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“Soon and Very Soon”: West Angeles Honors Gospel Legend Andrae’ Crouch

"Soon and Very Soon": West Angeles Honors Gospel Legend Andrae' Crouch

INTRODUCTION

Born July 1, 1942, vocal arranger, songwriter, choir leader and pastor Andrae Crouch bridged the worlds of church and mainstream music for more than 50 years.  Dubbed as “The Father of Modern Gospel Music,” Crouch brought a contemporary sound and melodic sensibility to gospel.  This made him uniquely suited to appeal to both black and white audiences during the early days of the countercultural “Jesus Movement”, and it also brought him attention beyond the church.

A California native who grew up in the Church of God in Christ, Crouch wrote his first gospel song at age 14. That song, “The Blood Will Never Lose Its Power”, went on to become one of Crouch’s signature hits, gracing churches everywhere.

His contribution to the worship of the church include songs such as:

  •  My Tribute (To God Be the Glory)
  • Bless the Lord Oh My Soul
  • Through it All
  • Let the Church Say Amen

His recordings garnered him 7 Grammy Awards, 6 GMA Dove Awards, an Academy Award nomination for his arranging work on the 1985 film The Color Purple, and an induction into the Gospel Music Hall of Fame in 1998.

Crouch’s career was formed during a period of great unrest in America.  The Civil Rights Movement, assassinations, the Vietnam War, race riots and a rising drug subculture defined the times, as did the Jesus Movement.  Crouch left college and went to work for Teen Challenge, a Christian organization which rehabilitated drug addicts and gang members. He formed the Addicts Choir there and began writing songs to comfort and encourage the troubled teens he counseled.

Soon and Very Soon Andrae Crouch

Bobby Jones, Marvin Winans, Donnie McClurkin, Bebe Winans as the Donnie McClurkin & The Disciples Tribute Ensemble at the Andrae Crouch Memorial service at West Angeles Church, January 2015.

During the same period, Andrae and his sister Sandra formed Andraé Crouch and the Disciples from members of his church.   In 1969 they were signed to Light Records, a mainstream Christian label. Crouch was inspired as much by contemporary pop, rock, and R&B as he was by traditional gospel.  The crossover appeal of the group and Crouch’s contemporary gospel style also garnered them popularity on the white church circuit.  It catapulted the group to prominence during a time when the nation was in need of a clear message of hope.

The Disciples’ contemporary style also brought some criticism from some gospel music purists who challenged the authenticity of Crouch’s contemporary sound.  The popular gospel style of the day followed the more traditional gospel sound, such as that of the Reverend James Cleveland;  also a driving force in modern gospel music.  Still, because Crouch’s songwriting followed familiar gospel music structure and reflected traditional church doctrine, his music’s purity has earned a place in hymnals around the world.

It wasn’t long before Andrae Crouch also caught the attention of the pop music world.  He was best known to the mainstream music audience for his choral work on Michael Jackson’s hit Man in the Mirror (1988), Madonna’s Like a Prayer (1989) and the soundtrack to the Disney film The Lion King (1994).  His passion, however, would forever be for creating the music that expressed his faith and for preaching and teaching at his parent’s home church in Pacoima, California.  He passed away on January 8, 2015, at the age of 72.

“That’s all I want in life is to be remembered as a guy that really loved God” – Andrae Crouch

Introduction, Dr. Judith McAllister.  History, Karen Lascaris.

Hear West Angeles’ Revelation Choir, under the direction of Brother Ron Taylor,  honor the anointed work of Andraé Crouch by singing one of his most heralded songs entitled, “Soon & Very Soon”:

 

021818_Andre Crouch Tribute from West Angeles COGIC on Vimeo.

Bishop Blake: The Foundation of Our Faith

The starting point of the believer’s knowledge of God, and the believer’s knowledge of the things of God, is not in the Old Testament

…it is in Jesus Bishop C.E. Blake: The Foundation of Our FaithChrist, the Son of God. Without Jesus, we probably would not be aware of – nor would we even read – the Old Testament. But the Old Testament points to Jesus. He fulfills the Old Testament.

