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New Birth Missionary Baptist Church Good Friday Service

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Pastor Jamal Bryant stopped by Get Up to address the controversy around his thoughts on Marijuana, Black males who dabble, and the Church.

 

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During the “Cool Soror” podcast with Rashan Ali, Pastor Bryant said “I’m looking for people that smell like weed. New Birth is the largest land-owning Black church in America. My position to my deacons is ‘why are we not raising cannabis?‘” He continued, saying “I’ll be able to bring in Black males. They’re able to do it legally. I’m teaching them farming. I’m helping them to enhance the ecosystem. This is the kind of conversation. So if the guy, Black boy, in Bankhead said ‘they growing weed at the church? Where do I join?’ I don’t need no pamphlet for him.”

As expected, those words cause a bit of controversy in the church. Pastor Bryant clears the air on those comments and more on Get Up! Mornings With Erica Campbell.

 

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ERICA: You can really say stuff and people can really, really say stuff. So we need to clear the air and set the record straight this morning.

GRIFF: That’s a good segue, “clear the air.”

ERICA: Griff. Stop it. You recently said you were looking for people who smell like weed. What did you mean, sir?

PASTOR BRYANT: I meant what I said and imagine Erica, the offense of the church. I said “I want people to smell like smoke. Smell like weed.” I never said I want to smoke with them. I’ve never said that the church is going to be selling blunts in the Bible bookstore. I said this is who it is that we’re after. This is the great commission to go after people who are drunk, go after people who are high. That’s what I believe our responsibility is and I cannot take it back. And I believe that that’s where the call is. We are recycling saints and not really going after sinners. But I really grieve for the church. Because this last week has shown me how judgmental and how narrow-minded the church is that we can’t even welcome people who smell like it.

I want to lend some clarity to the body because people think they know you and they don’t. Erica, my uncle was Frank Lucas, the biggest black drug dealer in America. So big that they made a movie about American Gangster. So why in the world? What if then perpetuate that same vice, that same sickness, and that same undercurrent that has damaged so many lives? Jesus said I came that you might have life in so please say to the Most High God, know that I am not trying to get people high. I am trying to elevate people to a whole nother level. Secondly, after thank you for giving me this opportunity. People said, Oh, why are you growing weed when it’s so much other stuff? Let’s pause right here. The Bible says people die from a lack of knowledge. I have an urban garden on our campus. So Shirley Ceaser could be my co-pastor. I’m selling greens, beans, tomatoes, you name it.