Mississippi pastor wins NBC's "The Voice" with rendition of "I Can Only Imagine"

by Bryan Brammer · May 20th, 2020 2:13 pm

A Mississippi pastor was crowned winner of NBC's "The Voice" Tuesday night, securing a $100,000 cash prize and a record deal.

Todd Tilghman — lead pastor of Cornerstone Church in Meridian and father of eight — captivated the show's judges with his emotional rendition of MercyMe's "I Can Only Imagine," sang in an empty church sanctuary due to the coronavirus stay-at-home orders.

Country music artist Blake Shelton described Tilghman's performance as "incredible," while renowned singer-songwriter Kelly Clarkson was moved to tears.

"You're so moving, and it's because you're a pastor," Clarkson said, wiping away tears. "It's because you have such a bigger belief inside of you than just yourself. I would love to come to your church to hear you speak. You're very special."

Tilghman, 41, also sang an original, "Long Way Home," and performed alongside coach Blake Shelton the John Mellencamp hit "Authority Song."

On Wednesday, Tilghman shared how grateful he was for the opportunity.


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