Kanye West Will Be Bringing His Sunday Service To Televangelist Joel Osteen's Megachurch

The “Jesus Is King” rapper and the Texas preacher apparently developed a friendship through phone conversations about faith.

Rapper and producer Kanye West will be paying a visit to televangelist Joel Osteen’s Houston megachurch this Sunday, Texas news outlets have confirmed.

West, who released his first gospel album last month, will be having a 15-to-20-minute conversation with Osteen at Lakewood Church’s 11 a.m. service, the Houston Chronicle reports.

Lakewood spokesperson Donald Iloff Jr. told the Chronicle that the conversation will revolve around West’s journey to faith. 

The rapper will reportedly make another appearance at the evangelical church’s 7 p.m. young adult service, this time with his Sunday Service choir.

West was already in town to perform at Travis Scott’s Astroworld Festival.

The rapper’s visit has not yet been announced on Lakewood Church’s website. As of Tuesday afternoon, the site still advertises that the evening service will feature performances by the Christian musician Tauren Wells.

West’s new album, “Jesus Is King,” is the rapper’s first to exclusively focus on religious themes. The album debuted on Billboard’s Top 200 albums chart at No. 1. 

Kanye West is slated to appear at two services this upcoming Sunday at Joel Osteen's Houston megachurch.
Kanye West is slated to appear at two services this upcoming Sunday at Joel Osteen's Houston megachurch.

West’s visit to Lakewood comes months after he started holding pop-up religious events across the country, sometimes at churches and accompanied by pastors. His wife, the reality star Kim Kardashian, has described these “Sunday Services” as a “musical ministry” where “they talk about Jesus and God.”

Osteen was reportedly the one who invited West to bring his Sunday Service performance to Lakewood, according to CBS affiliate KHOU 11. The pair apparently struck up a friendship through phone conversations about faith.

“Kanye and Joel are friends,” Iloff told the Chronicle. “He’s been wanting to come out for some time and it just worked out for this weekend.”

Osteen’s church draws about 45,000 members every weekend, filling out a 600,000-square-foot stadium that was formerly home to the Houston Rockets. Millions more watch Osteen’s sermons through weekly television broadcasts. The pastor regularly packs stadiums around the country during his preaching tours.

Both West and Osteen have been criticized by some Christians ― West for his support of President Donald Trump and his suggestion that slavery was a choice, and Osteen for appearing to promote the prosperity gospel, which suggests that God guarantees wealth and health to those who are faithful in just the right way. Osteen preaches that his own wealth ― which he attributes to book sales ― is a blessing from God.

While West’s foray into the Christian music scene has been a cause for celebration in some Christian circles, others have questioned why this support is emerging now ― especially since the rapper has been outspoken about his faith in the past.

Black Christian writer Andre Henry suggested in a piece for Religion News Service that white evangelicals’ newfound enthusiasm for West stems from the rapper’s embrace of conservative causes. 

“Only after Kanye put on the infamous MAGA hat did he become so precious to white conservatives,” Henry wrote.