Say what you will about Rev. Gaston E. Smith, the Liberty City pastor who faces felony theft charges and is the subject of this week's New Times feature, "In the Name of the King".
One thing is indisputable: The man can preach.
We've received a couple of emails looking for videos of Smith's impressive sermons, so we've posted footage of a July service. To attend a Gaston Smith sermon at Friendship Missionary Baptist Church is to observe something like slam poetry at its highest form. He starts out calm and paced, slowly building into a frenzied crescendo. And he always tries to appeal to the populace, mixing pop culture and modern ebonics with millenniums-old scripture.
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Incredibly, like a Jay-Z of the pulpit, Smith rarely uses notes. As young minister D'Andre Dawkins puts it: "He has a computer in his mind."