Before he makes his way to court every day, Michael Jackson wakes up at 4:30 a.m. to pray with the Reverend Jesse Jackson. The singer receives advice from the political activist/minister on his personal and spiritual issues, according to an Associated Press report.
After waking before dawn, Jackson spends 15 to 20 minutes speaking with Reverend Jackson by phone, during which they pray and discuss his life. "They've known each other for a long time," explained Jackson spokesperson Raymone K. Bain.
Though Jackson and his family are Jehovah's Witnesses and the singer was being advised and guarded by members of the Muslim sect the Nation of Islam earlier in his trial, Jesse Jackson told AP that he has been counseling the pop singer and his family during the trial.
The Rev. Jackson, one of the leading civil-rights figures in the country, said he thought it unfair that there are no black jury members (see "The Jackson Jury: Does It Matter If You're Black Or White?"), adding that he has counseled the Jackson family to "stay focused. This is a difficulty for all involved, the accuser and the accused. ... He will survive this."
In a rare break from his silence during the trial, Jackson told reporters on Tuesday that he was feeling upbeat about the way the trial was going, but was still suffering pain from the back injury that caused him to show up an hour late for court last Thursday (see "Pajama-Clad Jackson Late As Accuser's Lurid Testimony Resumes").
"I'm doing pretty good ... I'm in pain," he reportedly told journalists outside the courtroom. Bain said the air conditioning in the courtroom is exacerbating his back pain, which might also be stress related.
For full coverage of the Michael Jackson case, see "Michael Jackson Accused."