Billy Graham Celebration of Life

Billy Graham Celebration of Life – This is a celebration of life for Reverend Billy Graham. This shares some about his life and the ministry he did.

Billy Graham Celebration of Life

Billy’s real name is …

William Franklin “Billy” Graham Jr.


November 7, 1918
Charlotte, North Carolina


February 21, 2018
Montreat, N.C.

Billy Graham died, 99


William Franklin Graham Sr. (died 1962) and Morrow Coffey Graham (died 1981)


Ruth McCue Bell in 1943 (died June 14, 2007, age 87)



1943 B.A., Wheaton College—Wheaton, Illinois
1940 Graduated, Florida Bible Institute (now Trinity College of Florida)


While attending college at Florida Bible Institute (now Trinity College of Florida) in the late 1930s, Billy Graham preaches at local churches. #BillyGraham
While attending college at Florida Bible Institute (now Trinity College of Florida) in the late 1930s, Billy Graham preaches at local churches.


1950 Founder and chairman, Billy Graham Evangelistic Association
Began Hour of Decision weekly radio program, broadcast around the world for more than 60 years.
1947 – 1952 President, Northwestern Schools in Minneapolis
1945 – 1950 Charter Vice President, Youth for Christ International, Chicago
1943 – 1945 Pastor, The Village Church of Western Springs (now Western Springs Baptist Church), Western Springs, Illinois
1941-1943 Pastor, United Gospel Tabernacle, Wheaton, Illinois
1939 Ordained at Peniel Baptist Church, Palatka, Florida


  • Preaching—Billy Graham preached the Gospel of Jesus Christ to some 215 million people who attended one of his more than 400 Crusades, simulcasts and evangelistic rallies in more than 185 countries and territories. A 2005 Gallup poll revealed that 35 million people in America—one in six U.S. adults—had heard Billy Graham preach in person.
  • Television Ministry—Regular prime-time broadcasts, which began in 1957, have reached millions of households in the U.S. and around the world. In 2013, Graham delivered his final message—the culmination of his My Hope America project—via more than 480 stations.
  • Presidential—Billy Graham provided spiritual counsel to 12 sitting U.S. presidents—from Harry S. Truman to Barack Obama. Graham participated in events surrounding nine presidential inaugurations—participating in four swearing-in ceremonies.

My Hope America Videos

  1. Decisions (2016)
  2. Value of a Soul (2015)
  3. Heaven (2014)
  4. The Cross (2013)
  5. Defining Moments (2013)
  6. Lose to Gain (2013)

Yes 2013 had trhee My Hope America Videos.


  • 34 books (1947-2018)—See list below
  • “My Answer” (since 1952)—syndicated column carried by newspapers throughout the U.S. with a combined circulation of some 5 million.

Select Awards and Honors:

The following is a partial list of the numerous awards and honors received by Graham:

  • Gallup’s “Ten Most Admired Men in the World”—selected 61 times since 1955 (55 consecutive years, except when the question was not asked in 1976), more than any other individual in the world
  • Good Housekeeping Most Admired Men Poll, appeared in the top ten 16 times, as No. 1 five years in a row
  • Honorary Knight Commander of the Order of the British Empire (KBE), 2001, for his international contribution to civic and religious life for more than 60 years
  • Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation Freedom Award, 2000, for monumental contributions to the cause of freedom
  • Inducted into the Gospel Music Hall of Fame by the Gospel Music Association, 1999, the first non-musician to be inducted
  • Congressional Gold Medal, 1996, the highest honor Congress can bestow on a private citizen
  • The 1,900th star on Hollywood’s Walk of Fame, 1989, the first clergyman to be honored on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for radio, television and preaching ministry
  • Presidential Medal of Freedom, 1983, the highest honor the president can bestow on a private citizen
  • George Washington Medal Award for Patriotism, 1974, from Freedoms Foundation of Valley Forge
  • Sylvanus Thayer Award from the U.S. Military Academy Association of Graduates at West Point, 1972, the most prestigious award the U.S. Military Academy gives to a U.S. citizen who exemplifies the ideals expressed in the West Point motto, “Duty, Honor, Country”
  • International Brotherhood Award, 1971, from the National Conference of Christians and Jews
  • The Torch of Liberty Plaque by the Anti-Defamation League of B’nai B’rith, 1969
  • Horatio Alger Award, 1965, for the accomplishments of individuals who have succeeded in the face of adversity


Virginia “Gigi” Graham, 1945
Anne Graham Lotz, 1948
Ruth Graham, 1950
William “Franklin” Graham III, 1952
Nelson Edman “Ned” Graham, 1958
19 grandchildren, numerous great-grandchildren

