Joel Osteen: Texas pastor gets live show on SiriusXM satellite radio
Joel Osteen, who preaches to 40,000 people each week in Houston, will get his own satellite radio channel on SiriusXM. Joel Osteen's first show will be Saturday's broadcast of "America's Night of Hope" at Yankee Stadium.
Osteen, who preaches to 40,000 people each week at Houston's Lakewood megachurch, already shows his messages on the Trinity religious TV network and other television stations across the country. The new SiriusXM channel will feature live call-in shows hosted by Osteen and his wife, fellow Lakewood pastor Victoria Osteen, along with rebroadcasts of Osteen's past sermons.
"It's another way to get our message out," Osteen said.
He said SiriusXM approached him about five years ago with the idea but the time wasn't right.
"Five years ago we were still growing," said Osteen, who studied television and radio at Oral Roberts University. "I didn't think we could put the time and energy into it that we can now. We're much more established and have a bigger library. It feels really right now."
He said he's considering Tuesday mornings as the best time for his call-in show. SiriusXM, which has 25.8 million subscribers worldwide, said Monday it will announce later when Osteen's new channel will begin operation. Saturday's broadcast of "America's Night of Hope" at Yankee Stadium won't be shown on television until later.
Scott Greenstein, president of SiriusXM, said people who aren't inclined to watch one of Osteen's television broadcasts may like the opportunity to check him out on their car radio. He said he was attracted to Osteen because he's a charismatic figure with a wide following and a back catalog of material for programming.
"In the media business you tend to be New York- and L.A.-centric a little too much of the time, and there are a lot of things that are very important in the middle of the country," he said.
Osteen took over his father's ministry after his death and has built it to the point where Lakewood bought and renovated an arena that once housed the NBA's Houston Rockets to hold its services.
Earlier this year, thieves broke into the Houston church and stole $600,000. In a statement the Lakewood Church said the money and checks taken, as well as some envelopes with written credit card information, were limited to funds given during this past weekend's Saturday and Sunday services. "We are working with the police to fully investigate the incident," the statement reads. "The funds were fully insured, and we are working with our insurance company to restore the stolen funds to the church."
In 2003, Osteen told The Christian Science Monitor that the appeal of his nondenominational church lies in its message of uplift. "I think it's because our services have a celebratory feel to them," he says, sitting on a coffee table in his makeshift office near the locker rooms. "People feel lifted up by our message of hope, of life and victory. They don't feel like they are constantly being beaten down."
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