Returning to Scotland some 36 years after his last campaign there, evangelist Billy Graham called on church leaders and young people alike to recapture the spiritual heritage of their country, home of John Knox, presbyterianism, and the King James Bible. More than 250,000 people attended the series of ten stadium meetings, held in three major cities during late May and early June. An average of 1,860 per night (just over 7 percent of the audience) came forward at Graham’s invitations. Unlike his usual calls to commitment to Jesus Christ, Graham’s invitations in Scotland included challenges for Christians to commit themselves publicly to full-time ministry.
“What we need in Scotland is young men and women to offer themselves as ministers, missionaries, and evangelists, people who have a gift from God,” Graham said.
The evangelist’s message came in response to comments by Church of Scotland leaders, who have seen the national church lose a third of its members over the past three decades.
“Many of today’s church leaders in Scotland trace their spiritual roots back to Mr. Graham’s historic meetings in Glasgow in 1955,” said David McNee, chairman of Mission Scotland 1991. “Perhaps this mission will provide an infrastructure of new leadership in the future.”
Indeed, young people did respond in large numbers to Graham’s messages. An average of over 60 percent of those responding each night were under 25 years of age, organizers said. They added that almost half the commitments were first-time decisions, many by individuals with no church background.
Graham began his crusade with an address to the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland, a privilege offered only once since 1955—to the Queen of England—when Graham previously addressed ...1
Already a CT subscriber? Log in for full digital access.
Have something to add about this? See something we missed? Share your feedback here.
Subscribe to Christianity Today and get access to this article plus 65+ years of archives.
- Home delivery of CT magazine
- Complete access to articles on ChristianityToday.com
- Over 120 years of magazine archives plus full access to all of CT’s online archives
- Learn more