Before Jesus, the Jewish faith (the faith of the Old Testament) was exactly that…the Jewish faith. No one much beyond the Jews was interested in, nor did they feel they had access to, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob. Most people believed in in some kind of god, they just did not know what that god was like, or who that god was. In the Gentile world, they heard the testament of those who had walked the earth with Jesus Christ, or they were confronted with the very spirit of the risen Christ Himself. Without the life of Jesus, and without the Old Testament, the New Testament would not have become the basis for the great faith called Christianity.

This history is not said to reflect upon the Jews. God chose that nation, that group, to be the vehicle of the truth that He wanted to reveal up to that point. He isolated that race so that He could develop through them the truths upon which Jesus would build, and upon which the life and teachings of Jesus would be based.

The Gentile world seemed more ready to accept the Messiah that the Jews had described in the Old Testament than they were. And it is also a strange fact that the whole structure of sacrifices of animals and of blood ceased soon after Jesus offered the perfect sacrifice. In the Jewish synagogues and temples, there is no sacrifice of blood anymore, even though they believe that there is no redemption without the shedding of blood.

Because of Jesus we have a link – a Way – into the wonderful promises God made to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.  Jesus told us about God because He is God. If Jesus had not risen from the dead, He would never have impacted the world as He has. If He did not rise from the dead, He would not have the significance for us that He has.

Adapted from the sermon,“The Foundation of Our Faith”, at West Angeles Church of God In Christ, 10/16/2016.  

SCRIPTURAL REFERENCES:

1 Corinthians 15:12-21, 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18.


JOIN US AT WEST ANGELES! – Join us each Sunday at 8 a.m. and 11 a.m. at the beautiful West Angeles Cathedral, 3600 Crenshaw Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90016, and at 7 p.m. at the North Campus Sanctuary, 3045 Crenshaw Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90016. Visit Westa.org or phone:(323) 733-8300 for more information.

THE WEST ANGELES CHRISTIAN EMPORIUM –  Want to learn about the promises of God? Hear this entire sermon in its entirety on CD or DVD.  Visit us at the West Angeles Christian Emporium where you’ll find a variety of Bible translations, books on Christian life, devotionals, and more. Visit us in the lobby after each service, or visit us at  3021 Crenshaw Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90016. Phone: (323) 731-3012 for hours and directions.

Get Involved: The COGIC Urban Initiatives

Dear Beloved,

We are blessed with infinitely greater opportunities than BISHOPblack people anywhere on the face of the earth. But we are blessed that we might reach out to those less fortunate, and to lift them and help them. We cannot be satisfied to be in a community that’s blessed and prosperous until we reach out and bless everyone in that community.

I pray that, in this season, every one of us will stand upon our watch, and that we’ll go to God and pray:

‘God, I just don’t want to stand by. I want to have a positive impact on life on earth; I want to have a positive impact on my children, on my family, on my community. God, show me what you would have me to do show me what direction you would have me to go.’

As Presiding Bishop of the Church of God in Christ, I’ve asked every one of our 12,000 churches across the world to incorporate into their operations five areas of emphasis. We call this the Church of God In Christ Urban Initiatives.

The five areas are:

1. Education – Includes mentoring, tutoring, and Christian education
2. Economic Development – We offer job training, employment counseling and assistance, and entrepreneurship programs
3. Crime Prevention – We’ve developed alternative programs to proactively keep young people out of a life of crime, and to create collaborative relationships with law enforcement
4. Family – We’ve created programs to strengthen the family with a special emphasis on the role of fathers
5. Financial Literacy – Includes programs for both young people and adults

Some of the best leaders in our denomination have been assigned to lead the success of these programs across the nation. If every church has these five areas at work, there will be 60,000 programs in inner city America impacting our nation, impacting our communities, impacting the cities of our nation. West Angeles Church of God In Christ has all five of these areas well covered, and we must expand even more.

We need your gifts, your skills, and your involvement, and we look forward to working with you. We are Blessed to be a Blessing.

Bishop Charles E. Blake, Sr.
Presiding Bishop
Church of God in Christ, Inc.

