Passion Conferences

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Passion Conferences
Passion Conference Hurricane Logo.jpg
FounderLouie Giglio

Passion Conferences (also referred to as Passion and the 268 Generation, originally named Choice Ministries) is a Christian organization founded by Louie Giglio in 1997. The organization is known for their annual gatherings of young adults between the ages of 18–25, more specifically college students. The organization is also responsible for sixstepsrecords, Passion Music, and the megachurch Passion City Church.[1] The first conference was Passion '97, held in Austin, Texas. Today, the headquarters are in Roswell, a suburb of Atlanta, Georgia.[2][3] According to the organization, their purpose is to unite college students for a "spiritual awakening in this generation". The foundation of their purpose can be found in Isaiah 26:8.[4]

Since its start, Passion Conferences has operated national conferences annually. In 2008, Passion Conferences launched their first global tour that visited 17 different countries,[5][6] starting in Kiev, Ukraine and finishing in Sydney, Australia. Since then, Passion Conferences have continued to host gatherings and tours nationally and globally.


1985–1997: Early years[edit]

In 1985, Louie and Shelley Giglio founded Choice Ministries at Baylor University in Waco, TX.[7] Choice Ministries began as a campus-based student ministry and after 10 years of ministry at Baylor, Louie and Shelley moved to Atlanta, GA. In 1997, Giglio founded Passion Conferences in Atlanta under the banner of Choice Ministries to see a spiritual awakening among college students all across the United States and the world.

1997–2007: National success[edit]

The first conference took place in Austin, TX where thousands of college aged students came together during January 1–4, 1997.[7] Passion have hosted five more national gatherings in the next decade (1998, 1999, 2005, 2006, 2007), which involved more than 70,000 college students in total.[7] During this decade, thousands of additional college students connected with Passion through one of several other gatherings, including the OneDay Gatherings in 2000 and 2003[8] and the Passion Experience Tour.[9] Passion also became known for its worship albums over this decade, which featured many prominent contemporary Christian artists like Matt Redman, Chris Tomlin, and David Crowder.[10][11]

2008–present: Passion City Church and world tours[edit]

In June 2008, while speaking for pastor Andy Stanley, Giglio announced the planting of Passion City Church in Atlanta, Georgia with Chris Tomlin.[12][13] Along with Tomlin, Matt and Beth Redman, and a small core team, Passion City Church officially gathered in fall of 2008. Passion City Church held its first service on February 15, 2009, in Atlanta, Georgia at The Tabernacle.[14] In 2017, Passion City Church announced plans to expand to two new locations - Passion City Church, Cumberland[15] and Passion City Church, D.C.[16]

Also in 2008, Passion Conferences embarked on their first world tour, reaching out to 17 different cities in all 6 continents.[17] Passion has continued to launch world tours and regular tours throughout the years, including Passion NYC Subway Series,[18] Regionals '07–'08, Passion 2010 University Tour, Passion 2012 University Tour, A Night of Worship with Passion Tour, Passion: Let the Future Begin Tour, and Passion: Take It All Tour.[19] Passion's regular conferences have also become annually held. The Passion conference in 2016 was simultaneously held in three arenas in two cities: Toyota Center in Houston, Texas; Infinite Energy Arena in Duluth, Georgia; and Philips Arena (now State Farm Arena) in Atlanta, Georgia. Through live streaming capabilities, students were able to see the various speakers and musicians from each of the three venues throughout the three-day event.[20]

In 2017, Passion held their annual collegiate event in Atlanta, Georgia's Georgia Dome, former home of the Atlanta Falcons before renovations.[21] That year, Passion encouraged participants to sponsor more than 7,000 a children from Compassion International.[22] The conference also saw the debut of sixsteprecords latest artist Jimi Cravity[23] and the guest appearance of country music singer Carrie Underwood, which incited considerable Christian backlash.[24][25][26]

Passion 2019 was held in four sold-out arenas and churches across the United States, including Atlanta's State Farm Arena, Duluth's (Georgia) Infinite Energy Center, and in the cities of Dallas, Texas and Washington, D.C.[citation needed] It was announced that Passion 2020 will be held in only one venue, Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta, Georgia, December 31, 2019 – January 2, 2020.[27] It will be the largest Christian conference event in the United States since Passion 2017.[clarification needed]


Also known asPassion Music
OriginAtlanta, GA, United States
Years active1997 (1997)–present

Passion Conferences have released 28 albums over the span of 2 decades under the name Passion. Most of the Passion albums are live albums, recorded during performances in conferences or tours. Passion Conferences also owns sixstepsrecords, a record label that includes Crowder and Passion.[28]

