Throughout her career, Beyoncé has consistently used her platform to deliver empowering messages and advocate on behalf of the causes she believes in.
On Wednesday (Nov. 28), South African newspaper Sowetan published a new letter penned by the singer, herself, during which she addresses the late Nelson Mandela and thanked him for his teachings.
In the open letter, Beyoncé begins by recalling the pair’s first time meeting and expressing her gratitude for the life lessons he shared with her.
“I first met you in 2004 for the 46664 AIDS Benefit Concert in Cape Town, and the impact you have had on my life resonates with me today and every day,” she begins. “Your kindness and gratitude for every experience, and your ability to forgive are lessons I have learned and will pass on to my three children. My entire family holds you in high regard.”
The letter then addresses the upcoming Global Citizen Festival: Mandela 100, which will take place on Dec. 2 and pay homage to the late president one hundred years after his birth. The concert will feature performances from Beyoncé, JAY-Z, Black Coffee, Pharrell Williams, Usher, Ed Sheeran, Eddie Vedder, Femi Kuti, Chris Martin and Sho Madjozi, among others. The accompanying campaign is aiming to raise $1 billion to help those stricken by poverty across the world.
“It is an honor for me to travel to South Africa this week in celebration of you and your efforts to right so many wrongs,” Beyoncé continues. “You were a strategic warrior, a bold activist, and charismatic and well-loved leader. Your vision for dignity, for human rights, for peace and a South Africa free of racism and apartheid, allows us all to turn dreams into reality.”
The Mandela 100 tribute and charity event will air on MSNBC beginning at 9pm ET on Dec. 2. Take a look at Beyoncé’s open letter praising Nelson Mandela in full here.
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