Carlton Funderburke, senior leader of the Church at The Well Kansas City, came under fire this week after a clip of his August 7 sermon, which has since been deleted, went viral. In the sermon, he called his congregation cheap for not buying him a new luxury watch.
Funderburke, who leads the church alongside his wife Sylvarena, told his Missouri congregation that they are “poor, broke, busted, and disgusted,” because they’ve been honoring him with their “McDonald’s money” and not their “Red Lobster money.”
The clip has been viewed over 550,000 times on TikTok.
“I ain’t worth your St. John Knits (a luxury American fashion brand),” Funderburke scolded, adding that the people in his congregation couldn’t afford it anyway. “I ain’t worth your Louis Vuitton? I ain’t worth your Prada? I’m not worth your Gucci?”
“I’m saying this because I want you to understand just what God is saying,” Funderburke said. The pastor then ranted about his congregation not buying him a luxury watch made by Movado (worth between $398.00 and $3,295.00), which he requested a year ago.
“Found out that you can buy a Movado watch in Sam’s [Club]. And y’all know I asked you for one last year. Here it is, the whole way in August and I still ain’t got it. Y’all ain’t saying nothing. Let me kick down the door and talk to my cheap sons and daughters,” Funderburke yelled.
“I want to take this moment to address the now viral video clip of me from a sermon given August 7, 2022. Though there is context behind the content of the claim, no context will suffice to explain the hurt and anguish caused by my words,” Funderburke said. “I’ve spoken to those I am accountable to and have received their correction and instruction. I’ve also privately apologized to our church, who has extended their love and support to me. I’m privileged to do life with him.”
Funderburke admitted that his words were “mishandled and mismanaged” and asked for forgiveness from those who heard the sermon.
“The video clip does not reflect my heart, or my sentiments toward God’s people, yet that’s not discernible in the clip,” the pastor said. “Therefore, I offer this sincere apology to you today. No context could erase the words I used. I apologize to all who have been hurt and angered or in any way damaged by my words.”