back to top

Hillsong Megachurch Denies Supporting Marriage Equality

It rebukes international reporting, "Nowhere did I suggest that Hillsong supported gay marriage."

Posted on

Australian evangelical church Hillsong has moved to clarify its position on marriage equality after being lavished with praise in a recent New York Times report.

Paul Miller / AAP Images

The New York Times reported that Hillsong co-founder Brian Houston was in an "ongoing conversation" about marriage equality which represented a "shift in tone" for Christian evangelical churches.

The response to NYT report came via a statement to the church's website.

"Nowhere in my answer did I diminish biblical truth or suggest that I or Hillsong Church supported gay marriage. My personal view on the subject of homosexuality would line up with most traditionally held Christian views," wrote Mr Houston.

The pastor said he was not publically "condemning" homosexuality because the church had campuses in New York and California, where there is marriage equality.

"I made the point that public statements condemning people will place a barrier between the church and the world... which is why at Hillsong, we don't want to reduce the real issues in people's lives to a sound bite."

The powerful Pentecostal church counts upwards of 100,000 people attending its weekly services worldwide and has become known globally for producing best-selling Christian rock albums.

Mr Houston's statement sparked some criticism from Hillsong's hundreds of thousands of followers on Facebook, who were concerned the church's position on marriage seems vague.

The comments come after a turbulent month for Mr Houston. The pastor told the Royal Commission into child sexual abuse that he did not report several acts of abuse committed against children by his late father and Hillsong founder Frank Houston.

Royal Commission / AAP Images