When Whitney Houston's family and friends remembered the legendary singer at her funeral this past weekend, they spoke more about her strong Christian faith despite hard times than her talent in music.
"I don't care what was going on with her, I don't care what it was, she stayed grounded in the Word," said Patricia Houston, the singer's sister-in-law and manager, who was among several others who remembered the 48-year-old musician for her faith in Christ at the funeral in Newark, N.J., Saturday.
"A friend (identified only as Londale) sent a note reminding us that our dear sister, aunt, mother, friend in Christ has been set free," Patricia Houston said, according to the transcripts of the CNN's Piers Morgan Tonight show on Sunday featuring Houston's funeral. "Free from pain, free from sorrow, free from crying, free from sin, free from death. We will see her again but until then she rests peacefully in the Lord's presence." She went on to say that "the legacy that she left was music but what she left for you was her love for God and she had it and she was absolute, she was absolute about that." more >>
Two of American's biggest megachurch pastors – Bishop T.D. Jakes of The Potter's House and Joel Osteen of Lakewood Church, both in Texas – will share the same stage at the 2012 International Pastors & Leadership Conference.
The three-day conference, scheduled to take place May 3-5 at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Fla., promises to address the most pressing needs of today's church and bring together some of the biggest Christian leaders in the world today. Besides Jakes and Osteen, Bishop Tudor Bismark from New Life Covenant Church in Harare, Zimbabwe, Bishop Noel Jones from the City of Refuge Church in Gardena, Calif., and Dr. Cynthia James, a Christian psychologist providing counseling to more than 140 pastors, will be some of the names present at the event.
The conference is aimed at both pastors and their wives, as well as church executives and their administrative support staffs, and will present strategies for how to balance the business of church with the spiritual needs of the congregation and community at large. more >>
T.D. Jakes shared his grief over the death of Whitney Houston with his congregation during Sunday service at his Texas megachurch, just a day after the 48-year-old singer and actor died in her room at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in California.
Jakes, who is the lead pastor of The Potter's House in Dallas, is the producer of the movie remake "Sparkle," planned for release in August and features Houston's last film project.
Many who worked with Houston on the movie's set during filming last October and November in Detroit said she was upbeat and appeared to be making a comeback, according to the Detroit Free Press. more >>
Members of the New Jersey church where Whitney Houston grew up and sang as a child remembered the legendary music artist on Sunday for her longtime membership and service. The Rev. Jesse Jackson, who also visited the church, said he was "traumatized" by her sudden death.
"The family shared Whitney with the world, but Whitney was a mother, a daughter, and a sister, and that's the focus we want to keep in front of everyone today," Pastor Joe Carter told reporters who had gathered at New Hope Baptist Church in Newark, N.J., early Sunday morning as the first and only-for-members service was about to begin.
The 48-year-old singer and actor reportedly died in a bathtub at the Beverly Hilton Hotel, Calif., Saturday. The cause of her death may not be known until weeks later as toxicology results are awaited and an investigation is pending. But relatives of the singer told TMZ.com that prescription drugs and alcohol might have been the cause. more >>
Paula White, senior pastor and "Apostolic Overseer" of late Zachery Tims' New Destiny Christian Center as well as Without Walls International Church, has denied any connection to a rabbi seen in a widely-circulated video "crowning" Eddie Long king in an elaborate Torah ceremony at his Georgia megachurch.
After the Florida Courier published on Feb. 3 a "breaking news" report based on a rumor that White would be crowned queen during a Super Bowl Sunday service at New Destiny Christian Center, White and her attorney refuted the claims and denied that the Florida minister had any "ties or affiliations" with Rabbi Ralph Messer, the same minister who performed Long's "enthronement" ceremony at New Birth Missionary Baptist Church on Jan. 29.
The second round of the Elephant Room has come and gone. But as avid blog readers know, the debate surrounding the wisdom or folly of the event continues. This one may have bigger ramifications that most quick-a-minute Christian controversies.
I won't recap all the posts out there. Justin Taylor, as usual, has a good round up of the events and a sharp analysis. Thabiti's post from several months ago was courageous and worth reading again, as is Voddie's piece from a few days ago. D.A. Carson is working on some reflections for later this week. Be sure to look for those too.
Hesitations more >>