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Hillsong Pastor Carl Lentz Fired


closetcagebaby

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DomWackTroll

"...I did not do an adequate job of protecting my own spirit, refilling my own soul... and heal my own life and seek out the help I need... I now begin a journey..."

https://twitter.com/AndrewBeckNYC/status/1324474167660548098/photo/1

Hipster Christian resignation letter... or Gwyneth Paltrow's newest post at Goop.com? It can be so hard to tell! 

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That these could be considered equally disqualifying for a white evangelical pastor is Peak 20/20. 

I was reading the Twitter comments from the link in the first post, and someone asked if this disqualified Justin Bieber’s baptism (performed by the moral failure now under discussion), and then wrote

I thought 2021 was supposed to be better, but whatever.  The Biebs is here to help and thinks he can become a full-fledged minister in 1 year, pursue his music career at the same time AND SAVE HI

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Marmion
9 hours ago, Howl said:

Yup, but my immediate mental response was -- with a man or a woman?  

  

 

 

 

9 hours ago, Giraffe said:

Ah, yes! Woman = sweep it under the rug, blame woman for being seductress. Man = moral failing, humiliation of the church, reprobate. 

/s

I have heard a rumor , take it for what it's worth , which might be not at all , that he and Justin Bieber might have been more than just good friends , at one time .   

Spoiler

 

  

Spoiler

 

 

Spoiler

 

 

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2 hours ago, DomWackTroll said:

Hipster Christian resignation letter... or Gwyneth Paltrow's newest post at Goop.com? It can be so hard to tell! 

Oh my gosh, I'm still laughing, because that's right on point.  One of the current posts on Goop: She Quit Her Job, Then Changed Clean Deodorant Forever.  Also, Eye Yoga and something on releasing core emotions. 

So...Carl is Bi?  He may need to consult with Ted Haggard, who has openly admitted he is bisexual but claims to now be semper fi with his wife.  Ted Haggard also agreed to undergo a restoration process and then completed one, plus did secular counseling. 

On the other hand, I still think he lied about the extent of his involvement with a gay prostitute and doing drugs with him, plus he started another church but STILL believes marriage is between a man and woman, so WTF. 

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47of74
On 11/5/2020 at 11:08 AM, Themanda Duggar said:

I was reading the Twitter comments from the link in the first post, and someone asked if this disqualified Justin Bieber’s baptism (performed by the moral failure now under discussion), and then wrote ‘or should I say bieptism’, and I can’t stop laughing about it.

Depends on the churches involved.  Most mainline denominations will say that the baptism was legit despite any moral failures of the person performing the baptism, and if a non emergency situation performed by a clergy member.  (In the more mainline churches (Catholic, Anglican, Lutheran, etc) anyone can perform an emergency baptism if the recipient is in danger of death, and if the person survives some churches provide for clergy to perform conditional baptism later).  Reason that someone can baptize regardless of their personal failures is that the person is presumed to be acting In Persona Christi when doing that.

In Bieber's case it would be dependent on if the other church wanted to accept the baptism as legit.  I think there would be differences of opinion even within the mainlines but they'd likely come down on the side of accepting it.  

That all said, I don't see any church accepting a Bieptism as legit.  Especially if it involved Bieber giving a Bieptism to a tree. 

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clueliss

Well, the Ringer is now discussing this one.  (Sports, movies and the like - I found The Ringer due to GOT)

 

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Giraffe

http://thewartburgwatch.com/2020/11/13/brian-houston-announces-an-investigation-as-allegations-surface-that-carl-lentz-had-multiple-sexual-relationships-and-hillsong-knew/
The Wartburg Watch blog has more info. Apparently one of the Hillsong pastors is now under investigation, too. They may have known about his “misconduct” 🙄 since 2017.

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clueliss

Vanifty Fair article says they are going to be doing an independent investigation of the NY Branch of Hillsong. 

https://www.vanityfair.com/style/2020/11/carl-lentz-hillsong-tithing-tabloids

Quote

Photo by Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images.

For the past few weeks, Hillsong Church has been caught up in its Carl Lentz scandal, with the celebrity pastor being fired after it emerged that he’d been cheating on his wife. In the aftermath of that revelation, the megachurch’s cofounder Brian Houston said an independent investigation of Hillsong’s New York City branch would be conducted. Hillsong’s well-established reputation for controversy has meant that its ability to reform itself has already been questioned by former parishioners. All the while, as the Daily Mail noted on Monday, Houston is continuing to solicit donations to the church.

