As one of the longest-running ministries for the entertainment industry, the Hollywood Prayer Network (HPN) just passed a huge milestone, celebrating its 20th birthday.
On Saturday, Aug. 14, more than 400 people attended their live gala hosted at First Presbyterian Church in Hollywood, California.
The head of the ministry is founder Karen Covell, who is a film producer by trade. Covell moved to Los Angeles to pursue her education at the University of Southern California for film production and married her husband who is a music producer for motion pictures. They immediately realized how hard it was for people of faith to work in the entertainment industry and they needed prayer.
They found a small group of Christians and began to pray together. It made a huge difference in her life but Covell still felt unsettled.
"It's good that we pray for ourselves. But what Christians don't have who work in the media and arts and entertainment industry is churches and other Christians who will pray for them," she said. "I realized there was a love-hate relationship between churches and the arts and entertainment. But if you pray for somebody, you can't hate them! So I got the church to pray for Hollywood and it has been the bridge to relationship."
When asked what she has seen in the past 20 years in Hollywood, Covell remarked, "In the last 20 years, I am most excited about three different things that fill my heart. Christians are forming a beautiful community in Hollywood. We have 15 active ministries here. We have so many churches that industry professionals are going to. We have small groups, prayer groups, prayer walks, Bible studies on all of the studio lots. Friendships where people not only hang out together, and laugh and cry but they hire each other and are working together. I am seeing a growing community."
"Another thing we are seeing is that industry people are wanting to share their faith! They are sharing with co-workers, bosses, employees! It is growing!" she added. "I am seeing Christians on the outside of Hollywood who are not looking at it the same way. They are willing to pray now, to see it as a mission field and send young people who are talented to work here."
Believers and churches in Hollywood say that prayer has been the force that has created so much empowerment for the current generation of people of faith. They are flooding the entertainment industry as missionaries in the mainstream media as well as making faith-based projects on a scale that hasn't been seen before.
There are over 12,000 known and committed Christians in professions just in Hollywood itself, according to the Hollywood Prayer Network. And this number is growing daily even through the rough pandemic season of 2021.
Covell and her team have spent thousands of hours creating a relationship between churches and ministries who will pray for studios and professionals who work in the entertainment industry. They have also started more than 130 HPN chapters with over 12,000 intercessors around the world who share the same mission. Their mission is to identify, connect and empower Christians who are working throughout the entertainment industry, uniting and encouraging them with prayer and community, equipping them to live lives that demonstrate the love of Jesus Christ.
We asked Covell, how can Christians pray for Hollywood?
"We need more Christians to find each other, recommit their faith, and to join in what God is doing to move and build us up as a shining bright light," she said. "We need more believers to share their faith. If more people become Christians in Hollywood, we know the environment will change and the content will change."
"We need more prayer warriors outside of Hollywood to pray with us," Covell continued. "We need intercessors that are willing to pray for one industry professional who is a Christian who becomes their prayer partner. We need more local chapters around the world to meet the need in the world's most influential mission field."
When asked what her hope would be for the next 20 years of the Hollywood Prayer Network, Covell said, "I hope that God is so present in Hollywood that people's lives will change and that Christians are so full of the Holy Spirit that they will share their faith and that non-believers will become Christians."
"I am praying that Hollywood Prayer Network is no longer necessary because it's happening organically!" she added. "I want to be put out of business because the Holy Spirit has taken the industry for Himself!"
The Hollywood Prayer Network is the fastest-growing entertainment ministry of its kind. You can become an intercessor for the arts and entertainment industries all over the world by visiting them at https://hollywoodprayernetwork.org/.