Passion's first record, Our Soul's Desire, was released in 1997 under Star Song Records. After Star Song artists transferred to Sparrow Records,[29] Passion released two more live albums, including 1999's Better Is One Day, which saw Passion charting on the Billboard Christian Albums chart for the first time.[30] In 2000, Passion Conferences founded sixstepsrecords as a division of Passion Conferences.[31] As partners of Sparrow Records, a division of Capitol CMG, sixstepsrecords has many prominent contemporary Christian musicians under their label.[32][33] Their first album on the newwly created label, The Road to One Day, became the first Passion album to chart on the Billboard 200.[34]

Since the creation of sixstepsrecords, Passion has released more than twenty more live albums and two studio albums, nine of which have consecutively charted at No. 1 on the Billboard Christian Albums chart.[30][35] The lead single off of 2012's live album White Flag, "One Thing Remains", became Passion's first No. 1 song on the Billboard Christian Songs chart.[36] Passion's Let The Future Begin (2013) and Take It All (2014) both peaked at No. 4 on the Billboard 200, making them Passion's highest charting albums.[30]


Passion's annual conferences attract around 50,000 participants. Every year, the conference invites prominent Christian speakers and musical artists.[37]


Pastor Louie Giglio, founder of Passion, often speaks during the conferences. John Piper is also a frequent speaker at Passion Conferences. His sermon, "Don't Waste Your Life", which was preached during the Passion Conference in 2000, became one of the most popular sermons of the new millennium.[38][39] Other speakers that have spoken at Passion Gatherings include: Francis Chan, Andy Stanley, Beth Moore, Judah Smith,[40] Christine Caine, Carl Lentz,[41] Lecrae, Gary Haugen,[42] Ben Stuart,[43] Ravi Zacharias,[44] Matt Chandler,[45] Levi Lusko,[46] and Jay and Katherine Wolf, authors of the book "Hope Heals".[47]


Chris Tomlin performing at the May 23–24, 2008 Passion Conference in São Paulo, Brazil.

Sixstepsrecords artists form the core group of artists performing at the Passion Gatherings, including Chris Tomlin, David Crowder, Charlie Hall, Matt Redman, Christy Nockels, Kristian Stanfill, Melodie Malone, Brett Younker, and Jimi Cravity.

Other artists that have performed at Passion Gatherings include Lecrae, Hillsong United, Jesus Culture, Kari Jobe, Tenth Avenue North, Shane and Shane, SonicFlood, Gungor, Rend Collective, and Sean Curran of Bellarive.

Door holders[edit]

The men and women who volunteer at the conferences are called door holders.[48][37] They serve on different teams such as community groups, logistics and registration[49] and are considered to be at the core of the gatherings. They travel from all over the nation to serve at these gatherings. At various times throughout the year Passion City Church has special events for Door Holders.[50][51]

Charitable contributions[edit]

In 2011, Passion started the Do Something Now fundraising campaign,[52] later renamed 72DaysForFreedom. The fundraising campaign encourages participants in Passion's annual conferences to donate to different charitable organizations. In the Passion 2011 conference, over 22,000 students raised over $1.1 million towards multiple causes.[53] In the 2012 conference, students raised $3.3 million to fund seven different organizations that battle sex trafficking.[54][55] Passion 2013 saw the launch of the End It Movement, an anti-human trafficking fundraising campaign. Attendees gave over $3.6 million towards various causes at this conference.[56]

At the 2015 Atlanta conference, attendees collected items to donate to Atlanta's City of Refuge homeless ministry.[57][58] In 2016, participants raised more than $800,000 towards Project Haraka حركة, a partnership with World Vision USA to fund the building of a health facility in Syria.[59] This building is intended to serve as the first newborn ICU in opposition-controlled Syria.[60] Passion 2017 saw the start of the Make History Together fundraising campaign, in which the organization partnered with Compassion International to sponsor children in poverty around the world. The students sponsored more than 7,000 children in total, including all the Compassion International children from El Salvador, Rwanda, Indonesia, and Tanzania, and another 900 children from Bolivia,[61] creating the largest surge of sponsorships in Compassion International's 65-year history.[62]



All albums were produced on the Sparrow / sixstepsrecords label unless specifically noted.

