Mega Church Pastor Joel Osteen Under Fire for Reluctance to Open Church Doors to Hurricane Victims

According to some angry people in Houston, Joel Osteen is nothing more than an infuriating little wolf masquerading as a man of God to fatten his own pocketbook. But, maybe they are just angry overall at the destruction wreaked to their city following the hurricane and taking it out of Osteen, and his Church.

Which of you, if your brother asks for bread, will give him a stone? If he asks for fish, will hand him a scorpion? Or if he asks for shelter from cataclysmic flooding in your 16,800 seat megachurch arena, conveniently located near downtown Houston, will you send him a tweet?

Joel Osteen, that's which one. The televangelist won't open the doors of his church to the thousands of men, women, and children looking for shelter from Hurricane Harvey.

Even long-time fans of Osteen are accusing him of looking the other way when it comes to actually helping people in his own city.

Plenty of critics have complained, including one man who drove to the Lakewood Church and filmed the high and dry facilities. “I'm a Joel Osteen fan and I am a God-fearing man,” Sean Salisbury said in a video posted to Twitter, “but there [are] ways to get here and people right around here are suffering.”

Osteen then gave his 1st response to his critics as to why his mega-church could afford to pay him a lavish salary, but not risk the pews getting wet by opening their door to flooding victims.

The church responded, telling the New York Post that their locked facilities couldn't be reached by flood victims because of flooding, directing them to a nearby convention center instead. But Osteen didn't completely turn his face away. “Jesus promises us peace that passes understanding,” the pastor tweeted to his flock before leaving them in the rain. “That's peace when it doesn't make sense.”

As anyone a part of the 99% can attest, that statement didn't go over with anyone still capable of comprehending reality, and human suffering.

So, out came the salaried Lakewood Church spokesperson to do some more damage control. Because once the flood waters go down, and the streets dry out, they want all these people to come flocking back to the church to pay tithes every week, according to Osteen's critics making all this ruckus.

That statement predictably caught significant heat. A church spokesman later told reporter Ruth Graham that no government official asked them to serve as a shelter like they did during a 2001 tropical storm. No one in need would be turned away, the spokesman insisted, noting that the facility remains open with just a “skeleton staff.”

Yeah, anyone also picking up on the irony that part of that crucial “skeleton staff” dealing with the hurricane crises is a Church PR/Spokesperson? But, maybe we're just being harsh here and too quick to leap to judgments.

Joel Osteen ended up having to go back to Twitter this morning to publically claim the church would theoretically be willing to open their doors to everybody.

What do you think? People being too hard on this pastor or truly a case to point out as shameful hypocrisy?

Many people seem to view it as the latter. Osteen's apologies have yet to quell the screams of his critics. But, regardless, given that the Lakewood Church doors are now supposedly open, let's just get back to the real business at hand, helping people!




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