Preachers

The word ‘preacher’ is derived from the Hebrew word, ‘Qoheleth’. A preacher is someone who publicly delivers orations and discourses on religious or philosophical topics. This individual performs the tasks of a messenger, a minister and also of a herald, but is never in charge of or responsible for the group of people he/she is preaching to, which is an added responsibility for a ‘pastor’. The term ‘preacher’ is not as recognized as ‘pastor’ but is instead given to someone on a tangible basis on the reputation of their speaking skills. A preacher becomes known for conveying effective messages on a dais. There are some who preach exclusively on topics pertaining to religion, while there are others who preach on more spiritual or philosophical themes. Also, there are television preachers in order to be able to reach out to a larger audience in the likelihood of not being able to stand in front of a large public audience and deliver a message. From Imams to Da’ee’s or friars, preachers are prevalent in almost all countries and in almost all the cultures and religions. Here is a list of famous preachers. Go through their biographies, which include trivia, interesting facts, timeline and life history.
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This ranking is based on an algorithm that combines various factors, including the votes of our users and search trends on the internet.

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 1 Joel Osteen

Joel Osteen.
14
Famous As: American Preacher & Televangelist
Birthdate: March 5, 1963
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Houston

Joel Osteen is an American pastor, author, and televangelist. He is one of the most popular televangelists in the world, with his televised sermons being watched by millions of people every week in over 100 countries, including 10 million viewers in the US alone. In 2006, he was named in the 10 Most Fascinating People list published by Barbara Walters.

 2 Anthony of Padua

Anthony of Padua.
6
Famous As: Saint
Birthdate: August 15, 1195
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Lisbon, Portugal
Died: June 13, 1231

Thirteenth-century Portuguese Catholic priest Anthony of Padua was the friar of the Franciscan Order. He is remembered for his self-less devotion to the poor and the sick and is revered as the patron saint of lost items. He was declared a Doctor of the Church in 1946.

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 3 Girolamo Savonarola

Girolamo Savonarola.
4
Famous As: Monk
Birthdate: September 21, 1452
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Ferrara, Italy
Died: May 23, 1498
Distingusihed for his clash against corrupt clergy and with tyrranical rulers, Girolamo Savonarola became a moral dictator of the city of Florence. He earned a reputation for austerity and detested every form of pleasure that earned him powerful enemies.

 4 Jerome

Jerome.
4
Famous As: Priest
Birthdate: March 27, 0347
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Štrigova
Died: December 30, 0420
Latin priest Jerome of Stridon, also known as Saint Jerome, is remembered for translating the Bible into Latin, which came to be known as the Vulgate. Named a Doctor of the Church, he was a secretary to Pope Damascus I and predominantly preached about how women ascetics should behave.
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 5 Cotton Mather

Cotton Mather.
4
Famous As: Church Minister
Birthdate: February 12, 1663
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Boston
Died: February 13, 1728

Cotton Mather is remembered as one of the most significant New England Puritans. However, he exhibited a curious mixture of science and traditions, as he promoted vaccination against smallpox, while supporting the Salem witch trials. He had penned works such as Curiosa Americana and was a Royal Society member.

 6 Ted Haggard

Ted Haggard
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Famous As: Pastor, Priest, Preacher
Birthdate: June 27, 1956
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Yorktown

Ted Haggard is an evangelical pastor who founded New Life Church in Colorado Springs, Colorado. He is also the founder of the Association of Life-Giving Churches. He is against same-sex marriages. In 2006, it was revealed that he had paid a male sex worker for sexual favors and also purchased some illegal drugs from him. 

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 7 Kent Hovind

Kent Hovind
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Famous As: Evangelist
Birthdate: January 15, 1953
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Pensacola, Florida, United States

Kent Hovind is an American tax protester and evangelist. He is credited with establishing Creation Science Evangelism (CSE), which aims at propagating creationism. A controversial personality, Hovind was sentenced to 10 years in prison in 2007 for failing to pay taxes, structuring cash transactions, and obstructing federal agents.

