Billy Graham Center
Collection 382- Paul Ernest Freed. T1 Transcript
to listen to an audio file of this interview (46 minutes)
This is a complete and accurate transcript of the tape of the oral history
interview of Paul Freed in the Archives of the Billy Graham Center. No spoken
words have been omitted, except for any non-English phrases which could not
be understood by the transcribers. Foreign terms which are not commonly understood
appear in italics. In very few cases words were too unclear to be distinguished.
If the transcriber was not completely sure of having gotten what the speaker
said, "[?]" was inserted after the word or phrase in question. If the
speech was inaudible or indistinguishable, "[unclear]" was inserted.
Grunts and verbal hesitations such as "ah" or "um" were usually
omitted. The transcribers have not attempted to phonetically replicate English
dialects but have instead entered the standard English word the speaker was
Readers should remember that this is a transcript of spoken English, which follows
a different rhythm and rule than written English.
dots indicate an interruption or break in the train of thought within the sentence
on the part of the speaker
dots indicate what the transcriber believes to be the end of an incomplete sentence.
( ) Words
in parentheses are asides made by the speaker
[ ] Words
in brackets are comments by the transcriber.
This transcript was made by Robert Shuster and Amber Thomas and was completed
in June 2010.
382, T2 Interview of Paul Freed by Galen Wilson, October 23, 1981.
WILSON: This is October 23, 1981. And
this is an oral history interview being conducted for the Billy Graham Center
archives with Dr. Paul Freed, who is the founder and president of TransWorld
Radio. The first thing I want to ask you is...really doesn’t concern TransWorld
radio at all. But in a little preliminary research, I discovered that you were
a missionary child. So how old were you when...when you folks went over?
FREED: Well, actually, Galen, going
back into the history a little bit. My father was the foreign sale manager of
the Burroughs Adding Machine Company. A very, very outstanding businessman,
he was headed to be the next president of Burroughs Adding Machine Company,
when one day one of the men working under him looked him in the face and said,
“Ralphie, do you really believe the heathen are lost without Jesus Christ?”
My father said, “Yes.” He said, “Well, then if that’s
so, you’re the biggest hypocrite I’ve ever seen.” Six weeks
later, my father and mother were on there way to Bible school [unclear.] And
my father had given up his position. He had absolutely nothing left, and...
he had just enough for a month’s salary. They had told him--if I may go
into this a little bit [chuckles].
FREED: They had told him that anytime
he wanted his position back, he could have it, just by sending a collect wire.
If that was not available in equal amount, he’d send a collect wire, and
they would send him a month’s salary in advance. I remember my father
there at Bible school, mowing lawns, digging ditches, doing ever kind of work
to keep things together. I’ll never forget in the second year, when my
parents at absolutely nothing. My sister was a little baby girl and myself,
I was a boy about six, had nothing and.... Not a bite to eat–literally,
not a bite to eat. And my father went up to the mailbox, thought surely there
would be something...God always sends something in...but there was nothing.
He went down to the town below, and he had one nickel left, and for one nickel
you could get a sure-enough Hershey bar. So he got me a real Hershey bar (for
a nickel you could get a real one those days) and gave it to me just so I wasn’t
hungry as a little boy. They started back toward the school where they had the
little two room apartment when they passed Western Union. And my father stopped
and suddenly said to my mother (both my mother and father are with the Lord
[deceased] today), but he said to my mother, “Mildie,” (he always
called her Mildie), he said, “This is it. When...you and I can perhaps
stand being hungry and have nothing but when the children are hungry, this is
it. I’m sending a collect wire to Burrows Adding Machine Company for a
month’s salary in advance.” He was about to go in when my mother...uh...
grabbed him by the sleeve and said, “Just a minute, Ralphie.” She
said, “Let’s prove God just one more time. Let’s prove God
just one more time.” My father said, “All right.” So we walked
along the town, then back up the hillside. It was getting toward evening, and
they sent me running, as a little boy, with the key to the Yale lock in my hand.
When I got to the door, I opened it and clicked on the lights and, lo and behold,
the room was just loaded with food. All over the tables, the chairs, the floor,
roasts and steaks and eggs and bacon and flour and vegetables–everything
you’d imagine. And to this day, we don’t know who the delivery boy
FREED: We know that God sent it. And
the reason I bring that up - that that was the point at which my mother and
father had really learned to prove God. And that’s been the story in the
history of this entire work.
