By Bob Smietana
Billy Graham may be gone from this world, but you can hear his voice on the radio—at least for the next few weeks.
A Billy Graham tribute channel on SiriusXM will broadcast Graham’s sermons around the clock at least through Easter.
The channel is a collaboration between SiriusXM and the Charlotte, North Carolina-based Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, according to the Charlotte Observer.
It will feature Graham’s sermons, interspersed with recollections from his son Franklin and remarks from former U.S. presidents from Jimmy Carter to George W. Bush, according to the channel description on SiriusXM.
The newest incarnation of the channel is set to run until April 3 but might be extended, Franklin Graham told the Observer. “We hope (SiriusXM) will decide to keep the Billy Graham channel on the air,” he said.
An archive of more than 1,600 Graham’s radio sermons is also available online.
Graham’s not the only legendary preacher whose radio ministry lives on, according to Religion News Service. Some have continued for decades after their deaths.
Adrian Rogers, longtime pastor at Bellevue Baptist Church near Memphis, Tennessee, who died in 2005. His “Love Worth Finding” radio program, launched in 1987, is still broadcast on the radio and online.
James Kennedy, founder of Coral Ridge Ministries, who died in 2007. His “Truths That Transform” program aired for years on the radio after his death and is still broadcast online.
Charles Fuller, founder of Fuller Theological Seminary, who died in 1968. He hosted the Old Fashioned Revival Hour from 1937 to 1968. The show is still broadcast by Alive in Christ Radio.
Vernon McGee, former pastor of Church of the Open Door in Los Angeles, who died in 1988. McGee founded several radio broadcasts, including “Thru the Bible,” which continues.
The late Bill Skelton, who ran “Love Worth Finding” after Rogers’ death, told RNS it’s no surprise some long-dead preachers still connect with a large audience.
“I think as long as people turn on their radio and turn on their television sets and hear somebody teaching and preaching truths that are relevant to this life, the fact that he is alive or not is really not the important thing.”
Skelton, a former board chair of the National Religious Broadcasters, died himself in 2012.
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BOB SMIETANA (@BobSmietana) is senior writer at Facts & Trends.