President Barack Obama delivered the eulogy for Rev. Clementa Pinckney, the pastor who was killed during the massacre at Charleston, South Carolina’s Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church last week, in the historic city on Friday.

Obama Eulogizes Rev. Pinckney

Obama took to the podium at the TD Arena to memorialize Pinckney, as well as the eight others who died in the South Carolina church massacre.

“We are here today to remember a man of God who lived by faith,” Obama said. “A man who believed in things not seen. A man who believed there were better days ahead, off in the distance. A man of service who persevered knowing full well he would not receive all those things he was promised, because he believed his efforts would provide a better life for those who followed.”

“Preacher by 13, pastor by 18, public servant by 23. What a life Clementa Pinckney lived,” Obama said. “What an example he set.”

Of the eight others who were senselessly killed in the shooting, Obama described them as, “good people, decent people, God-fearing people. People so full of life and so full of kindness, people who ran the race, persevered. People of great faith.”

In addition to memorializing the pastor and his followers, Obama took the opportunity to call for racial healing in America, and to highlight the need to take down the Confederate flag.

“It’s true, the flag did not cause these murders,” Obama said, but “we all have to acknowledge the flag has always represented more than just ancestral pride. For many, black and white, that flag was a reminder of systemic oppression and racial subjugation. We see that now.”

“By taking down that flag, we express God’s grace,” Obama added.

Obama concluded his eulogy by leading those congregated in church hymn “Amazing Grace.”

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