Over 2000 federal troops, and law enforcement officers from all over Texas, and parts of Oklahoma and Louisiana stormed The Lakewood Church of Houston Sunday during worship services and arrested the entire congregation of over 26000 members. The action, coming two months after the notorious CPS raid on the FLDS compound, was conducted by the Department of Homeland Security, in its first high-profile operation.
Joel Osteen, bestselling author and Pastor of Lakewood, the world's largest megachurch, his hands cable-tied behind his back, was arrested and escorted along with his parishoners, onto the 500 buses chartered by the Texas Department of Public Safety for the occasion.
A DHS spokeman, his identity concealed by a black ski mask, held a press conference on the spot, co-opting the television studio normally used to beam Osteen's words of inspiration around the world, as crying women and screaming children were herded up cattle ramps borrowed for the occasion from the Fort Worth, Texas stockyards.
"We have had a compelling tip from a frightened young girl inside the congregation, that pastor Osteen's legions were constructing a sophisticated atomic weapon, which would be used to blackmail the United States Government."
"This should not be taken as an action against organized religion", said the masked man, "although I can't say that I much care for a sermon that is more pep talk than Fiery Word of God. But that aside, we can't have these zealous madmen threatening the government with enough firepower to level downtown Houston."
Hours later it was reported by CBS News that a Colorado woman who had made the hoax call reporting alleged child abuse at the FLDS church had been arrested by Texas Rangers as part of its investigation into that raid. Instead of using her one call to 'lawyer up', she called the Department of Homeland Security to report the 'Lakewood Church Bomb Plot".
"Easy as pie", boasted the smiling prankster from her perp walk into the Harris County Jail. "Feds believe anything you say about anybody sittin' on land they want for that NAFTA Superhighway. They're motivated to believe it...get my drift? How about a development deal, y'all? Got any cigarettes? Homeland Security is a bunch of grandma-friskin' punks."