FREED: It was from that point that they
went to the Middle East, where I grew up as a boy. I went there until about
seven or eight years of age. And my parents were they were the only....At first
they studied the Arabic language at what was then Palestine, in Jerusalem. Uh...then...later
on, they left me there when they went to their mission field. The place where
they were missionaries for many years, a number of years, was in southern Syria,
in the land of Horan, which is now Horan, called Bashan in the Bible. King Og,
the man with the long bedstead [Deuteronomy 3:11], was the...was the king of
Bashan. And that’s where they were the only missionaries for 300 villages,
which is just beyond what is now the Golan Heights. And at times, I went back
to school, and I used to go to school in Jerusalem, lived in Bethlehem, commuted
back and forth to school on my bicycle....I was baptized by my father in the
river Jordan when they were then in Palestine. But most of the ministry was
in what is now known as just beyond the Golan Heights.
FREED: Now the exciting thing to me
is that that’s where we are doing a tremendous amount of broadcasting.
And it was from that...it was from that I got the burden as the boy that we
just must reach more people. Because I’d go with my father to the villages.
I’d sit behind him. I’d see those Arabs who would hear the gospel
and watch the lives that were changed and the thrill of seeing the little churches
that were started. And I always said in my heart, “We must reach people,”
and I cared a lot about people. As a boy, I got next to him....I used to be
able to sling a , use a slingshot just as well as they could. And incidentally,
that’s the kind that David used to have, not the little kind of thing
with rubber bands, not that type of thing.
[Freed and Wilson talk at the same time. Unclear]
WILSON: But one you would whirl around.
FREED: That’s exactly.... You’ve
tried it too?
WILSON: [Laughs]. Not well.
FREED: But it’s...it’s the
kind you whirl around. And so I was next to them. Then they...actually they
came back on furlough. And it’s very interesting to know, that on furlough,
which was my sophomore year in high school, I went to Wheaton Academy here.
FREED: And my parents lived in Wheaton
here...uh...on...uh...I don’t remember the name of the street. All I know
it was right near, just a few houses from Red Grange’s house, the great
FREED: I always remember that. I was
very much...uh...uh... impressed with that. But I went as my sophomore year
to the academy. Then I went back with my parents to the mission field, then
came back to college, so I....
WILSON: To Wheaton?
FREED: Yes, to Wheaton College.
FREED: Uh...and that was in 1936. Came
back to Wheaton College and went to Wheaton for four years and was graduated
in...in 1940. And during those years, there were a number of people here that,
I think...I feel...that was just really meant much. As you all know, of course,
Billy Graham was here at the same time and Dr. [Hudson Taylor] Armerding was.
Ken Taylor, people like Bob Evans. And I feel that God used a lot of these people
for his glory.
WILSON: How in the world did anyone
afford to go to school in the Depression?
FREED: Well, [laughs] that’s a
very interesting question. I basically worked my way through college. My parents
had very, very little on the mission field, could send me almost nothing. But
it was not easy. I did a different type of thing. A lot of people work dining
rooms and all those kind of work; I did something else. At first, I got souvenirs
from the Middle East and these pressed wild flowers and...and...olive wood New
Testaments and things like that, which I sold all around...
FREED: ...and tried to work my way through.
But that was not really sufficient. I had to do more then....One summer I worked
with the Pontiac motor company. [Pauses]. [Aside]: Should I keep...?
FREED: Should I keep [unclear]?
WILSON: Uh-huh. [Laughs].
FREED: [Laughs.]...the Pontiac Motor
Company and had quite a good job there. And then two...two...summers I worked
in Gary, Indiana, the...the steel mills.
FREED: One summer on the open hearth
and one summer on the blast furnaces. Then my...my... last year in college,
I started a belt business.
WILSON: Mm-hmm. A belt business?
FREED: Yes, a belt business, which uh....Well,
it’s hard to explain. It was an idea that...uh.... Actually, a...a...friend
of mine by the name of Willys Braun, who was also, I think, a graduate of Wheaton....
WILSON: Oh, yeah.
had...he had some....
missionary in Africa.
Later missionary in Africa and was a very close friend. He had some ideas about
belts, but I took it from there and made...the idea, and made quite a business
was able on the side to start this business going where there were little things
made out of like...pieces of wood, pieces of plastic, different design things
which were strung on thongs, leather thongs or braided, different ways they
were made. It was just ideas I had of just belts.
could have been anything else, frankly. I might say that....I say this to the
glory of God: I think a lot of what TransWorld Radio has been able to go...has
had something to do with that. The main thing is God’s been in it.
there were some business principles which my father taught me, because he was
quite capable in that way...some basic business principles that now help the
workload today. So I just applied some business...bas...basic business principles.