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 8 Abdul Qadir Gilani

Abdul Qadir Gilani
4
Famous As: Preacher
Birthdate: March 17, 1078
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Amol, Iran
Died: February 21, 1166
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 9 Junaid Jamshed

Junaid Jamshed
4
Famous As: Recording artist
Birthdate: September 3, 1964
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Karachi, Sindh, Pakistan
Died: December 7, 2016

 10 Fulton J. Sheen

Fulton J. Sheen.
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Famous As: Archbishop
Birthdate: May 8, 1895
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: El Paso, Illinois
Died: December 9, 1979

Catholic bishop Fulton J. Sheen was also a prominent radio and TV personality. Known for his stint on the NBC radio show The Catholic Hour, he also hosted the popular TV programs Life Is Worth Living and The Bishop Fulton Sheen Show. He also wrote extensively on communism, love, and peace.

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 11 Abu Hamza al-Masri

Abu Hamza al-Masri
4
Famous As: Civil engineer, Engineer, Preacher
Birthdate: April 15, 1958
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Alexandria

 12 James Dobson

James Dobson.
6
Famous As: Writer
Birthdate: April 21, 1936
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Shreveport, Louisiana

The founder of the Focus on the Family, Dr. James Dobson is a qualified psychologist and has also had long stints with a children’s hospital and as a professor of pediatrics. Known for his popular radio program Family Talk, he has penned countless books, such as the bestseller Bringing Up Girls.

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 13 David Berg

David Berg
4
Famous As: Preachers
Birthdate: February 18, 1919
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Oakland, California, United States
Died: October 1, 1994

The founder of the hippie Christian cult named Children of God, or The Family International, religious leader David Berg, was also known as Father David. He was later accused of encouraging pedophilia and asking women to be “Hookers for Christ.” He also communicated with fellow cult members through codes.

 14 John Osteen

John Osteen
3
Famous As: Pastor
Birthdate: August 21, 1921
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Paris, Texas, United States
Died: January 23, 1999

Pastor and televangelist John Osteen is best remembered for his 16-year stint on the show John Osteen. He also established the Lakewood Church in Houston and penned countless books, such as Becoming a Man of Unwavering Faith. His son Joel Osteen followed in his footsteps.

 15 Pema Chodron

Pema Chodron
3
Famous As: Philosopher
Birthdate: July 14, 1936
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: New York City, New York (state) New York, United States

Pema Chodron is an American Tibetan Buddhist and an ordained nun. Born as Deirdre Blomfield-Brown in New York, she began studying with Tibetan Buddhist Lama Chime Rinpoche as a young woman. She eventually became a fully ordained nun or bhikṣuṇī. She is the author of several dozen books and audiobooks. She is the principal teacher at Gampo Abbey. 

 16 Warren Jeffs

Warren Jeffs.
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Famous As: Former President of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ
Birthdate: December 4, 1955
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: San Francisco, California

Wareen Jeffs is the Leader of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ. He is currently in jail after being convicted of sexual assault on minors. Like his father, Warren Jeffs is also notorious for polygamy and presiding over murky affairs at his church. Born prematurely, he appeared in the FBI’s 10 Most Wanted List in 2006 following allegations of arranging marriages of underage girls.

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 17 Father Divine

Father Divine
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Birthdate: 1877 AD
Birthplace: Hutchinson Island
Died: September 10, 1965

African-American religious leader George Baker, better known as Father Divine, founded Peace Mission, a movement that is now considered the basis of the civil rights movement. Father Divine claimed that divine intervention had caused the death of the judge who had sentenced him to prison for arranging meetings in Sayville.

 18 Kenneth Erwin Hagin

Kenneth Erwin Hagin.
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Famous As: Preacher
Birthdate: August 20, 1917
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: McKinney, Texas, United States
Died: September 19, 2003

Christian preacher Kenneth Erwin Hagin is widely remembered as the father of the modern faith movement. He had an almost-70-year stint with the Christian ministry. The founder of The Word of Faith movement, he popularized it through magazines, CDs, and books of the Faith Library Publications.

