Gospel singer Kim Burrell has officially become a hidden figure on the “Ellen DeGeneres Show” after video of anti-gay sermon goes viral. The singer was scheduled to perform a song from the movie “Hidden Figures” on Thursday with songwriter Pharrell Williams. Instead of the original duet, Ellen has confirmed that “I See A Victory” will be sung as a solo. The singer faces heavy backlash after delivering a sermon at the Love & Liberty Fellowship Church in Houston, TX condemning homosexuality as “perverted” and an “embarrassment” to the African-American church.
Video of the sermon also triggered responses from stars of the movie “Hidden Figures” as well as a host of tweets, and a petition of over 5000 supporters urging Ellen to boot the gospel singer from the show. Pharrell immediately released the following statement on Instagram:
I condemn hate speech of any kind. There is no room in this world for any kind of prejudice. My greatest hope is for inclusion and love for all humanity in 2017 and beyond.
Janelle Monáe, who is also set to appear on the show, denounced Burrell’s comments as hateful. The “Tightrope” singer did not think she needed to clarify her stance to followers but feels it is important that others understand her position. After retweeting Pharrell’s comments, the actress added:
I unequivocally repudiate ANY AND ALL hateful comments against the LGBTQ community. I feel we all belong to the same community, a shared community called humanity. I will continue to stand with other like-minded people who condemn any and all statements and actions that would seek to deny the basic humanity of our fellow brothers and sisters. We cannot sit idly by nor will we speak silently when we are confronted with such violence against members of our community. I am personally beyond exhausted by the ignorance and bigotry living in some people. I will rejoice when folks stop thinking they ARE GOD, Jesus’ assistant, picking and choosing what ‘sins’ are acceptable in the Bible, and using the Bible as a whip! WE cannot afford anymore tearing down of our shared humanity. My advice: If your religion does not make you are more loving or better person, ditch it.
In a now-deleted video, Burrell, who has officially become a hidden figure on Ellen’s Show, stood by her claims, and said she has to do “what God tells her to do.” As such, “she makes no excuses or apologies.” The pastor has not rescinded her words but said “enemies” who posted only a part of her original sermon have misrepresented them.
Fellow gospel singer Yolanda Adams also spoke out against Burrell’s anti-love message after learning that the preacher included Bishop Eddie Long in her list of hell-bound folk. Adams posted:
As a person who has gay relatives and friends, I had to put these words in the atmosphere to combat the unwarranted and unproven attack on my friend Bishop Long. Hateful words are never profitable to the cause of Christ in the world. Jesus said, ‘They will know you by your love.’
Burrell’s vocal talent is featured on a song in the upcoming film “Hidden Figures” which prompted Ellen’s original invite for the singer to perform the duet with co-singer Pharrell. Many within the LGBTQ community wondered how Ellen, who came out as a gay woman back in 1997 as was one of the first to break the Hollywood mold, would handle this fiery situation. To the delight of many, Ellen revoked her invitation to the preacher. However, the show must go on and will do so in the absence of Burrell who has now become a hidden figure on the show and to the many supporters of the gay community.
Although it is the right of any preacher to share personal convictions to their congregation, it is not as acceptable to speak in a hateful tone while decreeing that 2017 will be the year of their demise. Burrell has indeed received a host of backlash, but a great deal of support as well. Her message, despite the celebration by many within the Christian community, could affect appearances and performances outside of this religious union. Due to the backlash of her anti-gay stance, Kim Burrell has officially become a hidden figure on an upcoming episode of the “Ellen Show.”
By Cherese Jackson (Virginia)
Entertainment: Ellen DeGeneres: Kim Burrell will not appear on show
Time: Gospel Singer Kim Burrell Addresses Backlash After Homophobic Remarks
Radio Facts: Kim Burrell Goes on Extreme Rant Bashing Homosexuals and Eddie Long
Christian Post: Yolanda Adams to Kim Burrell: Attack on My Friend Bishop Long Is Unwarranted
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