SAN DIEGO – Their names may not immediately ring a bell but a group of 30-something-year-old church leaders are spiritual mentors to some of the biggest names in the entertainment industry.
Two of these pastors of the rich and famous are Rich Wilkerson Jr., who officiated Kim Kardashian and Kanye West's wedding, and Chad Veach, known for his young adult's ministry and whose senior pastor, Judah Smith, mentors Justin Bieber.
While both Wilkerson and Veach do not consider themselves celebrity pastors, their influence has reached music stars and athletes alike. Despite their sphere of influence, both agree that they simply aim to spread God's message while remaining true to who they are. more >>
Two influential pastors in Dallas, Texas, are at odds on what they both believe the appropriate Christian response should be to the recently-publicized border crisis involving children entering the United States illegally and unaccompanied.
The unprecedented influx of young children and teens trying to illegally enter the United State along the country's southwestern border has "triggered a political and humanitarian crisis," according to NBC News.
According to Robert Jeffress, pastor of First Baptist Dallas, the most compassionate thing the U.S. government can do to address the border crisis, heightened by the influx of unaccompanied alien children, is to secure the country's border with a fence. more >>
Bayless Conley was back at the pulpit at Cottonwood Church in Los Alamitos, California, this past weekend after suffering a near-tragic boating accident in January.
Although Conley had already returned to the California megachurch, his Saturday appearance was the very first time he preached since the accident, which had left him in critical condition.
The senior pastor was grateful to be back at the pulpit, writing after services, "Well, I did it. Preached (first) time since the accident. Thanks be to God, I had enough vocal strength to get through the entire message." more >>
The high-profile trial of Singapore megachurch pastor Kong Hee and five other City Harvest Church officials for misusing millions of church funds to pay for his wife's popstar career, resumed on Monday. Kong's wife, singer Sun Ho, is expected to take the witness stand this week.
Channel NewsAsia pointed out that the trial, which began in May 2012, is turning out to be one of the longest-running criminal trials in the country. Kong and the five other officials are accused of musing 24 million SGD ($19.2 million) in donated money. The defense has argued that City Harvest's church board never passed a resolution that indicated who exactly has the power to make decisions regarding the funds.
Sun Ho has not been charged herself in the case, though was temporarily removed from her position as executive director of the 30,000 member City Harvest, which was founded by Kong in 1989. The singer is expected to be one of the witnesses called to the stand this week, along with the first of the six church officials on trial. more >>
Pastor Creflo Dollar of World Changers International Church has joined the list of megchurches using satellite technology to spread the Gospel and expand their ministries globally, by planting a new congregation on Australia's Gold Coast, his ministry's first-ever international plant.
While the megachurch pastor already has a presence in Australia through his Creflo Dollar Ministries, the church is the premiere World Changers fellowship, or satellite church to launch in the Asia-Pacific country. Just two months after Dollar revealed his plans for the new congregation, World Changers Church International Gold Coast officially launched on Sunday, June 22.
Dollar does not minister at the church in person, but instead his sermons are streamed live from World Changers Church International's New York City campus during Gold Coast worship services. Live broadcasts or high-definition videos have been long employed by U.S. churches with multi-campuses in the United States and abroad as a means of unifying congregations. more >>
In a newsletter emailed to supporters this week, Florida pastor Paula White claims that God has shown her that "this is a season of victory for His people." The Christian minister also reveals a strong feeling "that a seed of $229 in accordance with 1 Chronicles 22:9 is a breakthrough seed for the month of July," and declares to recipients of her newsletter, "Do not hesitate to follow a prophetic instruction!"
White, who formerly led Without Walls Church International with ex-husband Randy White, is senior pastor of New Destiny Christian Center in Apopka, Florida.
In a newsletter emailed on Thursday to Paula White Ministries supporters, and titled "This Email Will Change Your Life!" White asserts: "YOU are on the verge of complete breakthrough in every area of your life. Spiritually, Financially, and Relationally God has shown me that this is a season of victory for His people." more >>