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The last time Billy Graham held a major crusade in Louisville, Ky., he was a 37-year-old evangelist with a simple messageラ"Jesus saves."

Nearly four decades later, the message of salvation through Christ hasn't changed, but the messenger delivering the good news will be 82 years old.

Graham has accepted an invitation to hold a crusade in Louisville June 21 to 24, 2001, in Papa John's Cardinal Stadiumラ45 years after he last held a major crusade in the city. Graham's last full-scale crusade in Louisville, held in 1956, lasted four weeks. He also had a one-day crusade in 1964.

The Louisville crusade will be Graham's second speaking engagement since he was hospitalized last June for several surgical procedures to treat hydrocephalus, a condition in which too much fluid builds up in the brain.

Graham participated in a Jacksonville, Florida crusade in November after he was released from months of rehabilitation and monitoring of his Parkinson's condition at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota.

Graham's hospitalization kept him from the Amsterdam 2000 Evangelism Conference, and during the course of his recovery he was not well enough even to deliver an opening address by satellite as was previously anticipated.

After being released from the hospital Graham also declared that he would have to "drastically reduce" his schedule.

A formal announcement of the Louisville crusade will take place Jan. 16, when area pastors will come together to begin planning for the four-day crusade. The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association will announce in the ensuring weeks and months the speakers and recording artists who will participate in the crusade.

R. Albert Mohler Jr., president of Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, will serve as chairman of ...

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