Kanye West confirmed he has converted to Christianity during a listening party of his new album, Jesus Is King.
Although it’s been speculated for quite some time that the rapper had converted to the religion, this is the first time the 42-year-old has confirmed it.
The announcement came on Saturday night (October 12), after Ye surprised students at Howard University with the listening party during a trip to Washington DC.
Given Kanye’s weekly Sunday Service tradition and his vow to move away from making non-religious music in favour of creating only gospel music, as per Complex, it’s no surprise the rapper has fully committed to his faith.
Footage of the listening party was obtained by TMZ, with Yeezy being heard saying:
I want to let you know that I am not here for your entertainment this afternoon. We are here to spread the gospel. Excuse me if I mispronounce anything. I am a recent convert. It means I recently got saved within this year.
After making the announcement, the audience applauded Ye, after which he referenced a song by his long-term friend Jay-Z in which he rapped the lyric ‘forced into sports or entertainment’.
The lyric came from his song Can’t Knock the Hustle, with Kanye saying he was no longer doing things solely for people’s entertainment. Instead, he said his sole intention is now to spread the gospel.
The rapper practised what he preached throughout his speech, telling his audience what he used to value and hold dear compared to now while quoting scripture along the way.
Kanye’s pastor, Adam Tyson, had previously hinted at this new direction by revealing how the rapper reacts to people swearing in his presence.
As per Complex, Tyson explained:
If somebody cusses in his presence, I’ve heard him say a couple of times, ‘Hey, man, you can’t cuss when you’re with me. I’m a born-again Christian’. Who’s gonna say that if they’re not meaning that they want Christ to be exalted in all that they do?
[He told me], ‘From now on, all I want to do is serve Christ. I want every song that I sang, to have part of my testimony, to include the gospel, and to include the element of worship to our great God. That’s what I want to do.’
Jesus Is King is now expected to drop on the same day as his IMAX film Jesus Is King: A Kanye West Experience, which will be in a select few cinemas until October 31.
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A Broadcast Journalism Masters graduate who went on to achieve an NCTJ level 3 Diploma in Journalism, Lucy has done stints at ITV, BBC Inside Out and Key 103. While working as a journalist for UNILAD, Lucy has reported on breaking news stories while also writing features about mental health, cervical screening awareness, and Little Mix (who she is unapologetically obsessed with).