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HEROES DIARY: BILLY GRAHAM

HEROES DIARY
Name: BILLY GRAHAM
Date of Birth: November 7, 1918
Date of Death: February 21, 2018
Years spent: 99 years, 106 days
Country: US

Billy Graham, the American Christian evangelist, is best known for his worldwide evangelistic crusades preaching the message of Christianity to more people than anyone in history. The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association (BGEA) reports, "nearly 215 million people in more than 185 countries" have been reached through his ministry. In his lifetime, he has led many thousands to make a decision to receive Jesus as personal Savior and to live for Christ. Graham has been an adviser and confidant to eleven US presidents and according to Gallup Polls is regularly listed as one of the "Ten Most Admired Men in the World."
Early Life
Born to William Franklin Graham Jr. on November 7, 1918 in Charlotte, North Carolina, to parents William and Morrow Graham. Billy Graham was the first of four children raised on the family's dairy farm in Charlotte, North Carolina. In hindsight there was little indication that Graham would one day preach the Christian gospel to as many as 215 million people in live audiences over 185 countries. Graham has been credited with preaching to more individuals than anyone else in history, not counting the additional millions he has addressed through radio, television, and the written word.
Education & Ministry:
While Graham's parents were strict Calvinists, it would be an unfamiliar traveling evangelist who would set Graham on a profound spiritual path. At the age of 16, Graham attended a series of revival meetings run by evangelist Mordecai Ham. Despite the fact that Graham was a well-behaved adolescent, Ham's sermons on sin spoke to young Graham. After high school Graham moved to Tennessee to enroll in the conservative Christian school, Bob Jones College. However, he felt disconnected from the school's rigid doctrine and soon transferred to the Florida Bible Institute. While in Florida, Graham joined a Southern Baptist Convention church, where he was ordained in 1939.
After graduating from the Florida Bible Institute with a bachelor's in theology, Graham moved to Illinois and enrolled at Wheaton College for further spiritual training. Here he would meet his future wife, Ruth McCue Bell. Ruth was the daughter of a missionary, and lived with her family in China until she turned 17. After graduating with a bachelor's in anthropology, Graham and Bell were married on August 13, 1943. They would eventually raise five children together.
In this post-war era, as he preached in the United States and Europe, Graham was soon acknowledged as a rising young evangelist. In 1949, an extended 8-week crusade in Los Angeles gained international recognition for Graham.

In 1950 Graham founded the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association (BGEA) in Minneapolis, Minnesota, which later relocated in 2003 to Charlotte, North Carolina.
Graham made evangelism enticing, non-threatening, even easy—and the media made his messages accessible to the masses.

 

More Accomplishments:
• On September 14, 2001 he led a national prayer service for the 9/11 attacks at Washington National Cathedral.
• He was presented with honorary knighthood (KBE) in December 2001.
• He presided over the graveside services for president Lyndon Johnson in 1973.
• He spoke at the funeral of president Richard Nixon in 1994.
• Graham was unable to officiate the funeral of Ronald Reagan on June 11, 2004 after hip replacement surgery.
• Billy Graham went to be with the Lord on the 21st of February, 2018.

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