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New Archive Dedicated To Billy Graham

by | Sat, Nov 12 2022

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A new Archive and Research Center dedicated to evangelist Billy Graham has opened in his birthplace of Charlotte, North Carolina.

The archive has been relocated from Reverend Graham’s alma mater Wheaton College in Illinois.

The 2,800 square metre state of the art complex is opposite the Billy Graham Library.

The A$20 million archive includes videos, cassette tapes, films, newspaper clippings, correspondences, sermon notes and memorabilia from the evangelist’s life.

It unites all of Billy Graham’s records — not only from the Wheaton archive, but from Minneapolis where he started his formal ministry and from Montreat, North Carolina where Graham and his wife lived for decades in a log-cabin-like home.

The archive will chronicle his lifetime of ministry which began with a sermon at a Florida Baptist church in 1937.

Executive Director David Bruce says Billy’s son Franklin committed resources to ensure it’s a robust, well-organised and authentic archive.

He denied Franklin Graham was trying to control his father’s legacy and possibly refuse access to archival materials to scholars and others who don’t share his views on conservative political and theological agendas.

Christian Headlines reports the archive will have 13 staff, but unlike the library, it won’t be open to the public.

Only theologians, academics and researchers will be granted entry by appointment.

Mr. Bruce explained: “Our key market is people wanting to learn what God has done and can do in the future that might encourage a young man or woman to take up the same task: a proclamation of evangelism.”

According to professor of American Christianity at Princeton Theological Seminary Heath Carter, Billy Graham’s influence was far-reaching.

“There’s been a lot more attention to critical engagement with him as a key figure in a movement that would become a strong base of support for the likes of Donald Trump,” he explained.

“There’s wider interest in evangelicalism and an acknowledgment that the trajectory of white evangelicalism in the mid-to-late-20th century had really significant implications for American politics.”