So, the idea of manufacturing belts, it could have been making anything.
out just by selling a few of them, going around from store to store and selling
suddenly I had the idea I could sell it through one of the...some of the big
chains. So I went to New York, to the...to the... buyers that are in New York
City. From Wheaton, rode the train there (no planes in those days) [laughs],
rode the train and...and...got it in into some of the largest chains in America,
like J. C. Penney, Co., some things like, also like...other chains that were
really important, some of the mail order chains. And was able to sell great
quantities of them. And rented a house right over [in Wheaton, Illinois] on,
I believe it was on Franklin Street, right here, rented the whole house, where
it was a place where we’d bring all these materials together from...from
Chicago and where we’d buy them in large quantities. And it gave a lot
of students the work of assembling these and packing them, invoicing them and
sending out whatever we sold. Just...just hundreds and thousands of gross of
these belts all over America. And it became a much, much larger thing than some
people realized. And we called it DuPage Crafts, which is after...named after
brilliant name, isn’t it [laughs]?
DuPage Crafts is was what it was called. And it that manner, sold it all over.
And, frankly, and I want to say this very carefully: I was...I feel I was able
to help many other students through school because the amount they’d make
on those belts would be about double what they could make. I mean they used
tremendous amount, about 25, 30 cents an hour at normal work and this would
be something like 50, 60, 70 cents an hour.
the Lord made it possible for me to help other students. And after I was graduated
from Wheaton, I went to Nyack [College]...
...and graduated from there in two years but I kept this belt business going
back here in Wheaton.
I just say it was the glory of God I was able to put money in many...in many
students’ boxes who never knew where it was from and just had the satisfaction,
not only God working to help me but to help them, as well.
it was quite a thing.
Now, you said you went from Wheaton to Nyack.
you were intended on a missionary career, perhaps.
always had been interested in missions somehow but from...from Nyack then also
I did additional work. I have a master’s from Columbia University and
a PhD from New York University in mass communications. And...I had felt all
my life that I really wanted to reach some people somehow. And originally from
Nyack I...I was in Youth for Christ and did quite a bit of work. I’ll
never forget, standing the day of graduation right there. The day I graduated
from Wheaton, I was going back to Wheaton with Torrey Johnson there, so that
was of great interest. And from Nyack, I was in Youth for Christ and was...went
down to North Carolina.
I headed up the Youth for Christ in Greensboro, North Carolina.
you were with Youth for Christ in the days of its infancy, weren’t you?
what...what do you remember about the way you went about doing things, the procedures?
I remember Youth for Christ very well, particularly from that conference that’s
so well known that they had in Beatenberg, Switzerland [August 10-22, 1948].
been to Beatenberg many times since then. Billy Graham was there and Torrey
Johnson and...and Oswald Smith and...and a number of the others from Youth for
Christ, the leaders. It gave me a lot of inspiration there. And I might say,
related to that, right when I was in Beatenberg with Youth for Christ, I went
to this conference there from Greensboro.
maybe I can put this in parentheses. My dear wife has been...has meant so much
to us down through the years. I remember, as I was planning to go and Torrey
Johnson was telling me, “Paul, you ought to go to this conference.”
My wife was...started crying, says, “I...we’ve just been married
a short time. I can’t let Paul go.” And Torrey said, “When
God needs him, He’s going to give you the strength.” And so she...she
smiled and said, “Well, that’s right, Torrey.” But I went
to this conference at Beatenberg. At that conference, some of the...two...two
men from Spain were there.
different ones went different directions from...from...from there, from that
particular sport in Beatenberg, to different places. Suddenly, one of these
two men said, “Paul, why don’t you come to Spain with us. We’re
going back to Spain.” And I said, “I’d rather go anywhere
than Spain. I have no interest in Spain. Spain’s alright. I suppose Spanish
rice is alright, or what have you, or tortillas but I, or... whatever it might
be.” But I said, “I ‘m more interested in the Arab world,
I’m interested in the Middle East, I’m interested in other countries,
but I am...I am not going to Spain. And three days later I was in Spain. [laughs].
And it was absolutely the leading of God. And it was at that time when I went
to Spain for that first time, I began to see some of the needs of Spain. I had
the privilege of starting Youth for Christ in Spain.
But it was when I saw Spain, which had some
of these difficulties with persecution of Christians and so forth. Things have
changed a lot now....
I had a contact, actually that was...I...I...talked and related to Spain with
President Truman about that in the White House.
Now, how in the world did you ever wrangle an interview with President Truman?
[laughs], the way...the way that worked out that time, that because I had gone
to Spain and was very much interested in looking at the problems and difficulties
there.... Actually, I had quite a contact, more than people realize, and I have
been very careful down through the years not to touch anything politically.
