Tag: Graham

The Graham-Eisenhower Connection

Yesterday in my “Religion and the Presidents” course, I shared the unusual relationship that developed between Dwight Eisenhower and Billy Graham. I say “unusual” because Ike was decades older than the young evangelist and had far more experience in the world. After all, he led the European Theater of WWII, including the daring and dramatic decision to go forward on D-Day. Yet Ike was being drawn by God into a closer examination of his religious beliefs. No achievement in this… Read more »

Religion & the Presidents

A couple of years ago, I had an idea for a new course that would examine the religious beliefs of the presidents. The course would also attempt to determine how those beliefs may have influenced the policies each president followed. That proposed course will now be reality this semester as I teach, for the first time, “Religion and the Presidents.” It will be a little different in structure than my other courses. First, no exams—how does one adequately “test” students… Read more »

Bush 41: A Man of Faith & Honor

Bush 41 is what the country started calling him once his son became president. Yet George Herbert Walker Bush was not just a number; my own research on him has led me to revise not only my evaluation of his presidency but my perception of him as a man of faith and honor. I voted for him twice, yet I had reservations as to whether he was the best successor to Ronald Reagan. I continue to note his deficiencies as… Read more »

Graham & His Presidents

Historians have a unique experience when they do research into individuals. Even though I have never met most of the people I’ve researched, I come away with the sensation that I know them anyway. My master’s thesis was on Yale president (and clergyman) Timothy Dwight and American geographer (and clergyman) Jedidiah Morse, the latter being the father of Samuel F. B. Morse of telegraph fame. My doctoral dissertation was on Noah Webster, the premier educator of early America and the… Read more »

Billy Graham’s Coronation Day

Billy Graham was ready to go. He had been ready for many years. Even though his passing was not a shock—after all, he was 99—just the fact of his death makes the world stop for a moment and consider a man who was faithful to His Savior and who made an enormous impact for Him. I remember watching Graham crusades on television when I was a teenager. I read a number of his books at that relatively young age. I… Read more »

Fruits of the Sabbatical

My 27th year of teaching at the college level begins today. I’m a little out of practice, though, after a year’s sabbatical. I’ll have to change my mental outlook and reorient myself. The sabbatical year was a real blessing. When some people picture a sabbatical, they probably think of someone relaxing for a year, playing golf, etc. Well, I haven’t played golf since I was 18 (that was at least a couple of years ago) and for me, relaxation consists… Read more »

The Eisenhower Decade

I am in Abilene, Kansas, researching at the Dwight Eisenhower Presidential Library. Spent all day there yesterday and will finish my research today. It’s rather sad that Eisenhower is practically a forgotten president for the current generation. Of course, I’ve often commented that students today know next to nothing about American history, but what they do know spans only their lifetime, or a portion of it. The Eisenhower decade was really rather prosperous for America, and he kept the peace… Read more »