Hillsong Church's global senior pastor Brian Houston has announced that an independent investigator will review the "inner workings" of Hillsong's New York City branch after the firing of its lead pastor, Carl Lentz, last week.
Houston took on social media to write: "We are launching an independent investigation into the inner workings of Hillsong NYC/ East Coast. We need a solid foundation for a fresh start and new beginning. The best is yet to come."
Earlier this month, Houston emailed staff and members of Hillsong East Coast about Lentz's termination. The email details: "This action has been taken following ongoing discussions in relation to leadership issues and breaches of trust, plus a recent revelation of moral failures.It would not be appropriate for us to go into detail about the events that led to this decision. Our focus at this time is to honor God and pastorally care for our East Coast church community as well as the Lentz family."
The following day, Lentz admitted in an Instagram post that he'd been "unfaithful to my wife.""I now begin a journey of rebuilding trust with my wife, Laura and my children and taking real time to work on and heal my own life and seek out the help that I need," Lentz wrote.
In 2010, Lentz co-founded Hillsong NYC in New York City with Joel Houston. Hillsong NYC currently has about 9,000 attendees among its 6 weekly services held at the Hammerstein Ballroom in Manhattan and the Welmont Theatre in Montclair, New Jersey. In 2017, Hillsong NYC expanded to campuses in Connecticut and Boston.
Lentz baptized Justin Bieber, was present at the baptism of Kevin Durant, and has befriended various other well-known people.