Evangelist Marvia to spread message of hope
Marvia Providence has travelled the world using her high energy gospel music to point people towards Jesus Christ.
Her popular songs I Am Warrior and Sing Praises Unto God may be among those she performs at First Church of God Heritage Worship Centre tonight.
The Jamaican first took the stage here in 2010, at the invitation of the New Testament Church of God, Glory Temple.
“This time, Bishop Lloyd Duncan of the New Testament Church of God felt led of the Holy Spirit to invite me to minister in concert as part of his birthday celebration,” Ms Providence said.
“He also invited Dr Sharon Apopa, a school friend who is celebrating her birthday this month, to be on board so they can celebrate Jesus together.
“This visit will be my third time in Bermuda. The first time, eight years ago, I ministered in concert at the Fairmont Southampton.”
There will be plenty of “high praise and worship” at tonight’s concert however there is a deeper purpose behind it, Ms Providence said.
“After we give praise and worship God, then we must make a decision about committing our lives.
“These are serious times that we are living in and there is just too much to gain and to lose.”
Organiser Marlene Flynn Carty insisted the event isn’t just for Christians but anyone who “has been struggling and just needs an uplifting atmosphere”.
“All are welcome and encouraged to come out and sing praises to the Lord,” she said.
One of the singer’s latest hits, Hear My Cry Oh Lord, features dancehall artist Elephant Man.
Ms Flynn Carty said people have testified about how the up-tempo tune had ministered to their hearts while on the dancefloor, resulting in them being converted.
“Marvia doesn’t perform, but she ministers in song,” she said. “The anointing of God is strong upon her life and she just gives God all of who she is while ministering.
“Our prayer is that people attending will be parachuted to another level in God having experienced this concert tonight.”
Ms Providence attended church as a child “mostly because it was all [she] knew”.
“I really didn’t have a choice in the matter growing up however I realised around 1985, after years of just going out of habit and being welcomed simply because I could sing, that this reason wasn’t good enough any more.
“I needed to get to know God for myself. And when I did, my life changed drastically and has never been the same.”
She committed herself, and her music, to the Lord.
She earned a ministerial licence and became an evangelist, eventually pursuing a bachelor’s degree at Emmanuel Bible College in Ontario, Canada.
She sang a solo for the Toronto Mass Choir’s 1992 album, Great is Thy Glory.
Two years later, inspired by a blend of Caribbean and southern gospel, she released an album, Too Much to Gain to Lose, and began touring.
Over the last two decades she has shared the stage with celebrated ministers Paula White, Eddie Long, John Francis, Shirley Caesar, Sheryl Brady, Beverly Crawford and Neil Ellis.
However she is most proud of the impact her ministry has had on people all over the world, some in places she has not visited.
“By following Christ I’ve learnt that if I walk in obedience to Him, my ministry will always be relevant,” she said. “I’ve also realised that I have to stay in my own lane and not try to be or copy anyone else.
“The message I always try to leave people with is the importance of having hope and faith in God, now more than ever.
“I’m hoping everyone who attends [tonight] will leave feeling encouraged, empowered, revived and restored.”
• The Sing Praises Unto God concert takes place at 7.30pm at Heritage Worship Centre on Dundonald Street. Tickets, $30, are available at all New Testament churches and Jamaican Grill on Court Street. The New Testament Church of God Mime Ministry, the Hayward Sisters, the Heritage Worship Centre Praise Team and gospel duo Last Call will also perform