One Last Crusade

Billy Graham's message, as described by those who've watched him over the years:

"Probably the thing that, personally, has meant the most to me about Billy Graham is just the simplicity of his message," said Pastor Tim Owens of First Baptist Church in Bryan.

"Very simple, very straight-forward," described Bill Wiman.

"I think the secret for him was that he kept his message focused and simple," said Reverend Matt Isom of First United Methodist Church in Bryan.

"I will preach as though I'm preaching my last sermon," Graham said in an interview with CBS News. "And that gives a new urgency to my message, I think."

Put simply, Billy Graham has reached millions. An estimated 210 million people have seen him in person, including 35 million living Americans, including Bill and Janis Wiman, who saw Graham in Dallas in the 70s.

"I think he holds a position of, perhaps, being like a spiritual leader to our country," Janis said.

"Will there be other spiritual leaders who will speak to our country," Bill pondered. "Yes, I think there will be. But there will never be another Billy Graham."

And countless more people, like Owens, have seen his TV endeavors.

"Though that medium of television and other means that that message has gotten out, through his life and through his message, I think it's had a profound impact on Christianity," he said.

Graham's message has crossed spiritual and ethnic boundaries, like in the early 50s in Mississippi, as a methodist reverend explained.

"He literally, himself, went out and pulled down the cords that separated the blacks from the whites in worship," Idom said. "And ushers were bumfuzzled and tried to put the cords back up separating them, and Billy Graham tore them down."

"Because of his popularity, he could have pursued politics or all kinds of things," Owens said, "but he consistently stayed true to, 'This is what God's called me to do.'"

"My number one prayer is 'Lord help me,'" Graham said. "In whatever I'm doing, whoever I'm talking to."

Billy Graham has done a lot, talked to many, touched millions, and one last time, takes to the pulpit.

His message: simple.


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