Billy Graham Honored at US Capitol Memorial Service

Billy Graham

The late evangelist Billy Graham was honored with a special memorial service in the United States Capitol Rotunda on Wednesday morning. The service featured remarks from President Donald Trump, congressional leaders and a performance from Christian musician Michael W. Smith. The full service can be viewed at

"Here lies America's pastor," Speaker of the House Paul Ryan, R-Wis., said in his short message after Graham's casket was carried in and placed in the center of the Rotunda by members of the U.S. military. 

"A man made great not by who he was but by who he served with all of his heart and all of his soul and all of his mind. We give thanks to God for the life and the works of this humble servant now and forever."

Donald Trump honored Graham for his "extraordinary life" and recalled a time when his father, Fred, took the Trump family to see Graham preach at the old Yankee Stadium in New York City in 1957.

"From a large tent in Los Angeles to 100,000 people at Yankee Stadium, to more than 2 million people at Madison Square Garden [in] over 16 weeks in 1957," Trump said. "I remember that because my father said to me, 'Come on son, ... come on mom, let's go see Billy Graham at Yankee Stadium.' And it was something very special."

"Americans came in droves to hear that great young preacher," Trump added. "Fred Trump was a big fan."

Singing "Just As I Am" during the service, Michael W. Smith said he had "no words to fully describe the emotions from this morning. So grateful!" 

Following the news of Rev. Graham's death last week, Michael wrote on his Facebook, "Friend, mentor, counselor, hero, leader, example, pastor - he was so many things to me, making the impact of his passing such a deep hurt. At the same time, I know Billy would be questioning why we grieve. Because he is now in paradise. He is face to face with the Jesus he so loved and served so well." 

Graham will lie in state until Thursday. During this time, members of the public are invited to come and pay their final respects. A formal funeral will be held in Charlotte, North Carolina on Friday.  


Tags : Billy Graham Billy Graham billy graham news billy graham capitol memorial service billy graham death billy graham funeral Michael W. Smith donald trump

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