Joel Osteen’s Lakewood Church Robbed; $600,000 in Donations Stolen From Safe
BY STOYAN ZAIMOV, CHRISTIAN POST REPORTER
Joel Osteen’s Lakewood Church in Houston, Texas, was robbed of $600,000 in donations over the weekend.
“We were heartbroken to learn today that funds were stolen from the church over the weekend. This includes cash, checks and envelopes containing written credit card information, and it is limited only to those funds contributed in the church services on Saturday, March 8 and Sunday, March 9, 2014,” Lakewood told the 45,000-strong congregation, the biggest in America, in a statement on Monday.
FOX 26 reported that Houston police are currently looking for clues on who might have broken into the church safe. The crime was discovered early Monday morning by a Lakewood employee. Around $200,000 of the stolen money is believed to be in cash, while the rest included donations made by checks and credit cards.
The Houston megachurch advised people who made contributions over the weekend service to pay close attention to their bank accounts in the coming days and weeks, and to report immediately any suspicious activity.
“It is important to note this was not an electronic data breach, but was instead limited to donations made in the services on March 8 and 9, 2014. You were not affected if you put your offering in a drop box, you gave online or through other electronic means, or you made a bookstore purchase,” Lakewood noted. “We are working with the police to fully investigate the incident. The funds were fully insured, and we are working with our insurance company to restore the stolen funds to the church.”
Can These 7 Foods Save A Man’s Life?
People who ate at a single cup of beans a day significantly lowered their systolic blood pressure, according to an Archives of Internal Medicine study.
Eating omega-3-rich fatty fish, such as salmon, twice a week can help lower the “bad” cholesterol, sometimes by up to 12%.
Walnuts are rich in alpha-linolenic acid, which is a type of omega-3 fat well known for helping to fight inflammation. Researchers at Yale have reported that just half of a cup a day can also help boost blood vessel function.
These nuts, which contain monosaturated fat (which is a good type of fat), provide a rich source of cholesterol-lowering sterols.
Yes, you read correctly! Now, don’t go overboard or anything, but researchers at the Chinese University of Hong Kong noted the LDL-lowering effects of capsaicinoids—compounds (which helps give chili peppers and jalapenos their flavor). Capsaicionoids apparently block the gene that causes arteries to contract, which leads to better blood flow to the heart. So, try adding half of a chili pepper or a tablespoon of chili flakes to those aforementioned beans, or another health dish of choice.
Guess what? Though egg yoks have carried quite the bad reputation for quite a while, researchers have found a link between egg consumption and clearer coronary arteries. So feel free to enjoy up to three eggs a day.
Similar to the resveratrol in grapes, pterostilbene, an antioxidant found in blueberries, can stimulate liver cells to better break down fat and cholesterol, according to USDA scientists.
It’s important to remember that eating right is just one part of your overall healthy heart strategy. You also need to exercise regularly, get enough sleep, and stress less. And here’s another interesting tip: a study in the American Journal of Cardiology concluded that men who have sex two or three times a week tend to have 45 percent less of a heart disease risk.
Hundreds March In Florida To End ‘Stand Your Ground’
As a co-host for Keeping it Real with Rev. Al Sharpton, a nationally syndicated radio show, I have been asked on a few occasions why Sharpton, perhaps the nation’s foremost civil rights activist, is still marching after all these years. Last week, I offered an inquisitive listener a simple, three-word response to his question: Stand Your Ground.
It’s been open season on young black men in America for years and on Monday, Sharpton, radio personalityTom Joyner, Sybrina Fulton and Tracy Martin, parents of Trayvon Martin, Lucia McBath andRon Davis, parents of Jordan Davis, and the family of Emmett Till, joined hundreds of African-American demonstrators who rallied in Tallahassee, Florida to protest the state’s Stand Your Ground laws, which has been used unfairly by whites as a defense for shooting young black males.
On Monday, activists rallied outside the Florida State Capitol Building to urge lawmakers to re-evaluate the Stand Your Ground law and repeal the law altogether. Others are asking for changes such as restrictions and training for neighborhood watch volunteers. Stand Your Ground allows people to use of force to defend themselves if they feel threatened and has resulted in two high-profile deaths of 17-year-old teens in Florida over the past two years.
“It’s a flawed law,” Sharpton told demonstrators. “Because you don’t need an actual threat. All you’ve got to do is believe a threat and you can use deadly force.” “Florida is the first state to enact the law in 2005,” Sharpton said. “We came back to where it started to begin where it will end.”
The Florida legislature’s House Criminal Justice Subcommittee rejected a full repeal of the Stand Your Ground law in November and that’s why I believe in marching for justice is still necessary in 2014. Maybe I’m old school, but social justice movements evolve and are driven by the issues of the moment.
Stand Your Ground is the critical issue of the moment. In fact, it’s a crisis facing young black men. I also believe that marches are important for young people of color – our leaders of tomorrow – to embrace social justice movements as catalysts to get involved in community service and political activism.
Last month marked the second anniversary of Trayvon Martin’s senseless death. The unarmed teenager was gunned down by neighborhood watchman/wannabe cop George Zimmerman on February 26, 2012 in Sanford, Florida while walking home from a convenience store.
Donnie McClurkin Brings God To Hollywood!
Photo: Royalty Images.
The 3rd Annual Gospel Goes to Hollywood Awards Luncheon (GGTH), held at the historical Taglyan Cultural Complex in Hollywood, C.A. was hosted by three-time Grammy® Award winning recording artist/pastor Donnie McClurkin, gave Hollywood an extra dose of faith as the red-carpet celebrity-driven event, produced by Tomeka B. Holyfield, helped raise awareness and funds in support of the fight against domestic violence.
Hundreds of celebrities gathered to witness the untold stories of faith in Hollywood by honorees, Academy award-winning actor Louis Gossett, Jr., director, producer, writer Bentley Kyle Evans, award-winning husband and wife entertainment duo David and Tamela Mann and actor and Hollywood stuntman Matt Sigloch.
“We’re honored to host Gospel Goes to Hollywood Awards Luncheon for the third year,” says Gary Taglyan of the Taglyan Cultural Complex. “It’s a privilege to work with so many great individuals for such a wonderful cause.”
With multi-talented actor Phillip Morris and Essence Magazine’s Editor-at- Large Mikki Taylor on board to present the award ceremony got underway with a fervent prayer by Pastor Robert Toure’ followed by the highly-anticipated musical performances by the smooth vocal sounds of gospel award winning recording artist Stephen Steward singing “Purify My Soul” and album title track “Enter Your Gates,” the award-winning family group The Showers, who wowed the audience with their hit song “Better,” and BET’s Sunday Best Jessica Reedy who filled the room with overwhelming joy with her new hit single also entitled “Better.”
Every performance was flawless but it was the impromptu reprise of The Showers’ song “Better,” lead by Donnie McClurkin and Grammy®-nominated R&B singer/songwriter Kelly Price and multi-award winning gospel recording artist Tamela Mann, that brought everyone to their feet and took the entire place into a deep spirit of praise and worship.
I’m happy to provide a platform where Hollywood has no inhibitions professing their gratitude for God, says Holyfield. “In the words of Matthew McConaughey, ‘I need three things in my life to survive: God, family and someone to look up to as a hero.’ My hero is God.”
The event hosted celebrities as Ernest Thomas, Mikki Taylor, Kenny Lattimore, Judge Mablean, Marvin Winans, Jr., Phil Morris, Brely Evans, Ellia English, Wendell James, Major Johnson Finley, Adrian Anderson, Antonique Smith, Florence LaRue, Angell Conwell, Chanel Haynes, Matty Rich, Lalia Odom and more.