God Is ‘My Source of Strength’: Earth, Wind & Fire Alum Discusses His Ministry
By Movieguide® Staff
Earth, Wind & Fire’s Philip Bailey wants to honor band founder Maurice White with a unique ministry opportunity.
After a difficult 2020, Bailey and the Mixed Roots Foundation are launching the #FosterChallenge campaign, which seeks to encourage Americans to donate money for the nation’s 500,000 foster youth. The fundraiser will support children from 20 different non-profit foster care organizations. The challenge is close to Bailey’s heart because he previously founded Music Is Unity, a ministry to help foster children.
Bailey revealed that his ultimate motivation and joy comes from his relationship with God.
“I’m a strong believer in God. Always have been. I’ve always believed that he directed my path from the time I was a kid. He has always been my source of strength. So I always go back to God,” Bailey explained.
He continued: “Life can be very challenging. But I’ve always believed that God is always in control, even when you are going through challenges. Nothing catches him by surprise. It’s all part of his plan. I rely on that even during the toughest of times. And ultimately, these challenges aren’t made to break me, but to make me more of what he created me to be.”
It’s Bailey’s faith that inspires him to serve others and honor White’s legacy after he died in 2006.
“Music is a very strong force when it comes to making a difference, as well as entertaining, soothing, and encouraging. But his special mission was always to render a service to humanity, to actually make music that made a positive difference,” Bailey said. “And that was the reason we wrote the kind of lyrics that we wrote over the years. That’s why he conducted himself in the way that he did. We were 10 years younger than him and new in the game. But he wanted to be a great example for us. And he was a great role model for all of us, growing up together in our early 20s.”
Though the pandemic affected Bailey’s ministry, the musician is determined to continue to better the lives of foster children.
“I’m a father and grandfather of seven and I just can’t imagine a time when any of them would be out there in the cold, cruel world without any support or anyone to turn to,” Bailey said. “Whenever I have done any of our initiatives to support foster care I meet many of these kids. The light has gone out of their eyes because they’ve been disappointed so much. So many have fallen between the cracks simply because they have nowhere to turn and they’re in a place by no fault of their own. It’s not like they did anything to deserve this. There are just so many different reasons you end up in foster care as a kid. And it’s not their fault.”
He concluded: “I did my research and I was stunned by the lack of support associated with our foster youth. It’s really a shame with the United States being such a wealthy country. There are so many children dumpster diving, sleeping under bridges and selling their bodies to survive. Not all of them end up in these kinds of situations, but there are too many of us to let it continue happening.”