Billy Graham’s Crusades

  • Gallup Poll (June 2005): 35 million Americans—one in six adults—had heard Billy Graham preach in person.
  • First Crusade: The first Billy Graham Crusade, held Sept. 13 – 21, 1947, in the Civic Auditorium in Grand Rapids, Mich., was attended by 6,000 people. Graham was 29 years old.
  • Last Crusade: At 86 years old, Billy Graham conducted his final Crusade in New York’s Flushing Meadows Corona Park, June 24 – 26, 2005. More than 230,000 people attended during the three days.
  • 400+ Crusades: Since his Crusade ministry began in 1947, Billy Graham conducted more than 400 Crusades on six continents.
  • 185 Countries/Territories: Billy Graham preached in 53 countries, taking the Gospel to live audiences in more than 185 countries and territories via Mission World and Global Mission (satellite-location meetings).
  • 215 Million People Reached: Billy Graham preached the Gospel of Jesus Christ to some 215 million people in live audiences (Crusades, simulcasts and evangelistic rallies). Hundreds of millions more have been reached through television, video, film and webcasts.
  • Largest Crusades: Twice Billy Graham preached to a Crusade crowd of more than one million people—both times during Crusades in Seoul, South Korea (1973, 1984). The largest single-day audience was 1.1 million people on June 3, 1973.
  • Longest Crusade: The longest Billy Graham Crusade ran 16 weeks in New York City in 1957. Approximately 2,397,400 heard him in person at Madison Square Garden (May 15 – Aug. 31), Yankee Stadium (July 20) and in Times Square (Sept. 1). Originally expected to run for six weeks, the Crusade was extended due to demand.
  • Largest One-Day U.S. Audience: The largest one-day audience at a U.S. Crusade was 250,000 people in New York’s Central Park in 1991.
  • Number of U.S. States/Cities: Billy Graham preached in 45 states (plus Washington, D.C.) and more than 125 U.S. cities.
  • Invitation Response: More than 3.2 million people have responded to the invitation at Billy Graham Crusades. Millions more have done so as a result of broadcast outreaches.
  • Crusade Television Broadcasts: Regular prime-time broadcasts of Billy Graham Crusades began in 1957. Billy Graham Evangelistic Association Crusades are still airing today (some feature his son Franklin Graham), reaching millions in the U.S. and around the world.
  • Global Mission: Held in 1995 in San Juan, Puerto Rico, and simulcast to live audiences at 3,000 mission locations in 185 countries, Global Mission was attended each night by more than 10 million people.
  • Mission World: In total, four Mission World satellite events reached more than 60 million people in live audiences in 139 countries.
    • Mission ’89 (Mission World Africa) was held in 1989 in London, with three meetings carried on television to 30 countries in Africa. The TV audience for each program (broadcast in nine languages) was between 22 and 30 million people, including those who attended one of the 16,000 separate Crusades organized in and by African churches.
    • Mission World Asia was held in 1990 in Hong Kong and extended by satellite and video to more than 30 countries throughout Asia and the Pacific region in 48 languages. Of the 100 million people who viewed the broadcast, more than 25 million attended one of the 70,000 satellite and video Crusades organized by more than 125,000 local churches.
    • Mission World Latin America was held in 1991 in Buenos Aires, Argentina, and extended by satellite, television and video to 20 countries across six time zones. More than 5 million people attended each of four broadcasts at the 850 satellite locations.
    • ProChrist ’93 (Mission World Europe), held in 1993 in Essen, Germany, was extended by satellite to more than 1,400 locations in 59 countries and territories in 44 languages, and attended by 7.2 million people.
  • Final Message: During the week of his 95th birthday, Nov. 7, 2013, Graham delivered his final message via more than 480 television stations. The video was the culmination of the My Hope America project, the largest outreach conducted in North America by the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association. More than 26,000 churches participated in the project, which resulted in thousands of individuals opening their homes to watch the program.

Books by Rev. Billy Graham:

2017 Hope for Each Day: 365 Devotions for Kids (Tommy Nelson)
2015 God’s Good News Bible Storybook (Tommy Nelson)
2015 Where I Am: Heaven, Eternity and Our Life Beyond (Thomas Nelson)
2013 The Reason for My Hope: Salvation (Thomas Nelson)
2012 The Heaven Answer Book (Thomas Nelson)
2011 Nearing Home: Life, Faith and Finishing Well (Thomas Nelson)
2010 Storm Warning (Thomas Nelson, reprint edition)
2008 Wisdom for Each Day (Thomas Nelson)
2007 Just As I Am (Harper Collins, reprint edition)
2006 The Journey: How to Live by Faith in an Uncertain World (W Publishing Group)
2005 Living in God’s Love: The New York Crusade (Putnam Publishing)—Reprinted as paperback in 2006 under the title, The Last Crusade (Berkley Trade)
2003 The Key to Personal Peace (Thomas Nelson)
2002 Hope for Each Day (J. Countryman)
1997 Just As I Am (Harper Collins)—Updated and expanded in 2007, Harper Collins
1992 Storm Warning (W Publishing)—Revised and expanded in 2010, Thomas Nelson
1991 Hope for the Troubled Heart (Word Publishing)
1988 Answers to Life’s Problems (Word Publishing)
1987 Facing Death and the Life After (Word Publishing)—Christian Booksellers Association best-seller list
1986 Unto the Hills (Word Publishing)
1984 Peace with God (Word Publshing, reprint edition)
1984 A Biblical Standard for Evangelists (World Wide Publications)
1983 Approaching Hoofbeats: The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse (Word Publishing)—The New York Times best-seller list; Evangelical Christian Publishers Association (ECPA) Gold Book Award
1981 Till Armageddon (Word Publishing)–ECPA Platinum Book Award
1978 The Holy Spirit (Word Publishing)—ECPA Gold Book Award
1977 How to Be Born Again (W Publishing Group)
1975 Angels: God’s Secret Agents (Guideposts Associates)—Publishers Weekly and The New York Times best-seller lists; ECPA Platinum Book Award
1971 The Jesus Generation (World Wide Publications)
1969 The Challenge (Doubleday & Co.)
1965 World Aflame (Doubleday & Co.)—The New York Times and Time magazine best-seller lists
1960 Billy Graham Answers Your Questions (World Wide Publications)
1960 My Answer (Doubleday & Co.)
1958 Billy Graham Talks to Teenagers (Zondervan)
1955 The Secret of Happiness (Doubleday & Co.)
1955 Freedom from the Seven Deadly Sins (Zondervan)
1953 Peace with God (Doubleday & Co.)—More than 2 million copies sold in 38 languages; revised and expanded in 1984, Word Publishing
1953 I Saw Your Sons at War (Billy Graham Evangelistic Association)
1947 Calling Youth to Christ (Zondervan)

