Last Wednesday, Evangelist Billy Graham died of natural causes at his home in Montreat, North Carolina. He was arguably the greatest religious figure of the twentieth century. In our world of scandals that seem to emerge everywhere about famous people, including religious leaders, Billy Graham was untainted. He and his three closest associates in ministry–Cliff Barrows, George Beverly Shea, and Grady Wilson–were a close-knit group that kept each other accountable and remained a team throughout Billy’s entire career. That, I think, was a testament to God in itself.
I have blogged about being one of the, no doubt, millions of friends Billy Graham had. He spoke to our PGA Tour Bible Study group four different times, and one time we had dinner Billy spoke at in Atlanta in which about half of the pros playing that tournament attended. All of this happened partly because Billy Graham had been a golfer all his life since his teens. But it was also because he sometimes participated in pro-amateur events conducted at PGA Tour tournaments on Wednesday, the day before the tournaments began. Billy did this various years in the PGA Tour tournaments at especially Atlanta and Charlotte. He was born and raised in Charlotte.
In my day, Billy Graham had a very odd style playing golf. He played golf cross-handed. The right way to play golf for right-handed players is to grip the club with your right hand below your left hand. Billy was right-handed, but he gripped the club with his left hand below his right hand. When golfers try to hit a full shot that way, they feel like they are going to break their wrists!
The following are some posts I’ve written here on this blog about Billy Graham: