The main purpose of these awards is not to help the recipients, although we do hope they will help the recipients in a variety of ways. The main purpose is to help millions of God’s children in all nations to study the life and work of the recipient; and thereby these millions will be uplifted and inspired toward their own personal spiritual growth.
Another purpose of these awards is to encourage progress in religion by calling attention to the wonderful new research, new revelations and new organizations now arising in each of the world’s religions. Progress is a part of God’s ongoing creative process. Each major religious organization can help by establishing a department devoted to research for progress. Increasing multitudes of blessings now flow from the 50 billion pounds devoted each year to research in the nature sciences. Similar manpower and resources in research on spiritual subjects could lead to even more blessings for mankind. The Templeton Awards are given not for saintliness nor for mere good works but rather for progress in religion.
The Templeton Award is open to every person who worships God. Every person is created by God, is a child of God and the Holy Spirit dwells within each human being. No child of God has yet learned more than one per cent of God’s infinity and therefore each other. The God Spirit is cause and creator of all things visible. So all life on the surface of this one little planet is a reflection of the invisible creative spirit.
The recipient of the award has been selected by distinguished judges from all five major religions worldwide and who serve for a three year period. The Buddhist judge is the Dalai Lama. Mr. Justice P. N. Bhagwati of the Supreme Court of India is a Hindu. The Honourable Philip N. Klutznick, former Secretary of Commerce of the United States, is President of the World Jewish Congress. Senator Orrin Grant Hatch, United States Senator, is a Mormon from Utah. Her Royal Highness The Grand Duchess Josephine of Luxembourg is a Roman Catholic. The Most Reverend Stuart Blanch, Archbishop of York, and Dr. Arthur Robert Peacocke, Dean of Clare College, Cambridge, are Anglicans. Other Christian judges are The Right Honourable Lynden O. Pindling, Prime Minister of the Bahamas, Charles Rickett Fillmore, Chairman of the Unity School of Christianity, and Senator Mark O. Hatfield, United States Senator from Oregon.
When the judges consider each nominee, they ask what did this person do that was new and original. Secondly, was this a new thing of spiritual nature rather than merely humanitarian. Lastly, the judges ask did it result in a great increase in man’s love of God or understanding of God.
This afternoon, His Royal Highness Prince Philip presented the Templeton Prize for 1982 to the Reverend Dr. Graham, founder of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association. Evangelism is a duty for every person who worships God in any form. Dr. Graham has originated more new ideas in evangelism than any living person. He has given the Church around the world a new hope and has contributed vastly to the wider vision and meaning of evangelism. His cooperation with all denominations to involve the statesmen of the world in evangelism has left an indelible mark on Christian history. Dr. Graham will now be introduced to you by the Right Honourable Sir Geoffrey Howe, Chancellor of the Exchequer.