Billy Graham switches churches
Famed U.S. evangelist preacher Billy Graham is switching churches after belonging to the same one for more than five decades, according to today’s Dallas Morning News.
The ailing 90-year-old minister has decided to leave the First Baptist Church of Dallas and join the First Baptist Church of Spartanburg, South Carolina. A link to the Dallas Morning News story, by its veteran religion writer Sam Hodges, can be found here.
The newspaper says Graham, who is mostly homebound in Montreat, North Carolina, these days, essentially made the decision based on geography. While he joined the Dallas church in 1953 during one of his evangelistic crusades, he has never lived in the city.
As a correspondent who has been based in Dallas for more two years and who covers religious issues, I found it interesting that someone of Graham’s stature belonged to a local church. In some circles he could probably, at least at one time, have claimed the title of “America’s preacher” if not the “world’s preacher.”
Many people probably don’t think of him as a member of a specific church, but even a mega-preacher needs his own pastors it seems.