By Bo Thornton
Prosperity preacher Kong Hee used his religion, as well as his parishioners and their gifts, in order to bank roll his wife’s attempt at a music career. According to Reuters, Kong Hee, is the co-founder of City Harvest Church in Singapore and was the senior pastor with his wife, Ho Yeow Sun, by his side as the first lady.
City Harvest Church is one of the largest religious institutions in Singapore and has over 17,000 active members. Apparently, Pastor Hee was not the good shepherd he purported to be. Instead of using church contributions for kingdom building and good works, Hee used the money to fund his wife’s music aspirations.
Pastor Hee’s wife, Ho Yeow Sun, wanted to be the Singapore version of Beyoncé, but apparently she was lacking in the talent department and unable to gain a decent fan base. Contrary to popular opinion, Pastor Hee had faith in his wife’s abilities as a recording artist. So much so that he decided to take funds from the church and use those funds to assist her music career.
When it was all said and done, Hee ended up spending approximately $37 million of City Harvest Church’s money on his wife’s fledgling music career. She released several marginal albums that turned out to be duds, and has a music video where she dances seductively with former member of the Fugees and Grammy Award winning Haitian artist Wyclef Jean. City Harvest Church members thought the video was in poor taste and too risqué for the first lady of the church.
After an investigation, it was discovered that Pastor Hee was paying $20,000 per month for a condo in Los Angeles CA. It was also revealed that his lavish lifestyle came by way of criminal activity. The church leader was arrested and charged with criminal breach and falsifying accounts. Hee was convicted and now faces a life term in prison.
This sheds some light on how some religious leaders are able to use their charisma to grow mega church followings. The congregation is to be tended and cared for with the Word, and in too many instances the house of the Lord is used for preachers to abuse their status, their authority and abuse the trust of their followers. It’s time that we worship God and not men.