Year Title Peak chart positions Notes

1997 Our Soul's Desire* Live album
1998 Live Worship from the 268 Generation Live album
1999 Better Is One Day 4 Live album
2000 The Road to One Day 3 139 Studio album
2000 One Day Live 12 158 Live album
2002 Our Love is Loud 4 77 Live album
2003 Sacred Revolution: Songs From OneDay 03 5 107 Live album
2004 Hymns Ancient and Modern 8 163 Live album
2005 How Great Is Our God 2 74 Live album
2006 Everything Glorious 2 69 Live album
2008 God of This City 3 74 Live album
2010 Awakening 1 15 Live album
2011 Here for You 1 11 Live album
2012 White Flag 1 5 Live album
2013 Let the Future Begin 1 4 Live album
2014 Take It All 1 4 Live album
2015 Even So Come[65] 1 18 Live album
2016 Salvation's Tide Is Rising 1 19 Studio album
2017 Worthy of Your Name[66] 1 32 Live album
2018 Whole Heart 1 37 Live album
2019 Follow You Anywhere 3 Live album

"—" denotes releases that did not chart.

*Released under Star Song Records

Compilations and other releases[edit]

Year Album Notes
2005 Passion 05
  • Released: 2005
  • Label:
  • Format: one iTunes bundle, two songs
2006 Passion: The Early Session
  • Released: February 28, 2006
  • Label: Six Steps
  • Format: Digital download
2006 The Best of Passion (So Far)
  • Released: December 26, 2006
  • Label: Sparrow / sixstepsrecords
  • Format: 2xCD
2007 Live From Passion07
  • Released: 2007
  • Label:
  • Format: three iTunes bundles, two songs each
2008 A Generation United for His Renown
  • Released: May 20, 2008
  • Label: EMI CMG
  • Format: CD
2014 Passion: The Essential Collection
  • Released: November 10, 2014
  • Label: Capitol Christian Music
  • Format: CD/DVD


List of singles and peak chart positions
Single Year Peak chart positions

Christ Air.

US Christ Digital
"White Flag"
(featuring Chris Tomlin)
2012 7 3 3 White Flag
"One Thing Remains"
(featuring Kristian Stanfill)
1 6
"The Lord Our God"
(featuring Kristian Stanfill)
2013 18 Let the Future Begin
"In Christ Alone"
(featuring Kristian Stanfill)
2014 32 25
"My Heart Is Yours"
(featuring Kristian Stanfill)
13 12 32 Take It All
"Even So Come"
(featuring Kristian Stanfill)
2015 7 3 7 Even So Come
(featuring Brett Younker & Melodie Malone)
2016 16 16 27 Salvation's Tide Is Rising
"Simple Pursuit"
(featuring Kristian Stanfill)
41 27
"Glorious Day"
(featuring Kristian Stanfill)
2017 25 19 Worthy of Your Name
"God, You're So Good"
(featuring Kristian Stanfill & Melodie Malone)
2018 42 Whole Heart
"Follow You Anywhere"
(featuring Kristian Stanfill)
2019 45 Follow You Anywhere

External links[edit]


