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Billy Graham, Radio Ministry Celebrate Birthdays

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By Felicia Howard, Christian Post Correspondent
November 7, 2010|8:23 am

World renowned Christian evangelist Billy Graham celebrates his 92nd birthday Sunday. Though well advanced in years, the beloved leader said he’s still looking for ways to serve the Lord.

“I am amazed every time I think of how many years the Lord has given me on this earth,” Graham said in a statement. “I am grateful for His blessing on our ministry for more than six decades, but wonder if there is something more He has for me to accomplish.”

Over the last few years, Graham has been working on a book project on the aging process from his home in western North Carolina. He continues to attend Billy Graham Evangelistic Association board meetings when he is able and celebrates reports from ministry events such as evangelistic festivals led by his son, Franklin, and grandson, Will.

“Under Franklin’s leadership, the ministry has reached new audiences in new ways I would never have dreamed, incorporating many modern technologies and creative strategies to share the same message of God’s love around the world,” he noted.

In the last year, he has also been visited by Christian and political leaders, including evangelist Greg Laurie from Southern California, President Barack Obama and former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin.

His recent prayer topics have included renewal in the church in America and international revival.

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Graham is believed to have spoken face-to-face with more people in more places than anyone in history. He has preached to over 210 million people in over 185 countries. And his ministry continues to reach millions.

His radio show, “The Hour of Decision,” turned 60 on Friday.

“The Hour of Decision,” the weekly radio ministry of the BGEA, airs on 581 radio stations in the U.S. and hundreds of radio outlets internationally. The program can be heard in five different languages, including English, Spanish, French, Mandarin and Farsi.

The show is one of the world’s longest running radio programs. Its first broadcast was live from the Billy Graham Crusade in Atlanta, Ga., on Nov. 5, 1950. Jim Kirkland, director of radio at the BGEA, says the purpose of the show is and always has been to “to make Jesus Christ known.”

He told The Christian Post, “We want to introduce Jesus Christ to those who are not walking with him, and build the walk with those who are. We want to make sure the Gospel of Jesus Christ is proclaimed.”

Cliff Barrows, a member of the National Religious Broadcasters Hall of Fame has held his hat as the host since 1950.

In his interview with the Christian Telegraph, Barrows highlighted, “The messages Billy preached 60 years ago and over the years are as relevant today as when he delivered them. God continues to use Billy’s faithfulness to reach a hurting world with the Good News of Jesus Christ. We thank God for the faithful prayer support of so many who have been our partners in ministry all these years.”

A special tribute to Graham will be held on Sunday during “The Hour of Decision.”

On the Web: http://www.billygraham.org/radio-hour-of-decision.asp

 

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