Lakewood Church warns members about new scam

By Daniela Sternitzky-Di Napoli - Digital News Editor
CNN

Senior pastor at Lakewood Church, Joel Osteen.

HOUSTON - Lakewood Church is warning its members about a new online scheme.

According to the church, someone created a fake Joel Osteen Ministries Facebook account in an attempt to charge people for prayer requests.

The church shared a post to Facebook on Wednesday saying, “Joel Osteen Ministries never requests money for prayer,” along with a screenshot of a message from the fake account.

In the message, scammers say that the user’s “prayer request account” has not been activated and that in order to activate it, people will “need to add a monthly donation of $24.99, which will give (them) access to three prayer requests a month.”

The scam goes on to say that if a person donates $49.99 a month, they will become a “Platinum Prayer Request member,” which will give them access to more prayer requests per month and “a chance to buy tickets to (Joel Osteen’s) next performance at (a) local arena.”

In its post, Lakewood Church also said that people can post prayer requests directly on its Facebook page or submit them via the Joel Osteen Ministries website.

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