In part one of this series, we looked at the important role college has in influencing culture for good or bad, how the first universities were profoundly affected by their intimate connection with the church, and how that connection has been severed. In part 2, we’ll explore how church-led prayer movements positively impacted the campus and society, where we dropped the ball, and why I believe there is a biblical mandate to pick it up again.
Praying Moms, the Campus, and an Evangelist
When American evangelist D.L. Moody preached at Cambridge to an antagonistic group of young college students, he was so distraught at their lack of attention that out of desperation he called on an army of 300 moms to pray. He said that their prayers literally “turned the tide” and that the previously unreceptive college men listened and responded to his message. This soon led to revival, out of which came “the Cambridge Seven,” a group of young men who changed world missions. Moody then brought his meetings to America which spawned more student conferences and missions movements. For over 25 years, Moody sought the help and support during evangelistic campaigns of sometimes up to 1,500 praying moms.
America's First Collegiate Prayer Movement
Throughout American history, our colleges have benefited from the transformative power of intense seasons of spiritual awakening and revival. The Second Great Awakening (1790-1845) produced our most powerful student revivals and the prayer movement that sustained them. Renewed monthly Concerts of Prayer in the mid 1780s were greatly responsible. For half a century America experienced genuine revival in one part of our nation or another.