Trump, Obama, Carter, Bush and other leaders pay tribute to Billy Graham

WASHINGTON (REUTERS) - Billy Graham became the best known preacher in the United States during 70 years in the pulpit. Following are reactions to his death on Wednesday (Feb 21):

"The GREAT Billy Graham is dead. There was nobody like him! He will be missed by Christians and all religions. A very special man." - US President Donald Trump on Twitter

"Billy Graham was a humble servant who prayed for so many - and who, with wisdom and grace, gave hope and guidance to generations of Americans." - former president Barack Obama in a tweet

"Billy Graham was America's pastor... I think Billy touched the hearts of not only Christians, but people of all faiths, because he was such a good man." - former president George HW Bush in a statement

"He shaped the spiritual lives of tens of millions of people worldwide. Broad-minded, forgiving and humble in his treatment of others, he exemplified the life of Jesus Christ by constantly reaching out for opportunities to serve. He had an enormous influence on my own spiritual life, and I was pleased to count Reverend Graham among my advisers and friends." - former president Jimmy Carter in a statement

"Billy Graham's ministry for the gospel of Jesus Christ and his matchless voice changed the lives of millions. We mourn his passing but I know with absolute certainty that today he heard those words, 'Well done good and faithful servant.' Thank you Billy Graham. God bless you." - US Vice-President Mike Pence on Twitter

"As anyone growing up in the 1950s and 1960s can tell you, it was hard not to notice and be impressed by the Reverend Billy Graham. There was no question that the Dolans were a Catholic family, firm in our faith, but in our household there was always respect and admiration for Billy Graham and the work he was doing to bring people to God." - Cardinal Timothy Dolan, archbishop of New York, in a statement

"Billy Graham has always been and will always be a hero in our home. Next to my own father, Reverend Graham was the most humble and gracious man I ever knew. I am honoured to call him a friend and a mentor." - televangelist and "megachurch" pastor Joel Osteen on Twitter

"His kindly manner and unpretentious nature made him a trusted confidant to twelve US presidents, reassuring generations of Americans that their leaders could count on this humble man of God for counsel and support." - US Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell in a statement