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The service at New Birth Missionary Baptist Church on Sunday, September 15, 2019, may have been back to church Sunday, but there was another reason the congregation saw a surge of people visiting. While everything else in the service was business as usual under the direction of senior Pastor Jamal Bryant, the last third included an appearance by Kanye West with his Sunday Service choir that was part worship and part sharing from Kanye about his personal experience with faith.
“We’re going to give God freedom to let him do whatever he wants to do,” Bryant said as a way of introducing the rapper. “All I ask is that you would be mindful that you are not here for a performance—you’re here for worship. I don’t care who walks in the room, there’s only one star in this room,” Bryant said while pointing his index finger to the ceiling.
Group - Singers - Stage - Director - Stage
A group of singers then congregated before the stage with a director leading them from the stage. Kanye could be seen to the director’s left, holding a microphone in his hand but only occasionally opening his mouth to sing, without the use of the microphone. The group sang a couple of gospel-style songs no one could accuse of being “watered down” with “spiritual but not religious” themes. The singers belted out lines such as, “Jesus, you’re the only power that can save this world today” and “Stand on the Word.”
Bryant could be seen observing the music from the stage and swaying to the beat.
Kanye - Prayer - Song - Son
Kanye broke out in a spontaneous prayer during one song, saying “You sent your only son to die for us and all you ask is radical...
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