Celebrity televangelist Joel Osteen has come under intense scrutiny for allegedly not opening his 17,000 seat Houston mega-church to the displaced people of Houston until he was publicly scorned.
Early Tuesday morning, Osteen told CNN that his 606,000-square-foot Lakewood Church was prepared to shelter people once the cities and county shelters reach capacity. And on late Tuesday, when the city’s convention center reported twice as many evacuees as its capacity, the pastor opened the doors to his church.
Osteen has defended himself, calling the outrage over him holding out a “false narrative,” and claimed that his church flooded Sunday and didn’t want to put the people of Houston at risk.
At the time of me writing this, the church has 100 air mattresses set up in an upstairs room, according to The Chicago Tribune, and a medical area with volunteer nurses and doctors ready to help with everything from small cuts to insulin needs. Evacuees will be housed on the second floor of the megachurch since the first floor is still prone to flooding.
It’s unclear whether Osteen was acting un-God-like or social media churned up the outrage without knowing the facts (likely), but I will say that the saga has produced some A+ reactions, warranted or not.
P.S. This gave me chills.
[h/t Daily Mail]