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Joel Osteen's Lakewood Church opens as shelter after criticism in wake of Harvey

Published: Tuesday, August 29, 2017 @ 6:06 AM
Updated: Tuesday, August 29, 2017 @ 12:58 PM

Joel Osteen Responds To Claims He Won't Open Church As Storm Shelter

Update 1 p.m. Aug. 29: Officials with Houston’s Lakewood Church said Tuesday on Twitter that the church was open to people seeking shelter in the wake of widespread criticism for its failure to open immediately after Harvey started to batter the city.

In a pair of tweets, the church's senior pastor, Joel Osteen, wrote for those affected by Harvey to "stay strong and know that God has you in the palm of His hand!"

Original report: Author and evangelist Joel Osteen, senior pastor of Houston’s Lakewood Church, is responding after getting some criticism after posting messages of prayer on social media.

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Many have posted on social media demanding to know why the megachurch hasn’t been turned into a shelter for storm refugees.

The facility’s Facebook page posted an announcement that the historic flooding ravaging Houston have rendered the facility inaccessible and have suggested people seek other options:

Those who have been able reach the site explain in their own posts why the church isn’t able to function as a shelter at the moment. It’s also partially underwater:

Osteen and Lakewood Church responded with a statement late Monday, saying,

“We have never closed our doors. We will continue to be a distribution center for those in need. We are prepared to house people once shelters reach capacity. Lakewood will be a value to the community in the aftermath of this storm in helping our fellow citizens rebuild their lives.”

Lakewood Church posted on its Twitter page that it is coordinating with the city and collecting supplies to distribute to Houston area shelters.

The Cox Media Group National Content Desk contributed to this report.

What You Need To Know: Joel Osteen

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Swedish musician Avicii dead at 28

Published: Friday, April 20, 2018 @ 1:40 PM

Avicii Dead at 28

Swedish DJ Avicii was found dead Friday in Oman, his publicist confirmed. He was 28.

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Judge forces David Copperfield to reveal 'Lucky #13' magic trick

Published: Friday, April 20, 2018 @ 7:09 AM

What You Need To Know: David Copperfield

David Copperfield was forced to shatter his most famous illusion.

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The famed magician was ordered in court Tuesday to break the Magicians Oath in court Tuesday, the BBC reported. A judge ordered Copperfield to explain one of his most famous tricks -- the Lucky #13 -- during a trial involving a man who claimed he was injured during the stunt.

British tourist Gavin Cox, 58, filed a negligence lawsuit against the illusionist, Time reported. Cox claimed he fell while participating in the Lucky #13 trick at the MGM Grand Resort and Casino in Las Vegas in 2013, the BBC reported. In the trick, Copperfield makes 13 audience members, chosen at random, disappear on stage and then reappear at the back of the room, the BBC reported. 

Cox told NBC News that he has suffered chronic pain and brain injury and has spent more than $400,000 on medical bills.

Copperfield’s attorney argued that revealing the secret would be financially detrimental, but a Las Vegas district court ruled against the magician

A Las Vegas district court rejected Copperfield’s defense, which argued that disclosing the secret behind the trick would be financially detrimental to him. He was ordered to explain how the trick was done.

Spoiler alert: Copperfield’s executive producer testified that when the curtain falls, the 13 volunteers are taken through passageways that circle the MGM building. They exit the building and then re-enter at the back of the theater, Time reported.

“There was a duty by the defendants to provide a safe environment to the audience participants,” Cox’s lawyer, Benedict Morelli, said in the opening statements.

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Actors Rachel Weisz, Daniel Craig expecting first child

Published: Friday, April 20, 2018 @ 9:12 AM

Rachel Weisz and Daniel Craig are expecting their first child together. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images)
Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images
Rachel Weisz and Daniel Craig are expecting their first child together. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images)(Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images)

Actor Rachel Weisz has announced that she and her husband, James Bond actor Daniel Craig, are expecting their first child.

The actress revealed the news when she spoke to The New York Times to promote her movie “Disobedience.”

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“I’ll be showing soon. Daniel and I are so happy,” she told The Times. “We’re going to have a little human. We can’t wait to meet him or her. It’s all such a mystery.”

Weisz, 48, and Craig, 50, have been married for seven years and are very private about their personal lives, but Weisz did share that she is happy in her marriage.

“I’m very happy being married,” she said, “Very, very happy,”

Although Weisz applauds celebrity couples who have made their relationships part of their brand, that’s not the case for her marriage

“Daniel and I are really similar. We just literally don’t know how to do that,” Weisz said. “We’re just really crap at talking about our private lives.”

This is the second child for each actor. E! News reported that Weisz has an 11-year-old son with director Darren Aronofsky and Craig has a 25-year-old daughter with actress Fiona London.

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Destiny’s Child singer Michelle Williams engaged to pastor Chad Johnson

Published: Thursday, April 19, 2018 @ 12:20 PM

Getting To Know Michelle Williams

Former Destiny’s Child singer Michelle Williams is getting married.

The 37-year-old singer is engaged to pastor Chad Johnson, 40, after a year of dating.

Williams and Johnson opened up to People about their love story, which began in March 2017 at a spiritual retreat hosted by Elevate International.

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Johnson, founder of Elevate International, led the retreat in Arizona and said he and Williams were in “very similar places on a personal level.”

“I was in a horrible, dark place,” Williams said. “I just needed to go somewhere where I could get a message of hope and restoration, rejuvenation — get connected to God.”

“Michelle was coming off the heels of a really bad relationship, and I was just in a place of despair as well,” Johnson, a professional sports chaplain who has worked with the Pittsburgh Steelers and L.A. Dodgers, said.

The two kept in touch after the retreat and progressed from texts to FaceTime calls.

“We spent almost three months without even seeing each other, just building a strong foundation on the phone and through FaceTime,” Johnson told People. “It was really built on friendship and communication.”

The two went on their first date at a wedding in the Dominican Republic, had their first kiss and decided to date officially.

“I told her, ‘I’ve been looking. I don’t want to look anymore. I’m done. My search is over,’” Johnson said.

A year to the day Johnson first reached out to Williams -- on March 21 -- the two got engaged. Johnson proposed with a 5-carat ring and a video of himself with members of Williams’ family.

“I started weeping and wailing when I see all these special people,” Williams said. “Towards the end of the video, something in my head said, ‘Pull yourself together! He’s about to propose! Stop all this crying!’”

Williams said she was drawn to her now-fiance because she could be herself with him, adding that Johnson calls her by her first name.

“My first name is Tenitra; my middle name is Michelle. I felt like I could be Tenitra; just ratchet, I didn’t have to have on any makeup, if I had to have on my hair bonnet — he just made me feel very safe in being myself,” she said.

The two plan on having a wedding this summer.

“It’s gonna be … think James Bond-meets-’Midsummer Night’s Dream’ — with a little hood in it,” Williams said. “It’s gonna be very traditional. We’re doing black-tie. We want it to be small and intimate and very private.”

Find out more about Johnson’s proposal and the couple’s love story at People.com.

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