But through the ambassador in...the American ambassador in Madrid and others,
they saw my deep interest, and I was invited to the White House by President
Truman to talk...to talk about these matters and....
so you didn’t go to talk about evangelism in Spain. I mean, he didn’t
think you were coming to talk about that.
he thought that I was...wanted to talk about the difficulties and problems of
Spain related to international matters, and it was of interest for him to talk
to him...talk with him for about an hour in the Oval Office of the White House.
what did you discuss?
discussed these matters of Spain, and I asked...again, don’t let me get
into the politics of it, but...but President Truman himself is a very, as you
know, is a very practical man, down-to-earth man. And he felt these were...these
were major things, that American policy should be interested in trying to reach
people on social levels and other levels. And...and he was very interested in
my opinion on that and my opinion on other international matters.
by the way, some of us had met also...would like...we met with President Ford
and went to them and so forth. I have met President Eisenhower and President
Nixon back when but uh..... And President.... These...these men are interested
in hearing what Christian leaders feel about the impact of the country...
various international matters.
much official or nonofficial support do these presidents feel at liberty to
ourselves deliberately walk away from it.
this is a very difficult thing. I do not want to sound critical of other leaders,
whoever they might be, in or out of this country as.... I personally feel that
its important to keep things nonpolitical.
both as far as this country is concerned and as far as abroad, in particular,
is concerned. So, therefore, we are not looking for the support of that...
trying to do it. And this is, frankly, why I personally have not talked to as
many large figures as I might, although I’ve dealt with prime ministers
and presidents of many countries. I’ve been with a number of them, but
I always have kept still about it.
may be one of the reasons that TransWorld Radio is...is not as well known as
it might have been otherwise.
order to keep these frequencies going, these giant stations, going, I thought
that was important.
Now, you...you mention that you started a YFC work in Spain. How were you able
to do that in a day and age when Spain was so closed?
at that time, the...Youth for Christ was not the type of thing they envisioned
it here. It was more in Spain what it later became in this country.
with people and groups and so forth and.... That’s a very good question
you’re asking me because this was part of my frustration. As I really
started, not too much could have been done with it, and that’s what made
me all the more become interested in Spain. And as a result of that, I felt
it must reach...and that’s where it comes in the story of how the station
started in Tangier.
was because of my feeling that “How are we going to reach these masses
of people?” As you know, Youth for Christ reached a lot of people. And
that...your question is a good one there. You seem to have insight into this.
But that, because of the frustration that we could only do it in a smaller way
and meeting in the church and so forth. But then I felt radio...
perhaps the answer. Now, perhaps I’ve touched the beginning of this. This
whole work did start...
Tangier. Actually, it was...actually, it was incorporated in North Carolina–I
haven’t mentioned that yet, have I?
had been in Youth for Christ and later I...I took a church. I mean, I...in South
Carolina in which I had started the first Christian and Missionary Alliance
church in South Carolina, I started it.
we were in North Carolina at which time after Youth for Christ where I was there,
I felt led to...to...resign from that and just totally by faith felt that we
could do something to reach others.
that they...that we should start with Spain and this idea of by radio seemed
to be the thing. With just barely, and just the idea of the whole thing, feeling...
we....But the idea was beginning to move, that something must happen. It was
just like starting from nothing.
Now did you...?
incorporated North Carolina in 1952.
happened to be the same day my daughter was born. She was born and my wife never
quite...wasn’t quite sure whether she...she’d forgive me or not,
whether I cared more about incorporating...
Radio or...or...or my daughter being born. Well, I’ve always told her
it was both. I love...love my wife and daughter and love the work both.
What was I going to ask you. Yeah, at the time, did you speak Spanish?
I only...I speak some Spanish. I...I speak Arabic well. I speak French and German.
And I speak some Spanish and a little English [laughs]. But let me continue
to repeat: Spain was just because they pulled us over there. It was still the
world that I was interested in.
all that...what I had seen in Spain and because I was pulled there. But to me,
this was just the beginning point.
I just saw the world that must be reached. And it was with that in mind that
we incorporated in 1952 and then went on the air with the first broadcast from
Tangier in 1954.
When...when I talked with Alan Travers this morning, he told me that I really
should get you to tell on tape the story of...of when you were in Spain–I
think it was Andalusia he said you were in, or some... one of the southern provinces,
that you had with the folks in the caves.
alright. Yes, that’s...you mean southern Spain near the caves there. Yes,
this is an important point. It is a particular story, and there’s certain
ones of these stories that are very, very...very, very important in my life.
