New Christian convert and rapper Kanye West is making good on his promise to evangelize America’s youth with music as he teams up again with megachurch pastor Joel Osteen and his wife, Victoria, for a Night of Hope event in New York City’s Yankee Stadium next spring.
Entertainment website TMZ first reported that West’s appearance at Osteen’s Lakewood Church in Houston, Texas, last month — before an audience of 17,000 plus more than 1 million online — was so successful that the duo will repeat the formula again on May 2, 2020, before a much larger audience at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx, which can seat more than 54,000.
The Christian Post reached out to Lakewood Church for comment on the report Thursday and will update this piece when a response is received. Representatives of the church confirmed with Houston news station KHOU11 that the report is indeed true.
Representatives told KHOU11 that they were still working out the details, but a source told TMZ that the format will likely be similar to West’s appearance at Lakewood Church last month where Osteen preached first and then West and his choir followed in a second session with music.
While the Lakewood Church event was free, sources said tickets for Night of Hope featuring West and Osteen “could be decently priced.” Tickets to previous events sold for $15.
In an interview with Osteen at Lakewood Church last month, West declared himself a formidable servant of Jesus as he called America back to God while teasing big plans to evangelize the youth through new music.
“Every time I stand up, I feel that I’m standing up and drawing a line in the sand and saying, ‘I’m here in service to God and no weapon formed against me shall prosper,’” West said in a wide-ranging discussion with Osteen.
Looking back at his life in the secular music industry, which glorifies anything but the fear of God, Osteen asked the rapper if he had any words of advice he could share with his younger self that could have helped him change the trajectory of his life.
While acknowledging that there is nothing he could say that could reach his younger self, West explained that he believes music could have, and said he was working on new music to evangelize the younger generation.
“It’s nothing I could say to the younger Kanye through words. I could speak to the younger Kanye through music, so this music gon’ come every month. We dropping that heat. We in the studio. God is strengthening our hands. We have writers, we have producers, we’re taking all the most fire producers and bringing them back to God. All the best voices, all the best dancers for us to see that it’s through Christ,” West said.
West began doing Sunday Service events, which generally include prayer and live music, in January 2019 at a time when his wife, Kim Kardashian West, said her family was on a path to spiritual enlightenment.
The journey has since led to West's recently released first faith-based album, Jesus Is King, which has gone on to make history on Billboard's Hot Christian Songs and Hot Gospel Songs charts. The set opened at No. 1 on both the Top Christian Albums and Top Gospel Albums tallies (dated Nov. 9) with 264,000 equivalent album units earned in its first week (ending Oct. 31), according to Nielsen Music.
Shortly after his appearance at Lakewood Church, West posted a photo of himself and iconic record executive Dr. Dre on Instagram noting: “Ye and Dre Jesus Is King Part II coming soon...”
At his latest Sunday Service in Lynwood, California, West praised God for allowing him to work with Dr. Dre.
“I used to spend all my time trying to make my beats be mixed as good as Dr. Dre,” Kanye said. "Who knew all I had to do was do an album for God and then Dr. Dre would start mixing my beats? Spend your time on God, and He’ll handle the rest."