According to the tabloid, in a livestreamed service from Sydney on Sunday, Houston said, “It’s a powerful thing when people know how to tithe, they know how to give, Amen.” The service reportedly included exhortations for attendees to donate a tenth of their income, as well as a video tutorial about how to donate. As the Daily Mail pointed out, Hillsong’s revenue in 2019, according to its report for the year, was almost $96 million, with 76% of it coming from “tithes and offerings.”

While the donation practices are not new, the story is indicative of the fresh wave of tabloid attention that Lentz and Hillsong have generated. Over the long Thanksgiving weekend, People got the details of the ex-pastor’s holiday celebration. “They will be staying close to home for the holiday,” one of Lentz and his wife Laura’s friends told the magazine, adding, “The family as a whole is always together. They love reading, nature, and game nights.” The two are reportedly in therapy together, despite another People story that speculated about Laura not wearing her wedding ring when she recently went to a tanning salon with Lentz.

And the Daily Mail has not only been covering Houston’s livestreams. Last week the tabloid’s website obtained photographs of Lentz taking out the trash at his family’s new home in Manhattan Beach, following the news that they’d sold their Montclair, New Jersey, home for $1.5 million just before Lentz’s affair sent him and Hillsong on their current course.

 

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clueliss

You know the plural on moral failures?  Insiders saying he had multiple significant affairs.  (And considering the rumors about Bieber over the years, I think we can now see why the Biebs thought cheating in Selena Gomez was perfectly fine.)

 

https://people.com/human-interest/hillsong-founder-leaked-audio-carl-lentz-affairs-report/

 

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Mark Driscoll (of the Mars Hill implosion) was never accused of infidelity, but certainly these arrogant personality characteristics: 

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“Not just general narcissistic behavior, manipulating, mistreating people … I think sometimes other hurtful things, the breaches of trust connected to lying, constantly lying … basically, broken trust.”

 

Edited by Howl
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Giraffe

The saddest part is even more could come out about this and none of it surprises me. 

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Also, this: 

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Hillsong general manager and director George Aghajanian was also reportedly present for the leaked chat, and allegedly said the church was negotiating with the Lentzes on a severance package, which they had not yet accepted.

I wish, just once, they'd say, "We're kicking your sorry ass out onto the street without a severance package.  So sue us if you want one, and good luck with that. We owe you nothing." 

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clueliss

Brian Houston was concerned about narcissistic behavior prior to this going public.

https://premierchristian.news/en/news/article/hillsong-s-brian-houston-was-concerned-about-carl-lentz-s-narcissistic-behaviour-prior-to-affair-scandal

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Houston went on to reveal that Carl's "bad moral behaviour" had "gone back historically", but that the first news he'd heard of the much-publicised affair was when a church staff member called him to say that a "very compromising chain of text messages" had been found on Carl's computer, prompting the pastor's admission and subsequent dismissal. 

 

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Interesting article, @clueliss.  It's a Christian publication and readers are provided a prayer at the end, with a "Pray for this issue" box to click.  

Also, cutting through the text in that article, it sounds like Lenz is a full-blown a**hole.  

Also, what is it about celebrity pastors who become more blatant/arrogant about their sexual acting out, as though challenging/daring people to call them out?  

Edited by Howl
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Four is Enough

There was an article in Sunday's New Yok Times about this and the "culture of celebrity" in the church operated by these people.

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3 hours ago, NoseyNellie said:

Ahhhh the trendy response to getting caught for doing horrible things... 
https://people.com/human-interest/carl-lentz-enters-treatment-depression-anxiety/

Ooooh, tons of tasty morsels in the People article.   First, it's in the title: 

Quote

Ex-Hillsong Pastor Carl Lentz Enters Treatment for 'Depression, Anxiety and Pastoral Burnout

Pastor Carl was SO EXHAUSTED from pastoring his flock that he *checks notes* had to screw multiple women not his wife and be impossibly difficult and arrogant. 

Moving right along. 

The depression and anxiety almost certain stem from realizing that he's flushed his marriage, his cash cow and his celebrity status down the drain.  I hope at least part of his depression is realizing the extent to which he's screwed his own children, who have access to social media and the realization that their parents (and by extension them) have been been shut out from their church community and lost their status within that social structure. 

