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Rev. Billy Graham dies at 99

Rev. Billy Graham (1918-2018)
Photo credit:
Wikimedia Commons

Evangelist Billy Graham, deemed “America’s Pastor,” has died at the age of 99 reports the Associated Press.

The religious leader was born in Charlette North Carolina in 1918 and grew up on a dairy farm. He would begin his interest in Bible study at age 16 and later on become the most well-known arena evangelist in the world.

His giant Southern California tent revivals in 1949 would become widely recognized as the beginning of the modern Evangelical movement. 

Graham’s influence on world leaders included being an advisor to many American presidents as well as Queen Elizabeth II.

His interest in politics would get him into trouble in 2002 when the Nixon tapes, recorded in the 70s, were released. On them, he made anti-Semitic remarks, although he would later say they were taken out of context.

As far as his stance on homosexuality, he wasn’t as outspoken as some but still publically interpreted the Bible as being against it. 

His son, Franklin Graham, on the other hand, has been extremely verbal in his anti-LGBT sentiments. He took over as President and CEO of Billy Graham Evangelistic Association in the early part of the 21st century.

The younger Graham has said the LGBT movement is orchestrated by Satan, gay men and women are perverse pedophiles and that gay marriage is an attempt to “rearrange God’s order.”

His father was diagnosed with Parkinson's disease in his later years and suffered the loss of his beloved wife Ruth in 2007. 

Rev. Billy Graham is survived by their two sons Franklin and Nelson and three daughters Virginia, Anne and Ruth.