This really was as God was... had moved me. I was in Spain, as always, to just
reach people in general, but it somehow boiled down to just one little tiny
family. I’ll never forget that time in southern Spain. And it’s
less that way today, but in those days (some today) quite a number of people
lived in caves in southern Spain now. As you see poverty in many countries.
But the poverty of the people who lived in caves in southern Spain was hard
to believe. And I went into an area where there are some of these caves, back
at the beginning, this was just before the whole thing [TransWorld Radio] started.
And this Spanish young man took me into this particular cave, and I remembered
going into the.... The caves are sort of like slicing the front of this clay
hill off and then there’s digging back into the...into the clay.
they’re not natural caves?
they’re not...they’re not natural. They’re more.... Well,
they’re semi-natural. It’s where the little...cracks and breaks
in the wall, but most of them are dug back into...into the mud, into the clay
of the side of the hill because they have no other place to live. And...and
actually because of the...the protection from the heat and all. And I went back
into one of these caves–well, some of them are natural, and some are sort
of half-way made. It’s...it’s a combination. Back in those little
hills the....clay hills. I went into this one; I remember as I stepped into
it, I thought the stench and the odor would knock me over. I’ve been in
Arab huts and in Bedouin tents, the filth and the disease of the Orient. I’ve
never seen anything to compare with the stench of it because it’s back
in a wet, clay atmosphere, and there’s no way of...the refuse, the disease,
the... is back in the clay. I thought it would knock me over. I could feel my
feet sliding on the slush and slime of the bottom of that cave. And back in
the interior there was a mother and father dying of tuberculosis. They were
actually coughing up their lungs right then, spitting out blood, right...both
of them, from the disease and filth of it. And there near them was a little
boy, maybe ten to twelve years of age. And I remember.... It’s difficult
to just tell all the details of it, but...and I remember...looking down at him
and I said, “God, You love this boy. And here his mother and father are
dying. I...I got to say something.” I had a little Spanish New Testament
in my pocket, and I didn’t know how to say it. And I looked down into
his face, as I was standing there. I could hardly see his face, just in the
darkness of the cave, a little candlelight there, absolutely nothing, poverty-stricken.
And I looked down into his face and I told him, “God loves you.”
And he looked back up at me and said, “Sir, you’re a liar. Nobody
loves me, and you know they don’t. Just look around. I have nothing.”
(He was about ten or twelve years.) “I have absolutely nothing. My mother
and father are dying. God doesn’t love me. Nobody loves me, you don’t
love me, nobody does. And you’re a liar.” In that moment it seemed
as though I would forget everybody else, all the world. I was looking at this
little lad. And I dropped down on my knees, so I would...could look just eye
to eye at him. I could feel the slush and slime ooze through my American trousers’
legs. [Sound of training passing nearby] And I looked in his face and I said,
“Son, God does love you. He loved you enough to die for you. He loved
you enough to give his all. He not only died but rose again that you might have
eternal life. He loves you, and I love you.” And then, I can’t tell
you the details. I kept on going, and he suddenly realized I meant it. It wasn’t
me talking down at him, it wasn’t me preaching at him, it was pouring
out my heart to him. And by the way that is what it is around the world today.
We may have huge transmitters and millions of people. It’s that one person;
it’s that one person. I say it was the glory of God that I had the privilege
of leading him to Jesus Christ there in the bottom of that cave. And then...and
then, I”ll never forget, I was about to leave and he said...he said, “Thank
you, sir, for telling me about that, but no one ever told me before.”
the combination between telling me I was a liar just to try to make out I was
going to tell him I loved him. And then between his finding the Lord and saying,
“No one ever told me that before”-- that was perhaps the turning
point in my life in which I said, “I’m never going to let anybody
say that to me again,...”
‘nobody ever told me before.’” And that is perhaps...and one
of the major incidents of how this whole thing [the ministry of TransWorld Radio]
happened. I just, the purpose of my heart....And I might say just this thing:
as we started the...the...from this incident did have a lot to do with the burning
passion of my heart to reach people, as we...as I went and thought about radio.
I’m not a radio man. That sounds strange to say. I never was, I never
was a radio bug, I never cared about radio, it’s people.
people. But from the day I led the first little Moslem boy to the Lord in...in
the southern Syria, to the day of that little Spanish boy and others and work
in this country but seeing others, I said, “By God’s grace, we shall
reach them.” And that’s been the overpowering thing of it.
