A church in San Francisco is asking its congregation to get in “Formation.”
San Francisco’s Grace Cathedral Church is inviting parishioners “to sing your Beyoncé favorites and discover how her art opens a window into the lives of marginalized and forgotten — particularly black females.”
During an interview, founding pastor Rev. Jude Harmon told the San Francisco Chronicle that, “the beauty of Beyoncé’s music is she explores those themes in an idiom that is accessible to everyone. We can use it as a conversation starter. That’s what it’s designed to be.”
Harmon also serves as the director of innovative ministry for Grace Cathedral.
Rev. Yolanda Norton, who is an assistant professor of Old Testament at San Francisco Theological Seminary – and teaches a course called “Beyoncé and the Bible” – will also be a featured speaker at the mass.
This is just the latest, of many churches all over the country, who have used pop culture references to engage with their following and boost attendance.
“I know there are people who will say using Beyonce is just a cheap way of trying to get people to church, but we’re following in the way of Jesus.” https://t.co/UcTprWZ5MS
— RELEVANT (@RELEVANT) April 18, 2018
This past February, activist and pastor Jamal Bryant’s delivered a ‘Black Panther’ sermon during an event called “The Gospel from Wakanda,” in which his church, Empowerment Temple, invited parishioners to come dressed in their best African attire for a worship service.
Bryant was quickly met with sharp criticism over using Black Panther as a theme.
“This Black Panther stuff [is] going way [too] far folks,” shared one commenter. “Please people get back to studying the WORD of GOD!!! People are getting to carried away…nothing about this movie was scriptural.”
But this trend doesn’t appear to be ending anytime soon.
According to its website, Grace Cathedral is the third largest Episcopal cathedral in the country. Their Beyonce inspired mass is scheduled to take place at 6:30 p.m on April 25th.
For more information, visit GraceCathedral.org.