T. L. Osborn
|T. L. Osborn|
T. L. Osborn, 2001
|Born||Tommy Lee Osborn
December 23, 1923
Grady County, Oklahoma, U.S.
|Died||February 14, 2013
Tulsa, Oklahoma, U.S.
|Cause of death||Natural causes|
|Occupation||Evangelist, singer, author, teacher and designer|
|Known for||Author of books on Worldwide Miracles-Evangelism and Soul Winning Awakening in the Developing Nations|
|Notable work||Healing The Sick|
|Television||Good News Daily|
|Political party||Liberal conservative|
|Spouse(s)||Daisy Washburn (m. 1942–1995; her death)|
|Parent(s)||Charles Richard Osborn
Mary Brown Osborn
Tommy Lee "T.L." Osborn (December 23, 1923 – February 14, 2013) was an American Pentecostal evangelist, singer, author and teacher, whose established ministry was based in Tulsa, Oklahoma. In his six decades of ministry, he hosted the Good News Today program, who was also best known for his mass-miracle ministry to millions. He was also the first missionary evangelist to attend open fields or parks, in non-Christian nations, to proclaim Christ and to pray for miracles as proof that "He is Alive."
Tommy Lee Osborn was born on December 23, 1923, on the small family potato farm, in Grady County, Oklahoma, to who was the seventh and youngest son of thirteen children, born to Charles Richard Osborn (1883–1966) and his wife Mary (née Brown) (1885–1951). Ironically, like Osborn himself, his father was also the seventh son, who was also a nonpracticing traditional Baptist, "That's supposed to mean something," Osborn joked, "Turns out, it did mean something." He said in one of his sermons, that his parents were actually musicians, as did several of his brothers and sisters. He started doing music at a very young age. Growing up for the latter half of the 1920s, he and his large family struggled through the depression years. In 1930, as the new decade approached, when Osborn was only 6, he and his family had moved to Skedee, Oklahoma, in search of another farm. At a church in Sand Springs, Oklahoma, he met an unfamiliar televangelist, Oral Roberts, who would become his lifelong friend, for over 70 years, until Roberts's own death in 2009. Osborn would frequently go with Roberts to help with evangelical meetings, as Roberts did most of the preaching, Osborn did everything else, which included playing the accordion as well as the piano, for the musical part of the meetings. He also testified that he was converted as a Christian, in 1937, when Osborn was 13, his older brother took him to a Pentecostal church in Mannford. When each and every one of his brothers had moved out, Osborn himself was the only boy, there, still at his parents' house, to help his 60-year-old father on the potato farm. He admitted that he was reluctant, even scared to get his father's permission to move out of his parents' house, and began traveling. While sorting potatoes in the cellar, the fateful day came when he was greatly surprised that his father said "yes."
In 1939, at 15, Osborn began milking the cows, as he was beginning to cry. He went down on his knees, praying and asking God what it was really about. The Lord told him to be an evangelist, he laughed and cried at the same time, not understanding what was happening to him. At the same time, he dropped out of junior high school, completing eighth grade, who started hitting the road with E.M. Dillard, a traveling evangelist responsible for holding evangelistic meetings, who, at the same time, he was also in charge of helping out and handling the youth services in the evening. He traveled with Dillard through three states, being the last one which was California, where he met Daisy Washburn Osborn, in Los Banos, California, at age 17 in 1941, at one of the meetings, and fell in love, immediately.
On April 5, 1942, Osborn married graduating high school student and farmer's girl, Daisy Washburn Osborn (born September 23, 1924 in Merced, California). He was 18, and she was only 17, going on 18, later that same year, and shortly thereafter they set out on a life of ministry and missionary travel with a trip to India at the age of 21. They also carried the Gospel of Christ to tens of millions of people all over the world, declaring with faith and confidence. They also worked at Lucknow, but their ministry could not bring fruit due to lack of people's faith that Bible is the Word of God. Their mission lasted less than a year in India, and returned home with critical family sickness. Together, the Osborns were the parents of an only daughter, LaDonna Osborn (b. March 13, 1947), who were raised with her parents, on the platforms of global mass miracle evangelism.
