BEYONCÉ HAD HER FAITH STORED IN HUMANITY.
The Houston-born superstar has been hard at work helping victims of Hurricane Harvey during the past week. In a pre-taped message, she reminded us that “natural disasters don’t discriminate. They don’t see if you’re an immigrant, black or white, Hispanic or Asian, Jewish or Muslim, wealthy or poor. We’re all in this together.” She continued, “Seeing everyone of different racial, social, and religious backgrounds put their own lives at risk to help each other survive restored my faith in humanity.”
STEVIE WONDER SET THE TONE WITH “LEAN ON ME.”
The hour-long telethon opened with an impassioned declaration from Wonder: “As we begin to love and value our planet… anyone who believes that there is no such thing as global warming must be blind or unintelligent.” Accompanied by a gospel choir, he then launched into a moving performance of “Lean on Me” that set things off right.
JUSTIN BIEBER LED A PRAYER FOR HURRICANE VICTIMS.
Before handing the reigns to Pastor John Gray, Bieber spoke directly to viewers at home, encouraging them to donate to hurricane relief efforts. “I just want to say I’m super grateful to be a part of this cause,” he said. “We don’t want you guys to just watch. We want you guys to be a part of this and donate whatever you can. It doesn’t have to be much, just whatever you possibly can.”
TORI KELLY AND LUIS FONSI BROKE BARRIERS WITH A BILINGUAL COVER OF “HALLELUJAH.”
Kelly and the “Despacito” hitmaker revamped “Hallelujah,” turning it into a stunning bilingual duet.
USHER AND BLAKE SHELTON MADE AN UNLIKELY BUT BEAUTIFUL PAIRING.
The Voice coaches took the stage in Nashville for a poignant cover of “Stand By Me,” letting the audience take over singing duties during the final, uplifting chorus.
SELENA GOMEZ TEARED UP WHILE SHARING A POWERFUL STORY OF SURVIVAL.
In a pre-taped message, Gomez told the story of the Salvidars, a Houston family who was trapped in a van by rising floodwaters from Hurricane Harvey. Only Sammy Salvidar survived, and Gomez tearfully recounted how Sammy’s brother Ricardo said he knows the rest of his family “went to heaven holding hands.” Gomez said, “If we are going to get through all the storms that confront us, that’s how we are going to do it — together, hand in hand.”
THE ROCK SHARED HIS OWN HEARTBREAKING TESTIMONIAL.
Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson shared a personal story of how he and his family survived Hurricane Andrew, which struck South Florida in 1992. He recounted how the disaster made his community stronger, saying, “There are no strangers in the aftermath of a hurricane; no political parties, no agendas, none of the things that can often divide us. It’s all about survival and coming together as one.”
DEMI LOVATO WENT COUNTRY, WITH A LITTLE HELP FROM HER FRIENDS.
The pop superstar joined country stalwarts Brad Paisley and Darius Rucker, as well as gospel singer Cece Winans, in Nashville for a rousing rendition of “With a Little Help From My Friends.”