“When I arrived at the airport, Mr. Graham himself was waiting for me. I expected to be chauffeured in a Rolls Royce or at least a Mercedes, but we got in his Oldsmobile and he drove it himself. I couldn’t believe he came to the airport driving his own car. When we approached his home I thought he would live on a thousand acre farm and we drove up to his house of made of logs. No mansion with crystal chandeliers and gold carpets, it was the kind of house a man of God would live in. I look up to him.” (Billy Graham: God’s Ambassador)
MONTREAT, NC (Associated Press, 9-17-79). Muhammad went to the mountain and apparently he liked what he saw.
Muhammad Ali, three-time world heavyweight boxing champion, spent several hours Sunday with Billy Graham in the evangelist’s home atop a mountain in Montreat. Ali said his visit was one of “looking and searching” in an effort to “learn more about other people.”
Sitting on the porch of Graham’s home, Ali looked at the evangelist and said, “He comes before me, I’m just a boxer–famous and all that…but he leads people to God. I look up to him.”
“I’ve always admired Mr. Graham, I’m a Muslim and he’s a Christian, but there is so much truth in the message he gives, Americanism, repentance, things about government and country–and truth. I always said if I was a Christian, I’d want to be a Christian like him.”
Ali spent the afternoon talking with Graham, then left for Louisville, KY, to address the National Conference of Christians and Jews on Monday. Ali retired from the ring recently and said he was “trying to figure out what to do now.”