The family of Maya Angelou arranged a private memorial service in Wake Forest University’s Wait Chapel on Saturday, June 7, but we are so grateful that they invited the world into the homegoing, via live stream and broadcast on select networks.
The service, which was called “A Celebration of Rising Joy” featured incredibly beautiful remarks, personal stories and performances from Cicely Tyson, Bill Clinton, Michelle Obama, Oprah Winfrey, singers Lee Ann Womack, Alyson Williams, Bebe Winans, Valerie Simpson and more friends of the late poet, in addition to remarks from her son Guy Johnson and other family members.
It was a lovely memorial filled with powerful words! If you missed it, click on the video above to see the touching way Dr. Maya Angelou was remembered.
How did the phenomenal woman touch your life?
Maya Angelou: Her Beauty, In Her Words
1. Maya Angelou
"My mission in life is not merely to survive, but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humor, and some style."
2. Maya Angelou
"I love to see a young girl go out and grab the world by the lapels. Life's a bitch. You've got to go out and kick ass."
3. Maya Angelou
"A wise woman wishes to be no one's enemy; a wise woman refuses to be anyone's victim."
4. Maya Angelou
“Pretty women wonder where my secret lies. I'm not cute or built to suit a fashion model's size But when I start to tell them, They think I'm telling lies. I say, It's in the reach of my arms The span of my hips, The stride of my step, The curl of my lips. I'm a woman Phenomenally. Phenomenal woman, That's me.”
5. Maya Angelou
"Does my sassiness upset you? Why are you beset with gloom? ‘Cause I walk like I’ve got oil wells Pumping in my living room."
6. Maya Angelou
"Does my sexiness upset you? Does it come as a surprise That I dance like I’ve got diamonds At the meeting of my thighs?"
7. Maya Angelou
"I would like to be known as an intelligent woman, a courageous woman, a loving woman, a woman who teaches by being."
8. Maya Angelou
"Love recognizes no barriers. It jumps hurdles, leaps fences, penetrates walls to arrive at its destination full of hope."
9. Maya Angelou
"If you're always trying to be normal, you will never know how amazing you can be."
10. Maya Angelou
"We can learn to see each other and see ourselves in each other and recognize that human beings are more alike than we are unalike."
11. Maya Angelou
"Try to be a rainbow in someone's cloud."
12. Maya Angelou
"Never make someone a priority when all you are to them is an option."
13. Maya Angelou
"I can be changed by what happens to me. But I refuse to be reduced by it."
14. Maya Angelou
"If you have only one smile in you, give it to the people you love."
15. Maya Angelou
"I'm a woman. Phenomenally. Phenomenal Woman. That's me."
16. Maya Angelou
"The most important thing I can tell you about aging is this: If you really feel that you want to have an off-the-shoulder blouse and some big beads and thong sandals and a dirndl skirt and a magnolia in your hair, do it. Even if you're wrinkled."
17. Maya Angelou
“You may encounter many defeats, but you must not be defeated. In fact, it may be necessary to encounter the defeats, so you can know who you are, what you can rise from, how you can still come out of it.”
18. Maya Angelou
“I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”