The recent discovery of large amounts of cash at the Lakewood Church has raised the curiosity of the public, especially about one of the most popular televangelists â Joel Osteen. With Osteen's Lakewood Church's weekly service TV program being watched by millions of viewers across several countries, the pastor evidently has a lot of followers, who might now have some serious questions in their minds.
While fixing one of the toilets in the church on Thursday, a plumber who revealed his first name as Justin, discovered "bags and bags" of cheques inside one of the walls, according to the Daily Mail. He immediately called into the Houston radio morning 100.3 The Bull show to inform them about his discovery.
"There was a loose toilet in the wall, and we removed the tile," he said on the show. "We went to go remove the toilet, and I moved some insulation away and about 500 envelopes fell out of the wall," he added.
The discovery had added layers to the story, as it comes seven years after donations worth $600,000 were stolen from a church safe, and never recovered. The police have confirmed a link between a reported burglary in 2014 and the recent discovery, according to USA Today.
The mega pastor had also recently returned $4.4 million in federal COVID relief loans his megachurch received from the government. With so many angles to the story, Osteen is being questioned by investigators. Meanwhile, the Church has refused to make any comments.
Who is Joel Osteen?
The 58-year-old Osteen is a televangelist megachurch pastor with a net worth of $50 million. Once listed as one of the most fascinating men in the world, Osteen is often criticized for preaching that wealth is a sign of God's favor. The pastor currently resides in a six-bedroom, eight-bathroom mansion in Houston's River Oaks worth an estimated $15 million and is also said to own a Ferrari worth over $300,000.
He has also written a few bestsellers, including, titled Become a Better You: 7 Keys to Improving Your Life Every Day, in October 2007 which printed three million copies in the first go and topped The New York Times Best Seller list.
Osteen often says he chooses to focus more on the goodness of God and on living an obedient life rather than on sin and that he emphasizes the power of love and a positive attitude while teaching Biblical principles.
He was once asked in an interview to CBN News as to why he chose not to focus more on sin or the devil and hell in detail, to which Osteen had stated:
"When I grew up, the devil was a reason why I had a headache or the devil was the reason I got mad today. We always blamed the devil. I think today when I say the enemy, I like to make it broader. Sometimes the enemy can be our own thoughts...."