Will Graham returns to the Rock, bringing his inspirational message of hope and love and where to find both through his Celebration of Hope
The Avalon Celebration of Hope with Will Graham – grandson of famed evangelist Billy Graham – takes place at Mile One Centre on Nov. 2, 3 & 4.
The no-admission three-night event is presented by the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association and churches of the Avalon Peninsula and will include a message of hope from Graham himself.
The first night of the Celebration is family-focused with fun activities and entertainment for the children while music and testimonies from some of the most popular musicians in Christian music, including NL’s own George Canyon, make up the other nights.
The day Graham spoke with The Herald he was driving through the beautiful mountains of Colorado. While he was no doubt taking in stunning scenery, his mind easily wandered to past visits to this wonderful province of ours.
“The first time I was there was 2005, right before my son was born. I got some great memories there. It’s beautiful,” he begins.
When asked about the “no admission” to the Mile One event, Graham paused briefly.There’s no charge for those who want to come celebrate, but such an endeavour comes with a very real price tag.
“Christians all across Canada want to reach other Canadians and they want everyone to hear the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ, and they’ve been giving generously to make this happen,” Graham explained.
There’s a spiritual truth of sorts in this sort of giving and receiving.
“What we get from Christ is free. We get the forgiveness of sin which He gives to us freely if we ask for it, but it came at a heavy price; the death of His own Son. We’re following the model that’s laid out in the Bible for us.”
Graham, who is taking his Celebration throughout Canada, said he continually feels the love and is only too happy to return the same.
“I’m so grateful to Canadians for their generosity. They help us proclaim the good word of Christ.”
But why take the show on the road? With his ministry accessible to all via the Internet, and with his involvement in the touching, inspirational film Unbroken, and with his devotional book Redeemed, he has access to Christians everywhere. Graham took a moment to talk parables.
“Jesus said, you guys fish for a living, now I’m going to make you fishers of men. I like to fish. I’m a poor fisherman, but I sure do like it. My brother’s a lot better than me, but you have to go where the fish are. So we are going to the communities.”
Graham said there’s nothing better than getting out and meeting people where they live, and Canada is one of his special places. Canada always held a special place in the heart of his grandfather, and it does for him as well, he says. Newfoundland is high up there when it comes to places he can’t forget.
“The first time I was in St. John’s I was at Mile One, it was one of my first places to visit in Canada. I’ll never forget you guys had a team called the Fog Devils. I thought that was a great name,” he said with a laugh.
Graham reflected on how the world has changed, but shared that the more things change, the more they actually stay the same.
“The way we get information has changed. Technology is so great but it comes at a heavy price. But the world we live in, not much has changed. Politics has always been bad, we just hear more of it. There’s always been refugees, even in biblical times. Jesus was a refugee for a while; he had to go down to Egypt. But in the big scheme of things, society hasn’t changed that much, it just seems like things are ramped up with things that are happening.”
Looking for Acceptance
But Graham’s message hasn’t changed, that’s the good news, he said.
“People are still looking for hope, they are still looking for meaning, they are still looking for purpose in life. People are looking for love and acceptance. With sex, drinking, alcohol, drugs; people are trying to drown out the pain. But people are still looking for acceptance and love and fulfillment and they can’t find it.”
But that’s not to be found, he added. At least, not on Earth.
“It’s found in the work of the Lord Jesus Christ because he’s the one who made us … Jesus can change anybody, that’s what my granddaddy believed and that’s what I’ll be preaching about.”
For more info, visit mileonecentre.com or billygraham.org