Graham's body to lie in honor at Capitol

Pauline Gross
February 24, 2018

Graham who was diagnosed with Parkinson's like symptoms, died at his home in Montreat, North Carolina, at the age of 99.

Graham's coffin is made of plywood, lined with a mattress pad and adorned with a wooden cross, a spokesman for the family said.

Before his death, Rev. Billy Graham chose one of his favorite Scripture verses from the Bible to be placed on his grave marker.

Ryan says he's inviting members of Congress and the public to pay their respects to the man called "American's Pastor" on February 28 and March 1.

The rare honour of placing an American's remains in the Capitol is usually reserved for USA presidents, military officials and politicians. A ceremony featuring congressional leaders was being prepared, Ryan said.

Graham became the de facto White House chaplain to several United States presidents, most famously Richard Nixon.

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Graham is reported to have persuaded over 3 million people to commit their lives to Christianity and his preaching was heard in 185 of the world's 195 countries, according to the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association.

An invitation-only funeral is scheduled for noon March 2 in Charlotte.

"America's Pastor" will be laid to rest March 2 at the foot of a cross-shaped walkway at the worldwide headquarters of his evangelical empire in Charlotte, buried in a simple prison-made plywood coffin next to his wife, Ruth, who died in 2007.

The service will be held under a tent in the main parking lot of the Billy Graham Library.

Earlier Thursday, U.S. House Speaker Paul Ryan says the Rev. Billy Graham's body will lie in honor in the U.S. Capitol Rotunda for two days next week.

Other reports by GizPress

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