Soul food

Inspirational sets at Ja Fun In The Son

Observer writer

Monday, July 16, 2018

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IT was event conceptualiser Tommy Cowan's hope to see lives transformed at the 16th Jamaica Fun In The Son at National Heroes' Park in Kingston on Saturday. Thousands of patrons flocked the all-day family affair to receive testimonials from artistes and pastors.

The free event was open to onlookers, believers and non-believers to receive the word of God. And if that wasn't inspirational enough, the line-up was. Former secular acts Carlene Davis, Marion Hall and Papa San are living testimonies of transformed lives, and Wayne Marshall is on that trod.

In a surprise appearance, Marshall was brought on stage by Prodigal Son to perform his new hit song, Glory to God. The crowd erupted as a teary-eyed Marshall sang alongside friend and deejay Ryan Mark.

“I've been on this journey; what's different now is there's this song that encapsulates where I am in my spiritual journey, or it kinda validates the discipline I've had and just the faith that I've had that there is something higher — and I'm aspiring to be one with that,” Marshall told the Jamaica Observer backstage.

“It's inspiring, it's riveting and it's epic, because here it was I wasn't on the front line duty, I never had no songs playing. God just said stay disciplined, stay true and I will sort everything out, and I did that. And He did sort out everything so what can I do? I am a believer...I am more than a believer now, I am a 'knower',” he added.

Hall, formerly known as Lady Saw, delivered a soul-stirring set. She spoke of her financial plight after giving her life to God in 2015.

Davis, who hung up her secular shoes after being diagnosed with cancer in 1996, was passionate on Jamaica Belongs to Jesus, Ambassador for Christ and This Island Needs Jesus.

Papa San brought his unique delivery to the mass with favourites like Smile Again, Pop Style and Church House.

Kevin Downswell was a crowd magnet. His energetic set saw patrons jumping and waving when he performed Goodbye World and Nobody Loves Me the Way You Do. He invited Alaine and Minister Donnie McClurkin onstage to share in song. The latter had earlier done an altar call after his sermon. McClurkin extended his ministry beyond Fun In The Son and went across the island last week.

“There's much more work to do than standing on stage being a celebrity; this is easy. You got 50,000 people that came out to hear you because they think you're a celebrity, and I love doing what I do. This crowd here was absolutely remarkable but the people that are in St Ann's infirmary, St Mary Infirmary, Spanish Town prison, they couldn't come here; those in Clock Tower Plaza, they may not be here because they feel disenfranchised. So the gospel has got to be mobile, the gospel has to go where the people are — and that's what we did,” he told the Observer after the show.

Cowan's daughter, pastor Sara Connor of the Word of Truth Family in Texas, shared her testimony of overcoming adversity and prayed for patrons.

Rondell Positive, Maurice Griffin, Marq, Kyann Knight and Sergeant Rose-Marie also performed.

Cowan was satisfied with the event.

“The great thing is to know that people's lives have been changed and people get blessed. Over the years, over 10,000 young people have been trained, over 20,000 got saved, and we just want all who came out tonight to just be the lamp of God and be the light of Jesus to this country,” he said.

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