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President Trump attends funeral for Billy Graham

President Trump attends funeral for Billy Graham

Hamblen also performed at the 1949 Los Angeles tent revival that helped launch Graham's career and became known as the "Canvas Cathedral".

After more than a week of mourning and memorials, "America's Pastor", Reverend Billy Graham, was laid to rest Friday at his library in Charlotte.

By his final crusade in 2005 in New York City, he had preached in person to more than 210 million people worldwide.

A private funeral service will be held at the Billy Graham Library where about 2,300 invited guests are expected to attend.

Exit polls showed that about 80 percent of white evangelical voters voted for the Trump-Pence ticket - the largest vote for a Republican presidential candidate since 2004, when such voters overwhelmingly chose President George W. Bush by a margin of 78 percent to 21 percent. "There weren't two Billy Grahams", local newspaper the Charlotte Observer quoted him as saying.

Billy Graham's children have remembered "America's Pastor" as a man living his life at home as he preached it in stadiums, with a personable humility and an unwavering focus on his faith.

Franklin Graham, who delivered the main funeral message, said all of those qualities were part of the whole.

Billy Graham died last week, he was 99. It was created by the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association.

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Famed southern gospel group the Gaither Vocal Band sang the traditional Christian hymn "Because He Lives", one of Rev. "But I think when he died, that was something very strategic from Heaven's point of view", said his daughter Anne Graham Lotz.

He said that, "the Billy Graham that the world saw on television, the Billy Graham that the world saw in the big stadium was the same Billy Graham that we saw at home".

Graham's headstone will carry his name, dates of birth and death and the inscription "Preacher of the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ" above the Bible reference "John 14:6".

Graham was a lifelong registered Democrat, and although Franklin Graham said his father had voted in the 2016 presidential election, he declined to say for whom.

President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence will attend the funeral and will be escorted by Graham's grandson, a Major in the United States Army. Only the sound of rain broke the silence of the pallbearers, six of Graham's grandsons, who guided his simple wooden coffin out of the hearse and began the slow walk toward the Billy Graham Library where it will remain until Friday's funeral.

The service is the culmination of a week of mourning that included Graham lying in honor at the U.S. Capitol rotunda in Washington.

For now, more than a year into Mr. Trump's presidency, the two remain aligned.

Billy Graham's family says the casket was made with no upgrades, and only minor modifications to allow for easy transport. His casket was made of pine by inmates at the Louisiana State Penitentiary at Angola.


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