Obadiah Franklin was like most ministers, wearing a three piece suit while preaching from a pulpit. Now, he’s not. He said God told him about four years ago to leave the building and his suits and take up the cross to pray for entire cities.

He was in Bridge City last week as part of his effort to preach to the Golden Triangle.
He’s known as “The man in reds” and has been to more than 400 cities to spread the word of God at busy city intersections. He carries a life-size cross and dresses from head to toe in red. The red signifies the blood of Christ. 

As he stands on the street, he looks like a living sculpture. People who stop to find out what he is doing hear the story of how he was led to preaching in “the church of the sidewalk, church of the highway.”

“Eighty percent of the people do not attend any church on a regular basis,”  Franklin said. “Ninety-six percent of the pastors are only preaching to four percent of the people.” Busy intersections are the best place to reach the majority of people in a city. Sometimes, just driving by him has rekindled faith.

His presence was an affirmation of a miracle in the case of Elvis Wade, an impersonator of Elvis Presley who was singing as “The King” long before Presley died.
Wade and his wife, Sandy Posey, were on their way to an engagement and came upon a narrow, two lane, bridge at a high rate of speed. At the same time, a semi-tractor trailer carrying a wide FEMA trailer also entered the bridge. It was inevitable that they were about to be in a serious accident, possibly fatal.

 It was so fast, all they had time for was to cry out “God have mercy.” Miraculously they emerged on the other side of the bridge. The first thing they saw at the bottom of the bridge was a man dressed in red, kneeling, praying beneath a red cross. They knew they had just experienced a miracle.

Wade and Franklin became good friends and stay in touch. Wade is also a minister who testifies to his audiences.

According to Franklin’s website, “He has appeared on “The O’Reilly Factor” on Fox New, ABC, CBS, NBC Nightly News, Christianity Today, CTN, TBN, and many live television and radio talk shows. Newspapers have written about him. He is often invited into churches, public and Christian schools both as a motivational speaker as well a minister.” Franklin has preached to churches as small as seven people and to crowds as large as 4,000.

Traveling the country, Franklin is homeless. He travels with the clothes on his back and his cross. He now has a truck that four churches got together and gave him. He lives in faith that God will provide his needs and plans on doing this the rest of his days unless God gives him other instructions.

He said that little over a year ago, God told him to, “pray for 27 cities in an area called the Golden Triangle.” For two and a half weeks last year, Franklin would come to The Triangle in between other stops. This year, he has been traveling in and out of the Triangle for the last three months. Bridge City was number 26 on the list. Winnie finishes up the 27 cities. Saturday and Sunday, Franklin preached at South Liberty.

He will be leaving Texas and heading to Tennessee to carry on his ministry.

If you would like to find out more about his ministry or would like to donate to his cause, visit his website: mapjesus.com.

You can reach Franklin 24 hours a day by cell phone at 863-258-8570 or e-mail him at obadiah.franklin@hotmail.com. Sometimes he doesn’t hear the phone ring during the day at busy intersections, so if people leave a message, he returns their calls.

About Penny LeLeux

Penny has worked at The Record Newspapers since 2006. A member of the editorial staff, she has "done everything but print it." Most frequently she writes entertainment reviews and human interest stories, with a little paranormal thrown in from time to time.She has been a lifelong member of the Orangefield community.