Joel Osteen Kicks Off U.K. Tour Amid Terror Attacks

LONDON – Joel and Victoria Osteen of Lakewood Church, the largest church in the United States, kicked off their tour across the United Kingdom Tuesday night at the Odyssey Arena in Belfast, Northern Ireland.

The Osteens' U.K. tour comes less than a week after a recent terrorist attack on Glasgow Airport and foiled bomb plots in London.

"We recognize that we are in the United Kingdom during uncertain times," Joel Osteen said, following the attacks.

On Saturday, two men described by witnesses as South Asian – a term used to refer to people from India, Pakistan, Afghanistan and other countries in the region – drove a burning jeep into the main terminal doors of Glasgow Airport, one day after two car bombs were foiled in Central London. Currently, investigators are working to untangle the ties between the eight suspects arrested in connection to the failed car bombing attacks in Britain and were hunting down others believed involved on the periphery of the plot.

"Because of this, we want to use this time to pray for the people of the United Kingdom and to offer a message of hope and encouragement," Osteen said.

The Osteens, whose church is currently one of the largest regularly attended worship centers in the world, will be stopping over at London's Wembley Arena on Friday for part of their tour and later the NEC Arena in Birmingham on Saturday.

The "Night of Hope" that will be held at each venue features praise, worship and prayer as well as an inspirational message from the Osteens and the electrifying music of Dove Award-winning Cindy Cruse Ratcliff and the Lakewood band and ensemble.

According to Nielsen Media Research, Joel Osteen is the most watched minister in the United States and reaches 95 percent of all U.S. television households. His first book, Your Best Life Now, went to No. 1 on the New York Times bestseller list and has sold over 4 million copies since its release in October 2004. The book is now available in 19 languages.

Lakewood Church's weekly services are also broadcasted on television in over 100 nations around the world.

Christian Post correspondent Kevin Donovan in London contributed to this report.