A Kansas City, Missouri, pastor who said his congregation was “poor, broke busted and disgusted” for not buying him the luxury watch he wanted has issued an apology after his remarks caused a stir on social media.
Carlton Funderburke, the senior pastor at Church at the Well, issued an apology video Tuesday for the “inexcusable” remarks he made in an Aug. 7 sermon.
“Though there is context behind the content of the clip, no context will suffice to explain the hurt and anguish caused by my words. I’ve spoken to those I am accountable to and have received their correction and instruction,” he said. “I have also privately apologized to our church, who has extended their love and support to me.”
In a video clip of his sermon posted on TikTok, Funderburke berates his church members for not “honoring” him with a Movado watch.
“This is how I know you’re still poor, broke, busted and disgusted, because of how you been honoring me. I’m not worth your McDonald’s money? I’m not worth your Red Lobster money? I ain’t worth your St. John Knits — y’all can’t afford nohow. I ain’t worth y’all Louis Vuitton? I ain’t worth your Prada? I’m not worth your Gucci?” he said in the nearly minutelong clip.
At one point, Funderburke tells the congregation that a Movado watch can be bought at Sam’s Club.
“And y’all know I asked for one last year. Here it is all the way in August and I still ain’t got it,” he said. “Y’all ain’t said nothing. Let me kick down the door and talk to my cheap sons and daughters.”
Many people in the comments condemned Funderburke for preaching about material items.
“That would’ve been my last day in his church,” a commenter wrote.
“I would’ve left so fast and loudly oh no sir,” another said.
Another wrote: “I missed the scripture about the mavado watch.”
Funderburke said Tuesday that his comments do “not reflect my heart or my sentiments toward God’s people.”
“Yet, that’s not discernable in the clip,” he said in his apology. “Therefore, I offer this sincere apology to you today. No context could erase the words I used.”
Minyvonne Burke is a senior breaking news reporter for NBC News.