14th Annual Super Bowl Gospel Concert

Where Faith Meets Football!

Renowned Photographer Naomi Richard Joins Gospel NewsroomBy Naomi Richard

The Super Bowl Gospel Celebration, currently in its 14th year, joined together NFL players, Grammy Award-winning artists, and special guests, on one stage to kick-off Super Bowl Weekend.  The show, sponsored by Toyota and American Family Insurance, took place on February 1, 2013, at the University of New Orleans, Lakefront Arena.

The only NFL Sanctioned Gospel Concert achieved its 14th Anniversary by returning to the city of New Orleans with a packed line up of Gospel Artists and NFL Players poised and ready to boldly proclaim the Gospel of Jesus Christ!

Grammy Award-winning, platinum-selling artist and American Idol Winner, Fantasia joined Gospel heavyweights such as Donnie McClurkin, Kirk Franklin, Lecrae, Bishop Paul S. Morton and Myron Butler.

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“I’ve been with Super Bowl Gospel since the beginning.  It is a time we all look forward to and it’s a place we feel comfortable telling our testimonies,” said one player.

Gospel Hip-Hop Artist Lecrae had this to say during the Media Press Conference, “I am so honored to have been chosen to be on this line-up.  Artists all over are trying to get on this show, it’s such a prestigious event.  I don’t know how the players chose me, but I am so glad they did.  In the locker rooms, Hip-Hop is being played.  I’m happy to put positive words and a positive meaning to a style they can relate to.”

As the host, Kirk Franklin was asked what he would bring to the concert having just served as the 2013 Co-Host for the Stellar Awards.  “I am happy to be the host for this event.  I believe my main purpose is to treat people with respect, to make sure they have ample time to perform, and that I let the Spirit have its way.  I find that if you treat people with respect, you get better results.  I was happy to host the Stellar Awards and I am happy to be hosting his concert tomorrow night.”

Emmy Award-winning co-host of ABC’s “The View,” Sherri Shepherd and seven-time Grammy Award-winning gospel musician, Kirk Franklin, were the concert’s host and they did an outstanding job.  They led the worshipers in praise, shouting, unscripted salutes, unplanned singing and at one point, Ms. Shepherd was leading a song with Pastor Donnie McClurkin!  It was spontaneous and the crowd loved every minute.

Thirteen-time Pro Bowler and Super Bowl XXXV MVP Ray Lewis of the Baltimore Ravens, was honored with the prestigious Lifetime of Inspiration Award.  The Inspiration Award has only been presented once in the history of the Super Bowl Gospel Celebration event to Former NFL Head Coach Tony Dungy in 2009, as it is reserved to celebrate extraordinary individuals who have impacted the sport and community.

During his remarks Lewis had this to say, “My grandmother is very sick and is in hospice.  She’s the oldest living matriarch of our family and she told me, I’m not going to die [until] you win that Super Bowl.”

And then, in a professional acknowledgement of the sensitivity of the situation, Lewis continued, “No disrespect to the 49’ers Team, but it’s so much bigger than that.” Referring to who might win the outcome of the game.  

There was a thunderous outpouring of applauds including from the 49’ers present.

Each year, Super Bowl Gospel is a highlight of the NFL activities that we look forward to.  It’s a time we see NFL giants become humbled at the Foot of the Cross for Jesus.  It is the time where faith meets football!

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