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Franklin Graham Praises 'Close Friend' Greta Van Susteren For Making Forbes' List of Most Powerful Women

( [email protected] ) Jun 07, 2016 11:14 AM EDT
Franklin Graham has congratulated his friend, Fox News host Greta Van Susteren, for being included on the Forbes' list of "The World's 100 Most Powerful Women" for the sixth time.
Franklin Graham appears alongside Fox News host Greta Van Susteren and her husband, John Coale. Samaritan's Purse

Franklin Graham has congratulated his friend, Fox News host Greta Van Susteren, for being included on the Forbes' list of "The World's 100 Most Powerful Women" for the sixth time.

Van Susteren, the host of On the Record w/ Greta Van Susteren and the longest-running cable news anchor in the U.S., ranked number 94 on the list, which represents "the smartest and toughest female business leaders, entrepreneurs, investors, scientists, philanthropists and CEOs making their mark in the world today."

In its list published Monday, Forbes named German chancellor Angela Merkel the "most powerful woman" in the world, followed by Hillary Clinton. While Van Susteren, 61, is the only news person in the top 100, women in media include Oprah Winfrey at number 21 and Arianna Huffington at number 70.

On Monday, Graham, head of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association and Samaritan's Purse, took to Facebook to congratulate Van Susteren.

"Greta stands out because she uses her influence and her voice to shine a spotlight on people who need help," he wrote.

Van Susteren and her husband, John Coale, who wed in 1988, both adhere to Scientology, a controversial religion founded by American science fiction writer L. Ron Hubbard which "seeks self-knowledge and spiritual fulfillment through graded courses of study and training."

Despite their religious differences, both Franklin Graham and his father, renowned evangelist Billy Graham, have referred to Coale and Van Susteren as "close friends." The elder Graham has also expressed admiration for Coale's strength and courage in his book, "The Reason For My Hope."

Last April, Franklin Graham took to Facebook to ask for prayers for Coale ahead of open heart surgery and referred to both Coale and Van Susteren as "great friends and supporters of Samaritan's Purse."

Several years ago, Van Susteren and Coale attended Billy Graham's 90th birthday party, and in March, the pair traveled alongside Franklin Graham to Myanmar, formerly known as Burma, where the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association will hold a Crusade at the end of next year.

In November, Coale and Van Susteren accompanied the younger Graham to Cambodia ten months after installing an irrigation system for 230 villagers to help alleviate hardship caused by the droughts.

"Helping others is fun - and comes in all forms," Van Susteren said at the time. "It can be traveling 1/2 across the world to build an irrigation system - or it can be visiting a lonely elderly person in your apartment building or even just giving someone a ride who needs one. Helping of all types is very valuable. All it takes is doing it. It is so enriching to help."

In addition to her humanitarian work, Van Susteren is currently is penning a book on best social media practices, which will be published by Simon & Schuster in 2017.