God visits FGCU: Gospel Jam spreads the word

Posted on December 1, 2011

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By Allison Gagliardi

amgaglia@eagle.fgcu.edu

God recently made a stop at Florida Gulf Coast University. At least the members of Voice Inspiration and Praise believe he did.

On Friday, VIP hosted a Gospel Jam. Local performers gathered on campus to praise God with their voices.

The organization put the concert together in hopes that it would make God more of an actual man to students. Ideally, someone to whom they can relate.

 “A lot of people think that we serve a God that is in a box,” said John Brown, VIP president. “But he is not in a box.”

 Brown says that students have this idea that God can’t fit into their lifestyle, so they forget the basic roots of their religion, whatever religion that may be.

 He is out to debunk that myth.

 “He (God) can relate to each culture. He is not a tall type with a long beard,” he said. “That’s the ‘Family Guy’ type God.”

 All of the performances had one thing in common: dancing.

 Rapping and booty-shakin’ were completely acceptable as well. This wasn’t your typical religious atmosphere. Audience members and performers did their praying and praising in a very modern way.

 “We tore it down. It was crazy,” Brown said. “Just ridiculous.”

 G. Reign is in a band called Lion Squad. His group performed several songs with positive messages, but with dance moves that you would expect to find in a club.

 G. Reign agrees that the major problem at play is that students shy away from their religion because they think their lifestyle makes creates a barrier between them and something greater.

 “There is none of this floating in the clouds stuff,” he said.

 Rebecca Butcher, a freshman majoring in education, grew up with God in her life.

 She understands the message that Brown and G. Reign are spreading.

 “I love my old church. Don’t get me wrong,” Butcher said. “ (My old church was) very straight-laced with no clapping during the songs. No dancing. No nothing. So then I come to this and it is a total 180. It is so much fun.”

 Butcher joined VIP a few weeks ago. “It was just something that I felt like I needed to do. God told me to go to that initial meeting,” she said.

 The group wanted Butcher to join as soon as they heard her voice. Butcher learned 12 songs in one day to prepare for the concert.

 “You can follow the Lord, and still have fun and be yourself. You just let everything go and just dance and sing and praise,” she said. “It is just so much fun.”

 Butcher summed up the message of the night perfectly.

 “Just have fun with it because if you can’t come as you are, why come at all?”

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By Allison Gagliardi

amgaglia@eagle.fgcu.edu

God recently made a stop at Florida Gulf Coast University. At least the members of Voice Inspiration and Praise believe he did.

On Friday, VIP hosted a Gospel Jam. Local performers gathered on campus to praise God with their voices.

The organization put the concert together in hopes that it would make God more of an actual man to students. Ideally, someone to whom they can relate.

“A lot of people think that we serve a God that is in a box,” said John Brown, VIP president. “But he is not in a box.”

Brown says that students have this idea that God can’t fit into their lifestyle, so they forget the basic roots of their religion, whatever religion that may be.

He is out to debunk that myth.

“He (God) can relate to each culture. He is not a tall type with a long beard,” he said. “That’s the ‘Family Guy’ type God.”

All of the performances had one thing in common: dancing.

Rapping and booty-shakin’ were completely acceptable as well. This wasn’t your typical religious atmosphere. Audience members and performers did their praying and praising in a very modern way.

“We tore it down. It was crazy,” Brown said. “Just ridiculous.”

G. Reign is in a band called Lion Squad. His group performed several songs with positive messages, but with dance moves that you would expect to find in a club.

G. Reign agrees that the major problem at play is that students shy away from their religion because they think their lifestyle makes creates a barrier between them and something greater.

“There is none of this floating in the clouds stuff,” he said.

Rebecca Butcher, a freshman majoring in education, grew up with God in her life.

She understands the message that Brown and G. Reign are spreading.

“I love my old church. Don’t get me wrong,” Butcher said. “ (My old church was) very straight-laced with no clapping during the songs. No dancing. No nothing. So then I come to this and it is a total 180. It is so much fun.”

Butcher joined VIP a few weeks ago. “It was just something that I felt like I needed to do. God told me to go to that initial meeting,” she said.

The group wanted Butcher to join as soon as they heard her voice. Butcher learned 12 songs in one day to prepare for the concert.

“You can follow the Lord, and still have fun and be yourself. You just let everything go and just dance and sing and praise,” she said. “It is just so much fun.”

Butcher summed up the message of the night perfectly.

“Just have fun with it because if you can’t come as you are, why come at all?”

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