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 19 C. L. Franklin

C. L. Franklin
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Famous As: Baptist minister
Birthdate: January 22, 1915
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Sunflower County, Mississippi, United States
Died: July 27, 1984

C. L. Franklin was an American civil rights activist and Baptist minister. Dubbed the man with the million-dollar voice, Franklin was renowned for preaching his sermons throughout the country. During the 1950s and 1960s, Franklin worked towards ending prejudicial practices against the black people in Detroit. He is also credited with encouraging his daughter Aretha Franklin to pursue music.

 20 Charles Grandison Finney

Charles Grandison Finney.
3
Famous As: Evangelist
Birthdate: August 29, 1792
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Warren, Connecticut, United States
Died: August 16, 1875

Charles Grandison Finney, dubbed as the Father of Modern Revivalism, began his career with the Presbyterian Church, where his style of preaching fermented spirited revivals. Later, his dissatisfaction with Presbyterian theology led to formation of Broadway Tabernacle and he started promoting abolitionism and equal education for women and blacks. He spent his last years as minister of Oberlin’s First Congregational Church.

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 21 Zakir Naik

Zakir Naik
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Famous As: Physician, Writer, Intellectual, Preacher
Birthdate: October 18, 1965
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Mumbai

Islamic preacher Zakir Naik is also the founder of the Islamic Research Foundation and his own broadcast network, Peace TV. Though a qualified surgeon, he later gained fame as a public speaker. His channel is banned in multiple countries, such as India, Bangladesh, and the UK, for its extremist nature.

 22 Henry Ward Beecher

Henry Ward Beecher.
3
Famous As: Clergyman, Preacher & Abolitionist
Birthdate: June 24, 1813
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Litchfield, Connecticut, U.S
Died: March 8, 1887

Congregational minister Henry Ward Beecher, the eighth child of Reverend Lyman Beecher, was a skilled orator and a prominent Protestant speaker. He was known for anti-slavery stance and his belief in God's love, One of his best works is the pamphlet Seven Lectures to Young Men.

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 23 William Brewster

William Brewster
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Famous As: Preacher
Birthdate: 1568 AD
Birthplace: Scrooby, Nottinghamshire, England
Died: April 10, 1644

William Brewster was an English official. He was among the passengers that traveled in Mayflower from England to the New World. When the ship landed at Plymouth Colony, William Brewster was accepted as the senior elder and hence became the religious leader of the colony. Eventually, he ended up serving as an adviser to Governor William Bradford.

 24 William Booth

William Booth.
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Famous As: Founder of the Salvation Army, Preacher
Birthdate: April 10, 1829
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Sneinton, Nottingham, England
Died: August 20, 1912

Hailed as the Prophet of the Poor, William Booth was the co-founder and the first the General of the Salvation Army, a Christian church known for its world-wide charitable work. Initially a Methodist preacher, he was moved by the plight of the poor and formed the Salvation Army, aiming to deliver salvation by meeting both their physical and spiritual needs.

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 25 William J. Seymour

William J. Seymour
3
Famous As: Preacher
Birthdate: May 2, 1870
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Louisiana
Died: September 28, 1922

William J. Seymour was an African-American holiness preacher. He is credited to have initiated the Azusa Street Revival, an influential event in the rise of the Charismatic and Pentecostal movements. He was a student of the early Pentecostal minister Charles Parham. He played a major role in the spread of Pentecostalism to various parts of America. 

