Sunday, May 15, 2011

Robert Nesta Marley, O.M., Sings "Redemption Song"

Reader Steven Cornett sends along the Archdiocese of Denver's Christopher Stefanick's reporting of the full story of how the singer "was baptized into the Ethiopian Orthodox faith before his death in 1981" — Redemption songs: The conversion of Bob Marley. Of the song, Mr. Cornett notes, "I can't mention this without reference to one of Bob Marley's most famous songs, Redemption Song, with it's first verse based on the enslavement of Joseph (Gen 37:11-36)."

The article quotes Ethiopian Orthodox Archbishop Abuna Yesehaq, "who had been sent from Africa by the Emperor Haile Selassie I after he found out that many in Jamaica were worshipping him as God incarnate," as saying, "I remember once while I was conducting the Mass, I looked at Bob and tears were streaming down his face. ... When he toured Los Angeles and New York and England, he preached the Orthodox faith, and many members in those cities came to the Church because of Bob. … When he was baptized, he hugged his family and wept, they all wept together for about half an hour."

Also quoted is Father Lloyd Malakot, "currently the chief priest and administrator of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church in Jamaica," who "knew Archbishop Yesehaq well," and says, "Even myself as the chief of the Church in Jamaica, I saw he was a prophet in his own right. His music was inspired by God. It was an expression of his belief that the Lord was with him. And he inspired so many people to enter the Church. Many are inspired by him, even now, to convert."

The great man's music played a big part in my reversion to the Faith. My fellow Americans should appreciate this rendition of the song — Bob Marley's "Redemption Song" Performed by Wyclef Jean.

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Omnes Sancti et Sanctæ Coreæ, orate pro nobis.