The Perfecting Church, home to famed gospel singer and Pastor Marvin Winans, is having a special dedication ceremony for the congregation’s youngest members on Sunday. Charity Grace, a Detroiter who recently started attending services at the church on East Nevada Street, wanted her only son, two-year-old Joshua Grace, to share in the blessings.
“I want to instill values and morals in my son based upon the word of God,” she told Fox 2 Detroit.
But when she called Perfecting Church on Tuesday to sign up Joshua for the ceremony, Charity said she was told by a woman elected in the church that Pastor Winans has a strict policy — he won’t bless the babies of unwed mothers in front of the congregation, Fox 2 Detroit reported.
Grace said she felt degraded by the pastor’s decision. She’s hoping he reconsiders, even if it means having her son dedicated during the week by a church elder.
Until then, she told Fox 2 Detroit she has no plans to return to Perfecting Church.
“I absolutely would not set foot back in the church right now because I feel like they look down upon me and my kind, meaning single moms and unwed mothers,” Grace said.
Pope Francis recently said in May that the Catholic Church should bless children born out of wedlock, because their mothers chose life over abortion.
“’Look at this girl who had had the courage to carry her pregnancy to term. … “What does she find? A closed door,” he said, according to Vatican newspaper L’Osservatore Romano. “This is not good pastoral zeal, it distances people from the Lord and does not open doors.”
Dr. Jacqui Lewis is the Senior Minister of Middle Collegiate Church in Manhattan’s East Village. She told The Huffington Post she was surprised that a child “of any kind” would be denied a blessing from a church, and referenced the Gospel of Mark, 10:10-16:
“People were bringing little children to Jesus for him to place his hands on them, but the disciples rebuked them. When Jesus saw this, he was indignant. He said to them, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. Truly I tell you, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.” And he took the children in his arms, placed his hands on them and blessed them.”
“You want to know what the Kingdom of God is like?” she asked. “Check out the children. Check out their innocence, check out their wide eyed wonder, check out their acknowledgement that they are dependent on others.”
Dr. Lewis also noticed something else — the little boy from Perfecting Church who was denied a blessing is named Joshua. “You know, Jesus’s name is really Joshua,” she said. “Joshua is Jesus’s namesake, and Jesus was born to a mother just like this mother.”
The pastor is a member of the Winans family, one of America’s most famous gospel clans. He’s released several albums with the Perfecting Church choir and is a recurring member on “Tyler Perry’s House of Payne.” Winans also memorably delivered the eulogy at Whitney Houston’s funeral in 2012. He was carjacked and assaulted outside a Detroit gas station in 2012.
While Dr. Lewis has never met Winans, she said she believes he’s a man with a “real heart for Jesus’s people.” She told The Huffington Post she hopes to someday have coffee with Winans to talk about the issue of withholding blessings.
“The way we think about God and the way we think of what God wants us to do … I think that happens in relationships,” she said.
What do you think? Is Pastor Winans right to refuse to bless the children of unwed mothers?
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This Week’s Celebrity Instagrams (10/15-10/21)
31 photos Launch gallery
1. Just a NY girl with BIG dreams....
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2. HAPPY CHILDREN=QUALITY PARENTING. We don't always see eye to eye on everything and that's normal. We're human beings. But we come together and do it right for what's important, the kids. We are not enemies, we are parents. And we are parents 1st. S/O to @monyettashaw for making Mason's bday memorable. S/O to @itscrystalsmith at home taking care of our other lil' Prince. ❤️❤️❤️ THIS IS WHAT CO-PARENTING LOOKS LIKE. #Blessed #Happy #AboveTheDrama #BiggerThanUs
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3. So happy to finally be able to share with you all that I’m the new Global Brand Ambassador for @Revlon! Follow my day on RevlonSnaps. Yay! Choose Love, Everybody! #RevlonXCiara #chooselove #ad
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4. Glam on point!!!@makeupbymotoko & @shaylinjoneshair #easybreezy @lifetimetv #beachesmovie #january2017 😘
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5. ✨True love ✨📸: @jessiemarrerophotography
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7. Today was not easy..but by the grace of God we all got through it. Words cannot express our gratitude for all of your Prayers, Positive thoughts and Support for us throughout the years. Tommy will be missed but most certainly never forgotten...And PLEASE don't ask "Where's Martin?.." he was there too...just not in this picture. Lol! God bless you all.. #LoveConquersAll #MartinShow
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9. West coast get ready for #RockyHorror. I will be live tweeting again. #letsdothetimewarpagain
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10. #THEKEYS pre order yours now ... Available everywhere #NOV22 #WeTheBest 🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑
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11. We about to ROCK at #KCABlackBall!! All for our life-changing effort to end 🌎 AIDS.
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12. Today's #SNAPJACK is brought to you by @yazzthegreatest 😂😂😂💋💋💋
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13. Damn girl you kinda old to be headed to the Go Go. You coming in at the age they leaving. LMAO
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14. Daddy daycare B-Boxin with @acewellstucker @shopraisingace
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15. #FBF Naviyd & URV "LIL MONSTERS"
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16. HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ONE OF THE BIGGEST LEGENDS IN OUR HIPHOP HISTORY! @snoopdogg CONTINUED BLESSING AND LOVE FAMILY!!!!! REAL OG!
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17. Thank you for a beautiful night VSU! Let's do it again! #HOMECOMING
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18. Had a great time this morning with my familia Erica, Griff & Truth!!
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19. Check out my interview on @essence facebook live. #inmyownwords #nycpromo #day2
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20. #She💋 #tbt #TheCoveAtTheAtlantis #DawgPawsAndAll
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21. Bae #retailtherapy
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22. Why me and @coryhardrict got the same pose... and notee... new mouth #naked
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23. When my husband is my personal 'hype-man'! it kills me every time! 💜😂 #WHATNOW #lostfiles📷
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24. Diggy Simmons
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25. Hand full of @jacquieaiche 💙💎💍 @esnail_la 💅🏾
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26. SuperSoulers! You can watch my interview with Carl Lentz live from my Facebook page, tomorrow at 11a ET| 8a PT. #SuperSoulSunday
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27. 💋 .. When the friendship is easy like Sunday morning. ☀️
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28. Sunday mornings are the best........... hugs and cuddles with my angel
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29. #huggar16 #hellohuggars
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30. My gym is everywhere!.. #RnBMoney #TheGeneral 📸: @twelvepastseven
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31. Nothing I would rather be doing... Rocko setting up our movie, Romelō working on a puzzle & Laiyah singing and sharing all she's learning at school... I'm so grateful for the joy they've brought into my life ... Praying for peace , joy & love in the home of EVERY family ♥️ #HeadScarfPJSunday LOL 😂
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