In August, ‘The Cell’ Becomes One Big Church

CHICAGO (CBS) — The man who leads the largest church in the country was in Chicago Friday.

America’s pastor, Joel Osteen, took in America’s past-time at U.S. Cellular Field. He threw out the first pitch at the White Sox game and spread the word about a big day in August.

More than 10,000 people already have bought tickets to Osteen and his wife, Victoria, host a “Night of Hope.” The stadium normally holds 41,000 during baseball games.

“You know, life pushes people down, and our message is about lifting people up,” Osteen told CBS 2’s Kristyn Hartman.

Joann Sasse Givens will be there, saying Osteen has changed her life.

Millions tune in to the televangelist, and with books and podcasts, the Osteen name keeps growing.

To help promote their Chicago appearance this summer, they paid a visit to The Cell on Friday. Call it the Osteen way of saying “save the date” for Aug. 6.

The message until then, Osteen says, “When you trust, when you believe, when you choose not to get negative and bitter, God will do amazing things in your life.”

Osteen has this huge following, but he was kind of a reluctant minister. When his dad ran a much smaller version of the church, he was behind the scenes.

He says he studied under his dad, but never went to the seminary. Co-pastor Victoria says he resonates with people because he’s a real person.

  • Grace

    This guy is smarmy! He sells, yes sells, (and as result is very rich), the notion that God will gift us all with happiness, riches and a full life. Where in heavens name does it promise those gifts in the Bible? It isn’t there. He does not address peoples pain and losses. He just rants on about having a positive attitude and all things you wish for will be yours. He doesn’t preach Godliness…Glory to God in the Highest.. never does he utter such things. Always stunned at people’s gullibility and inability to reason and see through a con artist. Smarmy!

    • Thomas

      Grace, go to and get the truth.

    • No Gray Area

      Thank you Grace. The Christian life is NOT about living life graced with riches, material abundance and problem-free living! Jesus said “Take up your cross and FOLLOW ME.” Trials and tribulations will abouns as we seeek to serve in Jesus Name-but also, grace, mercy, and forgiveness. If Joel Osteen’s message was true, Jesus wasted His time (AND his life )on the cross! The false prophets are alive and well and will stand before God on the day of judgement.

      • junior

        Never hear him doing anything to help people with the $72M he has. Just lke you never hear the pope do anything with his millions either.

    • watto

      This is why I can’t stand these guys. They take in the gullible people, use them, then blame them for the promises not coming true…”you just weren’t faithful enough”

  • tomc

    The sex sells. Osteen sells hope- materialistic hope. This is the right season for that kind of harvest. He is the preacher of dreams and is a good salesman. I very much doubt his christian belief,faith and spirit. You reap what you sow and that smile is like an immoral painting well taken care of.

  • KAB

    he is as fake as they make them, What a LIAR and a deceiver he is!!!!

  • cj

    the bible says the gospel is freely recieved and freely given, olesteen doesn’t much care for that scripture because he charges for his crusades, he is an evil man whose cult is filled with selfish people. jim bakker has a new name he goes by joel olesteen today. people don’t want to learn lessons of the past they just want their ears scratched.

  • Beloved in Christ

    Could and would we all be so prosperous in material matters if we to were just as shallow and glamorous as Joel, the reluctant preacher of the Gospel Truth, that Jesus Saves – Jesus alone Saves and taking that turn in the road is what makes all the difference – as some poet is famous for saying and Jesus is the one and only Way to be really happy in Life and godliness that cares about the widows and orphans.

  • Kate

    Sorry, but this pastor is not a pastor at all. He’s a wolf in sheep clothing. All he preaches about are that WE are the gods. WE can do anything and everything. And more than half of his messages are about getting rich. Come away from him.!

  • My thoughts

    i want to be a millionair too,….now god told me to tell all you fools to send me hundred dollars….and also all you hot looking women…yep,…god told me to breed my genes into you…got to go and scam some more dummies…man this gig ipays more then them Ashland Ave. store front preachers….

  • America's pastor?

    Where does CBS get calling Joel Osteen “America’s pastor” (not in quotes)? Victoria Osteen was ejected from a Continental Airlines flight for interfering with a member of the flight crew. She apparently became abusive and disruptive because the flight attendant wasn’t bringing her drinks fast enough. (She was flying to the high priced resort of Vail, no less.) And, yes, she was flying first class.

    • Bolen Marx

      Sorry but the incident on the plane had nothing to do with her getting her drinks fast enough. The fact is there was a sizable wet spill on her seat from the last flight. Like any other passenger, she asked for it to be cleaned up. Instead of cleaning it up the spill, the stewert demanded she sit down and get ready for takofff. The stewert sued Mrs Osteen in court and lost hands down. Mrs Osteen was completly vindicated. You should try to get your facts straight before writing about something you know nothing about.

  • Francess

    Praise the Lord. We are having Pastor Osteen for a change. We were waiting for the second coming of the Lord Jesus Christ and we know that Bro Osteen will tell lus what to do and where to wait for the Lord to take us all home. Praise the Lord we are heaven bound and we are ready to see Jesus coming with the angels with Him.
    What is he gona say about the murders? and the rapes?

    • Doc

      Did Joel murder or rape anyone? You said “murders and rapes”! That is a pretty serious accusation. What do you base this slander on?

