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Ruth’s Impact on Billy’s Early Ministry

Billy, Ruth and family after returning from London, 1954


To celebrate Billy Graham’s 100th year, the Billy Graham Library’s Journey of Faith tour will reflect historical points throughout the year. During the months of January and February, the tour features a new display that focuses on the 1940s and 1950s called “A Ministry Begins.”

It highlights memorabilia and photos from Graham’s life during that time period, providing insight into his early ministry and personal life.

Graham often speaks of his admiration and gratitude of his wife and the impact she made during the early years of his ministry.

He once said to a reporter of CBS, “Well, I have to give the credit to my wife and to the Lord because my wife stayed home while I traveled all over the world and she reared them and she taught them and she spanked them and she loved them and they all love her.  And we all know that she is the spiritual leader of our family.”

The new display features many special artifacts from their early years of marriage, including a note from Billy to Ruth on their wedding day — August 13, 1943.

Letter from Billy Graham to Ruth Bell Graham on their wedding day


Another artifact featured in this display is a collection of Ruth Bell Graham’s passports. Ruth traveled with Billy as much as possible, especially in his early days of ministry. At the 1954 London Crusade, Billy said of Ruth, “Her encouragement, her counsel, and her prayers supported me more than anything else.”

Ruth Bell Graham’s passports


To see the schedule of upcoming displays celebrating Billy Graham’s 1ooth year, visit here.


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  1. Ronald Davies says:

    Thank you Dr. Billy Graham for the words from your wife and you.Praise Jesus for the blessing your children are also to myself and many more that are hearing the Word of God. Lord bless you all. Amen.

  2. Angie says:

    God binds marriage of His servants into eternity; what an honor to witness a God-fearing couple here on Earth on their journey in Ministry.
    -Ernest & Angela Windhauser

  3. Sandra Hartman says:

    If everyone’s marriage started with God we would all have had the love of a lifetime. What a blessing their love has been and will always be but first is always Christ!!

  4. carolyn garner says:

    it is so sweet to see and read the endearing personal thoughts of Billy Graham for his precious love of his life Ruth…. it would be a treasure to have this romance of 60 years put into a book by next Valentine Day!!!

  5. Glenda Griffith says:

    Thank you for encouragement!!

  6. teresa blevins says:

    several years ago when i came back and gave my heart to Jesus i called the Billy Graham ministry and they prayed a beautiful prayer on the phone for me and i will never forget how that really touched me at a time when I just needed some encouragement. and for that i am truly thankful. Billy and Ruth were beautiful people with a sincereness to serve God and they are together now in heaven, a beautiful city !!

  7. Darlene wellinghoff says:

    I enjoyed my visit to the library this year. What a beautiful serene setting for Mr Graham to have grown up in. I weep for our country bec ause he brought the message of salvation to us and today the devil works very hard to remove any mention of God from the public arena Woe to us if we don’t stand up against the forces of evil God bless his family So thankful for his ministry I was saved at his crusade in Miami in the 60s

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