Priest’s viral ‘Hamilton’ video reminds parishioners, ‘You’ll Be Back’

By Egan Millard
Posted Jul 27, 2020

[Episcopal News Service] The Rev. Lonnie Lacy, rector of St. Anne’s Episcopal Church in Tifton, Georgia, had been looking forward to seeing “Hamilton” in Atlanta with his daughter for months. But then the COVID-19 pandemic hit and the performance they had tickets for was postponed until next year. So when a recording of the Broadway musical started streaming on Disney+ earlier this month, they watched it together. When King George III started singing “You’ll Be Back” in his flowing robes, Lacy got an idea.

“I thought, ‘You know what? I have a cope that looks just like that,’” he told Episcopal News Service, referring to the cape-like vestment priests sometimes wear for special occasions.

He decided to rewrite the song – in which King George orders the American colonies to stop rebelling, or else – to remind his parishioners that their church will be waiting for them when the pandemic ends. It was the perfect number to use in the annual parish talent show (which, like everything else, has been moved online).

“Every year at the talent show, I try to do something really big and really ridiculous as the closing act. And it’s just become a thing – people know that Lonnie’s going to do something big and stupid,” he said.

The song-and-dance routine has been viewed almost 300,000 times since it was posted on July 25.

“What I have discovered is there is such a hunger to be back together,” Lacy told ENS. The video is “a little humorous word of hope, a promise that God is going to get us through this. There is going to be another side of this, and we will get back together.”

– Egan Millard is an assistant editor and reporter for Episcopal News Service. He can be reached at