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‘Woodlawn,’ the movie: Great tool for evangelism

EDITOR’S NOTE: Ronnie Floyd is president of the Southern Baptist Convention and senior pastor of Cross Church in northwest Arkansas.

[YOUTUBE=0xb8fhck0ks]SPRINGDALE, Ark. (BP) — This coming Friday, the movie “Woodlawn” will be released nationwide. The Erwin Brothers, Jon and Andy, present this dynamic film. They are the filmmaking team behind movies like “October Baby” and “Mom’s Night Out.”

Film speaks the language of our generation, and Woodlawn does so profoundly.

Woodlawn is based on a true story about a school in Birmingham, Ala., named Woodlawn. This moving and inspirational film is based on the true story of how love and unity overcame hate and division in early 1970s Birmingham. The Woodlawn Colonels football team was a microcosm of the problems at the school and in the city, which erupted in cross burnings and riots. Then God showed up, almost the entire team came to Christ, and everything changed.

One week ago, my wife Jeana and I went to a premiere of this movie in Dallas at Prestonwood Baptist Church. She stated, “This is the greatest Christian film I have ever seen other than the ‘Passion of the Christ.'” There is nothing cheesy about this movie. It exhibits high quality acting and state-of-the art producing and filming.

If you have not seen the trailer of this movie, please take time to watch it now at http://woodlawnmovie.com.

This is our time

Jon has become a very good friend. He heard about my passion for and vision to see another Great Awakening in America. Our hearts are united in knowing this is our time to see the next Great Awakening in our nation.

I want to encourage each pastor and Christian leader to rent theaters and fill them with people of all ages to watch this movie. Encourage them to bring friends who are regular church attenders and those who have never attended a church before. Once the movie concludes, offer an opportunity for people to follow Jesus Christ.

Here are a few examples of response from early previews:

— Memphis, Tenn.: 125 kids, half of those attending, made decisions for Christ after watching Woodlawn at an FCA event:

“When I came up to close the night and give an invitation, we had at least half of the crowd stand and pray to receive Christ. It was the single biggest group and single biggest group of commitments I’ve ever seen at our FCA.” – Pat Ford, FCA coach and chaplain.

— Huntsville, Ala: A dark theater was filled with the light of Christ:

“After it was over, the coach gave me an opportunity to share the Gospel and I don’t know how many of the kids got saved, it was amazing the number of kids that professed Christ tonight. The theater was completely dark, they would never turn the lights on, but WOW, the light of Christ was shining bright.” — Ken Burnett, FCA Huntsville.

— Los Angeles: Football teams are being sponsored to see the movie. Then this happened:

“The theater manager saw what we were doing and offered 100 additional seats on him. He said, ‘I don’t believe in God, but I believe in what you are doing.’ Tommy Draffen [FCA leader] witnessed to him right there and invited him to the movie event on the 17th.” – Kevin Downes, producer/Woodlawn.

Woodlawn has the potential to become a tool for you to use for personal and mass evangelism. Additionally, it could serve as a catalyst for a major movement of God in a school, team, workplace, family or a ministry.

Cross Church is renting multiple theaters. Our desire is to fill the theaters with all ages and we will extend opportunities for people to come to Christ. Find a way to use this movie as a tool for evangelism.

Nationwide simulcast on Wed., Oct. 14

You can participate in a free online event, a nationwide simulcast on Wednesday, Oct. 14, called Unify.

Take the time now to register here — http://live.woodlawnmovie.com.s3-website-us-east-1.amazonaws.com — and plan to participate.

I look forward to participating with Jack Graham, Greg Laurie, Tony Evans and Tony Perkins. The simulcast will subsequently air multiple times on TBN. Check your local listings or visit www.woodlawnmovie.com for details.

I believe in this movie. Its message is so on target for America today. It can impact our generation. God can use it to call thousands into a saving relationship with His Son, Jesus Christ. Flood the theaters beginning Friday and keep flooding them over the next several weeks. Encourage people to attend. Rent theaters. Extend opportunities for people to follow Jesus. Let the movement begin.

    About the Author

  • Ronnie Floyd