It’s tempting to say that pastor Tony Spell has taken ungodly amounts of money from his parishioners, but he’s not disclosing how much exactly — and from my heathen perspective, everything Spell stands for is ungodly.
What Spell will say — did say, to TMZ — is that more than 200
suckers followers have given him their stimulus checks, or part of those checks. If those donors tithed 10 percent, Spell pocketed over $24K; if they handed over the whole thing, close to a quarter million.
That number is from last week; it’s likely that when Spell’s collection plate went around again yesterday, his take increased further.
The infamous leader of the Life Tabernacle Church in Louisiana tells TMZ … since April 19 when his “stimulus challenge” began, 205 people have given at least a portion of their stimulus checks to his church. We’re told this includes parishioners as well as outsiders who don’t belong to Life Tabernacle. Spell would not reveal how much cash he’s hauled in from these folks.
I don’t think his fans are one-percenters. They could probably use the dough to pay for food, medication, rent, utilities, et cetera. That’s what the stimulus money was primarily intended for — to help people survive economically, not to underwrite the bespoke suits of religious mountebanks.
That said, I confess to almost growing tender feelings for the love affair between the hustler and his slack-jawed marks. They form a match made in heaven; long may they deserve each other.