Envelopes full of money have been found hidden in a bathroom of a megachurch in Texas, seven years after $600,000 was stolen from the church’s safe.
A plumber discovered the undisclosed amount of money while carrying out repairs at Lakewood Church in Houston.
He called a local radio show to tell listeners he’d made the discovery on November 10th.
“Went to go remove the toilet and I moved some insulation away and about 500 envelopes fell out of the wall and I was like ‘oh wow,’” he recounted during the broadcast.
He said they ended up pulling out about 3,000 envelopes containing cash and checks. He did not estimate how much was found.
In March 2014, $200,000 in cash and $400,000 in cheques disappeared from a safe at the church and was never recovered.
Officials at Lakewood Church have confirmed that money has been found but haven’t specified the amount.
“Recently, while repair work was being done at Lakewood Church, an undisclosed amount of cash and checks were found. Lakewood immediately notified the Houston Police Department and is assisting them with their investigation. Lakewood has no further comment at this time.”
The televangelist Joel Osteen is lead pastor at Lakewood which is one of the largest churches in the United States. Services regularly draw more than 50,000 people a week and Osteen’s televised sermons are viewed by millions of people across the world every week.