I... I really am not a radio man; I’m not a radio bug. But, last Sunday...I
don’t care about radio. It sounds strange. I don’t want to talk
about it. When they start talking about, talk to you about ham [radio] this
and that and this and this, I don’t want to talk about it.
we have...we have some of the finest engineers. I have to admit, I do know quite
a bit about it now. But to me, it was...
means to reach...
other half of the world’s population. And this is perhaps one of the most
important things I would like to put down. I thank God for every means of reaching
people today, whatever it might be. Through the church, through literature,
through television, through the local church, through the national workers,
through the hospitals, through education, we should use every means at our disposal
to reach people for Jesus Christ without compromise. We should do that. But
this is an actual statement: As of today, as we are here on November 23,1981,
me, I’m one month ahead.
thinking about... Incidentally, I’m going around the world in just three
days with my wife...
gone one month. So, I’m... I guess I’m thinking about when I’m
coming back. October [laughs]. October the 23rd, 1981. As we sit
here today, we’re thanking God for every means of reaching people. And
I wish I had ten lives to give them, the great work that God is doing in so
many ways, like as he did through my parents, as he’s doing through others.
Absolutely, positively, today, at least half the world’s population, at
least half, over two billion, have absolutely no other way to hear the gospel
than through super-powered radio.
that’s what it’s all about. And that’s why TransWorld Radio’s
that’s how it started, that early beginning from nothing in Tangier. And
then when that closed up there, which was hard to believe how it could happen
that quickly in that way, we went from there to...to Monte Carlo. The Lord had
it...made it possible. We looked into alternatives.
like a wonderful place, but we looked for an alternative to Tangier, when everybody
said it was ridiculous. It wasn’t but about six months later that they
closed the station up. It’s the only one that’s ever been closed
it up because they turned it from an international city to a...to a local city
in this country of Morocco.
in, we had been already looking in Monte Carlo. And now we have six major locations
around the world.
major locations with some twenty-three or twenty-four transmitters, six million
watts of power. I think Alan Travers has told all about it. I don’t know
whether I should touch it or not. It’s not necessary, I guess.
I’m...I’m looking at the clock here. You’re about out of time,
I’ll give you a few more minutes.
we’re not going to cover nearly everything that I’d like to cover.
And I would, when...when we have the opportunity...
be together, I would like to do more interviews with you.
I would like to talk with you about your parents and about...
TransWorld Radio from the start. One quick question: How to go about choose...you’ve
got the six locations now...
How do you choose those? How did they come about?
actually we...we have six key locations with over six million watts of transmitter
people talk about “gain”, that goes into the hundreds of millions
of power we have. But actual transmitter power.... These six locations, I believe,
are the most strategic in the world. They were picked in order to reach the
whole world. That was the whole purpose. When we called it TransWorld Radio,
the objective and the burden of my heart, was that we really, truly would be
able to reach the majority of the world’s population. If you look at them,
there’s...there’s Bonaire [in the Netherlands Antilles] that reaches
all of Latin America, this hemisphere. We do not feel that North America is
our job. The United States and Canada, there’s just hundreds of stations...
FREED:... that works for that. But down through
Latin America.... And by the way, I just want to say, I thank God for the tremendous
work of HCJB, FEBC, of ELWA, all these other stations. My position is one simple
position: I wish we had ten times as much.
we have that location in...in Bonaire, which is just north of...in the Caribbean
in South America...
...to reach that whole part of the world. We have in Monte Carlo, a medium AM
transmitter, standard broadcast, a million, two hundred thousand watts, that...reaching
all Europe east and west, that’s strategic. And then at Cyprus, six hundred
thousand to reach the entire Middle East and the Arab world as far as from Egypt
to Saudi Arabia. Tremendous results there.
Iran...to Iran, daily broadcasts on the AM dial, and all these locations...
... have these big standard AM broadcast transmitters in addition to short-wave.
down in Swaziland to reach all Africa–you can see how these are strategically
placed. And then on the island of Sri Lanka, south of India, we have the whole
subcontinent of India can be reached. The 670 million of India plus maybe 150
to 200 million more can be reached, at least that much more, in that part of
the world on Sri Lanka, which used to be called Ceylon.
on the island of Guam across the Pacific, just...just looking at the mainland
of China, giant transmitters there, four of them going simultaneously, big ones,
right into China, then also southeast Asia, Indonesia, and so forth. Now in
picking these locations, there’s a...there’s a lot to be considered.
Geographically correct, but much more important, where we can get the permit...
these giant transmitters. It’s one thing to put out on a small local station,
a little local station. Incidentally, as I say that, thank God for every local
are a number of small lo...local stations that, frankly, do a job that we can’t
when you put on these giant transmitters, it’s an international matter.
