The jockeying for the Crystal Cathedral continues. A developer, a billionaire businessman, Chapman University and the Diocese of Orange are in the bidding. So is a Christian congregation in Norco that reaffirmed its bid for Reverend Robert Schuller’s bankrupt church on Friday. All this while Crystal Cathedral’s congregation tries to raise money and save its church.
News conference attendees from My Father’s House church in Norco frequently broke out in "amens" as Pastor Mark Thomas talked about financing plans.
"The Crystal Cathedral has a need," he says. "And if 78 percent of believers gave $5, we would have $1.1 billion."
Thomas adds that if the 78 percent of Americans who say they are Christian give money, My Father’s House church could pay for the Crystal Cathedral’s debt and buy the property in one day. He says more than 100 business and religious leaders are behind him in the effort, but he declined to name them.
About a dozen pastors joined Thomas – among them like Kerry Davis from Healing Streams church in Moreno Valley, a church of around 200 members.
"I plan to not just support it physically. I plan to send money in. Whatever we can do to help," says Davis.
Pastor Thomas from My Father’s House church called the news conference because he thinks his bid is misunderstood.
"We wanted people to actually hear our voice because a lot of times the emails come through and we get the words 'criminal', 'scammer'," says Thomas. "We get some of the negative stuff."
Thomas says more than 100 business and church leaders across the world support My Father’s House Church.
"We can meet with the lenders behind closed doors and open up our books and open up our resources and when they see who is behind us. They will fold their arms and say this can be done."
Thomas says he hopes the Crystal Cathedral can rescue itself, but if not, he says My Father’s House Church is ready to step in.
A group representing those with unsecured debt will weigh all the offers on the table and could present a plan in a week.