By Hamish Balfour
Prosperity gospel preacher Creflo Dollar says he wants to be the first preacher in space and is raising $20 million to buy a ride on a Russian rocket.
“This will be a great moment in church history,” said Dollar, who is asking his followers to donate $200 each toward his trip. “I will be the first minister in space and I will also offer special prayers that will get to God faster.”
Dollar also said the idea came to him in a dream, when God asked him to do something bold that the world would remember.
“Preachers with private jets are a dime a dozen, but to my knowledge nobody has preached the gospel from space,” Dollar said. “I’ve been all over the world, but not out of the world.”
Dollar, who raised eyebrows when he asked his followers to pay for a new $70 million Gulfstream jet, has caught flak for his lavish lifestyle, which also includes luxury cars and million-dollar homes. However, Dollar says his lifestyle is in line with Jesus’ teachings.
“Jesus rode a donkey, that was like the private jet of the day,” Dollar said. “He was all about pushing the boundaries. If he had been alive today he would have thought about riding a rocket into space.”
Odette Jackson, a member of Dollar’s World Changers Church International in Atlanta, was proud to fund his trip into space.
“I might be riding the bus, but I can tell my friends that my pastor went into space,” she said. “How many people can say that?”