Murray takes the stage at Church Hill

Jasmine Murray, former Miss Mississippi, who placed in the top 10 during the Miss America Pageant in 2015, American Idol contestant and contemporary Gospel singer, took the stage at Church Hill Elementary Tuesday to join in its Black History Month celebration.
By: 
DONNA SUMMERALL
Staff Writer

Jasmine Murray, former Miss Mississippi, who placed in the top 10 during the Miss America Pageant in 2015, American Idol contestant and contemporary Gospel singer, entertained first and second grade students along with parents and grandparents Tuesday at the Black History Month Program at Church Hill Elementary.

"It means so much to me to be able to share my faith through my music," Murray said. "It is so encouraging to me to make an impact on people's lives, especially children. Music means so much to me and it’s always been my dream to able to share it."

Murray said this was her second or third group to perform for this year, which is quite a change from her pageant days.

"When I was Miss Mississippi, this was my daily routine," Murray said. "I loved it, going to schools, talking to children. I want them to see me and know they can do anything. I started out as a little girl from Columbus, and now I'm recording songs. I want them to know if I can do it, so can they."

She said while she was singing her song, "Fearless," the children were singing along with her. As a new artist, it means a great deal to her for people to already be familiar with her music.

"I just think 'Fearless' is such a great song," Murray said. "We are all afraid of something. Everyone can relate. But it also tells us fear is not something we should be held captive by."

Murray said she loves to entertain young children, like the first and second grade students at Church Hill.

"I especially love the younger age groups," Murray said. "They are so excited and they have the sweetest spirits and hearts. They just pour out their love to you. They are sweet and so precious."
Church Hill music instructor Tia Lowery was the reason Murray paid a visit to Church Hill for its Black History Month program.

"I called Jasmine and asked if she were going to be home around today," Lowery said. "I wasn't going to ask her to come if she weren't already close by. She said she was coming home for a visit and when I asked if she would drop by Church Hill, she said yes."

Lowery said this was part of the Black History Month celebration, and she wanted to do something different this year.

"I have no idea what to do next year," Lowery said. "I don't know what I could do to top this. Jasmine has been so kind and gracious to come to visit with us."

Emily Lowery, a South Side student, had come by watch the program at Church Hill and was happy to talk about Murray.

"I liked when she was encouraging children to do and be anything," Emily Lowery said. "She is a very inspirational person. She wants people to do and be their very best. She said we can do anything and she makes you feel like you can. I want to be like her when I grow up."

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