Monday, May 21, 2018

No Figurehead Founder Part 4 of 4


Among many other initiatives, he recruited the first editor, Carl F. H. Henry, and when the first issue came off the press, sent him a lengthy critique. 
Though constructive and celebratory, his letter was brutally frank—and, as a CT editor recently observed, "he was right about everything in it."

Graham had a sense for what worked with readers, and I personally learned that five decades ago. Not long after he launched CT, he started his own organization's Decision magazine. As a college student, I received a letter from editor Sherwood Wirt saying he planned to include in the first issue my short story that had been published in Youth for Christ magazine. A few months later, Wirt wrote again saying Graham had looked over the layouts and decided the story didn't fit—and he was absolutely right.

Despite his multitude of commitments, Billy managed to keep guiding CT until the end. With his tremendous sixth sense about people and communications, he recruited editors and trustees and communicated regularly with CT's leadership as the organization grew from one magazine to a broad communications ministry. CT continues to resonate with his original vision.
Harold Myra was named publisher of Christianity Today by Graham in 1975. Myra retired as executive chairman in 2007 and is coauthor of The Leadership Secrets of Billy Graham (Zondervan).

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