May 15, 2016
Prince's Sister Denies Church, Says His Body Won't Be Part Of Planned Memorial Service

Prince's sister, Tyka Nelson, has had it, and she's not afraid to say so, says a recently-published report from TMZ. The church the singer was heavily devoted to has been planning a public memorial to honor the singer. His sister, however, is having none of it, saying that neither she nor her famous brother's remains will be present at the service. Some have implied a rift between Prince's family and the church, while others say she is simply informing the public that the church's event is a totally separate service from the one the family has planned.

Prince's sister denies church memorial service
Tyka Nelson, center [Photo by Adam Bettcha/Getty Images]Citing her brother as a very private man, Tyka Nelson revealed that on the evening of April 21 they'd been planning a small service with close friends and family for April 23. Unfortunately, due to unforeseen circumstances, they had to cancel it, but still held a private, very intimate gathering at Paisley Park in order to include those who'd already flown in for the service. But, she insists, it was not a funeral and the family is still planning a funeral/memorial service for sometime in August and says the public will be able to share their wonderful memories and tributes honoring their deserving brother. While some of his sister's comments could be taken to address any of several services that have been held to honor Prince's memory, most have said her comments were clearly meant for the church. The church, referred to by Jehovah's Witnesses as Kingdom Hall, had let the word get out about their planned event just before her Facebook post denying the family's involvement.
"Let me make myself VERY CLEAR! I nor my brother's remains will be present at any Memorial or Funeral services, until the families Memorial/Funeral/Tribute." [SIC]
In more than one point in her statement, Tyka firmly reiterates the distinct separation between the family's planned memorial and anything Prince's church might be planning. She goes on to say she supports other tributes, but denies any rumors that the family will be involved in any of them.
"Please Don't misunderstand...The grief process is a unique experience to each individual and Therefore I support any and all Memorials or Funerals that have happened and/or are being planned...However I will Not be in attendance, because I feel that once…is enough."
Prince's sister also addresses and denies the rumors that there has been discord within her family, least of all involving her. She mentions rumors about her storming out of the room, or that the family is at war. "Really?" she asks. "Where was I?" She strongly denies any fighting within the family, and goes on to cite a Bible verse, Matthew 12:25, which reads, "Every city or household divided against itself will Not Stand." Prince's younger sister insists that since her entire family was raised in the church they are very well aware of this verse and stand by it, including when it comes to honoring their brother's memory. She wants everyone to know they have every intention of including the public, and specifically expresses gratitude for the "love, support, and condolences" they've given.
Prince's life was spent very openly in support of his faith and his involvement in the Kingdom Hall of Jehova's Witnesses. A surprising expression of his devotion was his practice of sometimes knocking on random doors in his community to spread the word of God and Jehovah's Witness faith to anyone who would listen. As recently as six months before his death he was seen going door to door. According to interviews with his family, says, Prince's limousine would stop in front of a random home and he would get out, dressed in his signature suit and stacked heels and knock on the door. Then, he'd simply start the conversation by asking, "Would you like to talk about Jesus?" Who denies a visit from Prince?

Brother George Nelson, no relation of Prince's, is a fellow member of the church. He referred to the singer as a "publisher," meaning someone who spreads the word of God, and said that he was a member in good standing of their local church. He claims that they didn't see him at church often because he was away so much of the time, but when he was in town, he was very active in sharing in the ministry, even bringing members of his band with him.

While his sister still strongly denies involvement with the service planned by the church, she has updated her Facebook post with the plans for August and has expressed a desire to include Prince's adoring fans.

[Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images]