The Legacy of the Gospel – Route 66

September 15, 2021

Categories: Billy Graham

“Having this family legacy of proclaiming the Gospel is a gift,” said Will Graham in the BillyGraham.TV special The Legacy of the Gospel. Over the coming weeks we will be sharing a new limited blog series that takes a look at this family legacy.

On The Road Preaching the Gospel

The Route 66 God Loves You Tour is entering the final days of planning as Franklin Graham prepares to embark on a 2,000-mile trip with eight stops along historic Route 66. Beginning Sunday, Sept. 19 4 p.m., in Joliet, Illinois, the Route 66 God Loves You Tour will culminate in San Bernardino, California, on Oct. 2.

The first stop on Franklin Graham’s Route 66 God Loves You Tour is Joliet, Illinois on Sunday September 19 at 4 p.m. at Chicagoland Speedway.

Billy Graham Crusades in the Chicago Area

Franklin’s father, Billy Graham, had evangelistic events between 1959 and 1980 in the Chicago metropolitan area and had a combined attendance of 1.14 million people.

Billy Graham preaching at a crusade in Chicago 1971

Franklin Graham’s History in Chicago area

Meantime, while this will be Franklin’s first evangelistic event in the Chicago area, he has held outreaches in Illinois before.

Franklin Graham preaching at Rock the River 2009


In the summer of 2009, The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association launched a series of evangelistic outdoor concerts called Rock the River.  Franklin Graham traveled to Moline and Rock Island, Illinois. The concerts were youth-focused and featured high-energy bands who presented the Christian message through their music, and Franklin spoke several times throughout the day to offer a message of hope through God’s love.

Billy Graham’s College Days

The Chicago area holds a special place in Billy Graham’s life. Mr. Graham started attending Wheaton College in 1940 and graduated in 1943 with a degree in anthropology. He briefly pastored at United Gospel Tabernacle while maintaining a full class load. Then, after he graduated, he became the pastor of a nearby church called The Village Church of Western Springs (now Western Springs Baptist Church).

Billy Graham at Wheaton College



To find out more about Billy Graham’s ministry around the country and even the world, make sure to visit the Billy Graham Library. Admission is always free. Plan your visit today at


You can more learn more about The Route 66 God Loves You Tour at



What Do You Think?