Hillsong College USA has been one of the biggest blessings to pioneer and our first year has been filled with so many things worth celebrating! Our training environment, positioned in the heart of our local church, continues to give students the opportunity to learn about leadership and ministry, while getting hands-on practical experience in the life of Hillsong Church.
When reflecting on the year, one particular group of students comes to mind. A group that showed a somewhat unique pioneering spirit and took it upon themselves to create – The Sunday Night Parking Lot Team! These incredible students took the initiative, created the team and made a seemingly ordinary job remarkable! Instead of just smiling and waving at people as they drove home after church, they began preparing special routines, dance items and theatrical moments that always involved waiving their glowing orange batons in a full circular motion, exclaiming “FULL ROTATION, FULL ROTATION, FULL ROTATION”. Our congregation became genuinely excited to drive out of our parking lot each weekend just to see what new number these guys were going to pull off! Check out one of their epic routines here feat. our global EVP, Lee Burns:
This Car Park team made such an impression that even my 3 year old son, Jude, will welcome me home as I drive in after a day at work…you guessed it….waving his little arms in the air in a circular motion yelling “full rotation, full rotation, full rotation”!
These students took something that some might deem insignificant and made it significant. They made it their ministry. And as a result, have blessed countless lives and brought joy into our community. It’s leadership and perspective like this that will help students in the future as they pioneer churches, teams or departments in the seasons to come.
Another stand out for me this year has been our College staff, in particular, our Worship Music Stream Coordinator, Rena Sue Brown! She has been an absolute joy to work alongside and is an incredible blessing to our student body. With a musical background in opera and education, Rena is what helps make our college world-class. I nicknamed her “7 pump Rena Sue Brown” because at one point that was the number of pumps that she would get in her Starbucks coffee, but not only that, she is a bundle of energy! She leads with passion, wisdom and I’ll often see her writing down the cultural values of our house on sticky notes, speaking them to herself during different moments of the day or inspiring our students in classes on life and leadership. We are blessed to have a staff who love building the local church and who then instil that same heart and culture into our College.
Our students have learnt valuable skills over their year here but, more importantly, we’ve seen them grow in character and in their love for the Church. I remember being a young 20-something year old with dreams and aspirations for ministry. I reflect on a specific moment during a night of worship at church where I sensed God telling me that I would be involved in impacting the young people of this nation. Fast forward 10+ years, and I am standing in that promise as the Principal of Hillsong College USA. I now have the honour to spur on the dreams and aspirations of this next generation as we look to the future and our 2nd year of Hillsong College in America. As Ps. Brian Houston says, “Our best is yet to come”.
Principal of Hillsong College USA
Disclaimer: Photography and video content taken over 2019/2020. Any content taken during COVID adhered to state regulations.