Local Greeneville Awakening beginning its 15th week of services

Published 8:31 am Friday, July 27, 2018

Local pastors Roger Stockton and Nick Bailey say they are seeing things happening in the Greeneville Awakening that they have only read about in books as the revival finished its 72nd day of back-to-back meetings last Friday under a brilliant blue and white tent sitting in a rural community in Chuckey, Tenn.
Both Stockton and Bailey, pastors of area churches, say churches often go months at a time with no one coming to Christ. Yet an atmosphere has been created under “the tent,” that draws as many as 30-40 people a night to ask Christ into their lives. Week 14 ended Friday with 33 people coming to Christ ranging in age from age 9 to 82. A large portion of newcomers to the faith are above 40, Stockton recalls, of the 351 people that have made decisions so far. Stockton said, “Whole families will empty a pew to come to the altars to come to Christ. We don’t see that in churches anymore.”
Stockton, pastor of Greystone Free Will Baptist Church, joined with other churches within his community to host a revival that began April 15. They planned for it to last about a week. Nowadays, Bailey says people won’t support revivals if they last longer than that. But after 14 weeks, the core group from surrounding churches are more committed to attending every night than ever. “There is an electricity in the air,” said Jodi Southerland from Rogersville, whose grandparents live close and who attends every night possible.
Friday night 75 churches were represented, ranging from Baptist to Methodist, to Assembly of God to Pentecostal. Evangelist D.R. Harrison said, “We appeal to everybody. Christ is the only answer to a hopeless world. That’s what we preach.”
Harrison continues, “Monday began week 15 with services every night at 7 p.m., at 1005 Quaker Knob Road in Chuckey. Tonight (July 27), a Heritage Celebration will be held, when we honor old preachers who remember revivals that transformed their communities when they were young. My dad, David Harrison, is bringing the message. Dad was part of bringing 47 churches together in Kingsport in 1985 under a tent off John B. Dennis Highway which saw 1,000 people come to Christ in 11 weeks.
“I am totally amazed,” Harrison continues, “that this core of supporters have given up their entire summer to be here 72 straight nights, parking cars, greeting and filling the seats in this 1,500-seat tent. We call for the men who attend to come back at midnight to pray and the women to come back each morning at 9 a.m. We’ve had as many as 40 men come to pray, some staying two hours, knowing they have schedules for the following day. They are the ones bringing the miracle of revival to this Greeneville valley.”
Every night, Harrison calls on new people, attending for the first time, to raise their hands. Between 10 to 20 percent of the attendees are first-timers. Harrison announced at one service that a couple drove from Houston, Texas, just to get saved. He announced on Tuesday while reading a decision card, a lady drove down from Lexington Va., to get saved, couldn’t find the tent and wept on the way home. Her family paid for her to come back the following day to find the right location, attend and give her life to Christ. Harrison says, “These kind of stories are modern day miracles.”
There is no date for the revival to end. People don’t seem to be tired, but energized. Plans are for looking at weeks into the future expecting what some describe as to explode at some point into something really big.

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