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Kirk Franklin is a recording artist known for promoting Christ’s message with his popular blend of contemporary and urban hip-hop gospel music.

However, Franklin belted out a different tune yesterday at St. John Missionary Baptist Church, 5700 N Kelley in Oklahoma.

He made a presentation on behalf of the American Heart Association, touting the organization’s healthy heart mantra and new stroke prevention campaign “Get to Goal.” The new blood pressure management campaign is designed to motivate people to make lifestyle changes to lower blood pressure and reduce the risk of stroke.

“I’ve been very pleased to do it, honored to do it,” Franklin said of his ongoing work with the heart association.

Franklin said he has partnered with the organization for the past four years to promote a health message that is important not just to the black Americans but all Americans.

The Grammy Award-winning recording artist, whose most recent album “Hello Fear” produced hits like “I Smile” and “Give Me,” gave a free concert performance in 2009 at Fairview Baptist Church in Oklahoma City, in partnership with the American Heart Association’s “Power to End Stroke” campaign. His presentation on Sunday will not include a concert.

Franklin said he wants to let people know that they can prevent stroke and find ways to manage their blood pressure. Franklin said the solutions can be as simple as changing the way food is prepared or making time for regular exercise.

“We can do things to take ownership of our own recovery,” he said.

Franklin said he encourages people to make long-term changes instead of temporary adjustments.

He said black churches are great places to convey positive message because of their integral role in the black community.

“I think it’s been a great marriage between what I do and the church,” he said, adding that the black church is the hub — the nucleus — for civil rights, cultural and community issues to be discussed.

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