Saddleback Church's Radicalis Under Way
Calling it a "world-changing event," Saddleback's pastor Rick Warren kicked off Radicalis 2011, a three-day festival Warren believes will inspire a "fire for God" for participants.
The music, art and message-inspired festival, drawing hundreds of college students from San Diego to Santa Barbara, began Thursday with inspirational words from Warren and his wife, Kay Warren, at the mega church's recently-gifted Rancho Capistrano 170-acre ranch property.
"I had a dream, a vision that we with other churches could create a premier, global shaking mission event that could change the world," Rick Warren told an enthusiastic crowd spilling across a lawn in front of a large outdoor stage. "Radicalis, is the Latin word for radical. People think it means extreme, hip or unusual. But it comes from rooted. You are rooted It means rooting our lives in Jesus Christ and in our forever church family. It means uprooting poverty, illiteracy, disease and injustice."
Radicalis 2011 is the start of a nationwide event expected to draw thousands in 2012. Its purpose is to get the 20-something generation to embrace principles of Warren's PEACE plan — a plan Saddleback Church has focused on promoting outreach and change in communities around the world. PEACE stands for: Plant churches that promote reconciliation. Equip servant leaders. Assist the poor. Care for the sick. Educate the new generation.
The conference, which continues through Saturday and is open to the public, includes activities and breakout sessions with Rick and Kay Warren, Pete Wilson, pastor of Cross Point Church in Nashville and Brad Baker, Saddleback's college student's pastor. Music is provided by Zack Barker & Dominik Michalzik of the Crave Band and musicians Josh Fox and Phil Wickham
"To know the rest of your lives you'll say 'remember when,'" Kay Warren said. "Some of you will find the girl you marry here, some will find the guy you'll marry. This will become life-changing for some of you."
The Warrens are hopeful that the conference will inspire the next generation to embrace the PEACE plan
"The vision of the PEACE plan has to be passed to the next generation," Kay Warren said. They have to make it their own. They have to challenge, see it, accept it and own it."
Kay Warren said the Radicalis festival is the first large event to debut on the recently donated land that the Green family, a 400-plus craft store retailer from Oklahoma City, gave to the mega church last week.
"This property will be used to inspire the next generation." Kay Warren said. "It was amazing when they loaned it to us last year but when they outright gave it to us 10 days ago, God has done amazing things for this church. We feel honored by how God has lavished us. Our focus is serving our community, California and the world."