Joseph Dowdy, a Christian rapper, has won an all-expense paid trip to the Super Bowl and will have an opportunity to perform in the Super Bowl Gospel celebration.
Dowdy, a.k.a. "Minista Whisper," won the tickets for he and his wife from The Jingle Dreams Contest on American Family Insurance, according to Syracuse.com.
His prize is an all-expense paid weekend in Indianapolis for the Super Bowl weekend, Feb. 3-5. Dowdy will also have the opportunity to perform with the NFL Players Choir in the Super Bowl Gospel celebration. The celebration will be hosted by Wayne Brady and CeCe Winans.
Other Christian artists performing at the celebration include Natalie Grant, Donnie McClurkin and Hezekiah Walker.
The 36-year-old Queens, N.Y. native, said that he stumbled onto the contest and posted a video that shows scenes from his neighborhood. The video also featured a rap Dowdy wrote about his dream for his family.
Dowdy, who has 11 children, ages 4 months old to 18-years-old said his dream is to show them that they can make it in the world.
He and an Oregon contestant were chosen as winners from a list of 500 contestants. The winners were chosen by a panel that included actress Chandra Currelley, singer Natalie Grant and NFL Linebacker, London Fletcher.
Dowdy has made many Christian rap albums as Minista Whisper and is working on releasing his latest project," Reborn 2011 A.D." He runs Miracles Ministries in Syracuse, N.Y. and is a youth minister, with his wife, at the Apostolic Church of Jesus Christ.
Dowdy hopes to make connections during the weekend to help him build a youth center and open transitional housing for the homeless, according to Syracuse.com.
"If we have the right connections and finances we'll be able to take off with it," he said.
He also said he will be rooting for the hometown team in the big game. "The Giants are going to do it, they're going to take it this year," Dowdy said.
Dowdy had to overcome many obstacles and lived a crazy life, before turning his life around. According to his profile on Gracehope.com, he was dealing drugs at the age of 11. At 16, he was arrested for possession of two ounces of cocaine, was shot and nearly beat to death with a crow bar and gun.
While serving and an 8-15 year prison sentence, he decided to give his life to Christ after meeting his colleague, Prodigal in a Bible study class. After serving three years of his sentence, he was released with a degree and a plan to become a Christian rapper.
Since then, he and his colleague, Prodigal started Fulfillment Entertainment and he won a Sammy Award in Syracuse, N.Y. He also won a Tiffany Award in the Bronx, and had a documentary done on him by Syracuse University.