I don’t like to use the word ‘political’, but we have quietly
dealt with (and I have personally dealt with, these governments and the top
people, the cabinets, and the prime ministers and the presidents, and the ministers
of these countries) to put it in a place where we feel it’s the most secure
and have the greatest possibility of...of broadcast to those parts. And I really
do not know today, when you think of the work of...of others and what they are
doing, I do not know today where another superpower station can be put to advantage.
not saying it won’t happen. I just don’t know today. I hope it will
and all. But these are very difficult to find.
it isn’t just at random. They...they become very, very few and sometimes
take years. The one in Sri Lanka, we worked on that for over twelve years...
get the permit, in all that area, until we finally got that permit, and that’s
no easy matter.
what...what were the obstacles in getting that permit?
the...the obstacles are absolutely endless. In...in...in being technically right,
to be able to work it out financially, to be able to get the proper land and
all that, that’s a small part of it. The biggest thing, by far the biggest
thing, is to get the permission and the frequency, the permission for the frequencies.
we’re not only a short-wave, which is easier to get. We are that also.
we’re on these giant AM transmitters. I just returned from India, for
example, where I heard it clearly all over India.
the local stations. So, to get those permits, were tough persuading them. Perhaps,
always people ask, “How did you talk ‘em...them into it?”
The biggest thing that these countries have to gain by it...
...is it’s a big public relations thing for them. We put all these good
Christian programs and some music and all the rest, but on these stations we
make known that country.
So, it helps them in their tourism, helps them in their trade, helps them in
their...in their businesses and so forth. [train passing in background] We are
always, we are a nonprofit, Christian missionary organization...
by God’s people, just like any other faith mission. We are not a commercial
station. We do not ask for any money ever on our station ever, any money for
it’s very, very important to be able to get these governments to understand
that we make them known, which we do. Like, in Bonaire, they have a whole series
of commemorative stamps on TransWorld Radio and they...they tend to help us...thank
us for helping them. So, we in our broadcast will often talk about the beautiful
island of Bonaire and how good the fishing is and all the rest and the beautiful
sights there. This is one of the big reasons for...
to have us. Because we...we become a voice not just for that place where we
are but because the station is so large around the world...
make known all of our locations, all of our stations, and all of our locations,
at each of them.
Now, you are at more....You are not at 1466 frequency all over world.
no, oh no.
a different frequency everywhere. Like, in Bonaire, it’s 800 on the dial,
that’s really an excellent frequency. And then we have other AM frequencies,12...1280...1280
in Sri Lanka. And each place is a different frequency.
was the best frequency there, plus dozens of short-wave frequencies.
these transmitters, frequencies, 500,000, 1.2 million, short-wave, 250,000.
We’re right now putting in a new short-wave transmitter in Monte Carlo,
500,000 watts. And this is really big power.
the more important is...is....is the message and what it’s doing...
the principle. We have tried our best to stay right, true to...not tried to,
we have stayed true to the Word of God [the Bible] and to the truths of the
Word. We try to stay in the middle of the road and just reach people for the
how middle of the road do you try to....
Alan Travers already answered that one [laughs].
Well, we didn’t talk about it.
I mean by the middle of the road, is I think when you have a giant station,
you sort of can thread the needle a little better, than if you have a little
station. Here’s a giant station, people don’t understand it. With
blocks of time, on AM we’ll have blocks of time in a language.
half-an-hour in a major language, one language, another half in another. Like
in South America, Spanish, and then Portugese, and then of course, in English.
Or in Indian we’re on...in India, we’re on in 11 major languages,
so we’ll have blocks of time. I think it’s very important that we
don’t get into controversial matters. I think it’s very important
that we don’t become political in any matter and...and really teach the
Word of God. I think it’s also very important that we don’t come
out like we’re...we’re fighting anything or anybody. I don’t
think that’s our job. Our job is to preach the word of God, to make known
the truths of His word. We are very sound and fundamental as far as our beliefs
not out there fighting any group or any people of any kind. We have not felt
it’s our job to fight any group whatever it might be.
job is to proclaim the Word but be true to it, to the fundamentals of the faith
and go right down the middle of the road in that matter.
Like I said, I did talk about that with Mr. Travers, but I wanted to hear you
say it, too.
it’s two o’clock.
can go ahead and ask a couple more questions.
maybe, if you...whatever you want, if there’s something pretty important.
