A Brooklyn pastor was robbed at gunpoint during a sermon on Sunday. The shocking robbery – caught on live-streamed video – left the pastor and his wife shaken… and about $1 million dollars lighter.
Video of the robbery is going viral on social media, but the collection plate of sympathy is running low, with many wondering how and why a pastor and his wife had a million dollars worth of jewelry on their person in the first place.
Lightening the Collection Plate
Pastor Lamor M. Whitehead, bishop at Leaders of Tomorrow International Ministries in Brooklyn, was delivering his usual Sunday sermon to both in-person parishioners and an online audience when three armed gunmen burst into the church.
Chaos ensued, as congregants undoubtedly thought they might soon be victims of a mass shooting. But the gunmen only wanted Pastor Whitehead’s jewelry. On the ground with guns in his face, Pastor Whitehead was relieved of his watch, rings, necklaces, and even his cross. Then the gunmen took his wife’s jewelry too, leaving the Brooklyn church with a haul valued at roughly a million dollars.
The ordeal was captured on the church’s live stream.
In later posts on social media, Pastor Whitehead claimed that “[the devil] sent them,” and announced a $50,000 reward for information leading to their arrest. Whitehead says that they violated not only him and his wife, but his church as well.
“You did this to the church, the church where I’m sure your grandmother praises God and Jesus,” he explained. “There’s no reason for you to come inside a church and violate it.”
Still, not everyone’s been sympathetic, especially after hearing the shocking amount of money the thieves made off with.
They have one question: How does a church pastor have a million dollars in jewelry in the first place?
The Root of All Evil?
Social media users had a very clear lack of sympathy for the flashy pastor.
One Twitter user asked, “Excuse me but why is a pastor wearing $1M of jewelry? Why does he even own $1M of jewelry? What kind of pastor is this?” and another implied that the thieves were “finally robbing them back.”
“Where did [he] get the money to buy all that ostentatious jewelry,” yet another user wondered. “Did he fleece his flock!”
Critics also quoted Bible verses promoting charity and humility… implying that this wealthy pastor isn’t exactly practicing what he preaches.
Rebutting the critics, Whitehead insists it is his “prerogative to purchase what I want to purchase if I worked hard for it.”
The incident reminded many of a popular Instagram account that highlights the expensive sneakers and designer clothing some pastors wear while asking for donations from congregants.
What do you think? Would Jesus approve of such grand displays of opulence by clergy members?