a billy graham center
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  MEMORIES
 
Many years after the campaign, Dr. Lois Ferm, a member of the staff of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, began to tape oral history interviews with people who had been involved with the ministry of Billy Graham and the BGEA. Over more than thirty years, she interviewed hundreds of people. A few of those interviewed had been a participant in the 1949 campaign. Below are links to the audio files and transcripts of the interviews with these people.
Click names or images below to read and listen to the interview excerpts
William “Bill” and Vonette Bright. The Brights discuss Bill's first meeting with Billy Graham and his attempt to arrange for Graham to hold an Easter Sunrise service in Los Angeles Coliseum, ca. 1947. They were later counselors at the 1949 meetings, and Bill Bright founded Campus Crusade for Christ International in 1951. Interviewed on August 1, 2000. Duration: 4:11 minutes.
Paul Finkenbinder. Finkenbinder, who has been a missionary and evangelist in Latin America for almost his entire ministry, discusses hearing Graham when he was in Los Angeles on furlough in 1949. Interviewed on July 31, 2000. Duration 1:15 minutes.
Armin Gesswein. Gesswein, who was a minister living in the Los Angeles area in the 1940s, discusses the prayer ministry he began in Southern California and the support he gave to the 1949 meetings. Interviewed on July 13, 1971. Duration: 28:07 minutes.
Pearl Goode. Goode, a registered nurse, discusses how she became involved in the prayer support of the 1949 ministries and her continuing prayer ministry for Billy Graham crusades. Interviewed on October 23, 1970. Duration: 27:10 minutes.
Lionel Mayell. Mayell, a Los Angeles businessman and member of the Christ for Greater Los Angeles Committee, talks about the 1947 rally in the Hollywood Bowl, inviting Graham to speak in 1949, and the decision to continue the meetings past the original end-date. Interviewed on October 28, 1977. Duration: 19:30 minutes.
Roy McKeown. McKeown was on the staff of Youth for Christ in Los Angeles and a member of the Christ for Greater Los Angeles Committee. He discusses the newspaper publicity for the meetings, the conversions of Jim Vaus and Stuart Hamblen, and the impact of Billy Graham on Hollywood. Interviewed on July 13, 1971. Duration: 30:44 minutes.
Kenneth Overstreet. Overstreet made a profession of faith as a teenager at the 1949 meetings, which he discusses. He later became director of the Youth for Christ office in Los Angeles. Interviewed on May 27, 1976. Duration: 1:58 minutes.
David Shepersky. Shepersky was an active participant in the 1964 and 1976 Billy Graham San Diego campaigns. In this excerpt, he discusses his mother’s involvement in following up with converts from the 1949 Los Angeles meetings. Interviewed on May 26, 1976. Duration: 2:22 minutes.
Betty Skinner and Mildred Hopkins. Both women were members of the staff of the Navigators, a Christian discipleship ministry. They discuss their involvement as counselors in the 1949 meetings. Interviewed on March 8, 1972. Duration: 3:39 minutes.
Harold Straub. Straub, an oral surgeon, was treasurer of the Christ for Greater Los Angeles Committee during the 1949 meetings. He talks about the preparation for the meeting, finances, and the follow-up of converts. Interviewed on July 13, 1971. Duration: 8:03 minutes.
Jim Vaus. Vaus, who had been involved in wiretapping for both the Los Angeles police department and organized crime in the city, talks about his conversion during the 1949 meetings. He later started a Christian youth ministry. Interviewed on May 26, 1976. Duration: 13:45 minutes.
Benjamin Weiss. Weiss, a high school principal and member of the Christ for Greater Los Angeles Committee. Interviewed on July 14, 1971. Duration: 28:12 minutes.
Lawrence Young. Young, a printer and member of Christ for Greater Los Angeles Committee, talks about the work of the Committee in general, the decision to have Graham as speaker, preparation, and follow-up to the meetings. Interviewed on July 14, 1971. Duration: 41:32 minutes.
Louis Zamperini. Zamperini, a track star, describes his conversion at the 1949 meetings. He later started a Christian youth ministry. Interviewed on May 16, 1976. Duration: 4:16 minutes.
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© 2009
Wheaton
College
 Notice: This exhibit is for the enjoyment and education of the users of the BGC Archives Website.   Material in it is protected by copyright and any use, publication or copying is strictly prohibited   without written permission.