The Night Vigil for Peace and Freedom was one of the longest awaited events of 2006. For more than eleven months, those who had been to the Night of Greatness were itching for another opportunity to enter the New Year in God’s Presence; while those who had missed the event of the previous year, could not wait to experience something so great for the first time.

The last few months leading up to the Night for Peace were really hectic, from the evangelization; the marching to and from different areas; to the distribution of hampers to make people more aware of the event. There was a lot that had to be done, in the shortest possible amount of time.

Thousands of people from all over the country made every effort to be a part of this great event at the FNB Stadium. While most holidaymakers were heading towards the coast, many people from the coast were coming up to Jo’burg, for the sole purpose of celebrating the New Year in a different way.

The Night Vigil was awesome, and if you were not there you seriously missed out on a life-altering event. There was singing, dancing, rejoicing, and there were also fireworks, candlelight and so much more. It was truly the ideal way start the New Year. From Rebecca Malope’s singing to the choreography of the Victory Youth Group, no one was disappointed. There was something for everyone.

What was really surprising was the skydivers, no one would have expected it. During the opening ceremony, as the host was still introducing the whole event, we were asked to look to the skies as the South African flag would be landing. As we looked up, people were stunned and awed by what they saw.

Two red lights appeared to be flittering across the night sky and as they drew closer to the ground, it became evident what it was. Two skydivers flew into the stadium and after they landed, everyone applauded because many people had never seen such a sight in their whole lives.

As the night progressed, it became clear that it would be an unforgettable one, not only because it was the end of the year, but also because the Vigil was the last event ever to be held at the FNB Stadium, as it is now closed down to be rebuilt for the 2010 Soccer World Cup. Thus the Universal Church made history and sincerely speaking, I cannot think of a better final event to be hosted at the Stadium.

Not only was it packed inside the stadium, but also the overflow area completely crammed, so much so that there was no longer any more room to fit the people.

Nonetheless, no one left the stadium without God’s blessing upon their lives. Before the end of the night, Bishop Bira, went to the overflow area and made a special prayer for those who could not be inside the stadium, and he assured them they were not despised and they were just as blessed as those who were inside the stadium.

After that, everyone sought the Holy Spirit before the last prayer was made, and everyone made their way home reassured that God had done great things in their lives.