Midnight Worship has seen a growth in attendance for the start of the school year.
A record 545 students attended the first event on Aug. 28. Brittany Coons, senior advertising and public relations major from Cedar Park, said this was a large number compared to last year’s average attendance of 150-200 students. Coons has been the outreach coordinator for Midnight Worship since last year. She said Midnight Worship was started by college students and is promoted at all three Abilene universities.
The event takes place every Friday night at Fountaingate Church, 909 Willis St. Each worship session is a little over 30 minutes of worship with a full band.
Michael Guillot, sophomore business management major from San Antonio, is one of the worship leaders for Midnight Worship. He said it is a place where Abilene college students of any denomination can meet together and worship.
Guillot got involved as a worship leader by applying online. He said one goal of the worship event is to build Christ-centered community that bridges the gap between “church and the Church.” The worship, leadership, service, prayer and outreach teams are all made up of college students from different denominations.
“It’s really unique because it’s not a specific denomination,” said Guillot.
Guillot said he thinks high attendance the first night was partly due to Wildcat Week. Wildcat Week showed freshman many outside organizations and featured a late-night worship session in the middle of the week. He said as the year goes on the numbers of attendees will probably vary slightly as homework piles on for some, while others use Midnight Worship as a study break. Although spiritual formation event credits were offered last Friday, Guillot said he is not sure if credits will be available in the future.
“It’s not about the music or the singers,” Guillot said. “It’s about a community responding to God and who they are in Him.”
Coons said for her Midnight Worship is a place where she can be refreshed after a stressful week.
Each week has a different theme and sometimes different college pastors from Abilene will give a short message or activity. Coons said she hopes promotions such as chalking, social media, and chapel slides will inform more students about the ministry. She said students can get involved in many ways, from stacking chairs to helping on the outreach team.
Coons and Guillot said Midnight Worship gives students community that will last beyond college.
“There’s no place I’d rather be on a Friday night,” Coons said.