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August 2nd, 2010
02:08 PM ET

Katy Perry opens up on religious upbringing

Katy Perry sang about kissing girls, and now she's talking tongues: In the new issue of Rolling Stone, Perry reveals that her Christian minister parents spoke in tongues when she was growing up.

The California girl, who has "Jesus" tattooed on her left wrist, tells the magazine, "Speaking in tongues is as normal to me as 'Pass the salt..' It's a secret, direct prayer language to God." Perry, 25, adds that her dad usually speaks in tongues while her mom plays interpreter. "That's their gift," she explains.

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- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Celebrity • Christianity • Journeys • Muslim

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soundoff (44 Responses)
  1. verify

    Ah, but bleedingheart, were you *really* a skeptic? Or were you just waiting until the right thing struck your fancy? That's what believers are continually telling us former believers... "Oh, you weren't *really* a believer..."

    August 4, 2010 at 5:29 pm |
  2. bleedingheart

    NL
    I don't judge for being a skeptic. I once was too.
    I do believe some people want to be showy. As with everything in this world. So many are just yearning to be accepted in the world. Christains and none christains. That's human nature. I do believe there is a time and place to teach and talk about speaking in tongues. If they are going to talk about speaking in tongues they also need to educate. Because of the fact there are so many people that are creeped out by it or think that people are crazy because of it.
    I first wrote here just to let people know a little bit about tongues. 2nd it just breaks my heart that people are so mean to each other and judge each other so harshly. Everyone should have an opinion but they should also agree to disagree and yet have an open mind to hear why people believe what they believe 3rd to let people know how other christains feel about the in your face christainity. Not all christains believe in those tacktics.

    August 4, 2010 at 10:04 am |
    • NL

      Would you say that there is a certain percentage who actually don't feel the spirit, mimic speaking in tongues anyway because it's expected? From personal experience I can tell you that peer pressure and family expectations can keep total non-believers within the fold for quite some time, which really does nobody any good, right?

      Back when I was a practicing Catholic we had a similar problem with explaining Saint's medals and the Rosary. Maybe it's more like cultural differences. Try explaining Halloween or Thanksgiving to foreigners!

      August 4, 2010 at 5:21 pm |
  3. evolution2

    If you don't know about speaking in tongues then you should be quiet and learn before you pass a judgement. Sure you have the freedom of speech, but it's your tongue that's is going to condemn you. Whether you believe or not doesn't change the facts about the bible and what it teaches about tongues or heavenly language. I feel compelled to give you an example of how it works: when you go to court, your lawyers speaks for you. He knows all the legal jargon and can successfully defend and speak up for you even you may not understand the court case of Jones vs. the state of Ga. in 1968, but he does. Tongues is your lawyer (Spirit) speaking for you to a heavenly Judge that completely understands the spiritual jargon. We don't always know what we need or what to pray for, but of Spirit knows exactly and knows how and what to communicate with God. It's your choice if you let him or not. If you are afraid to let him speak for you then don't, but it doesn't mean that its wrong. My pray is that God will remove the fear of the unknown from you and your hostile spirit be calm so that He can lead and guide you to the Truth. Peace be onto you.

    August 4, 2010 at 7:29 am |
  4. bleedingheart

    NL
    I forgot to mention. I too was creeped out by exorcist.
    I was at a worship fest and it made me very uncomfortable when people behind me started speaking in tongues. I've heard it before but they were pretty loud. It was scary for my youth group teens. But, was a good education tool.

    There are a lot of people out there that i think I have experience that fake speaking in tongues. I say nothing, thats between them and God.

    I just pray for them to be shown what gifts they have and to try to do others that they aren't equipt with.

    Peace to you!

    August 4, 2010 at 1:44 am |
    • NL

      Ah, forgive me, but I am still a skeptic. I understand that people can be moved and want to vocalize. That's human nature and it also makes sense that individual groups use sounds that come from their own spoken languages. Kinda like how people all use 'baby talk" with their infants based on the language they wish the child to learn.

