The Legacy of the Gospel – Route 66 San Bernardino, California

October 1, 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. This is the final post in a limited blog series that takes a look at this family legacy.

On The Road Preaching the Gospel in San Bernardino, California

The Route 66 God Loves You Tour is coming to a close as Franklin Graham has been traveling on a 2,000-mile trip with eight stops along historic Route 66. The Tour began Sunday, Sept. 19 4 p.m., in Joliet, Illinois and will end in San Bernardino, California, on Oct. 2.  Franklin is reminding people how much God loves them and wants to have a personal relationship with them.

The Eighth and Final Stop on Route 66 God Loves You Tour: San Bernardino, California

The eighth and final stop on Franklin Graham’s Route 66 God Loves You Tour is San Bernardino, California on Saturday, October 2 at 7 p.m. at National Orange Show Event Center.

A Legacy of  Ministry in California

While Billy and Franklin Graham never preached in San Bernardino, there is quite a legacy and history of the Graham’s preaching in California.

Los Angeles 1949

Night after night crowds continued to pack the tent as the momentum of the 1949 Los Angeles rally continued to build.

Who could forget Los Angeles 1949? It was a watershed moment for Billy Graham’s ministry. Billy Graham’s 1949 Los Angeles Crusade began on September 25 and was originally scheduled for three weeks through mid-October. It ended up lasting 57 days and nights through late November. During those eight weeks of meetings, more than 350,000 people attended and over 3,000 made decisions for Christ.

Billy writes in his autobiography, Just As I Am, as the Crusade went into its fifth week, they had to rearrange seating to accommodate 3,000 more chairs. When that wasn’t enough, crowds overflowed into the street.

“People came to the meetings for all sorts of reasons, not just religious ones. No doubt some were simply curious to see what was going on. Others were skeptical and dropped by just to confirm their prejudices. Many were desperate over some crisis in their lives and hoped they might get a last chance to set things right.”

Los Angeles 1949

Mr. Graham would go on to hold eight Crusades in the Los Angeles area for a combined total attendance of over two million people.

    • 2004: Los Angeles
    • 1985: Anaheim
    • 1974: Los Angeles
    • 1969: Anaheim
    • 1963: Los Angeles
    • 1958: Los Angeles
    • 1951: Hollywood
    • 1949: Los Angeles

 One Crusade that stands out in Billy Graham’s memory is the 2004 Greater Los Angeles Crusade, held in the famed Rose Bowl.  He writes in Just As I Am,

“As I noted earlier, it was in Los Angeles that our Crusade ministry first came to public attention (in 1949). I have held several Crusades there since then and had hoped to return one last time to that dynamic part of the country. Los Angeles had changed in the fifty-five years since those first meetings, with large new immigrant communities from almost every corner of the globe and numerous so-called mega-churches (a word that hadn’t even been invented in 1949). One thing that had not changed, however, and that was the spiritual hunger of the thousands who came to the meetings and made their commitment to Christ.”

Billy Graham preaching at the Los Angeles Crusade 2004

Franklin Graham

Meanwhile, this will be Franklin Graham’s first time preaching in San Bernardino, but Franklin is no stranger to California. He has held several evangelistic events nearby.

  • June 25-26, 2011, Franklin Graham held a Festival in Los Angeles.
  • The Festival for Hispanics was held at Home Depot Center (now Dignity Health Sports Park).
  • In 2018, the 10-city California tour stopped in two cities in the Los Angeles metro: Pasadena (53 miles from San Bernardino) and Oxnard (117 miles from San Bernardino).
Franklin Graham preaching at the Los Angeles Festival 2011


People praying during Franklin Graham Festival in Los Angeles 2011

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



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