Hillsong founder Brian Houston throws a bombshell at the congregation

The pastor of the mega-church, who faces accusations of having hidden his father’s sexual abuse of children, gave his worshipers some surprising news.

Hillsong founder Brian Houston dropped a bomb on his worshipers, announcing he was leaving all church activities while defending allegations that he was hiding his father’s sexual abuse of children.

The pastor of the powerful Evangelical Church was charged last October with an indictment for concealing another person’s serious accusatory offense.

Police claim that from September 1999, Houston knew that his father, Frank Houston, had assaulted a man in 1970.

But on Sunday, Mr Houston told the church congregation that the criminal charge came as a “complete shock” and he intends to “vigorously defend” it, but this meant some changes.

He revealed to his followers his decision to immediately resign from his current duties as part of the Church leadership.

“In December, during our annual board retreat, Hillsong’s external legal counsel advised the board on the current charges I face and that it would be best practice for me to step completely away from church leadership during the trial,” he said. congregation Sunday morning.

“So it’s likely to be pulled out and fill most of 2022, especially given the backlog of courts exacerbated by the Covid pandemic. And along with that, the board and I have had detailed discussions about management requirements, and we have talked about the effects of the situation with my father, many years back up to the current trial, and the impact this has had on me emotionally.

“So the result is that Hillsong’s global board feels it’s in my and the church’s best interests for this to happen, so I’ve agreed to step aside from all ministerial responsibilities until the end of the year.”

The 67-year-old added that he should be “fully committed” to preparing his case and working closely with his lawyers to defend the charge and “put the case in order”.

Last September, he also stepped aside as director of all Hillsong boards.

Earlier this week, the Hillsong founder’s trial was delayed again after his lawyers told a court he would plead not guilty.

Lawyers for the founder of the mega-church requested via email that Mr. Houston’s case be adjourned so prosecutors and legal advisers could hold a case conference in February and resume the case.

In court documents, police claim that Mr. Houston failed to tell authorities that his father had allegedly assaulted a man indecently in 1970, despite believing that his father had committed the assault, and knew he had information that could assist a prosecution.

“By believing that Frank Houston committed the offense and knowing that he had information that could be of significant help in securing the prosecution of Frank Houston for that offense,” court documents claim he “failed to bring that information. to the attention of the NSW Police “.

The period of the charge is from September 15, 1999 to November 9, 2004, the day after Frank Houston’s death.

Hills Police Area Command began investigating reports that Mr. Houston had knowingly concealed information related to child sexual offenses in 2019.

Houston founded Hillsong in the suburbs of Sydney in 1983, while his father was the leader of the Assemblies of God in New Zealand until 1971.

The trial was adjourned until March 3.

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