Editor's note: This story has been updated.
The church’s parking lot was packed with cars, and began to fill up hours before the 11 a.m. service.
White-gloved ushers carrying tissues greeted those celebrating the life of Bishop Nathaniel Holcomb as they entered the church he had built.
When the 2,100-seat sanctuary and the extra chairs in it were filled, many guests moved into overflow rooms to watch the service being streamed on televisions. The service also streamed on the Christian House of Prayer and kdhnews.com websites.
Holcomb, the Christian House of Prayer founder and longtime pastor, died Nov. 27 at the age of 66. Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or Lou Gehrig’s disease, led to his death.
“Having people come from all over the world speaks to the love they had for Bishop Holcomb,” said Vickie Kuk who attended the service. “People love and respected him and gave so much of themselves because he gave so much of himself.”
Kuk, who is an Army veteran, was stationed at Fort Hood in 2005 when she met Holcomb.
“I came here from Korea and was moving to Fort Hood,” Kuk said.
Kuk said she attended one of Holcomb’s services and had been a member of the church since.
“He taught me how to love myself, love God and to love everyone else around me,” Kuk said. “He never looked at where a person was in life. He saw what they could do and looked at them through the eyes of Christ.”
As Holcomb’s family shared personal reflections of Holcomb, the congregation laughed and cried together.
Sitting in one of the overflow rooms with tear-filled eyes was Kim Robinson.
“Bishop Holcomb was very giving — he gave more than what he got and never asked for anything,” Robinson said. “He left us so soon. He is really going to be missed. He is a man after God’s heart.”
“Today’s service was a beautiful representation of Bishop Holcomb’s life,” Kuk said.