Hundreds gathered at St. Martin’s Episcopal Church in Houston on April 21 for a private funeral for former first lady Barbara Bush. Bush was 92 when she passed away at her Houston home on April 17.
Bush, the wife of the nation’s 41st president and mother of the nation’s 43rd, was remembered as a kind, God-fearing woman.
Among the faces in attendance at the invitation-only funeral were first lady Melania Trump, former President Bill Clinton and Hillary Clinton, and former President Barack Obama and Michelle Obama.
Bush’s granddaughters gathered to read sections of scripture from the Bible, passages that resonated with their grandmother’s way of life. Jenna Bush Hager was among the granddaughter’s of Bush to read from Proverbs 31.
“Strength and dignity are her clothing,” a steady-voiced Bush Hager read. “And she laughs at the time to come.”
Barbara Pierce Bush, Jenna Bush Hager’s sister, read scripture from 2 Corinthians chapter 4, a passage speaking about setting one’s eyes on eternity. “Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day,” Pierce Bush read.
“For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen,” she continued.
“For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.”
During his eulogy, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush spoke about his mother’s sense of humor and some of her last moments with family. “We learned not to take ourselves too seriously and that humor should be enjoyed and shared,” Jeb Bush said of the late first lady.
Jeb Bush was able to have a conversation about death with his mother before she passed. Barbara Bush firmly declared her faith in Jesus Christ, believing her arrival in heaven was coming very soon.
“I don’t want to leave your dad but I’m going to a beautiful place,” Jeb Bush recalled his mother saying. He concluded his eulogy by remarking how his family looked forward to joining Barbara Bush in heaven, alongside Robin, the Bush daughter who passed away at age three.
At the conclusion of the service, Bush’s family gathered outside the church. Bush’s grandsons carried out her casket, which is set to be buried at the Bush Library at Texas A&M University.
The planned burial site is a beautiful space surrounded by trees and near a creek. Former President George H.W. Bush and Barbara’s daughter, Robin, who passed away from leukemia in 1953, is buried in the same area.
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