What does ‘The Soul Man’ do on Sunday? He worships God, and on July 15, that’s just where he was – praising the Lord at three Los Angeles area churches.
Cedric The Entertainer, who portrays the Rev. Boyce ‘The Voice’ Ballentine on TV Land’s ‘The Soul Man’ sitcom, along with his family and cast members fellowshipped at First A.M.E. Church, West Angeles Church of God in Christ and The City of Refuge.
The visits actually served a two-fold purpose for Cedric, who hails from a strong Christian background. He got his ‘praise on’ enjoying the singing, prayers and sermon as well as addressed the congregations to encourage viewership of ‘The Soul Man.’
“It’s a blessing to be here and have an opportunity to talk about my show. You could see I was about to go to the big ‘desk’ before Pastor John (Hunter) pulled me back,” he jokingly told FAME’s 1,000+ members at the 10 a.m. service.
“We’ve had great shows in the past like ‘Amen,’ but I had the vision for this show, where we could talk in our community about some of the issues that are going on, show a family that’s loving, growing, learning, and we do it with each other.
“We hear talk about African Americans not having any presence on television and film, but when we have them, we must support these shows,” said Cedric.
Joining the audience in applauding Cedric’s comments, Pastor Hunter noted, “There are not many positive, affirming, family-oriented shows that are clean on television. It’s the kind of family program that doesn’t undermine the image of African Americans, but it reinforces the positive with levity and fun.”
The series, created by Cedric and Suzanne Martin, revolves around Rev. Ballentine, a R&B superstar-turned-minister. Upon hearing the call to ministry, he leaves his career and high life in Las Vegas to serve in his father’s church in St. Louis. Reluctantly joining him are his wife, Lolli (played by Niecy Nash) and daughter, Lyric (played by Jazz Raycole). Rounding out the cast are Barton, Boyce’s cantankerous father (played by John Beaslely) and Stamps, Boyce’s crafty brother (played by Wesley Jonathan). Reviewers agree that the show provides comedic, yet realistic, insights into the faith-based African American community.
A Sunday in the life of The Soul Man continued at The City of Refuge led by Bishop Noel Jones.
“It’s great that Bishop Jones allowed me to come in. I have known him a long time and he married me and my wife 13 years ago,” said Cedric.
“Also, it’s very important, if you have an opportunity, to watch this show and tell others to watch, too.”
Bishop Jones added, “The reason I allowed Cedric to speak is that I know it’s going to be tasty, it’s going to be tasteful and the show is going to impact many people. Hopefully, something within that show will have a message and entertainment that will uplift and encourage people.”
'The Soul Man' airs on Wednesdays at 10 p.m. on the TV Land network. Check local or cable listings for the channel.