a billy graham center archives exhibit
click to return to Introduction


From 1922 to 1932, the Chicago Gospel Tabernacle (or Tab), under the leadership of Paul Rader, was one of the most dynamic ministries in the United States. This exhibit tells their story.

At the Tabernacle (often referred to as the Tab), a basic Fundamentalist Protestant theology was combined with a joyful view of the Christian life and full scale engagement of popular culture and modern technology. Rader and the staff he recruited combined vigorous preaching with a knowledge of American business practices and advertising techniques. They wanted to bring the Gospel to people who never went to church and developed programs for many different types and groups of people. The resulting independent church was the starting point of many ministries still active today. It was also a model for other nondenominational American evangelistic programs and independent churches, many of whom are perhaps unaware that they mirror the Tabernacle or of the part the Tabernacle played in their history.

This exhibit will show the vigor and variety of the Tabernacle's outreach and trace its influence into the present. Besides its many photos and documents, these bare bones will hopefully take on flesh and breath through the audio clips of interviews in which people recalled the glory days of the Tab.

back to main Introduction page
go on to Timeline page