Dr. Nelson Bell's 100th Anniversary Service was held in Huai'an church,Jiangsuon Feb 23. Will Graham, the great-grandson of Dr. Bell, preached a message of hope at the service, leading over 150 among about 3000 attendees converted to Christianity.
This is the third time for Will Graham to preach in China, who also came in 2012 and 2014. One year ago on Feb. 2015, the representatives held evangelistic meetings and gospel concerts in churches of Huai'an and Zhenjiang, Jiangsu province.
A hundred years ago, Dr. Nelson Bell and his wife Virginia McCue Bell came to Huai'an, Jiangsu Province. They served here for 25 years. In 1920, their daugther Ruth Bell was born here and spent 17 years living here. Since then, the family loved China deeply. In 1988, Billy Graham and Ruth visited Huai'an. Many members there still remember them.
Before his preaching, Will Graham played a video in which his great-grandfather Dr. Nelson Bell spoke in Chinese with Huai'an accent in an evangelistic rally in USA in the 1970s. "I'm not a 'gweilo' (unkind Cantonese slang term for foreigners), but a Chinese who loves you very much and wants to share God's love to you." Bell said in the video. It moved many people.
Rev. Zhang Keyun, the chairman of Jiangsu CCC&TSPM introduced that Dr. Bell was an American missionary who loved China and Huai'an. He accomplished three things in China: opened hospitals to heal people; ran schools to improve Chinese literacy ; preached the Gospel to save souls. He was devoted to his mission, coming to crowds with God's love and mission, a man who extended the love and an example for Christians.
Zhang recalled the scene of 2011 when Billy Graham received CCC&TSPM in their visit to US. The Grahams has deep love and respect for Chinese. Billy Graham said, "My children are Chinese because their mom, their grandmother was Chinese. I've been telling them to pray for China. "
After the service, Will Graham and his younger brother Roy Graham visited the Love and Mercy Hospital where Dr. Bell worked as the third president. Bell led the medical staff and they saved about 1,3000 patients in 1929 when was the peak that the hospital cured people with black fever, a terrible infectious disease that caused high death rate. Because of so, they won the trust of the people in Huai'yin, a district of Huai'an, and its surrounding.