EXCLUSIVE: Joel Osteen admits he got emotional at Lakewood Church's reopening

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- In an exclusive interview with ABC13's Melanie Lawson, Pastor Joel Osteen admits he got emotional on Sunday after seeing so many people come back to Lakewood for its first service open to members.

Lakewood Church, the mega-chapel in Houston that can hold as many as 16,800 people, opened to worshipers.

The congregation led by Osteen was limited to 25% capacity, or about 4,200 people.

Osteen's church, like many others across the Houston area, has led online worship on Sundays since the onset of the pandemic.

WATCH: Members eager to return to Lakewood for in-person services
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Many people were seen eagerly entering Houston's mega-church, which opened its doors for in-person services on Sunday, Oct. 18.



The church memorably held its Easter worship event with Osteen, other worship leaders, and Lakewood's musicians in the empty chapel, along with a prerecorded performance by artists including Mariah Carey.

Osteen said it's been tough preaching to an empty sanctuary during the pandemic. In the video above, Osteen shares how the church has grown since the pandemic and much more.

READ MORE: Churches reopen for in-person worship
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ABC13's TJ Parker got a first look at how the church prepared for worshipers ahead of the first Sunday of in-person services in months.



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