After facing some heat for allegedly not opening the doors of his megachurch to Hurricane Harvey victims, televangelist Joel Osteen is speaking out and defending his church.
As the Senior Pastor of Lakewood Church in Houston, Osteen was heavily criticized on social media for reportedly not providing shelter to displaced people during the onset of the hurricane:
The megachurch, which was once home to the Houston Rockets, can seat up to 16,000 people — so when the church wasn't opened originally, people naturally had questions:
However, Osteen explained on “Fox & Friends” Wednesday his church sits in a flood zone, and water levels were getting dangerously close to breaching the flood gates.
“The church doors have always been open. We took people in as soon as the water receded,” the pastor explained. "Some of those people that make some of those comments don’t realize that the church was flooded.”
Osteen told the Fox News hosts his church has been working closely with a nearby shelter to get everyone to safety and provide them with the necessary supplies.
See the pastor's full statement below.