EDINBURGH, Scotland (FR) - A billboard in the Scottish capital city of Edinburgh reads "Scotland Awakens to God! Thirty Years of Decline Are Over!" One might expect such a message to be broadcast from a small, enthusiastic church. But this billboard sits in front of the headquarters of the Church of Scotland. Christian spokesmen within the mainline denomination as well as evangelical leaders from other churches all agree that Scotland is now experiencing the beginnings of a national revival.
Scotland has experienced revival in every century since 1500. According to church leader David Anderson, "Apart from minor and more limited awakenings such as the Welsh Revival of 1904 and the Lewis Revival of 1949-50, this is in fact the first century since the Reformation when Britain has not known the outpouring of the Spirit." Anderson then added, "Is this mere coincidence, or could it be that in the last decade of the 20th century we are going to witness across the face of our land a movement of God on a greater scale than any experienced in a previous time?"
Although church attendance has been on the decline in Scotland in recent years, reports are now surfacing that the growth of Christian churches and ministries is now accelerating. This has been accompanied by a renewal of interest in prayer for national revival. For example, plans are now being implemented to set up weekly and monthly prayer breakfasts for Christians in each of the 56 local government districts in Scotland. In Edinburgh each month hundreds of Christians meet together to pray for the city and revival. Just last Easter the city's largest concert hall was filled with more than 2000 Christians praying for revival.
Anderson, who leads a congregation in the Gorgie area of Edinburgh, reports that an early morning prayer meeting in his church - which began in January of this year - has now moved to a large hall because of the increased interest in prayer. Miraculous events have accompanied the movement; in Sutherland, a mother was recently converted after hearing her small son pray for her for almost two hours. In the Highlands, a man with no church connection was literally "smitten by the power of God and deeply convicted of his sins."
Anderson, who released this report added, "The fact is that, during the past 20 years and all over Scotland, in villages, towns, and cities, hundreds of praying groups have sprung up on a scale unprecedented in this century."
SI Moderator - brother Greg