split image of Ugandan clappers

Phaneroo Ministries, a renowned Ugandan Christian organization led by Grace Lubega Matovu, recently marked their ninth anniversary by bringing together hundreds of members to break the longest applause world record.

926 people gathered at the UMA Multipurpose Hall in Uganda’s capital city, Kampala, to take part in this event, dubbed “Clap for Jesus”.

Phaneroo are known for their lively, high-spirited assemblies, and this record attempt was no different.

@guinnessworldrecords Longest applause 👏⏱️ 3 hr 16 min 1 sec by Grace Lubega Matovu and Clap For Jesus Team 🇺🇬 The record attempt was organised "to send a message to the world that regardless of the struggles and difficulties, we must have room for gratitude and thanksgiving." #clapping#applause#uganda#teamwork#guinnessworldrecords♬ original sound - Guinness World Records

The congregation clapped for a total of 3 hours 16 minutes, maintaining an average sound level of 88.5 dB. For the attempt to be valid, they had to remain above 80 dB for the entire duration.

The previous record of 2 hours 5 minutes was set in 2019 by Clark Stevens and The Festival of Awesomeness (UK).

Group shot of clappers

Every participant was required to clap continuously throughout – if someone stopped, they were removed from the group by a steward.

Bathroom breaks were not permitted, however, if a participant became thirsty, a steward would assist them by holding a bottle of water to their mouth, which they could sip while continuing to clap.

The record attempt was live streamed and viewed by many people across Uganda, who clapped along to show support.

old woman clapping

“In a time where many are struggling as a result of various life events, I wanted to bring people to a place of thanksgiving and celebration,” Grace Lubega said.

“We sought to send a message to the world that regardless of the struggles and difficulties, we must have room for gratitude and thanksgiving.

“Our primary gratitude is to our Lord and Saviour Jesus in whom we believe.”

three people clapping

The record for the longest applause was originally set on 30 July 1991, when Spanish opera singer Plácido Domingo was applauded for 1 hour 20 minutes – through 101 curtain calls – after a performance of Otello at the Vienna Staatsoper.

In 2002, the record was broken when German band Grabowsky were applauded for 1 hour 30 minutes after their performance. The band returned to play an encore of two songs after the applause finished.

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