Episcopal Diocese of Washington

Engaging a changing world with
an enduring faith in Jesus Christ

A Statement On the Passing of the 41st President, George Herbert Walker Bush

December 01, 2018

A statement from the Very Rev. Randolph Marshall Hollerith, Dean of Washington National Cathedral, and the Right Rev. Mariann Edgar Budde, Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Washington

 Washington National Cathedral and the Episcopal Diocese of Washington join the nation in mourning and giving thanks for the life of President George H.W. Bush, a dedicated father, husband, patriot, veteran, and president. Our prayers are particularly with his children, President George W. Bush, Governor Jeb Bush, Marvin Bush, Neil Bush, and Doro Bush.

Across his 94 years, President Bush served his country with integrity, honor and distinction. He embodied the decency of his call to a “kinder, gentler” politics, and provided a steady hand to our nation as unprecedented winds of change swept across the globe. Facing the collapse of Communism and war in the Persian Gulf, President Bush’s leadership was defined by a sense of deliberation, humility, and thoughtfulness.

 His commitment to service and volunteerism remains an enduring testament to the rigor of his character and his gentleness of spirit. His unfailing support for the Americans With Disabilities Act was shaped by the compassion of his heart. Indeed, of his famed Thousand Points of Light, President Bush’s example burns brightest.

 His graciousness in defeat and his continued service to his country reflects the President’s depth of character and his sense of decency. Beyond the loss of a honorable patriot, we mourn the passage of a kind of politics that was rooted in the prophet’s call to do justice, love mercy and walk humbly with God. How much this nation longs to reclaim those better angels of our nature.

 Yet beyond the political achievements and historic accolades, President Bush was committed most to his family and his faith. He and his beloved Barbara poured their love into their children and raised them in faith. President and Mrs. Bush were here at this Cathedral, on Sept. 29, 1990, as workers set the final stone in place after 83 years of construction.

 George and Barbara Bush’s example of mutual devotion, fidelity, and commitment is inspiring, and it should give everyone great joy to know that Mr. and Mrs. Bush’s love continues into eternity.

 Together with all the saints in glory, for the life and legacy of President George H.W. Bush, we give thanks. From his commitment to civility and decency in our public life, we draw encouragement. And from his 94-year example of love, commitment, and character, we find inspiration to be the people he believed we could be.

 “Into your hands, O merciful Savior, we commend your servant, George. Acknowledge, we humbly beseech you, a sheep of your own fold, a lamb of your own flock, a sinner of your own redeeming. Receive him into the arms of your mercy, into the blessed rest of everlasting peace, and into the glorious company of the saints in light. Amen.”

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