There were laughs and there were tears at the National Cathedral funeral for former President George H.W. Bush. One particularly emotional moment for his son, former President George W. Bush, was when granddaughter Jenna Bush Hager gave a Bible reading.
Hundreds of dignitaries, heads of state and family members to gather at Washington National Cathedral for state funeral of former Pres. George H.W. Bush. https://t.co/kp2WCvO7K3 pic.twitter.com/vi3Bl4fgll
— ABC News (@ABC) December 5, 2018
“A reading from Revelation to St. John,” she began as she stood in front of the audience. “Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away and the sea was no more.”
“And I saw the holy city, the New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God,” she continued, quoting the New Revised Standard version, “prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.”
The growing emotion was already evident on his dad’s face as she read, “And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “See, the home of God is among mortals. He will dwell with them; they will be His peoples, and God himself will be with them.’”
“He will wipe every tear from their eyes. Death will be no more; mourning and crying and pain will be no more, for the first things have passed away,” Hager continued.
Skipping ahead a verse, she said, “Then He said to me, ‘It is done! I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. To the thirsty I will give water as a gift from the spring of the water of life.’”
Her dad’s face radiated with sorrow but hope as she spoke.
“Those who conquer will inherit these things, and I will be their God and they will be my children,” Hager continued before jumping to the end of the chapter. “And the city has no need of sun or moon to shine on it, for the glory of God is its light, and its lamp is the Lamb.”
“The nations will walk by its light, and the kings of the earth will bring their glory into it. Its gates will never be shut by day — and there will be no night there,” she concluded.
As she walked by the flag-draped casket of her grandfather, she laid her hand on it.
— CNN Politics (@CNNPolitics) December 5, 2018
A couple days earlier, Hager shared a final note she wrote in response to her to the death of her “Gampy.”
A beautiful and touching tribute. https://t.co/8k2ybZbA3h
— Michaela Johnson (@Michaela_J_) December 3, 2018
She penned, “Waking up missing this giant of a man who gave me everything. He taught me and my family about service, family, decency, the power of gentle words and a beautiful heart. I will miss him desperately but so happy he and my grandmother are back together.”
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This brought me such comfort this morning. I had the opportunity to talk with my grandpa about the afterlife. This is what he said: He answered without any hesitation. “Yes, I think about it. I used to be afraid. I used to be scared of dying. I used to worry about death. But now in some ways I look forward to it.” And I started crying. I managed to choke out, “Well, why? What do you look forward to?” And he said, “Well, when I die, I’m going to be reunited with these people that I’ve lost.” And I asked who he hoped to see. He replied, I hope I see Robin, and I hope I see my mom. I haven’t yet figured it out if it will be Robin as the three year old that she was, this kind of chubby, vivacious child or if she’ll come as a middle-aged woman, an older woman. And then he said, “I hope she’s the three-year-old.” Robin was the daughter this giant of a man lost years before to leukemia. The little girl he held tightly: who spoke the phrase I have heard Gampy repeat for my entire life, forever knitting Robin’s voice into the tightly woven fabric of our family: “I love you more than tongue can tell.”
Watch live coverage of the funeral below as it airs on Fox News: