John Legend Attacks Pastors in Anti-Easter Service Rant: Don't Let Them 'Kill Your Auntie'


John Legend criticized pastors who are choosing to hold in-person services on Easter Sunday in a series of tweets on April 4, saying “don’t let these pastors kill your auntie or grandparent.”

The Grammy- and Oscar-winning singer-songwriter’s Twitter rant began with a tweet that included a story from the Los Angeles Times about a church choir in Washington state that held a rehearsal in the middle of the coronavirus pandemic.

Sixty of the 121 choir members showed up for practice. Three weeks later, 45 had been diagnosed with COVID-19, at least three had been hospitalized and two people were dead.

“This story is for anyone even contemplating, considering, thinking, imagining, dreaming about going to church on Easter Sunday,” Legend tweeted.

“And please send this to your older relatives who aren’t on Twitter.”

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Eight people who attended the rehearsal told the Los Angeles Times that no one was coughing or sneezing or appeared ill and everyone avoided direct physical contact.

Linsey Marr, an expert on the airborne transmission of diseases, said the outbreak in the choir should serve as a powerful warning.

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“This may help people realize that, hey, we really need to be careful,” Marr said.

One person responded to Legend’s Twitter warning and said, “unfortunately some ministers are saying its a test of your faith … ‘real believers trust God’ so refraining from church thereby means you dont have faith.”

“Don’t let these pastors kill your auntie or grandparent,” Legend replied.

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Legend added that he gives this warning “as a pastor’s grandson and nephew.”

“I know how hard it is for many churches to pay their mortgage and that most pastors aren’t anywhere near rich and rely on the weekly offering to make things work for themselves and their congregation,” he tweeted.


Legend’s tweets come as churches across the country are facing executive orders to not hold in-person or even drive-up services to celebrate Easter.

Police in Greenville, Mississippi, even reportedly issued $500 tickets to members of Temple Baptist Church for sitting in their cars Wednesday and listening to their pastor’s sermon.

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Erin Coates was an editor for The Western Journal for over two years before becoming a news writer. A University of Oregon graduate, Erin has conducted research in data journalism and contributed to various publications as a writer and editor.
Erin Coates was an editor for The Western Journal for over two years before becoming a news writer. She grew up in San Diego, California, proceeding to attend the University of Oregon and graduate with honors holding a degree in journalism. During her time in Oregon, Erin was an associate editor for Ethos Magazine and a freelance writer for Eugene Magazine. She has conducted research in data journalism, which has been published in the book “Data Journalism: Past, Present and Future.” Erin is an avid runner with a heart for encouraging young girls and has served as a coach for the organization Girls on the Run. As a writer and editor, Erin strives to promote social dialogue and tell the story of those around her.
Tucson, Arizona
Graduated with Honors
Bachelor of Arts in Journalism, University of Oregon
Books Written
Contributor for Data Journalism: Past, Present and Future
Prescott, Arizona
Languages Spoken
English, French
Topics of Expertise
Politics, Health, Entertainment, Faith