ATLANTA — It's been more than a year since reverend Jamal Bryant took over as senior pastor of New Birth Missionary Baptist Church.
In an interview, Bryant told Channel 2’s Jovita Moore the megachurch is overcoming many challenges.
They also discussed New Birth’s future and the “Sunday Service” that controversial rapper, Kanye West hosted there.
Hundreds of people packed New Birth Missionary Baptist Church when Kanye West held Sunday service there in September.
“One hundred and fifty people joined the church that day, so it was a great day,” Bryant said.
Bryant said that about two weeks after visiting New Birth Missionary Baptist Church, West made some comments about supporting President Trump.
“Well, immediately after that he makes that endorsement, pictures were all over the press of me with Kanye as if I was co-signing his politics and so I thought about it, I believe in his faith transformation, but I didn't believe that he fully evolved in the liberation theology of the Christ that I believe in,” Bryant said.
Then, Bryant made a decision about a donation Kanye West gave New Birth Missionary Baptist Church.
“And so, I said ‘let me redirect that energy. It’s no way throwing shade on him, but thankful that he came out, but I wanted to give a gift to Morris Brown College, and it is the oldest HBCU in Georgia and Kanye West’s mother used to teach there,” Bryant said.
Bryant says he's optimistic about New Birth's future, despite the fact the church is $28 million in debt.
He says since last year, they've added 4,000 new members, he hopes to build senior housing on the property and make the church more environmentally-friendly.
“The reality is, in spite of whatever had happened, that New Birth made an incredible contribution to the community and we're building on all the good things that have happened,” Bryant said.
Bryant also told Moore that it's important that New Birth continues to reach out to the community.
They’ve given away shoes, donated food to the homeless and paid people’s medical bills.
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