The 700 Club with Pat Robertson


Nancy Pierre: Free from Islam, Free in Christ

By Renelle Roberts
The 700 Club – "I wanted to dance. I wanted to do theater. I wanted to do all of these different things and my parents were like, 'I want the best for you, so you’re going to be a doctor, a lawyer or an engineer.  Pick those three.'"

Nancy Pierre’s family came to New York City from Haiti.  They were Catholics and wanted what they thought best for their daughter – but she had other ideas. 

"I just wanted to be a superstar," Nancy tells The 700 Club. "I just thought that I was going to be in one of those Broadway plays."

So at 21 she moved out of her parents’ home and pursued a career in the theater.  As much as she enjoyed her acting gigs, she missed her family. The world of theater was competitive, and it was hard to make friends. 

"I just was like, 'Wow, I feel so empty. I feel so alone. There’s got to be something better.' So I just continued doing what I was doing, and I started working at a store."

Nancy shared her loneliness with one of her male coworkers at the store.

"So I’m explaining everything to him how empty I’m feeling and he’s just saying to me, 'You know, Allah can solve all those problems.' And then he started telling me about the women in Islam and how they are well respected. After I left home, I was just nothing, so I felt like this is a good way to get respect and to have people look at me like I’m a woman of valor and a woman of integrity. I just talked to him some more, and before you know it, we were dating. I thought it was great, and he was someone to talk to and really the only person who could really understand me at that time."

She enjoyed the close-knit fellowship she shared with her new friends at the mosque.  She immersed herself in the lifestyle of a Sunni Muslim; she abided by their strict dress code and prayed daily to Allah. But secretly she had doubts and on occasion read her Bible.

"I still had this love for Jesus. In my own mind, I was like, 'I can still hold on to Jesus. They don’t know what’s in my heart.'”

Nancy began an intense study of the Quran and Islam. She often compared the Quran with her Bible. That brought up some serious questions about Jesus. She says, "I couldn’t share my questions, doubts, fears about Islam with any of my Muslim brothers or sisters, because they already made it clear to me that Jesus was a prophet. And we needed to be following the honorable Elijah Muhammad , the prophet Muhammad. We need to be focused on Allah."

After attending the mosque for a few months, the acceptance Nancy received at first slowly turned into judgment and restriction. Now, it wasn’t enough that she simply attend services and date a Muslim man. She was told she needed to change her personality.

"The women were just so oppressed and that didn’t work with me because I’m a free spirit. I wasn’t created to be contained. So, when you have all of these restrictions and rules, 'Dress this way and dress that way,' I was like, 'What did I walk in to?'  There are times when you want to just let your hair down."

Nancy knew she needed to get out of Islam.

"It was always a battle, especially when I worked at a restaurant in Harlem. That’s what really set it off and I said, 'That’s it!'"

That’s when she decided to leave the faith.  But instead of telling the group she was leaving, she showed them.

"One day I just walked into the restaurant where I was. I had shorts on. I had a tank top on, and I let them say whatever they wanted to say.  They said, 'Sister! What happened? You just disrobed!' I said, 'It’s 101 degrees out here!' They said, 'Well, it’s hotter in hell fire.'”

Within a year of joining the Sunni sect, Nancy walked away and back into the world of acting. She landed a part as Diana Ross at New York’s Motown Café.

"I was able to sing and do all the theatrics. It was an amazing, amazing moment. But even in the midst of all of that, I still was lonely."

That is until she met Eric Pierre, a casting agent. The two spent a lot of time together and Eric eventually proposed, but under one condition: "If we get married, we have to start going back to church. I was like, 'Sure!' That’s the best thing you could ever say to me, because I’ve been looking for that, searching for that. Prior to that, we were going a Bible study for actors.

"Tasha Smith, who is a very popular actress, is an amazing evangelist. It was because of her that we actually gave our hearts to the Lord."

A change took place in Nancy’s heart when she realized that she didn’t need to pursue a rigid set of rules, but a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. For the past ten years, Nancy has enjoyed the peace and freedom she found in Jesus and she shares it wherever she goes. She finished college and is a busy wife and mother of four.

"I’m thankful to the Lord for life the opportunity to be able to start over and do it again. You don’t have to be perfect; you can come as you are to Christ and watch Him do awesome things in your life!"

Can God change your life?

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