The SITW Festival is holding a pop-up church service on Sunday

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The day was filled with sermons and performances with artists from across the country and the Howard Gospel Choir.

WASHINGTON DC, DC – Sunday is the last day of the Something in the Water festival taking place in Washington, DC. Thousands of people attended the three-day event. On Sunday, they held a free pop-up church service with star-studded programming.

“I can’t really explain it. I just feel in the presence of the Lord, in the presence of good people, hearing good music that I listen to daily, live, it’s just amazing,” Laura Stevens said.

After a trying week, Stevens said the outdoor pop service was just what she needed to kick off seven new days. The coronavirus pandemic has temporarily closed the doors of churches. She and her friend Charita Matthews were happy to have the space to worship in person.

“Being in these four walls for this long period of time is a lot and you don’t realize the emotional impact it takes on you,” Matthews said.

The event began with prayer. Thomas Bowen, DC’s Director of Religious and African American Affairs, said the Sunday service is what the community needs to bridge the gaps created during the pandemic.

“We need to get closer. We’ve been through a lot in the last two or three years. I can’t think of anything that speaks to people’s hearts so much as inspirational music like gospel music,” Reverend Bowen said.

The day was filled with sermons and performances with artists from across the country and the Howard Gospel Choir. The choir’s assistant musical director, Darrell Brown, said performing the Juneteenth was a tribute to generations who could only dream of performing on stages like this.

“Music is a universal language; and so no matter the genre, there is always a message in a song. We stand on big shoulders and so we’re not just doing this for ourselves and the people who are here, for those who came before us and paved the way for us,” Brown said.

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