 26 Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale

Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale
6
Birthdate: February 12, 1947
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Moga district
Died: June 6, 1984

 27 Edir Macedo

Edir Macedo
3
Famous As: Theologian, Writer
Birthdate: February 18, 1945
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Rio das Flores

 28 Johann Tetzel

Johann Tetzel
3
Famous As: Preacher
Birthdate: 1465 AD
Birthplace: Pirna, Germany
Died: August 11, 1519
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 29 Adoniram Judson

Adoniram Judson.
3
Famous As: Missionary
Birthdate: August 9, 1788
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Malden
Died: April 12, 1850

Baptist missionary Adoniram Judson is remembered for his long stint in Burma, where he established a church, founded schools, and baptised many people. He also translated the Bible into Burmese and worked on a Burmese-English dictionary. He was also one of the first from America to travel abroad for missionary activities.

 30 Keshab Chunder Sen

Keshab Chunder Sen
5
Famous As: Philosopher
Birthdate: November 19, 1838
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Kolkata, India
Died: January 8, 1884
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 31 Dwight L. Moody

Dwight L. Moody
3
Famous As: Editor, Philosopher, Writer, Evangelist, Hymnwriter
Birthdate: February 5, 1837
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Northfield
Died: December 22, 1899

Dwight L. Moody was an American publisher and evangelist. He is credited with founding the Moody Church which went on to become the most well-known religious outreach of its kind. He gave up his lucrative shoe business to focus solely on revivalism. He played an important role in the Civil War, working with the United States Christian Commission of YMCA.

 32 Ann Lee

Ann Lee
3
Famous As: Religious leader
Birthdate: February 29, 1736
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Manchester, England
Died: September 8, 1784

Ann Lee is remembered as the founder of the Society of Believers in Christ's Second Appearing, also known as the Shakers, for their ritual of shaking during worshipping. Born to a blacksmith in England, she initially worked at a textile mill and later ushered her movement into the U.S.

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 33 Facundo Cabral

Facundo Cabral
3
Famous As: Singer
Birthdate: May 22, 1937
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: La Plata, Buenos Aires, Argentina
Died: July 9, 2011

 34 Praise-God Barebone

Praise-God Barebone
3
Famous As: Preacher
Birthdate: 1598 AD
Birthplace: England
Died: 1679 AD

 35 Lyman Beecher

Lyman Beecher.
3
Famous As: Clergyman
Birthdate: October 12, 1775
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: New Haven
Died: January 10, 1863

Known for his stance against alcoholism, publishing six time-honored sermons on it, Presbyterian minister Lyman Beecher also worked for women’s education. An active participant in theological controversies, adhering to the New School Presbyterian branch of schism, he was once tried for heresy. However, he is equally remembered for fathering thirteen children, seven of whom earned distinction in their chosen field.

 36 Muhammad Metwalli al-Sha'rawi

Muhammad Metwalli al-Sha'rawi
3
Famous As: Cleric
Birthdate: April 15, 1911
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Daqadus, Egypt
Died: June 17, 1998

 37 Hal Lindsey

Hal Lindsey
3
Famous As: Preacher
Birthdate: November 23, 1929
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Houston

Hal Lindsey is an evangelist and Christian writer. He graduated from Dallas Theological Seminary, following which he worked with Campus Crusade for Christ. He was also a Sunday school teacher. He has authored many books, including The Late, Great Planet Earth and Apocalypse Code. He serves on the executive board of Christian Voice and has hosted many Christian TV shows. 

 38 Peter Marshall

Peter Marshall
3
Famous As: Preacher
Birthdate: May 27, 1902
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Coatbridge, Scotland
Died: January 26, 1949

Peter Marshall was a Scottish-American preacher who served as the pastor of the New York Avenue Presbyterian Church. His life and career inspired a biography titled A Man Called Peter. Written by his widow, the book achieved popularity and was later made into a film of the same name. 

 39 John Humphrey Noyes

John Humphrey Noyes
3
Famous As: Preacher
Birthdate: September 3, 1811
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Brattleboro, Vermont, United States
Died: April 13, 1886

John Humphrey Noyes was an American preacher, religious philosopher, and utopian socialist. He was the founder of the Putney, Oneida, and Wallingford Communities. He decided to devote his life to religion at a young age and studied at the Yale Theological Seminary. He was also involved in political activism and helped organize an anti-slavery society in the United States. 