      You, however, seem to be concerned with why people speak as they do in public. Paul stated that "all things must be done properly and in an orderly manner" when referring to speaking in tongues. Do you feel that some people are being too showy? Putting it "out there" in public just to wedge those who believe as they do from the rest of society in a kind of "we have gifts, and you don't"

      August 4, 2010 at 9:41 am |
  5. bleedingheart

    These are the two areas my beliefs of tongues come from.
    Bible
    New International Reader's Version (NIRV)
    1 Corinthians 12:10
    10 To others he gives the power to do miracles. To others he gives the ability to prophesy. To others he gives the ability to tell the spirits apart. To others he gives the ability to speak in different kinds of languages they had not known before. And to still others he gives the ability to explain what was said in those languages.

    1.Cor.14:2 that speaking in tongues is speaking to God only and not to men. No man can understand it not even interpreters. It is mysteries. But if any man preach the gospel in a foreign language (known tongue), let there be someone who can interpret, then you have the real gift.

    What you speak of in exorcist is tongues but not speaking tongues in the spirit of Christ. There are many different speaking in tongues due to sin. God made this for the good but others can take it and use it for evil.

    I don't want to argue. I was just trying to educate and explain what how I feel Christains should act. Not forceful. I just feel that so many want to defend what they believe and don't actually let the spirit inside them take over.

    Peace to All!!

    August 4, 2010 at 1:30 am |
  6. bleedingheart

    well, I will explain it the best I can. I understand alot more then I can bring to words. The language of tongues goes back to Paul the apostle. (In Acts of the bible) He spoke many languages but not enough to help Corinth. Which was a city alot like our world today. Full of so much sin. He asked God to have everyone to speak a language someone could understand. Key word is someone it doesn't mean all.
    So to answer your question. They are speaking what the holy spirit is giving them to speak. It says in some form in scripture that we can't take in all our minds have. So we speak in tongues. The holy spirit speaks for us which could either be a prayer or just worship to God.
    You need to be careful with tongues. If you try to speak tongues without being a christain you can tread in trouble waters. Even to the point of worshiping satan.
    It can be explained more through different web sites. Do some research you will find out alot that I have a hard time explaining. I could, but it would be a book and lots of scriptures to explain it all.
    I hope this helps. I know I went more indepth but I don't know how much you know so I wanted to make it more clear just incase.

    August 4, 2010 at 12:34 am |
    • NL

      If it is an actual language can anyone get a Tongues dictionary and translate for themselves? If I were to record someone speaking in Tongues and asked several translators to independently tell me what was being said in English, would they all tell me the same thing? Funny thing is I bet I could get a more consistent result from people speaking Klingon.

      I believe that Acts was describing the Spirit bestowing the gift of languages, actual languages spoken at the time, and not this... whatever it is? Frankly, the first time I heard it I was reminded of the grunts of the possessed girl in the movie the Exorcist. Creeped me out, a lot!

      August 4, 2010 at 12:49 am |
    • peace2all

      @bleedingheart

      Thanks for the information...... So, If I want to learn the holy spirits language of 'tongue' I best be careful as you say, as I may tread into very troubled waters...i.e... the devil/satan....? Hmmmmm

      I must find out this 'tongue' language.... I see that my friend, @NL is also interested...

      @NL... I think we should seek a true 'master' at speaking the language of 'tongue' so we can learn and not start speaking devil talk and such...

      I'm game... 😉 You....?

      Peace....

      August 4, 2010 at 1:53 am |
    • NL

      peace2all-
      I stopped believing in the devil long ago, so I'm not afraid that one day I'll get him on the phone as a wrong number and need to tell him so.

      August 4, 2010 at 9:46 am |
  7. bleedingheart

    My heart is just aching from all these comments. I never blog but have been called to do so. We do have people in our church that speak in tonge but in private as to not offend anyone. Some people are afraid of what they don't understand or can't even comprehend. I grow up catholic and the older I got the more questions I had. I actually questioned christianity myself. God revealed several things to me to show me that he is real. I will not go into details as to the same reason to not speak tongues around people that don't fully understand.
    All I can tell you is I thought I was going crazy when I dreamed thimgs and it would happen. Now I know that I have a spirtual gift that God has given me to change my life and so many other lives around me.
    The only thing I believe a christain should do is show everyone love and through our love people will see Christ. If they choose not to it's okay God gave us choice. He didn't want us to be forced to love him. He wanted what we want someone to love us voluntarily.
    As christians we should be asking 3 questions. 1st. Do you believe in Christ. (If not) 2nd. where will you go if you die – most don't know others question themselves while saying heaven 3rd. Do you want to hear the truth.
    Saying do you want to hear the truth. Gives the person their own choice and if they say yes you give them the scriptures to read. Of course I would have a bible with me. When they read it God will speak to them and if they want to turn to him they will. If not it's okay. They were given a choice by God and God doesn't want anyone to be pressured into coming to him.
    He does of course love each and everyone of us. Christian or none christain. Just as all of us should everyone has a good part of them. Always remember Love the person HATE THE SIN!
    And for AikidoManOfGod every seed needs to be planted and eventually some will grow. Never give up!!

