An Instagram account has gone viral by revealing celebrity preachers who wear expensive sneakers.
The account focuses on famed megachurch preachers such as Miami preacher Rich Wilkerson Jr, who officiated Kim Kardashian and Kanye West‘s wedding, Hillsong NYC pastor Carl Lentz, who baptized Justin Beiber, and other Beiber confidants Judah Smith and Chad Veach.
‘I started deep diving these mega-churches and I realized there’s a lot of people out here wearing like the hypest outfits, the highest resell kicks in the game,’ the account’s creator told Fashionista on condition of anonymity.
The creator, who is an Evangelical Christian himself, said that he had created the Instagram account mainly for the comedic value, and that reaction had run the gamut.
‘I’ve had hundreds of pastors and people in ministry message me like ‘Thank you, keep doing what you’re doing. It’s prompting a discussion around what leadership and stewardship look like within the church,’ he said.
‘I also have this whole other component of the secular, questioning or atheist community that are messaging me like, ‘Dude, this is hilarious. It’s crazy the money that these preachers make,” he continued.
The account provoked the ire of well-known pastor Chad Veach, who runs the hip Zoe Church in Los Angles, where actors such as Chris Pratt have flocked for spiritual guidance.
The account posted on Tuesday about Veach’s $1,980 Gucci backpack and $794 Rhude trackpants, drawing a rebuke from the pastor himself.
‘Wanna know what’s crazy? I legit did not pay for one thing i am wearing,’ Veach initially commented from his verified account on the post. ‘Is that wild to you? that’s wild to me… Thanks for the shout out tho. You’re a blessing.’
As trolls responded with snide replies, Veach deleted the comment within minutes – and even took the extraordinary step of changing his well-known Instagram handle to @chadveach, from @chadcveach.
‘That’s when I was like oh, this just got way more real than I ever intended,’ the account creator said.
‘I’m not trying to cause a division; me and him both believe inherently the same things. I just think that if you’re in church you should know how your pastor is spending the money.’