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This years BET Celebration of Gospel lived up to it's theme of "Raise The Praise," by featuring not only the best in Gospel music but also the best in the acting world as well as the best in the R&B field as well.
Pastor Donnie Mcclurkin began the worship event with is new song "Trusting In You" from his new disc "Live In Detroit." The song got the crowd on there feet as they began to dance and praise god with Mcclurkin and his singers.
Mary Mary kept the praise party going with their hit singles "Get Up" and "I Worship You," both from their latest recording. The crowd was singing and praising with them throughout both performances.
One of the biggest surprises of the evening came early when R&B legend Teena Marie belted out her version of the gospel classic "His Eye Is On The Sparrow," which had the crowd on their feet from the moment that she came out on stage.
The other surprise came later in the show when LL Cool J joined by Mary Mary performed "We're Gonna Make It" from the Madea's Family Reunion Soundtrack.
The crowd was waving their hands in the air like they were at one of his concerts. Steve Harvey joked "Thank God that I don't have LL's body, cause I would be coming out here with my shirt off, in a vest and just a bow tie on, hosting this show. Y'all would get sick of seeing me."
Kurt Carr received a standing ovation for his knock out praise song "Right Time Right Place." Kirk Franklin & Rance Allen turned in an A plus performance of their song "Little Boy,'' which had Franklin do a split move reminiscent of the late great James Brown.
Heather Headley joined gospel artist Smokie Norful for their stellar version of the classic "Jesus is Love."
UK gospel artist Muyiwa & Riversongz made their American debut, singing their stellar song 'Let's Praise." During the song they taught the crowd to sing the lyrics in the Yoruba language of Nigeria.
Legendary gospel artist Vickie Winans turned in yet another stellar performance of her hit "The Rainbow."
Dr. Bobby Jones joined by Grammy nominated artist 21:03 gave an inspiring performance of the gospel groove "Call Him Up."
The best performance of the night came when Hezekiah Walker was joined by Marvin Sapp and DJ Rogers on his song "God Favored Me," This song sent the crowd in full-scale praise mode. Audience members were lifting their hands, crying and some were even speaking in tongues, like in a church service.
Donnie Mcclurkin who was joined by Karen Clark-Sheard, Dorinda Clark-Cole & Shirley Caesar on the closing song "I'll Trust You Lord."
Comedian Steve Harvey hosted this year's event and was funny as ever. He had the audience in stitches during the whole show. He delivered the jokes with style and ease. Harvey commented, "God knows who to give the voices to. If I had the voice of Rance Allen, there ain't no way that I would be singing gospel." That line made the audience cracking up.
BET'S Celebration of Gospel will air January 25 on the network check local listings for time.