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Shirley Caesar on Forgiveness, Her New Album, and Membership in the “B Club”

By Bob Marovich Pastor Shirley Caesar watched the news with incredulity as she learned how Dylann Roof killed nine people during Bible study at Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, South Carolina. “I found it very hard to forgive the boy,” Caesar told the Journal of Gospel Music. “I kept asking myself: ‘Who would come and sit in a Bible study and be a part of it, and people show love and friendship and favor, and then turn around and kill nine people?’” For two weeks, Caesar channeled her internal struggle into the Bible study she led at her church, Mt. Calvary Word ...

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JGM Pick of the Week: May 23, 2016

“Mother Emanuel” Shirley Caesar From the forthcoming Entertainment One Music CD Fill This House Available from digital retail outlets Gospel songs with explicit social messages are a rarity these days, making Shirley Caesar’s sobering memorial to the shooting at “Mother” Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, South Carolina, stand out all the more. The mournful piano introduction gives way to Pastor Shirley’s head-shaking solo on the contrast of such a hateful act of racism happening in a sanctuary of love and acceptance. She reminds us that the name of the church, Emanuel, means “God is with us.” Shirley doesn’t as much ...

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