Newark Star-Ledger Profiles Evangelist Franklin Graham’s Focus on HIV/AIDS
The Newark Star-Ledger on Sunday profiled evangelist Franklin Graham's effort to boost evangelicals' awareness about HIV/AIDS and people affected by the epidemic. Graham, the son of evangelist Billy Graham, said he hopes to devote $5 million of the 2003 budget for his relief agency, Samaritan's Purse, to HIV/AIDS efforts and boost the agency's HIV/AIDS spending by 30% each year. Graham urged evangelical churches to make HIV/AIDS a "budgetary item" on their agendas, although he acknowledged that raising money for AIDS is difficult in the face of the country's focus on combating terrorism. Graham noted that African hospitals operated by Samaritan's Purse have seen an increase in people with medical problems related to HIV/AIDS. "I think as a Christian I should do everything in my life to try to save life. ... I think we ought to be on the forefront of [HIV/AIDS]," Graham said. He stated that although he may join secular organizations in their HIV/AIDS efforts, any program he would support must maintain the belief that "sex is appropriate only within heterosexual marriage" and emphasize abstinence over condom use as a way to prevent disease (Banks, Newark Star-Ledger, 9/1).This is part of the Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.