Relief to Honor Billy and Ruth Graham Unveiled in Jiangsu

By Ruth Wang, November 07, 2018 10:11 AM

The unveiling ceremony of the relief The Righteous: Billy and Ruth Graham was held in Huaian on Nov. 1, 2018.

Roy Graham, a grandson of Billy Graham, attended the ceremony.

On November 1, 2018, a relief to remember the world's late, renowned evangelist Billy Graham and his wife Ruth Graham was unveiled in Huaian, Jiangsu province. 

The Graham family has a long history with China, especially Huaian where Billy Graham's father-in-law Lemuel Nelson Bell served as a medical missionary and where his wife Ruth was born.  

At the ceremony, Roy Graham, Billy Graham's grandson, gave a speech on behalf of the family. He shared that his grandmother had lived in Huaian a century ago and despite tremendous changes having taken place there, their emotions for China remained the same. 

The relief entitled The Righteous: Rev. Billy and Ruth Graham was created by Yuan Xikun, the most influential sculptor in modern China. 

The two statues, entitled Billy Graham as Messenger of Hope and Billy Graham as Sower, were unveiled at a ceremony on September 28, 2018, held at the headquarters of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association (BGEA) in North Carolina. The statues took Yuan one year to complete. 

Ten years ago, the "Portrait Diplomat" had already begun a friendship with the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association (BGEA) through relief efforts for the Sichuan earthquake. According to the Beijing-based Jintai Museum where Yuan served as its curator, in 2017 he visited the Billy Graham Library and the Billy Graham Training Center, located at the headquarters of BGEA. Moved by the Graham family's four-generation devotion to evangelism, Yuan collected thousands of pieces of material to produce the relief and the two statues. 

A new memorial hall detailing the history of the church in Huaian was also opened on the same day. 

- Translated by Karen Luo

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