NEW YORK — Megachurch speaker and author Joel Osteen and his wife Victoria were among a number of celebrities, including drag queens, actors and music industry personalities, who attended the “SiriusXM and Pandora Present Lady Gaga at the Apollo” concert on Monday night in New York City. The two posed on the carpet for a photograph next to a SiriusXM/Pandora/Lady Gaga backdrop, which is posted online.
“Are you ready to [expletive] party tonight? Are we making history?” Gaga, whose real name is Stefani Germanotta, asked the crowd as she opened the show, according to the New York Daily News.
The popular music streaming companies had announced last month that they would be presenting the “special performance” to “celebrate SiriusXM and Pandora coming together as one company.” They also noted that the concert “coincides with World Pride Month, which this year is being celebrated in New York City.”
The Daily News reports that Germanotta “performed a selection of her most beloved hits dancing around, in a most homoerotic latex fantasy, dropping F-bombs and getting tips from the future by speaking to an ‘Avatar’-like Gaga figure.”
She also spoke of her advocacy for those who identify as homosexuals and transgenders, telling the crowd, “So, it’s Pride Week. I wish it could exist 365 days of the year, but I’ll take an [expletive] global week.”
Germanotta urged those in the theater and around the world to “[a]sk the question: ‘What is your pronoun?’ Because for a lot of people, it’s really hard, and their pronouns aren’t respected or they’re not asked.”
As previously reported, Germanotta, whose music videos and concerts are often performed in little clothing and are sexually suggestive, sings about homosexuality in her song “Born This Way.”
“A different lover is not a sin, believe capital H-I-M,” the tune claims. “No matter gay, straight or bi, lesbian, transgendered life, I’m on the right track baby, I was born to survive. … I’m beautiful in my way, ’cause God makes no mistakes.”
A number of drag queens attended the invitation-only event, including Alaska Thunder[expletive] (Justin Honard), Ginger Minj (Joshua Eads), Sharon Needles (Aaron Coady), Aquaria (Giovanni Palandrani) and Shangela Wadley (Darius Pierce) of “RuPaul’s Drag Race.”
Other attendees included American Idol’s Adam Lambert, Saturday Night Live’s Heidi Gardner, actor Michael Douglas, and Neil Patrick Harris and his “husband” David Burtka.
And in the midst of those photographed were Joel and Victoria Osteen, who posed like the others adjacent to the Pandora/SiriusXM/Lady Gaga backdrop. Christian News Network can only link to the photograph as it is protected by copyright.
The Osteens have their own channel on SiriusXM, which according to its description, features “daily messages of hope and inspiration, live call-in shows and with Joel and Victoria, and special live services.” Being connected to the network is likely the reason why they were invited to the event.
Christian News contacted Joel Osteen Ministries to inquire about the appearance, but was told by a representative that she didn’t know anything about the matter as she had just learned of it and that any statement would have to come from Joel himself.
Some outlets expressed bewilderment as to why the Osteens attended since it was assumed that he opposes homosexuality, which Gaga advocates.
As previously reported, Osteen drew criticism in 2013 when he told the Huffington Post that God accepts homosexuals without also mentioning the requirement of repentance.
“You say [in your book] … ‘It doesn’t matter who likes you or doesn’t like you; all that matters is that God likes you. He accepts you; He approves of you,” host Josh Zepps stated. “Is that true for gay men or true for homosexuals?”
“Absolutely,” Osteen replied. “I believe that God’s breathed His life into every person. We’re all on a journey. Nobody’s perfect.”
“The Bible says that sin is pride, sin is selfish ambition,” he continued. “We tend to pick on certain things, but I believe every person is made in the image of God, and you’ve got to accept them as they are as they’re on their journey.”
Osteen then explained his belief that Christians should exemplify kindness to the world, rather than “pushing people down.”
“Again, the Scripture teaches the way people are going to know His disciples is for our love for one another, and so, I’m not preaching hate [or] pushing people down,” he stated. “I’m not here to tell everybody what they’re doing wrong.”
2 Corinthians 6:17-18 exhorts, “Wherefore come out from among them and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing, and I will receive you and will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be My sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty.”
Respected British preacher Charles Spurgeon also once declared, “Avoid the appearance of evil. ‘But we must not be too rigid,’ says one. There is no fear of that in these days. You will never go too far in holiness, nor become too like your Lord Jesus. If anybody accuses you of being too strict and precise, do not grieve, but try to deserve the charge.
I cannot suppose that at the last great day, our Lord Jesus Christ will say to everyone, ‘You were not worldly enough. You were too jealous over your conduct, and did not sufficiently conform to the world.’ No, my brethren, such a wrong is impossible. He who said, ‘Be ye perfect, even as your Father which is in Heaven is perfect,’ has set before you a standard beyond which you can never go.
’Well, but,’ says one, ‘are we to have no enjoyments?’ My dear friend, the enjoyments which are prepared for Christians are many and great, but they never include sin and folly. Do you call vice and folly enjoyments?”