    Peace to all! In our country we need to all be fighting for one thing. Peace! and through peace we will find love.

    August 3, 2010 at 11:03 pm |
    • peace2all

      @bleedingheart

      Peace to you as well....

      But, I still have to know...... tell me about the 'language of tongue'.....!!! What are you/they 'actually' saying..

      Peace....

      August 3, 2010 at 11:12 pm |
  8. Luke

    Katy Perry has an abnormally long neck, no?

    August 3, 2010 at 5:01 pm |
    • peace2all

      @Luke

      Yes, very likely so......

      August 3, 2010 at 7:49 pm |
  9. K

    @joe: And I think we're gonna need to pray for you........just saying......

    August 2, 2010 at 7:21 pm |
  10. K

    @AikidoManOfGod: Good for you for stating the truth.....It seems that you can be sure of where you're going 🙂

    August 2, 2010 at 7:19 pm |
    • peace2all

      @K

      And Aikidomanofgod can be*sure* of where he is going...... because of what actual proof you have...?

      August 3, 2010 at 2:03 am |
  11. aukala

    I too grew up in a Pentecost household/church. It seemed that it was always the same people who spoke in tongues. But they preached that speaking in tongues was directly from the Bible. I was always frightened to dispute this belief; but, yes, it sounds like gibberish and I don't understand how anyone could interpret what was being said.

    August 2, 2010 at 6:36 pm |
    • joe

      i was born Pentecostal but i grew up and woke up.. to learn its all bunk

      August 2, 2010 at 6:49 pm |
    • warrior63

      One time I was in a church that spoke in tongues and this one woman was doing it really loud. It was super annoying to me, so I prayed "God could you PLEASE make that woman shut up!!!" I was STUNNED when all of a sudden right after my prayer, she shut up!!

      August 2, 2010 at 11:32 pm |
    • Juu

      Speaking in tongues is really speaking in foreign languages. It's like French, German, Japanese, etc... people today tend to forget that people of the past spoke differently. If I speak Latin, I am speaking in tongues. English? Same thing if it is not my first language.

      August 4, 2010 at 7:13 am |
  12. Ferch

    I hate how this country is ran by such extremists. In one side we have those Nazi Christian monsters on the right, on the other side we have this God-insulting drug addicts. They are destroying this country. Why can't people just be normal without being obsessed with atheism or christianity?

    August 2, 2010 at 5:42 pm |
    • AikidoManOfGod

      In other words, not know what happens to you when you die? Either there is a God or there isnt. It cant be both. The world wants you to believe that this is all there is in life so if it feels good, do it. However God wants you to know that there is more than just this life, there is an afterlife. And there are two possible destinations: Heaven and Hell. God made heaven for all of us to be with Him, He made Hell for Satan and those who turn from God. The Bible says that there is noone that doeth good no not one! God is a judge and this offends you because you dont like the idea of a God judging who you are. But because you have sinned, you have hidden yourself from God. God is Holy and created all things. the Bible says that all liers will have their part in the lake of fire.

      However there is a way to get to heaven. There are 2 things you must do, first you must realize that you have sinned by the 10 commandments, that you deserve hell, but that you realize that Jesus came to die on the cross 2000 years ago for all of your sins. You must realize that Jesus is the only way to heaven and eternal life. Then you have to turn from your sin, that is stop doing what it is that hurts your relationship with God.

      It isnt easy to say this nor is it popular, but it is the absolute truth. Its not my truth or a version of the truth but THE TRUTH.

      There are alot of scientific ways to prove that there has to be a God, and many ways to prove that evolution could not be possible except micro-evolution or (Variation).

      If you want to look at all the facts, just like the athiest Lee Strobel did, you will be supprized to find out that God made everything, and he loves us very much and has a perfect plan for our lives. You are a special creation in Gods eyes.

      Lee Strobel went out to prove that the Bible was false and ended up becoming a Christian because the Bible speaks absolute truth and Jesus is the Truth.

