JOE OSTEEN has been giving away more than $1 billion since he founded his first megachurch in the mid-1980s, but the pastor has vowed to donate only $1 in the next three years to charity.
Osteen, who has been called the most successful evangelical Christian of all time, made the announcement during a news conference at his Mount Olive, New Jersey, megachutre.
“I’ve been a part of some of the greatest moments of my life, but I’ve also been the most selfish person,” Osteen said, as he thanked his family and friends for helping raise his billion-dollar church.
Osteen has said he would donate the money to the American Red Cross, the World Wildlife Fund and the World Food Program, as well as his personal foundation.
He said he plans to distribute the money on an annual basis to the poorest people in the world.
The Osteens’ massive annual fundraising drive, known as “Osteen’s Million,” has raised more than twice as much money as any other religious leader combined.
The annual fundraising total of $6.4 billion has eclipsed the total fundraising by Pope Francis, who is expected to give away more money this year than the Ostees.
Obeyens son, Joel, was recently elected president of the United Church of Christ.
The Osteen family is a member of the Southern Baptist Convention, the world’s largest Protestant denomination.