‘I’m Just One of Millions’: Former President Bill Clinton Thanks Billy Graham

By   •   February 27, 2018

President Clinton and Franklin Graham
On Tuesday, former President Bill Clinton became the second U.S. president to visit the grounds of the Billy Graham Library in Charlotte, North Carolina, where Mr. Graham’s body was lying in repose. He met with Franklin Graham for about 45 minutes before greeting other family members and addressing media.
President Clinton greets Franklin Graham
President Clinton and Franklin Graham greet each other in front of the Library with smiles and a handshake.
President Clinton with microphone
“I would like to thank Franklin Graham and the Graham family for making me feel welcome,” President Clinton said. “I’m just one of millions, maybe hundreds of millions of people, who in their own way will find some way to say thank you and goodbye to Billy Graham.” Visit Billy Graham's memorial site to learn more about his life and leave condolences.
Franklin Graham talks with President Clinton
Franklin Graham and President Clinton talk on the Library grounds.
President Clinton in front of Library
Clinton was 11 years old when he heard Billy Graham preach in his hometown of Little Rock, Arkansas. He had no idea that three decades later, he would join the evangelist as governor of Arkansas for a 1989 Crusade.
President Clinton and Franklin Graham talk and drink sweet tea
Enjoying sweet tea and reminiscing on Billy Graham's life inside the Graham Family Homeplace.
President Clinton and Franklin Graham pray over Billy Graham's casket
Before President Clinton left, he and Franklin Graham placed their hands on the casket, and prayed.
President Clinton pats Franklin Graham's shoulder
Shortly after Mr. Graham’s passing last Wednesday, Clinton released a statement about him: “Billy has finished his long good race, leaving our world a better place and claiming his place in glory."
President Clinton and Franklin Graham in the Homeplace
“Billy and [his wife] Ruth Graham have practiced the ministry of … being friends with presidents of both parties, counseling them in countless ways, always completely private, always completely genuine,” President Clinton once said. “We sat in the Oval Office reminiscing and talking about current circumstances, and I asked for Billy Graham’s prayers for the wisdom and guidance of God.”
President Clinton speaking
At the end of the visit, Clinton shared how he read a story recently about how pastors have to be careful getting too close to politicians. “But don’t forget,” he told the camera crews and reporters in front of him. “Those of us who are Christians believe in a lot of second chances, and the politicians need those more than anybody else. So you’ve got to cut him a little slack for trying to give a willing ear and an open heart without regard to his political preferences.”
Franklin Graham stands by father's casket with President Clinton
While talking to President Clinton, Franklin Graham stood by his father's simple plywood casket, which was made by inmates in Louisiana.
President Clinton signs guest book
President Clinton signs the guest book.
President Clinton and Franklin Graham by car
President Clinton recently said, “I saw Billy Graham live that faith fully in the constant kindness, encouragement and counsel he extended to Hillary and me."
President Clinton meets Franklin Graham's extended family
Outside the Graham Family Homeplace, President Clinton took time to talk with Billy Graham's extended family, including his cousin, Mel Graham, and grandson, Roy Graham.
President Clinton speaks
“I think he was a profoundly good man who conveyed simple beliefs—that we can claim kinship with God by asking. He showed his faith by his works and by his life,” Clinton said of the late evangelist.