city life, we will persevere in prayer, worship, service, and sharing the Gospel. At the core is a driving belief that the Lord wants to visit not only Houston but also America again, producing a spiritual awakening that leads to salvation–one that will have rippling effects throughout the world!