Some 20,000 people between the ages of 18 and 25 from around the country are gathering in Atlanta this weekend for the first of three Passion 2015 Conferences. The massive gatherings bring together young Christians in an effort to inspire them to follow biblical principles in their lives, as the Blaze reported. The next Passion events will be held in Atlanta Jan. 16-18 and in Houston Jan. 31-Feb. 1.
Held at the Philips Arena, the sold-out conference began Friday and will continue through Sunday. Organizers say the goal of the event is to bring attendees closer to God, while helping the needy around them. Participants were asked to bring items that could be donated to help Atlanta’s homeless residents, CBN News reported. The conference is collaborating with Atlanta’s City of Refuge homeless ministry to donate the items.
In previous years, Passion conferences have reportedly raised millions of dollars to end modern-day slavery, WXIA-TV reported. About 20,000 towels and socks were collected for the homeless at the conference in Atlanta last year.
The conference is hosted by Pastor Louie Giglio, who heads the Passion City Church in Atlanta. He has been running Passion conferences since 1997 when the first one was held in Austin, Texas.
Several Christian music acts, including Chris Tomlin and David Crowder, are performing at the conference this weekend.