Pop singer Shawn Mendes recently described how listening to worship group Maverick City sing about Jesus brought him to tears because he only recently began his spiritual journey after growing up "more or less atheist."
The Canadian singer was a guest on the Man Enough podcast last week where he shared his experiences from childhood all the way up to his booming music career. The award-winning artist detailed how his fame, current relationship and upbringing have shaped his ideas of masculinity, "privilege" and service.
When talking about music, the 22-year-old shared how he found that music possessed great power.
"Only in the last two years I've realized the real power that music is,” Mendes said. “There's something so interesting because I grew up kind of more or less atheist. And now becoming much more spiritual and really being sure there's a God, or sure there's a higher thing, the universe or whatever, music was the thing that did that for me.”
"Watching Maverick City choir singing about God, singing about Jesus, I'm sitting there watching this YouTube video and they're singing about Jesus, and I just start crying, like crying my eyes out,” the pop star revealed.
"You know, when you're crying and it's like this is like something leaving me,” the young musician added. “This is like that type of cry. I'm like, how is something that my whole life I've grown up to believe is fanatic and not science and not the truth feel like home because of this song?”
Maverick City Music has been releasing a plethora of worship music in recent years. The group won Top Gospel Album at the Billboard Music Awards for their April 2020 release of Maverick City Vol. 3 Part 1. Maverick’s collaborative album with Elevation Worship, Old Church Basement, also made history recently, setting a new worldwide record for the most first-day streams for a Christian and gospel album on Apple Music. The group's most recent release, Jubilee: Juneteenth Edition is now available and features collaborations with Justin Bieber along with other mainstream artists, such as P. Diddy and Tori Kelly.
Mendes, who never said he identifies as a Christian, said he's also listening to Hindu mantras and songs from India that make him feel the same way he did when listening to the popular Christian group.
"There's really truly a way that music gets to the soul and creates. I'm stealing this from the words of Pharell's uncle in the Netflix series that he just released, he says, 'Music makes words that people don't want to hear out loud in speech more palatable,'” he added.
“Voices of Fire,” is the series the “Wonder” singer was referring to.
The unscripted project “Voices of Fire” follows gospel leaders and Pharrell Williams' uncle, Bishop Ezekiel Williams, the general overseer, pastor and founder of Faith World Ministries, as they search for undiscovered talent in Hampton Roads to form a new gospel choir.
According to multiple reports, Mendes grew up in a Christian home in Pickering, Ontario, Canada. However, he claims he was an atheist until recently.