The Billy Graham Library Celebrates Christ’s Birth

By   •   December 8, 2023

This special event runs through Dec. 23. Reservations are required and spots are filling up fast. Make your reservation today.

When Billy Graham Library visitors drive onto the grounds for Christmas at the Library, they hear jingle bells ringing with the rhythmic sound of horses’ hooves as they pull carriages through festive lights.

What You Need to Know

  • The Billy Graham Library opens at 9:30 a.m. and is closed on Sundays. Admission and parking are free.
  • Christmas activities are Monday through Thursday, 5 p.m.–9 p.m.; and Friday and Saturday, 5 p.m.–10 p.m. Reservations required.
  • Carriage rides: $12 for adults; $6 for children under 12.
  • Pet the animals in the live nativity from 11 a.m.–1 p.m. Thursday through Saturday.

The beautiful scene sets the stage for telling the world’s greatest story—the birth of of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ more than 2,000 years ago.

On Tuesday night, Sarah and Jesse Hearn came with their four children, ages 6 months to 7 years old.

They were most excited about Christmas story time and the live nativity, a depiction of the night Jesus Christ was born in Bethlehem.

“In today’s world, it’s something wholesome,” Sarah said. “They’ll be taught something that’s real and true.”

Kristen Taylor drove from Spartanburg, South Carolina, with her daughter, Ellie.

“We were kind of surprised by the kangaroo,” she said, referring to the unique animal among the donkeys, sheep, goats, and camels in the nativity.

“That was a fun treat.”

Hank, an Australian red kangaroo, is one of many animals in the live nativity.

This is the Library’s 16th year welcoming guests from around the world. For many, it’s an annual tradition, but for Michele Bougard and her son, Jason, it was their first time.

“When I walked into the Library, the [24-foot Christmas] tree and everything was just so beautiful—and then the carolers started.

“I got goosebumps,” she said. “It brought tears to my eyes to have everyone singing, even [the] guests.” It took her back to childhood, she said.

Michele loved that the focus was right where it should be—on Jesus’ birth—a much needed reminder in our culture today.

“[The message] was ‘Merry Christmas’ instead of ‘Happy Holidays,’” she said.

“I really did enjoy that because sometimes you feel out of step with the world, or irrelevant.”

During each night of Christmas at the Library, carolers sing Christmas songs at 6:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.

The Peace of God

Through the years, many visitors have shared how they’ve felt the peace and presence of God as they walk onto the Library grounds.

Terry and Becky Grow, a missionary couple, had always wanted to visit the Library but were busy ministering overseas in China, Africa, Jordan, or Israel.

This year, they finally made it.

“I’m here for the presence of the Lord,” Becky said on her way in.

In The Journey of Faith tour, visitors not only learn about Billy Graham’s faith and global ministry, but most importantly, they hear God’s Word and discover the sacrifice that His Son, Jesus Christ, made on the cross.

During December, families also hear the Christmas story told over a speaker at the live nativity, and children can hear more during story time on the heated patio.

As the night drew to a close, Terry and Becky boarded a shuttle bus to return to their car.

Through happy tears, Becky recalled what the experience had meant to her: “Life-changing,” she said, shaking her head. “The Spirit of the Lord is here.”

Invite someone who hasn’t heard the Good News to come to the Library through December 23 for Christmas festivities.

Get more details about Christmas at the Library.