ATLANTA --An Atlanta megachurch took in $69 million in 2006, according to a financial statement the church's minister released in response to a Senate investigation into him and five other well-known televangelists.
The Rev. Creflo Dollar disclosed the World Changers Church International's financial information to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, but said the money he spends is his own.
Dollar said his income comes from personal investments, including businesses and real estate ventures. But the church gave him a Rolls Royce, which he mainly uses for special occasions, he said.
"Without a doubt, my life is not average," he said. "But I'd like to say, just because it is excessive doesn't necessarily mean it's wrong."
Sen. Chuck Grassley of Iowa, the top Republican on the Senate Finance Committee, launched an investigation into the finances of six ministers after hearing reports of some preachers' lavish and opulent lifestyles. In a letter last week, he requested answers by Dec. 6 to questions about their executive compensation and amenities, including use of fancy cars and private jets.
Besides Dollar, the letters were sent to faith healer Benny Hinn, Kenneth and Gloria Copeland of Texas, David and Joyce Meyer of Missouri, Randy and Paula White of Florida and Bishop Eddie Long of New Birth Missionary Baptist Church in Lithonia, Ga.
Dollar questioned the investigation's focus on religious groups. The minister is among the religious leaders who preach the "prosperity gospel," the teaching that God will shower faithful followers with material riches. But he said he uses only his personal finances to pay for his luxuries.
"My lifestyle does not come out of the church's bank account," he said.
is this guy appropriately named. creflo a. dollar. i see this guy on tv and i wonder who would watch this shit now i have to wonder whos sending this asshole money. of corse the church gave him a new rolls royce ...the money he brought in was all tax free. he says "My lifestyle does not come out of the church's bank account," well, where does it come from then. was he fich before he started this church.
first and foremost the government should tax churches. if your followers really believe than you'll survive if not you'll fold up. i imagine that most religions would fold. lets be honest the onlt reason religions exist is to hold down the stupid and make thenselves rich.
second, i hope that my room in hell overlooks the place where they torture these people who prey on the old and the stupid. i know that there is a special place in hell for all of them.