Sledge sister: 'I was blocked' from performing for Pope

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Sister Sledge performs at the Festival of Families on September 26, 2015 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Pope Francis wraps up his trip to the United States with two days in Philadelphia, attending the Festival of Families and meeting with prisoners at the Curran-Fromhold Correctional Facility.

As previously reported by my esteemed colleague Vinny Vella, Sister Sledge performed Saturday night before Pope Francis sans the youngest of the sisters, Kathy Sledge, who was known for her iconic lead vocals on the international chart-topping hit "We Are Family."

I spoke with her yesterday to get the low-down as to why.

"I believe the show was booked misleadingly," she told me.

"There's a misconstrued report out there. I certainly want to clear this up. We were always intermittently in and out, and sometimes in different configurations. We have madness like any other family, but we've always come together when it counts."

Sledge said that it was her idea to pitch Sister Sledge for the pope's visit, and that it was advertised that all four sisters would be onstage. She sure thought she would be, as she said her likeness was being used in ads promoting it.

"I was more concerned about the disappointment of the fans," she said. "That's always been my concern from the beginning."

It's no secret the sisters have all explored their own solo projects in their careers, but over the years the group has typically reunited to perform for big events.

Sledge said she was in the audience Saturday night, but was denied clearance backstage or anywhere near her sisters. It wasn't until 3 a.m. yesterday that Sledge got word from her sisters that their "schedule was very demanding," but they could have "talks of reconciliation" in a couple of weeks.

"I felt like everyone would bury the hatchet and let's do it the way people love it and know it," she said of the group's fan-favorite hit song.

"But in the end, I think things surfaced and that's what's going on now. I feel good about that. Until you really get to the truth, that's the first step in real and true healing."

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