Today, February 21, 2018, the world lost one of its most influential Evangelists–Reverend Billy Graham.
Being a student at the University of Northwestern — St. Paul on the day of Billy Graham’s passing was honoring. Graham left such a legacy for Northwestern and Northwestern’s Media Community. It was absolutely incredible to hear stories from students and faculty regarding ways the inspiring leader has impacted lives and the community.
While the world mourns, heaven celebrates.
Working with Northwestern’s campus broadcast news Eagle 7 I got to hear so many stories about how Billy Graham touched the lives of many. He was Northwestern’s second president and founder of KTIS, a media ministry of UNW. I heard a bit ago on the radio that when Graham was president, the media students longed for a radio station and he helped found that. As I pursue the world of media at UNW, hearing that gave me even a deeper respect and admiration for Graham. Not only did he lead so so many to Christ, but he helped establish paths at UNW so I could chase the one I’m on.
Graham is one of the reasons my family has a strong foundation built on faith. When my parents attended one of his crusades before we kids were born, my dad was saved that night. Without a doubt, that moment helped shape my family’s future and reliance on God. Reflecting on this today made me realize how grateful I am for someone I have never met. Billy Graham impacted countless lives, and I’m blessed to be able to see the outcome of that all around me at UNW and personally.
I can only imagine the way Billy Graham felt as he heard the words:
“‘Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness!'” Matthew 25:21.
At 29 years old, Graham became UNW’s second president. He served as president of Northwestern from 1948 to 1952, a period including the famous 1949 Los Angeles evangelistic crusade, which catapulted the young preacher and his growing family into the national spotlight. Our community at Northwestern continues to be blessed by his impact to this day.
Inspired by Graham’s ministry, Northwestern dedicated one of the buildings on campus to him in 2011. The Billy Graham Community Life Commons, or known to students as the “Billy,” is a place for people to connect and build relationships as the campus lives out its mission inspired by Graham–to provide Christ-centered higher education.
I’m in awe of how our campus news covered today’s breaking news. It was such a neat process to be a part of. I can’t wait to share Friday’s show that highlights and remembers Graham’s life.
During one my of interviews, one girl shared this quote:
“Someday you will read or hear that Billy Graham is dead. Don’t you believe a word of it. I shall be more alive than I am now. I will just have changed my address. I will have gone into the presence of God.”
A life lived well. Billy Graham will be missed, but what an incredible legacy he has left for Christians to walk in. He might be gone, but his mission lives on. I’m blessed to be a part of a community and college that embodies that.
Definitely tune into Eagle 7 News this Friday—we got some good stories. Also, if you’re in MN, turn on the news tonight. I’m sure you’ll see our campus and hear about the incredible life Graham lived.
UPDATED February 23, 2018:
A link to Friday’s Eagle 7 News: