As many as 500 people from throughout the Pacific Northwest are expected to attend a tent revival meeting that begins Wednesday in Lewiston and continues through next Tuesday.
Josh Pilon, associate pastor of Echo Hills Church, said the religious revival meeting is in partnership with Awaken the Dawn, a national ministry that has held such events around the country for the past three years. The Lewiston meeting is part of a 100-day national prayer and worship vigil called “Tent America.”
“We started in 2017 with all 50 states represented in 50 tents on the National Mall (in Washington, D.C.),” Pilon said Monday. “We were there for three days in day-and-night worship, and it was their inaugural launch.”
According to its website, Awaken the Dawn “is a grassroots movement of day and night worship, prayer and missions. Beyond the events, we are a nationwide family with the shared value of hosting the presence of God, leading to a third great awakening in America and the nations.”
The revival begins at 6 p.m. Wednesday at Echo Hills Church at 3215 Echo Hills Drive.
In 2018 and 2019, the Tent America revivals were held in the capitals of all 50 states, along with college campuses, drawing thousands of participants.
Although prayer to end abortion and overturn Roe v. Wade was part of the initial gathering, Pilon said that is not the main focus of the revival, and the Lewiston event is not intended to be political.
This year, the events were divided by national region. Since Oregon and Washington have limited large public gatherings because of the coronavirus pandemic, Lewiston was chosen as the site for the vigil, owing to its proximity to the West Coast and the state’s advancement to Stage 4 of the reopening plan. Pilon said participants also are expected from Montana and Wyoming.
He said event organizers have worked with Public Health – Idaho North Central District as well as the city of Lewiston to make the gathering as safe as possible. The revival tent will be furnished with hand-sanitizing stations, and social distancing and face coverings will be encouraged.
Also, because of the social distancing concern, the format won’t feature keynote speakers or main events. Participants will sign up for prayer and worship or music segments that will run continuously throughout the six-day assembly.
“It’s not the traditional revival tent-style,” Pilon said. “This will be driven off of prayer and worship, and people will sign up for one-hour (periods) for leading prayer or (to) play music. We will probably have a few worship teams that will gather larger sums of people, but it’s not like a church service. People can come whenever they want.”
There is no charge for the event. Pilon said the organizers already have raised most of the $2,000 to cover costs but will be asking for donations for the remainder of the expenses.
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