Today, we see more and more that the church is being marginalized and our religious liberties restricted. We have seen this even more so in the United Kingdom and other countries where the teaching of Biblical truth can be portrayed as hate speech. Combined with the effects of a global pandemic, many Christian leaders feel discouraged, isolated, and depleted.
But in this time of spiritual decline, there is still a passion for evangelism in the U.K. We recently hosted 1,200 pastors and church leaders in Glasgow, Scotland; Liverpool, England; Cardiff, Wales; and London, England for the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association’s (BGEA) Evangelism Summit.
Our vision for the Summit was to help Christians refocus on the task Jesus Christ Himself gave us. Our orders have never been revoked or changed: “Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation” (Mark 16:15, ESV). These one-day events included speakers from around the world who shared from God’s Word and challenged attendees to not grow weary of standing firm in their faith and to continue to trust the Lord, while looking for creative ways to share the Gospel in a post-Christian culture.
These pastors and church leaders said how refreshing it was to gather and focus on our urgent mission of sharing the hope of Jesus Christ with a hurting world. One pastor said the event came at the right time and that hearing the messages from the speakers helped him feel even more equipped to share Christ with others. “As churches, we are always trying to develop and change, but this reminded us to refocus and simplify our message—which is always about the cross,” he said.
“In this time of spiritual decline, there is still a passion for evangelism.”
During the final Summit event on Nov. 15 in London, we announced the dates for a four-city God Loves You Tour scheduled for next year and these leaders were excited and encouraged by this nationwide outreach. I will be sharing the Good News that “God so loved the world, that He gave His only Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life” (John 3:16, ESV). Will you pray with us for God to do a mighty work for His Name’s sake? I thank God for the opportunity to preach His Word.
Truth Came to Us at Christmas
We live in a world desperately in need of truth. Deception, false teaching, and misguided philosophies lead many people astray. Thankfully, we know that truth came to us at Christmas. His name is Jesus. He is the living Word of God, the Bread of Life, the Living Water, the Alpha and Omega. He personifies truth, and He said, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me” (John 14:6, ESV).
Jesus Christ was born into a world much like ours. It was divided by politics, class and race struggles, injustice, and people needed hope—the hope of a Savior. The Apostle John, when he described the Messiah’s first coming, explained this wonderful promise to those who welcome Christ as the true Savior: “To all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God” (John 1:12–13, ESV).
The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association exists for this single purpose: to share the truth, hope, and love of God. Through your prayers and gifts, you touch lives all across the globe every day, offering them an opportunity to believe in His Name, receive Him into their lives, and become children of God.
As we celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ, we are excited to welcome tens of thousands to Christmas at the Library in Charlotte, North Carolina, to enjoy the live nativity, festive lights, carolers, and holiday treats. Please pray for God to touch many lives as they visit.
My son Will is hosting a Christmas streaming event on Monday, Dec. 20, from the Billy Graham Library. You can watch it at WillGrahamLive.com starting at 8 p.m. Eastern Time, as he opens God’s Word and focuses on the Savior Jesus Christ. Please pray for the Lord to touch many lives that night.
Thank you for your partnership in this Gospel ministry. Your prayerful support takes “good tidings of great joy” (Luke 2:10, NKJV) to people across the globe, and you are making an eternal difference.
May this Christmas be a time of peace and hope in your home and in your hearts, as you celebrate the “Savior, who is Christ the Lord” (Luke 2:11, NKJV).
Have a wonderful Christmas,
Taking the Narrow Road
LIVES CHANGED AS SUDBURY, LONDON RESIDENTS RESPOND TO GOSPEL AT CELEBRATIONS
Kim’s* family was struggling with relationships. A breakdown in communication had caused bad feelings and isolation, and Kim was hurting because she wasn’t sure how to fix it. Then she learned about the Greater Sudbury Celebration with Will Graham, one of two Ontario Celebrations in October. That’s when things started to change.
Kim, a Christ-follower for more than 20 years, brought her stepson Matt* and his cousin Miley* to the Greater Sudbury Community Arena, praying that God would use Will Graham’s message to restore her family.
God did even better. Matt, who has obsessive-compulsive disorder, responded to the Gospel and rededicated his life to Christ. “We live in a world that says there are multiple ways to find happiness,” Will told the audience. “But Jesus says the way [to eternal life in Heaven] is narrow, and very few are on it.” With a smiling Kim sitting beside him, Matt said, “God’s been speaking to me, and a lot of what Will said resonated with me.”
“I was praying Matt would go forward,” Kim said joyously. “He’d gone to church with us in the past, but then he rebelled. So when he went forward at Will’s invitation, I just thought, ‘Thank You, Lord.’”
“I could tell something was happening …”
Miley, 13, could see Matt’s features change as the Holy Spirit used Will’s words to touch his heart. “I could tell something was happening,” said Miley, who hadn’t spoken to Matt for several years before the Celebration. “I hope this will start reconnecting us.”
We thank God that more than 1,500 people attended the Celebration outreach weekends in Sudbury and London. Another 5,800 watched online in Canada and around the world. They heard the Good News from Will, supported by music and testimonies from Christian artists Brooke Nicholls, The Afters, The Color, and George Canyon.
Almost 350 people, in-person and online, responded to Will’s invitation to accept and believe God’s offer of salvation through Christ—the “founder and perfecter of our faith” (Hebrews 12:2, ESV).
London Celebration Chairman Garry Fess prayed for more than 20 years that the Celebration venue in his city—Budweiser Gardens—would host an evangelistic outreach. So he was overjoyed at what God did, even though the pandemic had an effect on attendance.
“We faced a lot of obstacles along the way to the outreach weekend,” he acknowledged. “But the people that came were very enthusiastic, especially on the final night when there was a real sense of God’s presence drawing people to Christ. You could feel it.
“Some people were almost running [to the stage to respond to Will Graham’s Gospel invitation] and that really touched my heart,” Garry continued.
“It made the whole two-year journey worth it. It reminded me the Gospel is powerful and, if it’s shared, it will do its work with the anointing of the Holy Spirit.”
Please visit BillyGraham.ca/Stories for more reports and photos of all that God accomplished at the London and Sudbury Celebrations. And please pray that new believers in those cities get connected to local churches, where they can be discipled in their new faith.
* Names changed for privacy
Give To Where Most Needed
Help us fulfill our mission of proclaiming the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ to all we can by every effective means available to us and by equipping others to do the same.