Minnetonka, Minnesota’s Jehovah’s Witnesses Kingdom Hall held a memorial service for Prince – “Brother Nelson” as his fellow congregants knew him – Sunday at the church where Prince worshipped. Over 500 people attended the invite-only memorial, with Minneapolis police providing extra security to keep throngs of Prince fans and media from attending the event, The Associated Press reports.
Among them was Larry Graham, bassist for Sly and the Family Stone. Graham was a mentor to Prince and was his longtime associate in funk band Graham Central Station. At the service, he spoke about Prince and their shared faith; Graham is often credited with introducing Prince to the Jehovah’s Witnesses.
The memorial service, which was not an authorized estate event, concluded with “See Yourself When All Is New,” a hymn from the Jehovah songbook. The program also borrowed a lyric from Prince’s 3121 ballad “Beautiful, Loved and Blessed”: “If I were to ever write down my life story, I could truly say with all the fame and glory, I was just a piece of clay in need of the potter’s hand.”
On May 11th, Prince was honored at a Los Angeles memorial that featured Janelle Monae, Esperanza Spalding, Mavis Staples and all the members of the Revolution. Prince’s ex-wives, Manuela Testolini and Mayte Garcia, Prince’s ex-wives, organized the memorial.
Friends, family members and collaborators gathered to honor the late icon in L.A. on Wednesday.