The past of a megachurch in North Carolina is defending his $1.6 million mansion calling it a gift from God.
Elevation Church Pastor Steven Furtick, 33, told his congregation last month that his 16,000 square-foot mansion is “not that great of a house.”
News reports picked up on the story and found Furtick’s 19-acre property is valued at $1.6 million. Tax records confirmed a statement from the church’s chief financial officers that Furtick only paid $325,000 for it.
“My wife and I made a decision, and we built a house,” Furtick told his congregation on Sunday. “It’s a big house, and it’s a beautiful house, and we thank God for it … We understand everything we have comes from God.”
According to Elevation Church, the five-bedroom home was paid for by books sales and book advances. Furtick did not reveal how much he grossed from writing books.
“I do not call this an attack,” Furtick said. “This is a news story, and the media is not our enemy.”
The church reportedly offers their members access to any financial statement belonging to the church, although they aren’t made pubic.
Church member Cora Morgan said “it’s his money” and no one had the right to tell the pastor what kind of home to build.
“Every Sunday, people are lined up outside of church like they’re trying to get into the club,” Morgan said. “Maybe this is an opportunity for everyone to see how great God is.”