The Grammy-nominated Wynonna Judd — one half of “The Judds” duo of the 1980s — praised the “Pentecostal” God on primetime television Sunday night.
Wynonna Judd, 57, alluded to her Christian faith during CMT’s “Naomi Judd: A River of Time Celebration,” a star-studded event held at the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville honoring her mother, Naomi, who died by suicide April 30 at 76 years old.
“This is live TV, right?” she said at the end of her performance of “Love Can Build a Bridge,” the hit country song written by Naomi Judd and performed by The Judds during their 1991 farewell tour after the elder Judd was diagnosed with hepatitis C. “OK, let’s change things up.”
Wynonna Judd then pointed toward the sky, telling the crowd, “I want her to hear this.”
When one of her band members asked Wynonna Judd what she wanted to do, she quipped, “I just want to keep going and make them sweat,” before adding, “No, I want to be spontaneous, because the God I believe in is Pentecostal!”
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At that point, she led the audience in repeating the refrain of “Love Can Build a Bridge” twice.
Performing with Wynonna Judd were members of the choir from Christ Church in Nashville, where she said she and her husband, Cactus Moser, attend church. Moser played drums alongside his wife.
At another point during the service Sunday night, Wynonna Judd announced she will go on with the previously scheduled arena tour initially billed as “The Final Tour” for The Judds duo.
“I will continue to sing,” she declared at the Ryman. “I made a decision, and I decided to share it on national television. After a lot of thought, I am gonna have to honor her and do this tour, because that is what you would want.”
“Bono once told me, ‘Give them what they [the fans] want…not what you want,’ the iconic singer added. “Plus, there are 2,500 roses up here. So tonight, as we close, I say, ‘The show must go on.’ As hard as it may be, we will show up together. You will carry me — as you carried me for 38 years — once again because I honestly didn’t think I should do it. I didn’t know If I could go on without her. … Oh, God, life is so strange. It is so devastatingly beautiful what happened here tonight. We will continue this spectacle. That is what she would want, right?”
Before the performances got underway, Ashley Judd — Wynonna’s younger sister and an actor — delivered a eulogy for their late mother. She also spoke briefly about her own faith.
“When I am so forlorn, I say to my Creator, ‘I do not know who you are and yet I do know who you are because you are the one who saved me,'” she said. “And in the dark night of the soul, I say to myself, ‘I do not know who I am, yet I do know who I am, because I am the one you saved.’ Our circumstances do not have the power to name our identity because, as my mother taught me, we are spiritual beings having a human experience. And God comes to us disguised as our life.”
In 2018, Naomi Judd spoke with CBN News about her deep depression and the Christian faith that sustained her.
“I have faith,” she said at the time. “I believe in God and I’ve gotten through all this stuff because of those three things: my faith, my hope, and my belief in an eternal God.”
Please continue to pray for the Judd family as their process the grief of their significant loss.
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