The statement quoted in that article (identified as a source close to the family)  is a master class in PR reputation management/damage control; I'd be interested in knowing who they hired. 

Also, dying to know what facility he's gone to for "treatment" reputation rehabilitation and which other celebrity pastors have gone there. 

 

 

 

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G33kywife
On 12/9/2020 at 9:15 AM, Howl said:

Pastor Carl was SO EXHAUSTED from pastoring his flock

The church I attend had a pastor several years ago who was terminated for extensive plagiarism in sermons. During the time when he was placed on leave, he was permitted to come and address the issue with the congregation. He said he’d been going to counseling, and discovered his reasoning for the plagiarism was that he was burnt out but felt like he needed to pursue ministry at any cost. It was so frustrating as a church, and didn’t really help anyone feel better about the situation. Ugh. 
 

Lentz blaming his affair on a stressful job is absurd and I hope in a few years, some other church doesn’t hire him and claim he has been “restored.”

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47of74

Looks like all of Hillsong is a hot mess 

Quote

Hillsong’s disgraced pastor Carl Lentz is just the top of the messy pile of laundry that is the church itself! It seems the church also doesn’t stand for homosexuality and that some members of the church’s preaching staff, like Josh Kimes from Hillsong Boston, are allegedly just a tiddly bit racist.

Monica Uribe, is one of the former member of the church who spoke to Business Insider for a big ol’ exposé about the inner workings of the church, and I’m sorry to say, it sounds pretty bad.

Uribe came out as bisexual to her pastor at Hillsong Boston, who she said made it clear that if she started “practicing” bisexuality, there’d be trouble with the church. After a suicide attempt, Uribe eventually checked herself in for a four-day psychiatric inpatient treatment at McLean Hospital, none of the pastors from the church came to see her. Of the church, which she left after five months, she told Business Insider, “If I would’ve stayed, I would have probably attempted suicide again.”

 

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From my observation (local Hillsong church) they thrive largely off the Aussie expat community, and put presentation front and centre. A couple of my friends attended and there was a definite policy of pushing the most photogenic members of the various teams to the more congregation facing roles. 

For a time the definitely also had a ‘dance ministry’ (think a couple of attractive 20 somethings in tight fitting clothes on either side of the stage dancing to the songs). 

So the fallen hipster pastor angle doesn’t surprise me really.  

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On 12/16/2020 at 12:13 PM, stylites said:

From my observation (local Hillsong church) they thrive largely off the Aussie expat community

Now I'm deeply curious as to just how many expat evangelical Aussies there are... There aren't actually that many evangelical Aussies here, maybe it's because we exported?

On 12/14/2020 at 12:47 AM, 47of74 said:

It seems the church also doesn’t stand for homosexuality

They have links via the founder to the Gloria Jeans coffee chain, who were sponsoring a "you're not really lesbian, it's just a phase" program here for a while (if they are still it's a lot more covert). Which is one of the reasons I won't buy their coffee. 

On 12/13/2020 at 8:11 AM, closetcagebaby said:

Damn I wish I could take a break from work to go to “tired rehab.”

Me too. I assume it's where you just sleep a lot, at least that's what I want!

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13 hours ago, Ozlsn said:

Now I'm deeply curious as to just how many expat evangelical Aussies there are... There aren't actually that many evangelical Aussies here, maybe it's because we exported?

You do have a certain dispersed 'belt' of evangelicals/charismatics in Aus though don't you?  These are only guesses; but New York/London will have a certain number of Aussies on their OE, or there as early career expats, and I imagine in those cities Hillsong picks up folk based on a familiar cultural note, and folk who are anyway open to a  different spiritual emphasis as they are both young and away from home?  The more regional churches seem to be based around a core of Aussies rather than having an Aussie majority congregation.

Back to the central core of this thread; I note there are now stories of multiple affairs and sexual harrassment from multiple (unnamed) leaders and volunteers, going back years, https://www.vanityfair.com/style/2020/12/hillsong-new-misconduct-report

So it appears to be an issue of church culture (which I guess would have been evident to some anyway as they pondered someone seemingly as narcissitic as Lentz managed to become the lead pastor of one of their major branches).

Edited by stylites
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