Social Activities of Billy Graham

  • Medal of Freedom: In 1983, Billy Graham received the Presidential Medal of Freedom from President Reagan—the highest honor the president can bestow on a private citizen.
  • Congressional Gold Medal: In 1996, U.S. lawmakers awarded Graham and his wife, Ruth, the Congressional Gold Medal—the highest honor Congress can bestow on a private citizen.
  • U.S. Presidents: Graham provided counsel to 12 sitting U.S. presidents—from Harry S. Truman to Barack Obama. Graham participated in eight presidential inaugurations. Only a Supreme Court Justice from the 1800s has participated in more.
  • Civil Rights: Through the 1950s, 1960s and early 1970s, Billy Graham declined invitations to speak in South Africa—refusing to go until the meetings could be integrated. Integration occurred in 1973, and only then did Graham make the trip to South Africa.
  • Gallup Poll: Billy Graham was regularly listed by the Gallup organization as one of the “Ten Most Admired Men in the World.” Since 1955, Graham was chosen a record 61 times (55 consecutive years, except when the question was not asked in 1976)—more than any other individual in history.
  • Author: Billy Graham authored 34 books, including his memoir, Just As I Am (Harper Collins, 1997), which hit three best-seller lists in the same week and remained on The New York Times best-seller list for 18 weeks.
  • TranslationsGraham’s best-selling book, Peace with God (Doubleday & Co., 1953), has sold more than 5 million copies and been translated into 38 languages.

The Billy Graham Evangelist Association

  • Founded: In 1950, Billy Graham founded the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, now headquartered in Charlotte, N.C.
  • Employees: The ministry currently employs some 500 people worldwide.
  • Response: More than 22 million people have made a commitment to Jesus Christ through a Billy Graham or Billy Graham Evangelistic Association outreach effort.
  • Franklin Graham Festivals: Franklin Graham, president and CEO of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, has preached more than 190 evangelistic events in 38 states and U.S. territories, and 49 countries since 1989.
  • Will Graham Celebrations: The third generation of Grahams to proclaim God’s love under the banner of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, Will Graham has spoken to audiences across six continents since beginning his evangelistic ministry in 2006.
  • Rapid Response Team: Formed in 2001 after the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, the Billy Graham Rapid Response Team of crisis-trained chaplains has been deployed to more than 250 disaster zones, including hurricanes, tornadoes, floods, fires, shootings and areas of civil unrest.
  • Billy Graham Library: Since it opened in 2007, more than 1.1 million people have toured the Billy Graham Library in Charlotte, North Carolina.
  • Billy Graham Training Center at The Cove: Founded by Billy and Ruth Graham, The Cove is a 1,200-acre getaway in Asheville, North Carolina, where Christian leaders, teachers and speakers guide people in studying God’s Word.
  • Radio: Since 1950, a new edition of the Hour of Decision radio program has aired across the country each week and is now exclusively available online at
  • Print: Decision magazine, the official publication of the ministry, has a circulation of more than 425,000, making it one of the most widely circulated religious periodicals in the world.
  • Syndication: The “My Answer” syndicated newspaper column has run across the country—and across the world—since 1952.
  • Online: Through the organization’s Internet Evangelism ministry, more than 11.3 million people have made a commitment to Jesus Christ. There are also some 8 million people connected to the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association and its ministries through social media.

Compliments of DeMoss

About the Author

Author: Steve Patterson

A Christian Blogger that enjoys blogging about the Bible, Theology, God, Jesus Christ, Christian Music, Family, Cats, Odd Holidays, sewing and much more. I have been blogging since 2004, however, I have been blogging on Courageous Christian Father since 2012. I enjoy listening to Christian Music. I am married with 1 daughter, 2 step-sons and a step daughter.

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