 40 Thomas Müntzer

Thomas Müntzer
3
Famous As: Preacher
Birthdate: 1489 AD
Birthplace: Stolberg, Südharz, Germany
Died: May 27, 1525

Remembered as a radical reformer, Thomas Müntzer was a major force in the German Peasants' War of 1525. Initially a priest and a linguistic specialist, he gradually began representing the middle class and worked toward church reforms. He was eventually executed, and his head wad displayed as a warning.

 41 Thomas Hooker

Thomas Hooker
3
Famous As: Preacher
Birthdate: July 5, 1586
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Marefield, United Kingdom
Died: July 7, 1647

Thomas Hooker was an English colonial leader. Hooker is credited with founding the Colony of Connecticut and is hence referred to as the Father of Connecticut. Thomas Hooker, who played a major role in the development of colonial New England, was one of the founders of the state of Connecticut as well as the city of Hartford.   

 42 Johnny Lee Clary

Johnny Lee Clary
3
Famous As: Theologian
Birthdate: June 18, 1959
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Martinez
Died: October 21, 2014

A prominent 1980s’ wrestling champion, Johnny Lee Clary later came to be known as Johnny Angel. He had been part of the Ku Klux Klan and had also appeared on shows such as Oprah, where he defended racism. He later renounced the Klan and became a Christian evangelist.

 43 Je Tsongkhapa

Je Tsongkhapa
3
Famous As: Teacher
Birthdate: November 21, 1357
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Amdo, Tibet
Died: 1419 AD

 44 Harold Kushner

Harold Kushner
3
Famous As: Rabbi, Writer
Birthdate: April 3, 1935
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Brooklyn, New York City, New York, United States

Harold Kushner is an American rabbi and author. He is best known for his 24-year tenure as the congregational rabbi of Temple Israel of Natick. Kushner is also renowned for writing several books including best-sellers, such as Living a Life That Matters: Resolving the Conflict Between Conscience and Success and When Bad Things Happen to Good People.

 45 Nicholas Ridley

Nicholas Ridley
3
Famous As: Martyr
Birthdate: 1500 AD
Birthplace: South Tynedale, England
Died: October 16, 1555

 46 Bill Bright

Bill Bright
3
Famous As: Evangelist
Birthdate: October 19, 1921
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Coweta, Oklahoma, United States
Died: July 19, 2003

Bill Bright was an American evangelist. He is credited with founding an interdenominational Christian parachurch organization called Campus Crusade for Christ. In 1996, Bill Bright was honored with the $1.1 million Templeton Prize which he donated to support and popularize the spiritual benefits of prayer and fasting.

 47 Pierre Vogel

Pierre Vogel
3
Famous As: Preacher
Birthdate: July 20, 1978
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Frechen, Germany

 48 Edward Hicks

Edward Hicks
3
Famous As: Painter
Birthdate: April 4, 1780
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Langhorne, Pennsylvania, United States
Died: August 23, 1849

Initially a Quaker preacher, folk painter Edward Hicks is best remembered for his work The Peaceable Kingdom and its 100 versions. His interest in painting perhaps stemmed for his early years as a coach painter. He mostly depicted the landscapes of New York and Pennsylvania. His works also featured animals.

 49 Richard of Chichester

Richard of Chichester
3
Famous As: Saint
Birthdate: 1197 AD
Birthplace: Droitwich, England
Died: April 3, 1253

 50 John Cotton

John Cotton.
3
Famous As: Theologian & Preacher
Birthdate: December 4, 1585
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Derbyshire, England
Died: December 23, 1652
John Cotton was a clergyman in the American and England colonies. He was widely regarded as the greatest theologian and minister of the Massachusetts Bay Colony. A prolific writer, John Cotton is credited with writing the first known children's book by an American, Spiritual Milk for Boston Babes.
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