US evangelist Franklin Graham has shared more details of his father’s “warm friendship” with Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth.
Speaking to Premier, Graham shared the Queen would often seek spiritual advice from his father.
“She wanted to talk about the Bible, she wanted to talk about things of faith. She herself would read, and she would have some questions about things that she was reading.
“She wanted my father's opinion, ‘what did he think about that particular passage?'. And sometimes they had a Bible study together,” Graham shared.
The pair first met during one of Billy Graham’s crusades to the UK in the 1950s. He was 33-years-old and had just finished a crusade around Scotland.
“I believe it was 1955 when they first met,” Graham said.
“The Queen had invited him to Clarence House and both my father and my mother met her. That's when they began a personal friendship.”
“They met together many, many times after that.”
Although the Queen’s position prevented her from publicly endorsing Billy Graham’s crusades, she invited him to preach for the royal family on several occasions at Windsor and Sandringham.
After those encounters, Graham said his father would often describe the Queen as “very normal and humble”.
In 2001, Billy Graham became the first clergyman outside the Commonwealth to receive an honorary British knighthood.
At the time, the late evangelist was ill and could not travel to the UK to receive it but the monarch arranged for the British ambassador in Washington do it for her, Graham said.
“She arranged for the British Embassy in Washington to hold a kind of a state dinner for my father at the embassy and the ambassador at that time presented this knighthood to him, and it was for the proclamation of the Gospel.
“That's what she gave it to him for. For carrying out the Great Commission. And I think that meant so much to my father that she recognised his role and his carrying out the Great Commission,” he continued.
Billy Graham would conclude his crusades in 2005.
When asked about King Charles and the role he will play in protecting the Christian faith, Graham said he hopes and prays King Charles “has put his faith and trust in Jesus Christ” like his mother did.
“I’ve heard that he's been very outspoken on many moral issues. And I appreciate that very much about him. I don't know a whole lot about his faith, but I can promise you, he had a lot of influence from his mother.”
You can listen to the full interview here: