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Congressman's church to host Mandela tribute

Published: Sunday, Dec. 15, 2013 11:54 a.m. CDT

CHICAGO (AP) — A Chicago congressman is hosting a memorial service for Nelson Mandela that's expected to draw high-profile community leaders and politicians.

The event at U.S. Rep. Bobby Rush's church is being billed as the "people's memorial service" for the former South African leader.

Rush's spokeswoman Debra Johnson has said that former Illinois Gov. George Ryan and Nation of Islam Leader Louis Farrakhan are expected to attend the Sunday service at the Beloved Community Christian Church of God in Christ.

It could be one of the first public speaking engagements for Ryan since he was released from prison after serving 5 ½ years for a corruption conviction. Ryan met with Mandela during a trip to South Africa in 2000, when Ryan was governor.

Mandela died earlier this month at age 95.

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