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2,100 new Christians this summer as Soul Survivor comes to an end

2,100 made commitments at the events which were the last ever of their kind.

After 27 years, Soul Survivor will no longer run the festivals with organisers saying God was calling them to "hand over the baton".

Over 30,000 attended over the summer, marking record attendances at the events in Peterborough, Stafford and Kinross.

Founder Mike Pilavachi told Premier he has no regrets about the decision to make this year the last.

"I'm not at all sad," he said. "Only because we know God has spoken to us. We're looking forward to the future - we know it's right.

"It's been an utter privilege and a joy to serve Jesus and to serve the young people for these years and we've got so many memories that we'll take with us to heaven - it's been wonderful.

"People have been texting saying, 'Are you feeling sad? Is there a bit of you that's going to die? Is there a bit of you missing?' What I want to say is it's been such a privilege and honour but Soul Survivor has never been my life - Jesus is my life and he's not going anywhere."

Tom Smith attended the events as a teenager and now leads worship there.

Speaking about his experience this summer, he said: "It's been one of my life's greatest privileges just to see and lead this tribe of people into the presence of God and just see God move in so many ways.

"Even just this week, we've seen two people walk out of their wheelchairs. One hadn't been able to walk for five years, one for ten years.

"We see people set free from addictions and stuff happens when you give the Holy Spirit space.

"This is something that we're passionate about and we're going to do till the day we die - this is not the end - it very much feels like the start of something new."

While the summer festivals come to a close, Soul Survivor will continue to operate as a church in Watford. It'll also run events looking to equip church leaders across the country.

Leaders are now encouraging young people to attend four other events next year. They're recommending Vineyard's Dreaming the Impossible, Elim's Limitless, the Movement Summer Camp and the Scripture Union/Powerpoint event in Scotland.

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