Pacific Northwest Franklin Graham Festival Impacts Thousands of Lives in Tacoma
The Pacific Northwest holds a special place in the heart of Franklin Graham dating back to 1976, when he lived in the Seattle area while helping to organize a Billy Graham crusade. This past weekend, he returned to the Tacoma Dome—where his father preached in 1983 and 1991—to share the timeless life-changing message with a new generation. “Are you lost tonight?” asked Graham. “You may be thinking, ‘Franklin, you just don’t understand the power that cocaine has in my life or the power that sex has in my life. You don’t understand the power of the drugs and alcohol … I just can’t do it.’ But if you come to Christ tonight and ask Him for help, He will help you. He will fill your life up. He did it for me, and He will do it for you.” The Pacific Northwest Franklin Graham Festival, Nov. 2-4, drew 25,988 to the Tacoma Dome. During the three-day event 1,416 people responded to Graham’s invitation to make a commitment to Jesus Christ. Included in those crowds were 3,608 children and their parents who came to the Saturday morning KidzFest program, where over 300 children responded to the invitation to commit their lives to Christ. Graham’s message offered the kind of hope and encouragement that pastors and community leaders say people in the Pacific Northwest desperately need to hear. That’s why volunteers from more than 200 churches joined together for this non-denominational effort, working in partnership with the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association to organize and plan the Pacific Northwest Franklin Graham Festival. In addition to nightly messages by Graham, the Festival also featured music by award-winning artists, including Steven Curtis Chapman, Group 1 Crew, Starfield, Tree 63, Downhere, Israel and New Breed, Tommy Coomes Band, Dennis Agajanian, and a 300-voice choir made up of volunteers from churches across the region. Earlier this year, Graham held Festivals in Panama City, Panama; Norfolk, Va.; Binghamton, N.Y.; Kiev, Ukraine; Guayaquil, Ecuador; and Busan, Korea. Graham will hold his final 2007 Festival in Hong Kong Nov. 29-Dec. 2. Graham is president and CEO of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association and the international Christian relief organization Samaritan’s Purse.