Hillsong Conference 2006
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Hillsong Conference 2006 was a Christian conference hosted by Hillsong church from 3–7 July 2006 in Sydney, Australia. The year marked the 20th anniversary of the annual Hillsong Conference, which began in 1986. It is the largest annual conference in Australia.
The conference featured internationally prominent speakers and music worship leaders from the United States, Canada, England, Australia and other countries, and featured a contemporary worship style. The venue was Sydney Olympic Park in Homebush Bay, originally built for the 2000 Olympics. Main meetings were held in the Acer Arena, formerly known as the Sydney SuperDome, with smaller meetings being held in nearby buildings. Youth meetings were held at the Hillsong Baulkham Hills Convention Centre.
|Venue:||Sydney Olympic Park|
|Date:||Mon 3 - Fri 7 July 2006|
|Nations represented:||71 |
|Denominations represented:||21 |
|Adult Registration cost:||A$149(?)-$259(?)|
|Budget:||A$4,600,000 for venue(?)|
|Decisions for Christ:||??|
Key Speakers and Musicians
In order of the night programs:
- Rick Warren, senior pastor of Saddleback Church.
- Matthew Barnett, pastor of the Dream Center.
- Frank Damazio, senior pastor of City Bible Church.
- Rick Godwin, pastor of Eagle's Nest Christian Fellowship.
- Bill Hybels, senior pastor of Willow Creek Community Church.
- Jentezen Franklin, senior pastor of Free Chapel.
- Charlotte Scanlon, senior associate pastor of Abundant Life Church.
- Reinhard Bonnke, evangelist and leader of CfaN Christ for all Nations.
Worship Leaders and Christian Bands
- Darlene Zschech and the Hillsong team
- Alvin Slaughter
- Israel Houghton and New Breed
- Cindy Cruse-Ratcliff
There were also a number of other Christian musicians and worship leaders for specific strands.
Over 4,000 young people attended the Jam program (Jam 68 and Jam Wildlife). 2006 was the first year that ticketed seating was implemented, with the intent to guarantee seats and reduce queue lengths. Brian Houston declared that the registration money did not cover the costs of the conference, and that it was a big burden for a single church to bear. Some offerings were taken up for independent causes, such as for the evangelistic work of Reinhard Bonnke and his team. Also, over 1200(?) children were sponsored through Compassion.
Criticism of Hillsong Conference
- Many Christians outside of the charismatic/Pentecostal movement view speaking in tongues, which was common amongst the attendees and was practised by some of the speakers, feel uncomfortable with this expression and doubt its biblical basis.
Response to Criticism
- Pastor Rick Warren says in his book The Purpose Driven Church that many business people in Western society are used to a highly professional workplace and conferences, so they expect a highly professional church worship service. Many Christian leaders believe that it is important for a church to fit in with (neutral or positive aspects of) the local culture, while rejecting negative aspects. They point to the healthy variety of styles exhibited throughout the worldwide Christian church.
- Pentecostals see speaking in tongues as biblical. At the conference, Richard Roberts, president of Oral Roberts University said in a Moving in the Spirit elective that Pentecostals had hurt evangelical Christians through their teaching on tongues. He announced to a mostly "tongues"-speaking audience (in this stream) that most of them did not actually speak in tongues in the revelatory sense of 1 Corinthians 14. He suggested that there is a distinction between a "personal prayer language" as practised by the majority of the audience (what critics might refer to as "babble") and the prophetic type of speaking in tongues he claimed was exhibited in 1 Corinthians 14. Another Pentecostal speaker in this elective also mentioned that he had dialogued with evangelical Christians about tongues and grown in his understanding.
- "Hillsong Conference: A call to action" (Press release). Hillsong Church. 2006-07-04. Retrieved 2006-07-28.
- "Volunteers: The heartbeat of Hillsong conference" (Press release). Hillsong Church. 2006-07-07. Retrieved 2006-07-28.
- "Jam united impacting the generations" (Press release). Hillsong Church. 2006-07-06. Retrieved 2006-07-28.