After over three decades of hosting the Harvest Crusade at Anaheim’s Angel Stadium in Southern California, Pastor Greg Laurie of Harvest Christian Fellowship announced a change in venue for the 2023 event, saying this year’s event will take place at the Honda Center.
In a blog post on the crusade’s website, Laurie wrote that the decision to change the venue was prompted by Angel Stadium’s management, who informed the organizers that they could no longer allow people on the field during baseball season.
Despite extensive discussions, the stadium’s management remained firm in their decision, explained Laurie, evangelist and pastor of the Harvest Christian Fellowship in California and Hawaii.
“These things come our way, but when one door closes, another door opens. When COVID was happening, we were not able to meet one year at the stadium,” he wrote. “So we created a film called A Rush of Hope that was like an evangelistic cinematic film that touched a lot of people. So now we’re pivoting again.”
Pastor Laurie left open the possibility of returning to Angel Stadium in the future but confirmed that the 2023 Harvest Crusade would take place at the Honda Center, located not far from the Angel Stadium.
The two-night event, scheduled for July 1-2, will be held in an enclosed environment and is set to offer a more intimate and immersive worship experience for attendees, the megachurch pastor said, noting that the crusade will be conducted “in the round,” allowing for closer proximity between the stage and the audience.
The event will feature performances by Christian artists Chris Tomlin and Phil Wickham, along with other special guests, Laurie said. However, he emphasized that the event is more about the collective worship experience and the proclamation of the Gospel than the guest performers.
Hundreds of thousands of people have accepted Christ in the Harvest Crusade events, with each gathering drawing crowds numbering in the tens of thousands.
Founded by Laurie and Pastor Chuck Smith, the Harvest Crusades began as a one-time evangelistic outreach at the Pacific Amphitheater in Orange County in 1990 before later moving to Angel Stadium of Anaheim, where it had become the longest-running annual outreach in U.S. history, according to Harvest Ministries.
The new movie “Jesus Revolution” follows Laurie in the 1970s as a slew of young people searching for truth and meaning on the West Coast prompted a countercultural movement that continues to impact the Church today.
In a recent op-ed for The Christian Post, Laurie wrote about the great spiritual awakening in 1970. “It was called the ‘Jesus Movement.’ In a time not unlike our own, God worked a miracle in American history,” he wrote.