Franklin Graham to tour Australia
Franklin Graham, son of legendary American evangelist Billy Graham is set to follow in his father’s footsteps on an Australian tour. Not everyone is happy with this news, however.
Set to take place in February 2019, Rev. Graham’s tour will take in many of the same locations where his late father’s legendary crusades rallies took place, including Perth, Darwin, Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide, and Sydney.
The tour marks the 60th anniversary of Billy Graham’s 1959 tour.
“I first went to Australia in 1975 with my good friend Bob Pierce, who founded Samaritan’s Purse,” Graham said in a statement on his website.
“Since then I’ve had the opportunity to preach in many locations across this incredibly beautiful nation. I’m looking forward to returning next year to share with the people of Australia that God loves them.”
Ridley College’s Dr Mike Bird is one prominent conservative evangelical scholar who says he will not attend Graham’s tour. Writing for the ABC’s Religion and Ethics blog, Dr Bird criticised Franklin Graham for his close relationship with US President Donald Trump.
Rev. Graham, Dr Bird argues, has “messianised” Trump and has been “idolatrous” in his devotion to the President:
Franklin Graham’s Christianity is thoroughly implicated in a particular political vision, a peculiar agglomeration of policies about America’s place in the world; it is tied to troubling form of pugnacious nationalism, centred on the anxieties of the white middle class, and seeks political influence at the expense of faithfulness to the gospel. Graham’s god looks like an apotheosized version of Ronald Reagan; his Jesus comes with an endorsement from the NRA; and his Holy Spirit is the presence of American military power in the world.
While Graham has been broadly supportive of Trump, he has criticised the President’s prior policy of separating children from their parents at the US border.
Billy Graham passed away earlier this year at the age of 99. He refused to endorse or support political candidates. This policy came about after he endorsed Richard Nixon as president: a decision the evangelist would go on to regret.
For more information about the 2019 Graham Tour of Australia, visit GrahamTour.com.au.
Image by Matt Johnson
Jonathan Foye is Insights’ Editor
Regional Partnership Information ExpoTue, 6th Jun 2023 - Thu, 8th Jun 2023
Propel FOCUS | SydneyFri, 9th Jun 2023
Spiritual Care Australia Conference - Trajectories of HopeMon, 19th Jun 2023 - Wed, 21st Jun 2023
National Conference of Lay Preachers 2023Fri, 4th Aug 2023 - Mon, 7th Aug 2023
Preachfest 2023Wed, 1st Nov 2023 - Fri, 3rd Nov 2023
- See more events
ADD AN EVENT
Are you hosting an event in the Synod that will be of interest to Insights’ readers?
To add an event listing email us your event details. A full list of events can be found on our Events page.