Thousands sign petition calling for national holiday for Billy Graham

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The congregation included President Donald Trump, Vice President Mike Pence and their wives. But, in keeping with Graham's pioneering use of new media, the service also will be streamed live on the BGEA website, with coverage beginning at 10 a.m.

The tent used for the funeral harkens to Billy Graham's beginnings decades ago under "The Canvas Cathedral" - a white canvas tent the pastor used to spread the gospel during a 1949 crusade in downtown Los Angeles. Youngest daughter Ruth told about how she sinned and didn't listen to her father with a hasty marriage, but he was waiting for her with open arms when she realized her mistake.

While Franklin Graham steered clear of politics during his message, the Trumps and Pences were the first guests he welcomed as he began.

Through my dad's ministry and keeping our family in church, I was saved on April 8, 1984.

The lineup of clergy and singers from as near as North Carolina and as far away as Asia, was racially diverse - moreso than the mostly white audience. Graham grew up in a house on a dairy farm in Charlotte on Park Road.

Graham was laid to rest beside his wife, Ruth Bell Graham, on the grounds of the Billy Graham Library on February 2.

On Wednesday and Thursday, Graham's casket lay in honor in the U.S. Capitol Rotunda - a top distinction previously given to only three private citizens.

"For Pete's Sake" was shown in Atlanta, Ga., on a Thursday night in June 1968, and during the invitation following the film, my dad (Ronald A. Jones) walked the aisle and accepted Christ Jesus as his Lord and Saviour.

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

Thousands were in Charlotte on Friday to say goodbye to Graham. "I'll have just changed addresses, that's all'".

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