Billy Graham planning more crusades despite failing health

Posted: Friday, November 03, 2000

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) -- Evangelist Billy Graham said Tuesday that despite his failing health he's planning more crusades next year, dispelling rumors that a four-day crusade here this week would be his last.

''I am looking forward to many more months and possibly years of crusade ministry,'' said Graham, who turns 82 next week. He plans to hold two or three crusades next year, he said.

''I come here with a sense of fear and trembling of my own inadequacy and my own lack of strength. But in our weakness, there is the strength that God gives,'' Graham said.

''I have had some difficulties over the past few weeks and months. I am not going to say I am totally well, because I am not,'' he said.

The white-haired Graham, who moved slowly and deliberately as he spoke, was diagnosed with Parkinson's disease about six years ago. He spent three months at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., earlier this year and was treated for pain in his jaw in Gainesville this week.

Although Graham began his career in Florida and has visited Jacksonville many times, the crusade that begins Thursday is his first here.

Since his first crusade in 1949, Graham has preached to more than 210 million people in live audiences in 185 countries. He is the author of 18 best-selling books.

His last crusade was in June in Nashville. The four-night meeting brought crowds averaging 52,000.

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On the Net:

www.jacksonvillecrusade.org



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