ProChrist Transmitted to 21 Countries – 160,000 Attend First Night
By Wolfgang Polzer
Special to ASSIST News Service
MUNICH (ANS) -- One of the biggest evangelistic outreach programs on the European continent has kicked off from Munich, Germany. ProChrist meetings are aired daily via satellite to 1,250 venues in 21 European countries, March 19 through 26.
According to the organizers more than 160,000 participants watched the program during the first night on Sunday. Attendance figures dropped slightly on Monday to 147,000. 4,500 guests flocked to the Olympic hall in Munich. The figures lag behind the last ProChrist campaign in 2003, when 200,000 met in 1,304 venues on the opening night.
The main speaker at ProChrist 2006 is Rev. Ulrich Parzany, former general secretary of the German YMCA. In his first sermon Parzany challenged the notion that religious tolerance means that all religions are equal. The latest outbreaks of violence over the Muhammad cartoons had shown that this kind of tolerance could not guarantee a peaceful world, Parzany said.
As far as Jesus is concerned, the New Testament shows, as Parzany explained, that a personal relationship with Christ is essential and not superior arguments.
Johannes Friedrich, Lutheran Bishop of Bavaria, welcomed the ProChrist campaign. It was just what the region needed, considering that one in four Bavarians is without any church affiliation.
ProChrist also aroused considerable interest via the Internet. 5,549 users from 27 countries watched the live video stream during the first night. More than 5,000 downloaded Parzany’s sermon (www.prochrist.org).
ProChrist started in 1993 from Essen, Germany, with Billy Graham as the main speaker. The current campaign started with “ProChrist for Kids”, March 18. The program with 4,500 children was transmitted to 400 local venues.