Advertisement
Click here for General Assembly coverage

Brian Houston teases new book and comeback

Disgraced Hillsong founder Brian Houston has announced plans to write a new book sharing his story.

Brian and Bobbie Houston, formerly senior pastors of Hillsong Church, lead prayer at the megachurch in Sydney, Australia. (Photo courtesy Hillsong Church)

Disgraced Hillsong founder Brian Houston has announced plans to write a new book sharing his story. Houston resigned from the global megachurch last year for alleged sexual misconduct, but has complained that he was “betrayed,” “lied about” and “defrauded.”

Since recently being cleared of criminal charges, Houston has been active on social media and revealed his plans for the book on X, formerly Twitter, this past Saturday.

“I’m writing my story. It’s a big job and may take a while. But gee there’s a lot to praise God about,” the 69-year-old shared over the course of two posts. “My book will lift the lid and tell the untold story. But it will also tell the amazing story of God’s grace and blessing.”

The posts follow a Sept. 16 post where he proclaimed, “We are coming back!”

Houston made headlines in August when an Australian court found him not guilty of concealing his father’s sexual abuse and not reporting it to the police, The Roys Report previously reported.

Houston had been charged with concealing a serious indictable offense of another person in 2021. Police say his late father, Frank Houston, also a preacher, sexually assaulted a young male in the 1970s. Court documents allege that Houston knew of his father’s abuse as early as 1999 and failed to disclose this information to police.

Frank Houston died in 2004 at age 82.

However, Sydney Court Magistrate Gareth Christofi ruled that Houston had a reasonable excuse for not reporting his father’s crimes.

“The Crown submits that the reason was that the accused was trying to protect the reputation of the church and his father,” Crown prosecutor Gareth Harrison explained during his closing arguments in the trial.

Houston, who co-founded Hillsong Church with his wife, Bobbie, in the suburbs of Sydney in 1983, had stepped down from leading the global megachurch in January 2022 to focus on the trial and court proceedings.

In March 2022, he formally resigned after an internal investigation revealed he acted inappropriately toward two women. Houston allegedly spent time alone in a hotel room with a woman, not his wife, in 2019 after consuming anti-anxiety medication and alcohol, the board of directors of Hillsong said.

In April of this year, Houston pleaded guilty to charges in California of driving under the influence of alcohol after a prior arrest on Feb. 26, 2022, which was less than a month before his resignation from Hillsong.

Now, Houston has focused on traveling with his wife and speaking at churches around the world.

Houston’s latest book announcement comes after multiple years of scandals at Hillsong.

Scandals began at in the church in November 2020, when NYC lead pastor Carl Lentz was fired over an extramarital affair. In the years following, several other Hillsong pastors have been accused of sexual misconduct. Several more resigned or broke ties with the megachurch or shuttered.

Two unflattering documentaries painted a picture of a celebrity-like hierarchy and a culture of cover-up that permeated the U.S. and Australian branches of the megachurch.

In Australia, the church faces an investigation into financial fraud by Parliament member Andrew Wilkie. Wilkie accused Hillsong of mass money laundering, tax evasion, fraud and using church money “to do the kind of shopping that would embarrass a Kardashian.”

Now led by Phil & Lucinda Dooley, Hillsong has 27 locations around the world. Hillsong’s music program has produced 36 albums with more than 500 songs, including “Oceans,” “What a Beautiful Name,” and “Shout to the Lord.”

This story is republished from The Roys Report.

Liz Lykins is a writer, editor and communications specialist.

LATEST STORIES

Advertisement