Stormzy has been given a Standford St Martin award in recognition of “his contribution to the public understanding of religion”.
The rapper has been given the trustees’ award ahead of the digital ceremony, which celebrates broadcasting about issues around faith and ethics.
The panel “decided Stormzy should receive this award not because he believes in God, but because of how this faith has informed his efforts to foster a public conversation and to build a sense of community that has united thousands of fans across cultural, class, generational and religious boundaries,” according to a statement from the award organisers.
Stormzy: “Every award I’ve ever collected, whatever achievement I’ve ever had, I’ve always been vocal about the fact that it’s not possible without God.
“He’s the reason why I’m here today. He’s the reason that I’m able to have a career… but a lot of the time I get non-believers saying ‘don’t thank God, this wasn’t God. This was all you’, and I know this wasn’t all me,” he said.
“This was God.”
He will be presented the award as part of an online ceremony on June 11.
The Right Reverend Dr Helen-Ann Hartley, who is the Bishop of Ripon, said: “The openness and clarity about which Stormzy speaks and sings about his faith and the efforts he’s made to translate that into action resonates with people around the world who have heard his music on the radio, seen him perform on television or watched his videos online.
“This award celebrates people that have made an outstanding contribution towards understanding how religion impacts on the personal, political and social sides of our lives – for these reasons we’re very pleased to be presenting this year’s award to Stormzy.”