Here’s a collection of links about David Wilkerson, who was killed in a car accident yesterday.
He founded the Time Square Church [sic], now a non-denominational megachurch of 8,000 members, back when this was a crossroads of iniquity, not a place where the Christian Cross was much discussed among X-rated establishments. And Wilkerson founded a faith-based program to wean addicts off drugs. Known as Teen Challenge, it now has branches worldwide.
As a writer and an evangelist, Wilkerson was “influential” long before Time Magazine annual list of the names with clout in culture, politics and entertainment. …
At [Christianity Today], the comments roll along. They say things such as “Forever grateful,” and “Saved my life.” and one woman wrote, “Because of his ministry I am no longer a heroin addict but a Pastor in San Angelo, TX., reaching out to other drug addicts and lost souls!” says another.
Now the [Hellinger Theater] marquee proclaims NONDE-NOMINATIONAL TIMES SQUARE CHURCH. THE REAL REVIVAL ON BROADWAY! And the house attracts a mixed bag of congregants ranging from middle-class families to the homeless, prostitutes, drug addicts and AIDS sufferers, all drawn by four-a-week, 2½-hour services and no-nonsense sermons. “I never considered myself a great preacher—I’m a communicator,” Wilkerson says, and his low-key approach sharply contrasts with that of other evangelists. A few years ago he warned his friend Jimmy Swaggart that he feared God was about to shut Swaggart’s flamboyant act down, and he now says that all the fundamentalist “one-man shows are over. The people won’t have it.”
Times Square Church Founder David Wilkerson Dies in Accident (Christian Post)
Wilkerson founded Times Square Church in 1986 when he walked down 42nd street at midnight and his heart was broken over the prostitutes, pimps, runaways, drug addicts, hustlers, and X-rated movie houses he saw.
“I saw 9-, 10- and 11-year-old kids bombed on crack cocaine. I walked down 42nd Street and they were selling crack. Len Bias, the famous basketball player, had just died of a crack overdose, and the pusher was yelling, ‘Hey, I’ve got the stuff that killed Len,’” recalled Wilkerson, according to the Times Square Church website.
“I wept and prayed, ‘God, you’ve got to raise up a testimony in this hellish place … The answer was not what I wanted to hear: ‘Well, you know the city. You’ve been here. You do it.’”
Dad’s last mission on earth was to be an advocate for the poorest of the poor—to provide relief and support for hungry children and widows and orphans. After founding Teen Challenge, World Challenge and Times Square Church, he sought to feed starving children in the most impoverished countries in the world. Today, Please Pass the Bread is saving the lives of thousands of children, through 56 outreaches in 8 countries.
Like King David of old, after having served God’s purpose, he died. I know if my father were able to encourage you with his words today, he would invite you to give your all to Jesus, to love God deeply and to give yourself away to the needs of others.
“On that day, America, there can be no doubt, lost a saint.”
More to come…