ATLANTA – The four-day Passion conference ended Tuesday with a final call for students to make the name of Jesus famous.
Passion Movement founder Louie Giglio said he and his team do not care so much where the students go – whether to an unreached people group or to Goldman Sachs in New York City – as long as they take the name of Jesus with them.
He urged the 22,000 students attending Passion 2011 in Atlanta to spend less time worrying about where they go and more time on what message they are carrying, because even if they go to a remote village to translate the Bible, it is meaningless if they do not bring the joy of the name of Jesus to those people.
"At the end of the day, did you carry His name?" Giglio asked. "Whatever you do, in word or deed, just make sure you do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ."
The well-known ministry leader, who began as a Bible study teacher at Baylor University, expressed concern that students will say "Amen" while in the stadium but an hour afterwards forget about their commitment.
He said Passion is about experiencing God and making the name of Jesus famous, and it is not intended to be an event students can walk away from unchanged.
"We wanted to burst through the doors with the gospel," said Giglio. "[A]nd to say to you this Jesus Christ the son of God is everything, he is worth everything, he demands everything, and the best thing any of us can do is to give him everything.
"Not some, not a little, not a part, but every single thing you got, putting it in the hands of Jesus Christ."
This year, students at the Passion Atlanta conference gave the most donations in the history of the movement. The Do Something Now effort, a movement to provide financial resources to address some of the world's greatest needs, collected a little over $1 million in donations from Passion conference attendees as of Tuesday morning. The Passion media representative on Wednesday said more money came in throughout Tuesday and that the team was still calculating the exact total.
This year's donation well surpassed that of last year. In 2010, over $668,000 was collected during the Jan. 2-5 conference, which was also held in Atlanta. A couple attending the event volunteered to match the gathered amount, bringing the total to more than $1.3 million.
But this year, university students alone donated over $1 million. There is no matching fund for the donation this time.
The money will be given to nine different Christian charities that will use the funds to build wells in India, provide microloans for women in Afghanistan, feed children in South Africa, build homes in Haiti, send Bibles to Colombia, and help women and children rescued from sex slavery, among other works.
Another Passion conference is scheduled to take place in Forth Worth, Texas, April 1-3.