- (Photo: Reuters/Alex Gallardo)
Crystal Cathedral administrators, who announced a "faith filled" decision in July to raise $50 million to try to pay off its debt and maintain ownership of the church, have reportedly fallen short in their fundraising efforts.
It was reported Friday by that the Schullers have failed to raise even half the funds needed to prevent the church from being sold.
The Orange County Register discovered in court papers filed last week that the congregation has only collected $4,737 in their Miracle Faith Offering drive, a far cry from the $50 million owed in debts.
The figure reflects donor contributions accumulated as of Aug. 31, the publication reports. The attorney representing Crystal Cathedral, Marc Winthrop, reportedly noted that another progress report would be revealed in two weeks.
Crystal Cathedral, located in Garden Grove, Calif., may go to new owners in November if the Rev. Robert Schuller and church officials fail to pay the debts. The board of creditors responsible for facilitating payment of the debts will reportedly hold a vote on Oct. 24 to decide on selling the property.
According to church spokesman John Charles, the Miracle Faith Offering drive has since accumulated "hundreds of thousands of dollars," reports the OC Register. Charles was unable to prove the publication with an exact figure.
Moderators of the official "Hour of Power" Facebook page have asked supporters to sign up for "24/7 Prayers" – an effort to seek "God's miracle that will save Crystal Cathedral," CP reported Sept. 23.
"Crystal Cathedral is now being prayed for 24 hours a day, 7 days a week," the message on the California megachurch’s Facebook page declared. "Thank you to all our friends around the world who are praying for God's miracle that will save Crystal Cathedral."
The Garden Grove Church was forced to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in October 2010 when faced with lawsuits for money owed to vendors from the 2009 production of "Glory of Christmas."
In addition to the past due expenses, the church was also slammed by a decline in revenue.
Senior Pastor Sheila Schuller Coleman declared in May that the church was being sold as a result of its financial situation.
The church then announced a "faith-filled" decision in July to try to raise money through contributions from supporters and save Crystal Cathedral from a sale, but it appears the sale is imminent.
The church's bankruptcy woes have attracted several offers, with the highest bid coming from the Roman Catholic Diocese of Orange for $53.6 million.
Other interested buyers include Chapman University, Hobby Lobby, and My Father's House International Church in Norco.