  1. ^ Interview Sarah Eekhoff Zylstra. "Q&A: Louie Giglio". Retrieved January 1, 2015.
  2. ^ "Baptist Press – Passion '07 kicks off with 21,000 adults in Atlanta – News with a Christian Perspective". Archived from the original on May 10, 2007. Retrieved November 11, 2017.
  3. ^ Georgia Secretary of State office, control number 10018357
  4. ^ "Passion Conferences". Retrieved January 1, 2015.
  5. ^ Tweet Email (January 9, 2007). "Passion Conferences to Go International in 2008 | Christian News on Christian Today". Retrieved January 9, 2014.
  6. ^ Gaines, Adrienne S. "College Students Worship, Pray, Serve at Passion 2010 Event". Charisma News. Retrieved November 19, 2018.
  7. ^ a b c "Louie Giglio: The Heart Behind the Passion". Retrieved January 1, 2015.
  8. ^ "Passion Conferences 'OneDay 03'". The Christian Post. Retrieved January 1, 2015.
  9. ^ "The 2003 Passion Experience Tour Dates". The Christian Post. Retrieved November 19, 2018.
  10. ^ "One Day Live - Passion | Songs, Reviews, Credits | AllMusic". AllMusic. Retrieved November 19, 2018.
  11. ^ "Our Love Is Loud - Passion | Songs, Reviews, Credits | AllMusic". AllMusic. Retrieved November 19, 2018.
  12. ^ "Chris Tomlin leaving Austin Stone". May 11, 2008. Archived from the original on March 10, 2009. Retrieved January 10, 2013.
  13. ^ "Giglio and Tomlin to plant church". Modern March. October 10, 2008. Archived from the original on November 10, 2012. Retrieved January 10, 2013.
  14. ^ Zylstra, Sarah Eekhoff. (February 24, 2009) Christianity Today. Q&A: Louie Giglio - The Passion Conference founder talks about his overseas tour and the new church he has started with Matt Redman and Chris Tomlin.
  15. ^ "Passion City Church Approved for Cumberland Expansion". Atlanta Journal Constitution. Retrieved February 28, 2018.
  16. ^ "Passion City Church // D.C." Passion City Church. Retrieved February 28, 2018.
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  19. ^ "Kristian Stanfill to Lead 26-City "Passion: Take It All" Tour, Kicking Off September 10". the media collective. Retrieved January 1, 2015.
  20. ^ "40,000 Christian College Students Flood Three Arenas for Massive 'Passion' Event – and Here's the Remarkable Thing They Accomplished". The Blaze. Retrieved February 25, 2016.
  21. ^ Poole, Shelia. "Passion 2017: Atlanta faith-filled event reaches out to millennials". ajc. Retrieved November 11, 2017.
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  29. ^ Price, Deborah Evans (December 5, 1998). "EMI's StarSong Shifts To Imprint Status". Billboard: 5.
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  37. ^ a b WRITER, Charles Young STAFF. "Passion Conferences: Helping Christian youths spread the gospel". WV News. Retrieved November 19, 2018.
  38. ^ "Tim Keller, John Piper, and Andy Stanley Among the 12 'Most Effective' Preachers". News & Reporting. Retrieved November 19, 2018.
  39. ^ "How John Piper's Seashells Swept Over a Generation". The Gospel Coalition. Retrieved November 19, 2018.
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  41. ^ "Passion Conference: It's Danger and Lack of Passion for Truth". Proclaim & Defend. August 12, 2014. Retrieved November 19, 2018.
  42. ^ "Gary Haugen at Passion 2013: You Can Be the Generation That Ends Slavery in the World". The Christian Post. Retrieved November 19, 2018.
  43. ^ "More than 20,000 Gather in Worship at First Passion 2015 Conference". Christianity Daily. January 5, 2015. Retrieved November 19, 2018.
  44. ^ "Ravi Zacharias Challenges 40,000 Students at Passion 2016: Does the Truth Matter to You?". Retrieved November 19, 2018.
  45. ^ "Matt Chandler: Passion 2015". Lighthouse Gospel Ministries. March 31, 2015. Retrieved November 19, 2018.
  46. ^ "SBTS Prof Promoting Nefarious Charismatic Gathering? Say it Ain't So". Pulpit & Pen. January 3, 2016. Retrieved November 19, 2018.
  47. ^ "After 20 years with Passion conferences, here's two things I've learned • Notes from the Trail". Notes from the Trail. January 7, 2017. Retrieved November 19, 2018.
  48. ^ "Door Holders". Passion 2015. Archived from the original on December 31, 2014. Retrieved January 1, 2015.
  49. ^ "Door Holder Teams". Passion 2015. Archived from the original on December 31, 2014. Retrieved January 1, 2015.
  50. ^ "US Conference – Passion City Church". Retrieved April 4, 2018.
  51. ^ "55,000 Pack Georgia Dome for Passion 2017, Sponsor Over 7,000 Children". The Christian Post. Retrieved November 19, 2018.
  52. ^ "College kids feeling passion for conference". Retrieved November 19, 2018.
  53. ^ "Passion 2011 Brings in Record High $1.1 Million". The Christian Post.
  54. ^ "College kids vow to end slavery".
  55. ^ "Passion conference raises more than $3M for its campaign to end human trafficking". Cardinal & Cream. February 22, 2012. Retrieved November 19, 2018.
  56. ^ "Passion 2013 Donates Over $3 Million to Fight Human Trafficking". The Christian Post.
  57. ^ "Passion Conference returns to Philips Arena". WXIA. Retrieved November 19, 2018.
  58. ^ "Passion Conference | Crew One". Retrieved November 19, 2018.
  59. ^ Hallels. "Passion Conference Has Raised $811,813.39 for Project Haraka". Retrieved November 19, 2018.
  60. ^ Longs, Herb. "Passion 2016 Raises Over $800,000 To Build Hospital in Syria". Retrieved February 25, 2016.
  61. ^ "Wow: Millennials 'Make History' at Passion Conference by Sponsoring 7,000 Kids Across the Globe". CBN News. January 8, 2017. Retrieved November 19, 2018.
  62. ^ "Passion Students Sponsor Every Compassion Child in Four Countries". News & Reporting. Retrieved November 19, 2018.
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  64. ^ "Passion Chart History: Billboard 200". Billboard. Retrieved March 6, 2018.
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