FILE – In this Saturday, May 11, 2013, file photo, Bishop T.D. Jakes speaks during McDonald’s Gospelfest 2013 at the Prudential Center, in Newark, N.J. (Photo by Charles Sykes/Invision/AP, File)
It is in uncertain times like these where more people tend to turn to prayer and lean on their faith to help guide them through whatever crisis they may be facing.
But as people across America are being urged not to congregate in large groups, and in some cases are being ordered to stay at home/shelter in place to help prevent the spread of the Wuhan coronavirus, church leaders are being asked to figure out creative ways to preach God’s word in front of large audiences in ways that don’t include having people gathering into their churches on Sundays.
Surprisingly enough, such was the case on MSNBC on Monday morning, when anchor Craig Melvin interviewed Texas Bishop T.D. Jakes to discuss the faith community’s role in helping combat the Wuhan coronavirus. Jakes has been a frequent critic of President Trump’s, but the message he talked about on Melvin’s Monday show was one few people could disagree with.
After a five minute interview where Jakes talked about how his church had been livestreaming services for several years, Melvin asked Pastor Jakes to end the segment by saying a 30 second prayer for our nation, something which is normally frowned upon at news networks like MSNBC and CNN, and among some who watch their programming.
Here’s their exchange:
Melvin: “Bishop, 30 seconds. For folks who weren’t able to get to church yesterday, I’ve never actually done this on the air. Can you lead us in prayer for 30 seconds?”
Jakes: “Yes, I can. Our Father and our God, we bow our heads to you in humility, understanding that we are not competent in and of ourselves to handle this kind of global calamity. We look to you, Lord, to be the source, the strength, the help, the light that we need. Strengthen our first responders, strengthen even our broadcast people, strengthen all of us whose lives have been devastated and disrupted and give us the peace that passes all understanding. In Christ’s name we pray, amen.”
Melvin: “Amen. Bishop Jakes, always good to see you, sir. Thank you.”
Melvin also played a clip from Jakes’ Sunday service which was especially relevant at a time when so many who worship can’t attend church at this time:
“They’re having all this big discussion about whether we should have church or not or whether we should be in a building then talk about what would Jesus do. I don’t know because Jesus never saw a church. All of this stuff you made don’t have nothing to do with the power of God. It’s not about a building. It’s not about a building. It never has been about a building.”
Jakes also appeared on Monday’s “Your World With Neil Cavuto” program on Fox News and talked about how it was okay for people to honor Easter from their homes instead of in the church, which my RedState colleague Jennifer Van Laar wrote about here.
The full segment between Melvin and Jakes, where Jakes also gave some great tips on how to keep the anxiety and fear down during the Wuhan coronavirus crisis, can be watched below:
(Hat tip: Curtis Houck at Newsbusters)
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