His Sights Set on the Kingdom

By   •   August 30, 2013

Blind Library volunteer with dog
Library volunteer Michael Baggett and his guide dog, Mason.

Michael Baggett shook hands with Billy Graham at a San Antonio, Texas, Crusade in 1993, but has never seen the evangelist’s face. Mike, a Billy Graham Library volunteer, has been legally blind all his life.

“Please walk this way,” Mike tells Library visitors on a sunny Saturday. Inside, he offers directions as they enter the Journey of Faith tour. “Silence your cellphone. No flash photography.”

Mike, 51, occasionally sees shadows, shapes and light. He can’t see the visitors, but hears people approaching and greets them.

Mike works at a company that employs the blind. His co-worker, Stacy Byram, is also legally blind and told Mike about volunteering at the Library. Mike had help filling out the volunteer application and started volunteering two years ago. Stacy volunteers, too, but she isn’t Mike’s only friend there.

Mike’s voicemail message tells friends they have reached “Michael and Mason.” Mason, a 9-year-old black lab, is Mike’s guide dog. The two have been inseparable for seven years, but sometimes Mason sleeps on the job. He sprawls out on the floor while Mike stands at his post in the Library, and some visitors never notice the sleeping dog. Others ask to pet him.

More than two decades ago, when Mike was in his late-20s, volunteering for an evangelistic ministry was far from his mind. As he puts it, he was “going down the dark road” and drank too much. He was living in San Antonio where he met a family who invited him to church.

Shortly after that, in 1993, Mike attended the San Antonio Crusade with a friend. They went to the front when an invitation was given at the end. Mike says God used Billy Graham to help turn his life around.

Mike’s transition wasn’t immediate, but he has seen his faith grow. He first experienced the Library’s Journey of Faith tour with a Sunday school class in 2008. The Sunday school teacher explained the different rooms to him, and he enjoyed hearing the videos. The tour shows how God used Billy Graham to reach the world with the Gospel.

Today, Mike takes public transportation to volunteer at the Library twice a month and give others a chance to experience the Journey of Faith.

“I like working and doing things for the Lord,” he said.

Thousands of people have given their lives to Christ at the Billy Graham Library. You can support the Library by becoming a Friend of the Library. Click here to find out how.

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  1. Amy says:

    Wonderful article! Stacy Byram was my best friend in high school. God is so good! 🙂

  2. Beverly says:

    amazing God! keep inspiring people Mike. God bless you!

  3. Cindy says:

    I think that it is a very heart- warming story!!! Mike is a wonderful man!!! He is such a blessing to others!!!! May God Bless You, Mike, and Mason, too!!! Love in Christ, Cindy Moor

  4. Bryan says:

    You are an inspiration from God! God bless

  5. Doris says:

    What a sweet story!