 

GET INVOLVED WITH WEST ANGELES

  • For financial literacy, economic development, and community assistance programs, PLEASE CONTACT: The West Angeles Community Development Corporation at (323) 751-3440. Please click HERE for more information. http://www.westangelescdc.org/
  • For more on our family and personal development programs, PLEASE CONTACT: The West Angeles Counseling Center at (323) 737-7463 or (323) 733-8300×2360, [email protected] http://34.212.213.111/counseling-2/
  • For our “Manhood 2 Fatherhood” sessions, please contact The West Angeles Counseling Center at (323) 737-7463. Please click HERE for more information. http://34.212.213.111/portfolio/manhood-to-fatherhood/
  • For The Brotherhood Organization, please contact (323) 733-8300 http://34.212.213.111/the-brotherhood/
  • For The Women’s Affairs Organization, SISTERS, and our other women’s initiatives, please call (323) 733-8300, or click below to access our complete ministries list.
  • For more information on our adult and youth Christian Education Classes including The School of Practical Christian Living, Sunday School, and the West Angeles Bible College, please call (323) 733-8300.
  • For college prep and Education Enrichment contact Deacon John Wilson at (323) 733-8300 x2628, 2629 [email protected] [email protected] http://34.212.213.111/education-enrichment/
  • For West Angeles COGIC Ministries and Auxiliaries – For more information on all of West Angeles’ ministries and auxiliaries, including our Skid Row Ministry, the Prison Ministry and many others, please call 323 733-8300, or CLICK HERE for a complete list. http://34.212.213.111/ministries-departments/

“Building healthy individuals, families, and communities for a successful future.”

INTRODUCING I AM 2018 – Join us as we celebrate Dr. King’s legacy, renew our commitment to his vision, and train future leaders to accelerate our fight for economic justice and civil reform.  Watch the video below, and please CLICK HERE to learn more.

Introducing: I AM 2018

As we commemorate the legacy of The Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., let us be reminded not only of his life’s work, but also of the countless men and women who stood next to him until his very last day 50 years ago. Today, it is an honor to introduce to you:

I AM 2018

 

“I may not get there with you. But I want you to know tonight, that we, as a people, will get to the Promised Land”                            – Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.  

 

The night before he passed, Dr. King spoke these words as he was rallying a group of striking AFSCME sanitation workers and community members in Memphis, telling them to rise up and “make America what it ought to be.”  The worker protests against unfair wages and lackluster safety centered on four iconic words: I AM A MAN. The slogan’s meaning was clear: workers, people of color, and all those marginalized in society deserved to be treated with dignity and respect — as men, as women, and as human beings.

This year, on the 50th anniversary of his death, we invite you to join us in:

Memphis, Tennessee

April 2 – 4, 2018

We will celebrate Dr. King’s legacy, renew our commitment to his vision, and train future leaders to accelerate our fight for economic justice and civil reform.  Along with COGIC, AFSCME and affiliated religious and community groups and labor organizations, I AM 2018 will send a powerful message of solidarity.

-Bishop Charles Edward Blake, Sr., Presiding Bishop and Chief Apostle

 

Register to attend and follow “I AM 2018” for event updates:

BUTTON click here

IAM2018 AFSME

7 Quotes to Honor The Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

The Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was one of the greatest leaders in world history. Dr. King led a nonviolent movement in the late 1950’s-60’s to achieve legal equality and economic justice for African Americans in the United States.  Legislation for a Holiday honoring Dr. King was first introduced four days after Dr. King’s assassination, then signed into law in 1983.

 

Today, we honor the legacy and memory of the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. with 7 of his quotes  on racism, social change, and nonviolence:

  • “Racism is a philosophy based on a contempt for life…It separates not only bodies, but minds and spirits. Inevitably, it descends to inflicting spiritual and physical homicide upon the out-group.”
  • “We are now faced with the fact that tomorrow is today. We are confronted with the fierce urgency of now…”

  • “Ultimately a great nation is a compassionate nation. No individual or nation can be great if it does not have a concern for ‘the least of these.’” 
  • “A nation that continues year after year to spend more money on military defense [rather] than on programs of social uplift is approaching spiritual death.” 

  • “It is the arrogant assertion that one race is the center of value and object of devotion, before which other races must kneel in submission.” 
  • “I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.”

  • “Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate, only love can do that.”

Image and quotes, courtesy of The King Center.org. (accessed January 17, 2016).  http://www.thekingcenter.org/about-dr-king.  See excerpts from the historic March on Washington below, courtesy of The History Channel.

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The King Library and Archives in Atlanta is the largest repository of primary source materials on Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and the American Civil Rights Movement in the world. Significant records which document the social, cultural, economic and political impact of the civil rights movement are housed at the King Library and Archives, and are available online. See more at: http://www.thekingcenter.org/