Joel Osteen prays for 7-year-old shot at Lakewood Church in 1st Sunday service since shooting

On Feb. 11, a shooting rang out at Joel Osteen's Lakewood Church in Houston.

February 18, 2024, 4:03 PM

Joel Osteen preached for "restoration and healing" in the first Sunday service following the shooting that erupted at his Lakewood Church in Houston last week.

"Lord, we think of your faithfulness, especially this week, Lord, what you brought us through," Osteen said during the service.

Osteen noted how the shooting, which took place last Sunday in between services, could have been far more deadly. "We don't take it for granted. Your angels were watching over each one of us," he said.

On Feb 11., a female shooter -- later identified by police as 36-year-old Genesse Ivonne Moreno -- was shot and killed by off-duty officers who were working security at the church.

Evacuated parishoners outside television evangelist Joel Osteen's Lakewood Church after a shooting incident in Houston, Texas, Feb. 11, 2024.
ABC affiliate KTRK via Reuters

"This troubled woman came in and tried to strike fear," Osteen said. "This is the time to shine brighter."

Two people, including Moreno's 7-year-old son, Samuel, and a 57-year-old man, were shot and wounded in the cross fire.

Samuel was shot in the head and transported to Houston's Children's Hospital in critical condition.

In a Facebook post three days after the shooting, Samuel's grandmother, Walli Carranza, said he lost "a portion of his frontal lobe" due to the gunshot.

"Half of his right skull had to be surgically removed during two surgeries done in less than 24 hours," Carranza wrote. "He was in cardiac arrest multiple times and no one can determine whether he has significant brain activity," she said.

During the Sunday service, Osteen got emotional while preaching for Samuel's recovery, asking for God to "show him your mercy."

"I just ask you, Lord, to heal the hurts in that family," Osteen said.

Osteen also prayed for the health of the second victim, a 57-year-old man who was shot in the leg and was later released from the hospital after treatment.

Law enforcement vehicles are parked outside the evacuated Lakewood Church of television evangelist Joel Osteen after a shooting incident in Houston, TX, Feb. 11, 2024.
ABC Affiliate Ktrk/via Reuters

"It was traumatic, you know, for a lot of people that were here and even people that weren't here, because this is our church and this is what God has given us," Osteen said. "For somebody to come in and kind of, not kind of, but to violate and do something crazy — but you know what? Like we singing in all these songs, we trust in God."

Samuel's grandmother told ABC News last week that she thinks the shooting was "predictable and preventable."

Opening up about her former daughter-in-law's mental health issues, Carranza said, "Despite the fact she had schizophrenia, she was allowed to own guns."

A motive remains under investigation. Police are delving into the background of Moreno, who has a well-documented history of mental health issues and a criminal record, according to an ABC News review of documents and records.

A sticker saying "Palestine" was on the AR-15 rifle police recovered from the shooting. "We do believe that there was a familial dispute that has taken place between her ex-husband and her ex-husband's family," some of whom are Jewish, police said.