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In 2014, at Joel Osteen‘s Lakewood Church in Texas, someone broke into a safe and stole roughly $600,000 in cash, checks, and envelopes containing credit card information. That money represented one weekend’s worth of income. The church had insurance for this sort of thing, believe it or not, so they didn’t miss out on the donations, but it remained an open question as to who took the money. No one was ever arrested in conjunction with the theft.

There hasn’t been an update in the case… until now.

Last month, apparently, a plumber was called to deal with a loose toilet in the church. After he removed the toilet and everything behind it, he made a startling discovery, as he explained to 100.3 The Bull morning radio host George Lindsey:

“There was a loose toilet in the wall, and we removed the tile,” the caller said. “We went to go remove the toilet, and I moved some insulation away and about 500 envelopes fell out of the wall, and I was like ‘Oh wow!’”

Those 500 envelopes contained lots and lots of cash.

How much? We’re not told. If it’s not the full $600,000, the remainder of the money is still missing. But law enforcement was called in to continue the investigation and the church confirmed the discovery.

(Incidentally, when the money was stolen, there was a $25,000 reward for anyone with information that could lead to the arrest of a suspect. The unnamed plumber wouldn’t be eligible for that reward, anyway, since no one’s been arrested, but Crimestoppers of Houston said the window for tips has closed and no one will be getting any reward at this point.)

You have to wonder why someone would’ve gone through all the trouble to steal that much money, only to dump a large chunk of it in the church. Was it a church member? A staffer? Does Joel Osteen just keep his spare cash in Lakewood’s walls like other people do under their mattresses? What if that cash isn’t the money that was stolen in 2014?!

I. Want. Answers.

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Hemant Mehta is the founder of, a YouTube creator, podcast co-host, and author of multiple books about atheism. He can be reached at @HemantMehta.