      I am saying this not as a brainwashed person but as someone who has felt the Holy Spirit first hand as many have who are Christians.

      Just think about this, what if your right and there is no God? then you can just do what you want to then. But think about this....what if your wrong? If your wrong then it matters what happens before you die, you matter, what you say and do matter, because I can tell you, God loves you but He will judge you, Hes not your mom or dad, He is God and sin is unholy and He cant be in sins presents nor can sin be allowed in heaven so He must punish those that do not deserve heaven.

      None of us are a good person nor deserve heaven but Jesus was perfect and because of Him we are saved as long as we put our trust in Him alone. Then God will find us innocent and we will dwell in the house of the Lord forever, Amen.

      August 2, 2010 at 6:15 pm |
    • joe

      see thats exactly what hes talkin about...instead of making a nice comment to his..Aikidomanofgod u turned into a sunday school meetigs..what he means by Nazi Christian monsters

      August 2, 2010 at 6:48 pm |
    • joe

      Meeting..dang typos LOL

      August 2, 2010 at 6:51 pm |
    • peace2all

      @Aikidomanofgod

      See now, this whole article was 'tongue' and, well you know the rest, and you had to go and write a 3,000 word bit of biblical gibberish to ruin the mood.

      peace....me/kenpo/brazilian jiu-jitsu man

      August 3, 2010 at 2:07 am |
  13. Thugliest

    there is no god, the bible is fiction!

    August 2, 2010 at 5:21 pm |
    • joe

      finaly someone with a good head on their shoulders

      August 2, 2010 at 6:58 pm |
  14. joe

    makes me lose respect for her thats shes another brainwashed sheep

    August 2, 2010 at 5:03 pm |
    • warrior63

      Joe said, "makes me lose respect for her thats shes another brainwashed sheep" I'm sure JOE would rather a woman TOTALLY AND COMPLETELY REJECT men than to have parents who believe something other than we are all food for worms when we die.

      August 2, 2010 at 11:29 pm |
  15. TodL

    In other words, "I'm like, totally kinda gullible, ya know?"

    August 2, 2010 at 5:03 pm |
  16. bluegrassmama

    gee...... wonder what mama and daddy think of their little girl "kissin girls"..................hum.......................

    August 2, 2010 at 3:46 pm |
    • peace2all

      @bluegrassmama

      I imagine that they are a bit conflicted about the .... dare I say.... 'tongue' part... I'm sorry, couldn't resist....

      August 2, 2010 at 4:47 pm |
  17. Saladin

    Isn't speaking in tongues speaking so that anyone, of any language, can understand you? Did these people not even READ Acts?

    August 2, 2010 at 3:36 pm |
    • Reality

      Was Pentecost an historical event or simply more myth concocted by Luke to gain members to the newest cult in town??

      e.g. Luke, the only gospel writer to note the Pentecost, started this tale in Luke 24:49 i.e. a single attestation and therefore historically unreliable.

      August 2, 2010 at 4:42 pm |
    • peace2all

      @Saladin

      You are 'speaking tongue & Cheek', right...?

      August 2, 2010 at 4:43 pm |
    • Steve

      No, I didn't..... I don't like fiction.

      August 2, 2010 at 6:45 pm |
  18. JenniferM

    I grew up in a church like that. This phenomenon of speaking in tongues is really just mass hysteria and gibberish, plus some peer pressure. There's nothing magic about it. Sometimes, people just memorize a set of syllables and repeat them over and over.

    August 2, 2010 at 3:26 pm |
    • peace2all

      @JenninferM

      And even more amazing, is people in the audience 'act as if' they actually understand said 'gibberish'

      This is really bothering me.... I need someone to translate the language of 'tongue' !!

      August 2, 2010 at 4:45 pm |
  19. Roxanne

    I just lost so much respect for her.

    August 2, 2010 at 3:24 pm |
    • rsbirk

      Who had respect for her anyway?? Good grief!

      August 2, 2010 at 4:47 pm |
  20. peace2all

    Always been fascinated by the 'speaking in tongue's' phenomenon. The fact that her Father and Mother have utilized this 'language' is, well.... what can I say.

    And add to it that the Mother is the 'interpreter'........ Can't be too much of a secret if she is interpreting for people. Please, I have to know what they are talking about. ...

    August 2, 2010 at 2:39 pm |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.