The Osborns first gained notice shortly after returning from India as evangelists on the Big Tent Revival circuit in the United States and Canada, where they preached to audiences often numbering over 10,000 in open-air meetings and under large tents in settings such as fair grounds and stadiums. Other young contemporary evangelists of the time such as Oral Roberts, Billy Graham, Jack Coe, R.W. Schambach and A.A. Allen were also on the circuit. The Osborns emphasised the love and compassion of God, rather than the "fire and brimstone" commonly used by evangelists of the era, and used supernatural healing in their meetings.
By the early 1950s, their emphasis began to shift more and more toward international missions. They began to hold large crusades in Latin America, Asia, and Africa, where crowds began to grow rapidly and at times exceeded 100,000. After Osborn's crusades in Thailand in 1956 and Uganda in 1957, Pastor Fred Wantaate of Makerere Full Gospel Church said that "after that crusade in Mombasa, the fountain of the river of Pentecostalism spread in the heart of East Africa". Around that same time, he also met another unfamiliar televangelist, Marilyn Hickey, 8 years Osborn's junior, and her new husband, Wallace, when the young couple both had traveled around in her husband's car, doing tent revival meetings, in town, who got to heal some people with him. He also became lifelong friends with her family, until she lost him, just 4 months after she lost Wallace. The most coincidental thing is she was also a guest-speaker at one of the conferences in which Osborn held.
Over the course of the next 5 decades the team traveled to more than 70 countries and reached millions of people. They created prolific quantities of missionary evangelism and training materials, some of which were translated into more than 80 languages.
Osborn's wife of 53 years, Daisy Osborn, died of natural causes in Tulsa, Oklahoma, on May 27, 1995, at age 70. Thereafter, he continued to travel and conduct crusades around the world, for over 15 years. Compared to his widow, Osborn also died of natural causes on February 14, 2013, at the age of 89. According to his daughter, LaDonna, though he was primarily healthy, his body was weakened just a few days before, that he stopped breathing. He was interred next to his wife at the Memorial Park Cemetery in Tulsa, Oklahoma (the same cemetery where Oral Roberts was interred, nearly 4 years earlier). Osborn was survived by 1 daughter, 3 of 4 grandchildren and 3 great-grandchildren.
Osborn's daughter LaDonna Osborn continues to operate the ministry founded by her parents, including leading international crusades in the developing world every year. His grandson Tommy Ray O'Dell, has also followed in his grandfather's footsteps and has a ministry focused on evangelism and education in Asia, Africa, and Europe, and like his grandfather often draws large crowds. It has been said that miracles took place in his services.
- Healing The Sick
- God’s Love Plan
- The Good Life
- The Message That Works
- The Purpose of Pentecost
- How To Enjoy Plenty
- Join This Chariot
- "Deaths - 2/16/2013". Tulsa World. Retrieved 2013-02-16.
- "Evangelist, Crusade Focusing on Atheism". The Hartford Courant. Hartford, Conn. June 21, 1969. Retrieved February 6, 2010.
- "Le "pasteur miracle" américain attire en masse les évangéliques". Le Figaro (in French). Paris. August 28, 2006. Retrieved February 6, 2010.
- Eric Bureau, Carole Sterlé and Laure Pelé (August 28, 2006). "5 000 fidèles pour la croisade évangélique". Le Parisien (in French). Paris. Retrieved February 6, 2010.
- "How TL Osborn Really To Touch And Shake". Gospel Epistle. November 2015. Retrieved February 23, 2016.
- "Biography of T.L. Osborn". Healing And Revival. 2010. Retrieved February 22, 2016.
- "TL Osborn Dies at 89". Z3News.com. 2013-02-16. Retrieved February 22, 2016.
- Lumu, David Tash (January 20, 2010). "50 years of Pentecostalism in Uganda — Sizzling Faith". The Observer. Uganda. Retrieved February 6, 2010.