What is your favorite Christian metal band

With rock and metal music, contemplative through Advent

Third Advent weekend: As everywhere in the state, there is also a pre-Christmas concert in the North Rhine-Westphalian Ennepetal. But already at the entrance it becomes clear that the listener is not expecting the classic "O you happy" or "Power up the door". Hundreds of people with T-shirts, caps and pullovers from their favorite band stand in line because the Christian metal festival "Christmas Rock Night" takes place here every year.

The "Christmas Rock Night", CRN for short, is being organized and hosted by the CVJM Rüggeberg for the 40th time. For 35 years, the CRN has been coming to the Bügerhaus Ennepetal every year. The aim is, among other things, to reach young people who do not feel comfortable in church or who do not belong to any church with Christian rock and metal music, explains Detlef Westermann, main organizer of the CRN.

Meanwhile, "Metalheads" - that's what fans of this music call themselves - travel from Switzerland, the Netherlands and all over Germany to celebrate their love for metal and Jesus Christ. But the first years of the CRN were accompanied by critical voices, Westermann recalls. But when the festival got bigger and more popular and still remained peaceful, with "nice, God-fearing, young Christians", as he says, the critical voices gradually became quieter and finally fell silent.

Loud music for Jesus

For the 40th anniversary of this festival, the CRN is promoting a total of 17 bands, two of them from Germany, nine from the USA, including veterans and headliners of the CRN such as the group "Wolves at the Gate".

A metal festival, 17 bands from seven countries, almost 1,000 visitors from ten countries - one thing is certain: it will be loud and it will be crowded. This is exactly what defines the festival. And Jesus: Everywhere you look you can see visitors with T-shirts with Bible verses printed on them, sweaters with the saving message of Jesus Christ.

In the midst of the loud metal music, people pray, small groups read the Bible together, musicians from the bands eat with their fans. Due to the limited space, people get closer and create a familiar environment, as they all have one thing in common: the love for metal and Jesus Christ.

Even on the two stages, the prayer doesn't stop: bands pray in front of the audience and spread the good news of faith in Jesus. Patrick Madsen, drummer of the American metal band "Random Hero" says that metal is very versatile and shows a lot of emotions. Through his music and his performances, he always gives glory to God.

Metal very emotional

During a loud and powerful performance by the band “Zahna” from Dallas, Texas, the front singer of the same name says a prayer to thank God for the festival. Then she gives the audience a testimony from her life.

It is dead quiet in the arena while Zahna emotionally reports on how she has lost everything in the past few years: first her job, then she became homeless, lost all her friends and finally her will to live when she was diagnosed with kidney failure.

In the midst of this hopeless message, the singer utters eight words that change the whole mood in the audience for the better and make the crowd applaud: "But the Lord had a plan for me." - But the Lord had a plan for me.

Hundreds of people clap, shout "Amen" and thank God, while Zahna says that she has found a new job and new friends, is now happily married and has had a successful kidney transplant.

These eight words have been slightly changed to become the unofficial motto of the CRN. According to Zahna's report, almost everyone said to another festival visitor this weekend: “The Lord has a plan for you!” - The Lord has a plan for you.

By: Jonah Trees