The church received the loan as part of the federal government’s pandemic stimulus package, per the Houston Chronicle's report. Specifically, the millions in PPP for Lakewood were made possible by way of the federal CARES Act, which detailed the purposes of the loans as existing to provide wages or other operational costs. In a first, the program included the allowance of direct financial assistance to places deemed "houses of worship."
Reps for Lakewood, as noted in Robert Downen's report, said early this summer they had not applied for a loan. Furthermore, the church's name was not featured on a Small Business Administration list of recipients shortly after the first round of applicants. A loan for Lakewood, however, was approved in mid-July following the reopening of the program. In July the Chronicle reported that more than a thousand groups of the religious variety in the state of Texas had been given hundreds of millions of dollars.
Naturally, the general public is not too thrilled by the idea of Joel "Miracles in Your Mouth" Osteen's church landing millions in PPP funds:
On the same day the PPP news started making the rounds, Osteen took to Twitter to share some yawn-inducing godstuff.
"God is giving you the opportunity to grow, to come up higher," Osteen, whose 2020 has included walking on water with Kanye West, said. "He's getting you prepared to handle the weight of favor, the weight of influence."
For more examples of televangelism-related fuckery, look here.