The Baylor University campus is a bustling place during the spring semester, buzzing with students and visitors who gather for a variety of reasons. Sometimes the occasion is a lecture, a social gathering, or a musical or theatrical performance. Sometimes the reason people gather here is for a sporting event.
This Sunday, reason will be the most important of all: Jesus Christ.
The goal behind FM72, which runs Sunday through Wednesday, is to spark a passion for Jesus in the Baylor family and throughout our hometown of Waco, bringing renewal and renewal.
Organized by Baylor students inspired by the power of prayer and supported by local church congregations, FM72 will allow students and other members of our community to join in the name of Jesus for 72 hours of prayer on Fountain Mall, located in the heart of our campus. Additionally, each evening there will be a gathering at 8 p.m. at McLane Stadium to worship, pray, and hear the word of God.
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I am thrilled to see our students stepping out boldly to encourage this generation of men and women to experience the transforming power of the gospel.
Additionally, I am proud to note that FM72 is an initiative with a deep history on and beyond our campus – an initiative that reflects Baylor’s mission in Christian higher education and our roots in Baptist evangelism. In the spring of 1945, Baylor students gathered to pray for revival for 90 consecutive days. This effort proved to be the start of a revival movement that spread throughout Texas, the South and around the world, launching a vibrant generation of professionals, pastors and missionaries.
In the spring of 2019, inspired by their predecessors, Baylor students organized the first FM72, a gathering of thousands on Fountain Mall for 72 hours to pray and join in worship. Many expressed a deep sense of God’s presence, and we heard story after story – in the months and now the years that followed – of lives that were changed during those hours of prayer.
Today, people from many different organizations and church affiliations have come together once again, this time reviving the motto of the generation of 1945 – “I’d rather have Jesus” – to emphasize the need to center our lives on Christ.
Baylor’s aspiration to be the leading Christian research university is grounded in the belief that serving in such a capacity enables us to have a greater impact in the world for Christ. Ultimately, what matters most to the Baylor family is not academic accolades, but our success in preparing students to lead and serve communities in need, share the gospel, and glorify God. .
During this coming week, I invite you to come to our campus to join our students in prayer and worship to renew the focus on what is most important – our shared faith in Jesus Christ.
Linda A. Livingstone, Ph.D., is president of Baylor University.