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‘You Haven’t Grown Up In a Black Church’: Churchgoers Step In as Video of Pastor Keion Henderson Trying to ‘Stop’ His Congregation from Catching the Spirit Receives Backlash

Pastor Keion Henderson wants God to receive all of the glory, but right now he is the one caught in the spotlight for his viral leadership.

The Lighthouse Church founder is yet again the topic of discussion as a new clip from a recent sermon has begun to circulate on Instagram.

He remains a hot topic days after he ignited a discourse about the very public way he chose to silence a disruptive church member whose continuous wails during praise and worship struck a nerve. In the latest clip generating comments, the pastor is in the midst of preaching when every member of the choir begins to stir about on the stage behind him in the Houston sanctuary.

Pastor Keion Henderson defended against critics taking issue with him telling his choir not to overdo their praise and worship. (Photos: @pastorkeion/Instagram, Keion Henderson TV/YouTube.)

The music director punctuated the moment with organ chords that signaled a full-blown shout and Holy Spirit experience was unfolding. Henderson turned to them and said, “Let me, uh … no. We’re not gonna do that. Wait,” but it was too late. Several of the members had already started to move across the stage, tilt their heads back, call out to the Lord, and shuffle in place.

“There is a … wait! Wait! We gon’ get there. There is a spirit of disobedience in this church. I’m asking you to just wait a minute,” he said as the music continued to play and choir members roared into their microphones, further inciting the energized scene to play out.

Still, he said, “Alright, order in the house. Look at somebody else and tell them I’m gon’ live to see it happen.”

“He hates it there but the money is Good,” claimed one critic. Another user wrote, “Worship team needs to read the room. Pastor got something God put on his heart to say, and folks too busy catching the spirit to catch the message.”

But several others suggested that the Indiana native may have been having a playful moment. “I can’t tell some of yall don’t go to church regularly…he’s joking…sheesh,” read one defense of his actions.

“Now this was very light hearted…totally different from the last time he went viral,” wrote another who drew comparisons from the time he told a female parishioner “silence in the name of Jesus” for drawing attention to herself with her wailing.

Yet others say Pastor Henderson was simply doing his job. “He’s hyping them up ! If you don’t go to church stay out of church folks business,” said one person.

Another wrote, “Say you haven’t grown up in black church, without saying you haven’t grown up in black church. this is normal behavior from down south black pastors him saying stop, does not mean literally it’s like an if you know, you know, type of thing.”

Henderson addressed the controversial moment when he appeared alongside his wife, Shaunie O’Neal, on the “Tamron Hall” show last week. Despite people suggesting that his actions were inappropriate, he explained that he and other church members had been trying to get the woman to pipe down for four years.

“As a pastor, I know the difference between disturbance and worship and what people have to understand, what people have to understand is that every time you hear noises in the church it isn’t worship,” he told the daytime talk show host. He added, “There has to be order. … And so what I did is I brought order to the room so people can hear God and not her, and I’ll do it again if I need to.”

Another supporter, who defended him from harsh criticism amid reactions to the new clip, said, “All BLACK pastors do this!! Act like they want them to stop but really want them keep going! Y’all need to get up off this man for real!”

Henderson has been in ministry since childhood, when he first realized he had been called to lead. He founded the Houston-based church in 2009. He began dating O’Neal in 2019. They wed in 2021, making the former basketball wife — she was previously married to Shaquille O’Neal — a first lady.

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