Franklin pastor met Oral Roberts days before his death

Published 8:45 am Friday, December 18, 2009

FRANKLIN—A Franklin pastor was among a group of ministers who met with televangelist Oral Roberts just days before his death.

Dr. Peggy Scott, senior pastor of Fellowship Around the Word Church and president of Peggy Scott Ministries, traveled to Newport Beach, Calif., to meet with the ailing Roberts at his home on Dec. 5. He died Tuesday at age 91.

“He was very strong on that day,” Scott said. “It was very interesting because he kept stressing to us not to try to be like him but to be what God called us to be.”

She said Roberts, one of the first evangelists to effectively use television to spread his faith, gave the ministers copies of two of his most recent books: “When You See the Invisible You Can Do the Impossible” and “The Miracle of Seed-Faith” with Todd Coontz. He also talked about his life — from his “miraculous healing” from tuberculosis as a teenager to the deaths of his wife and two of his children. He also spoke about his critics.

In the 1940s, Roberts began conducting “healing” crusades across the country in tents, and in the 1950s he introduced television cameras to the services, eventually reaching people around the world. In 1963, Roberts established Oral Roberts University in Tulsa, Okla.

Roberts’ claims of healing the sick and even raising the dead, as well as some controversial fundraising techniques, drew sharp criticism.

“He did not allow the criticism to keep him from obeying God,” Scott said.

“It was just a wonderful time,” she said of the meeting. “It’s something that I will always cherish.”