USA (MNN) — 2012 marks 200 years since the state of Louisiana was admitted into the United States. It follows that 2012 is also the 200th anniversary of the Louisiana Baptist Convention.
The conference for this year's Convention–currently made up of 1,600 churches and 600,000 members–gave way to a decision that 2012 would be a year of revival.
"Over 30,000 people prayed and fasted for this conference that God would move among the leaders–the Christian leaders and Baptist leaders there in Louisiana–to send revival," explains evangelist Sammy Tippit, who just returned from the conference.
The conference served as a launching pad for several revival-inspiring events, which will hopefully allow the passion felt at the conference to continue on throughout the year.
"It's not just a one-time conference," confirms Tippit. "They're dedicating everything they do this whole year to seeking God–every meeting with young people, with children, with adults–every kind of meeting they will have will be centered around calling for and trusting God to send a great spiritual awakening."
The Baptist Convention feels so passionate about the need for revival in the United States, it is even going as far as to launch the Joseph Willis Institute for Great Awakening Studies, a division of Louisiana College meant to educate a generation about spiritual leaders and movements in U.S. history.
"The way we go forward is remembering the faithfulness of God that we have in our history," says Tippit. Those at the Joseph Willis Institute will do just that. The Institute will launch this year sponsoring symposiums, hosting a repository of historical material, and providing academic instruction regarding past and present revival.