      • coey

        doc your an idiot actually probably joel so yeah an idiot

  • Smooth

    Many mainline Christian institutions/churches willl not allow Osteen to speak at their place of worship. He is classifed as a “FALSE TEACHER” by many of the leading Christian pastors/presidents. Ticket prices for this event are being kept low keyed due to the enormous prices being charged. Hey Osteen, why not make it a crusade and allow the poor to come in for free. I believe that is what Jesus would do.

    • Richard Gardner

      You say he is classified as a false teacher by many leading christian pastors……A bit of the pot calling the kettle black eh? Never trust a priest or polotician, you’ll be disappointed every time!

  • Tony

    He promotes goodnes. I dont have a problem wit dat. . Materialistic? Our entire economy (Capiitalism) is counting on YOU to be materialistic. I kinda like da guy and welcome him toda South Side of Chicauga.

    • Doc

      Is that English?

  • Annie

    We all believe that God is control of every single thing we do. If ihe is a wolf or has gotten rich out of the poor., then God will judge him and Victoria. She also is a wonderful person and we all should be proud of her. Instead of telling women to scorn and reject their husbands.. she tells women to stick to the Bible and respect and stay by your husband till death do us part.
    Isn t that wonderful? That God will take us home and we do not have to worry about materialistic or any tistic things of the world.. because we will not take anything from the earth. We will be in heaven forever.
    Will you take your gold or silver with you when you die?

  • Marquette

    This is a lot of hate for Saturday morning.

  • James

    Joel is much better than most TV preachers. I watch him when I get the chance. His message of living a positive and productive life is more inspirational than most anything being taught today in schools, in the home, or in church.

  • Smooth

    To all who are critical of us who are opposed to Joel Osteen, let’s clear up something. We are opposed to his false teachings of “everything is rosy”. Jesus said, in this world you will have trouble and he also said BEWARE of false teachers. Joel and Victoria’s teachings do not match up with the Bible. He leaves out issues which are the heart of a person’s problems and that is SIN. Nothing wrong with bein positive, but also let’s be realistic.

  • My thoughts

    …well he doen’t have that beeny hinn haircut, and to date no sex charges came out….yet….yep, ole god himself told this creep’ola to go around and collect a “C” note from the fearful dummies and prey upon them like a wolf, …so this demon and his old sea hag goul wife are “IN” with the big G man…..
    Well blow me down an hurry up and drink the kool-aid …move the flock down to jonestown, ear it’s still for sale and the kool-aid vats are already out….
    God said he needs money, …so this creep can live the high life…didn’t jesus sleep on the dirt?….

  • Erinn

    Poor Joel… his ears must be hurting so bad reading this notes. However, for the record, Jesus said that we should not judge others… and who is without sin shall throw the first stone.
    Of course he is rich and it is making a positive life statements that a lot of people are believing in. The mainline churches do not accept him because their churches are clubs. The same people come every single Sunday… they do not bring more souls to get saved or help someone in need.
    Openj your eyes… because Jesus is coming soon and where are you gona be when He arrives?
    Hoarding more gold and silver? Who will inherit those things when you are gone?
    And Victoria…. God bless her. She is sticking by her husband and preaching tool. Keep up the good work Victoria… we sureliy will see you in Gloriyland.

    • B.E. Lere

      There is nothing that says satan can’t quote the Bible. Just look at osteen.

      • corey

        nice one just like cops are allowed to lie to you

  • jordan

    What’s the matter with people. Would you rather hear That Joel is molesting his flock or something positive like Jesus loves you. He’s just a teacher of Gods word. The Bible tells us Jesus is Love and that Love is the greatest gift of all. Isn’ t that what he teaches

  • Ray

    Our job as Christians is to live an authentic life of love and respect…so that the hatrers say ” hey what makes you so happy anyway”
    And then we are to 1 Peter 3:15 Always be ready to give an answer when someone asks you about your hope. Give a kind and respectful answer and keep your conscience clear. This way you will make people ashamed for saying bad things about your good conduct as a follower of Christ.

  • Kenny

    RICH, is not a dirty word. “And we know that Christ, although he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, so that you, because of His poverty might be made rich.” 2Cor: 8:9 (Rich = Health, Attitude, Relationships, Material possessions)

  • I smell BS

    Pastor, I think not… Motivational speaker for an AA meeting…. maybe

  • Thomas

    Come on, Christians! We all read our Bible. “Beware of false prophets in the last days.”

  • Louis M. Smith

    Regardless it is Osteen or some other precher, this is what the Bible says toat is needed for salvation: “I am the rsurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall llive. And whoever lives and believes in Me shall never die.” Jn. 11:25 and 26. Jesus was tolking to Martha while on the to raise Lazarus form the dead. Paul states this: “And not only that, but we also glkory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produeces perseverrance…” Rom.53. Paul is many, many times tolkd of the tribulations that a Christian will indure in this world. If Mr. Osteen does not teach the above then is nothing more than a voice blowing air. But Mr. Osteen Jesus teaches me, also, to love my enomies. The last poit, whene Jisus comes he sepperate the weant form the tares.

  • Billy Z

    I agree with much of what Joel says – in the words of the late, great Rev Ike: Why wait for some pie in the sky, by and by, after you die?

  • bONNIE

    Did the Lord not say to Peter, “Feed my sheep’? Some of these preachers are “fleecing the sheep” and feathering their own nests to the tune of coins dropping into their coffers. Jesus rode a borrowed mule into Jerusalem. This is the Lord I love and honor. Read the Bible. Do all the good you can to everyone you can as often as you can.

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