Candid views from the popular evangelist who is at home in Latin America, Europe, and the U.S.

Luis Palau brings a Latin gusto to mass evangelism that captivates crowds around the world. The 48-year-old, Argentinian-born evangelist has been preaching crusades in Spanish for nearly 20 years, and in English for nearly 10. He has been invited to lead a “Mission to London” beginning in October and extending to the summer of 1984. Palau was recently interviewed by CHRISTIANITY TODAY staff.

What kind of support from national leaders have you received in your crusades?

In Guatemala, we had no say [about presidential participation]. It happens that it was okay. The president was deliberately not listed on the program, though the organizers had a strong suspicion he’d be coming. He showed up in a car caravan; they all expected a helicopter.

In some situations, we could have had a president on the platform, but didn’t think it wise for the body of Christ in that country. Some presidents were eager to be on the platform and we had to pointedly not invite them.

The president of Paraguay couldn’t have given more help, more freedom, than in the two visits we’ve made. In fact, his wife and some of his children came to the meetings. It was a great time for the gospel in Paraguay.

In Uruguay, the president sent his top secret-security person to the meetings because they were suspicious of us. They had recently expelled many Protestants from the country, who, according to them, were hiding weapons in churches. But at the airport as I left, the second in security told me, “Look, regrets from the top officials. We’ve been following you all along, we’ve been listening. We appreciate what you had to say and we apologize that you weren’t received at ...

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