Mandisa laid to rest

Mandisa's funeral service at Brentwood Baptist Church in Nashville, Tennessee, on April 27, 2024.

Christian singer Mandisa was laid to rest on Saturday after her untimely death last week at the age of 47. 

The former American Idol contestant was found dead in her home in Franklin, Tennessee on April 18. The official cause of death has not been made public but police said there were no suspicious circumstances.

Friends and family gathered to remember her at her funeral held at Brentwood Baptist Church in Nashville, Tennessee, on Saturday morning. 

Speaking at her funeral, worship pastor Travis Cottrell called her a "sweet" and "special human".

"We were beneficiaries of her expressions of gratitude and surrender to [God], and we thank [God] for that," he said. 

Her cousin, Dennie Marshall, remembered her as a "happy person" who "possessed a spirit of joy deep down in her soul".

"She could laugh, she could cry and she could sing," Marshall said.

Mandisa rose to fame after appearing on American Idol in 2006 and went on to release five albums, collaborating closely with a host of Christian artists including TobyMac and Michael W Smith.

Paying tribute last week, TobyMac said he was "honoured" to call her a friend.

"I have never met an artist who is more encouraging and supportive to other artists than Mandisa," he said. 

"She was honest and authentic but I always left her side feeling better. She watched every act, every night on every tour singing along with a smile that made you feel alive.

"She was honest about her struggles and viewed her breakthroughs as an opportunity to let others know that they can experience victories just like her. She saw us as a family. God's family. In all our diversity. All flawed. And all in need of the love of a Good Father, a Heavenly Father.

"I know her battle is over but I will always treasure her memory and that smile and infectious laugh that I had the pleasure of experiencing."