I’m not sure when I’m gonna get back, maybe soon, maybe later.
one thing I wanted to ask was about your mother’s radio show, Woman
mother went to be with the Lord. And that, by the way, she’s a wonderful
your step-mother is still living?
was a missionary under the...the North African Mission in Tangier when my parents
she was a...a nurse at the North Africa Hospital. And then when my parents....
My father came back on a furlough in 1957, my mother went to be with the Lord.
And then she.... My father remarried and married...
was then Nora Chambers, a very lovely, wonderful person. She has had quite a
ministry. Person-to-Person, a woman’s program, which has been used
quite a bit. It’s...it’s one of our many programs but it...it’s
a good program, and God has used it.
Does she still...she still makes it?
still produces it, yes.
does she produce that?
produces that in Monte Carlo. She lives in Monte Carlo.
did you come to choose Chatham, New Jersey, for your main office?
it just seemed to be the....The best spot was...seemed to be in the New York
we...we want it to be the most convenient for airplane travel to any part of
the world. And there really is no better place than New York if you want that.
People talk about new airports and all, but there’s no place, at least
in these years and right now, to reach all parts of the world. Plus, it’s
a tremendous resource. Almost any item you need, you can get almost immediately
from companies or warehouses or...or distributors...
in the New York area. And we actually are about an hour west of New York, a
very lovely spot, and in seemed to be good for us because we have the combination
of traveling plus servicing them. As you know, we have some...something like
600 missionaries around the world...
tremendous needs, many of them highly trained people, and they have needs that
need to be supplied. And it seemed to be the best spot for us.
else’s in Chatham. We are about to build a new...new headquarters there;
our present location is too small. God just made available to us fourteen really
beautiful acres and we’re putting up some new buildings. We don’t
care much about buildings. I don’t. I really don’t [chuckles].
know, as such. I’m interested in reaching....
functional. And it’s just a headquarters here. Our real job is out there...
the world. And...and I...I would just like to say this: God has given us some
marvelous young people. And I just trust that God will move on more of the very
best of young people. None are too good for God’s work. And this work
of ours that God has--just like my father gave that up. This work is no stronger
than the individuals in it. And I just pray with all my heart that He will,
and we do have some good ones.
I just pray whether...from whatever place it might be, that we’ll get
the right kind, that God will move on them to reach the world.
what are your sources of recruitment?
you, for instance [laughs].
it’s very interesting. I was...I was talking this morning with someone
interviewing me for the television, so I saw two or three little possibilities.
I look at people like you. I...it sounds strange to say, I feel there are sources
course, we will speak around. More than 4,000 churches support us across America.
our people speak. We have deputational people. But I think it’s person-to-person,
making people come to realize this is no minor thing. This is completely major.
to get the right kind of people. A very interesting thing I...perhaps I will
just say here: About half of our support and quite a number of people come from
Europe, which is a...a. real testimonial to the fact of how God is using the...the
radio work from Monte Carlo, which we...
heard all over Europe, both east and west. And about half of our support comes
from Europe, and we don’t ask for a dime or a pound or a franc on...on...or
even a mark, on the air.
about half of the support comes from there and quite a few of...of our missionaries
Do you find that most of the...both of the North American staff and the national
staff that you have, comprising that 600 some missionaries, do more of them
seek you out than you seek them in first contacts and [unclear]?
yes, yes, they tend to, because they hear, see what we are doing, hearing, and
they really get in touch directly with us. But God has given us some wonderful
people. And I...I just would like to say so that anybody whoever hears my voice,
that no work is stronger than the people in it.
I just...I just trust God that He will lay this burden on people’s hearts.
Not so much [unclear]...not so much as a matter of saying, “I’m
going to be a missionary. I’m going to go sow [?]...some foreign field.”
I don’t...I’m not so sure that is really the way but that... I am
certain to want God’s best for my life,
will for my life. And, by the way, maybe I’ll take just a moment to say
what...how I believe you find God’s will for your life.
is for anybody, just...just a little point I’ve said to many...many. But
I...I think it is very important. We hear different formulas for finding God’s
will, and I think they’re all right...all correct and good. You know,
find it from God’s work...Word, from circumstances, from godly people,
from following others. But this seems extremely naive when I say, there isn’t
a thing that we can do about the past.
can not...we can not even guess what we’ll be doing in the future, for
it’s in God’s hand. It’s only today that we have control of
it. And the whole heart of finding God’s will for a person’s life
is to be in His will today.
if it’s His will that you talk with me here today, that’s God’s
will for a person’s life. If that person is doing something out of His
will today, then he’s out of His will. And it’s just a tremendous
thing to know, yes, this is God’s best for me right today, this moment.
there’s no limit to what God can do in my life.
Okey-doke. I thank you.
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