As the news broke this morning of the passing of Billy Graham, I couldn’t help but think about my favorite Billy Graham story: his role in Explo ’72, the Campus Crusade for Christ conference here in Dallas that came to be known as the “Christian Woodstock” and the pinnacle of the Jesus Movement. That event, in turn, helped push “Jesus Music” (later known as contemporary Christian music) forward among believers – obviously a watershed moment for any of us who have sung non-hymns with college students.
Below are a few interesting articles about Billy Graham’s connection to campus ministry… but of course hundreds or thousands of us have a more personal connection, too. In my case, the pastor of my church in college, Chris Osborne, had come to Christ after seeing Graham on TV, and I’m very thankful for the impact that pastor had on my life. Whether it’s a lineage of evangelism or impact, I wouldn’t be surprised if many of you can trace a little of the “Billy gene” in your spiritual DNA.
- Evangelicals on Campus: an interesting look from Patheos on Billy Graham’s presence on campuses (which wasn’t always welcome)
- A Look at Billy Graham’s Ministry in College: Where did Graham get his fire for evangelism? In college! (There’s even a poignant scene on the college golf course.) Not only does this highlight the “college ministry” role of Christian colleges, but it emphasizes just how world-changing ministry to collegians can be.
- A ‘Religious Woodstock’ Draws 75,000: the New York Times take on Explo ’72, written at the time
- What Really Happened at Explo ’72: a quick synopsis from Cru
- Tips for using Billy Graham’s “My Hope” film on college campuses