DBU Students Lead EQUIP Worship Conference in Vancouver

A group of students in Vancouver.

A group of Dallas Baptist University students traveled to Vancouver, Canada, from May 16 to May 25, in order to lead a conference on congregational worship led by Larry Tardy. Working with the various ethnic congregations in the Vancouver area, these DBU students organized and taught different sessions on worship leadership and musical styles.

"The attendees were so blessed by our DBU students, as were we by their desire to grow in their understanding of music," stated Aaron Zavala, worship coordinator for spiritual life at DBU. "Many at the conference told us that their hunger and desire to grow in their worship leadership skills were sparked to life again by attending the conference."

Arriving in Vancouver on May 16, the DBU group quickly began meeting with local congregational leaders in order to prepare for the coming conference. Meeting up with Ray Woodard, head of Westcoast Baptist Association, and Jeff Phillips, pastor of Crossings Baptist Church and a DBU alumnus, the students began to understand the spiritual state of Vancouver. The group was informed that 47% of the population of Vancouver associated themselves as irreligious.

"People here do not recognize their desperate need for Jesus in their lives," reflected Zavala.

For the first several days of their stay in Vancouver, the DBU students led pre-conference workshops at various locations, teaching church leaders and congregational members musical skills in areas such as guitar, piano, and voice.

Friday, May 22, marked the first day of the EQUIP conference. Expecting only around fifteen people, the EQUIP volunteers were surprised to support over 120 people from 23 different churches of all ethnic backgrounds. Volunteer leaders and workers for the EQUIP conference included Chad and Ryan Baily from Willow Bend Baptist Church, Kyle Sherman from the Church on Rush Creek and also a DBU alumnus, Reggie Scott from Fielder Road Baptist Church, and Jesse Reeves, author of "How Great is Our God" and former bassist for Chris Tomlin, among others.

Lasting for two days, the conference drew to a close on Saturday, May 23. "What was started at the EQUIP conference is just the beginning of something the Lord wants to do in Vancouver over a long period of time," commented Zavala. "We hope to continue working with the Lord in what He desires to do in Vancouver."

Written by Aaron Jones