Hillsong Church has grown into such a behemoth, its leaders have created their own denomination.
Brian Houston, co-founder and lead pastor of the Hillsong global franchise, announced this week that the church’s international growth sparked the congregation’s decision to break away from Australian Christian Churches (ACC), a branch of the World Assemblies of God Fellowship.
“As Hillsong has continued to grow, we no longer see ourselves as an Australian church with a global footprint, but rather a global church with an Australian base — our global office now resides in the USA,” Houston explained. “Two-thirds of the people attending Hillsong Church each weekend live in countries beyond Australia.”
Hillsong Church, a global collection of congregations, will break from the Australian affiliate of Assemblies of God denomination and essentially create their own denomination https://t.co/MwJNL3dhP8
— Jonathan Merritt (@JonathanMerritt) September 25, 2018
Hillsong is currently represented in 24 nations around the globe, with 123 different campuses and locations. Because of its incredible reach worldwide, Houston announced Hillsong Church is “now registered by the Australian Department of Births, Deaths, and Marriages as a recognized denomination with the ability to credential pastors in our own right.”
“This recognition,” he continued, “alleviates the issue that would occur if, for example, a concern arises that affects the credential of a Hillsong Church youth pastor in one of our campuses in Europe. The Australian ACC cannot be expected to have adequate information to address this issue or even know who the person is, let alone the resources to appropriately deal with the issue on a personal or pastoral level.”
Houston, it should be noted, stressed the fact that Hillsong Church’s split from the ACC has nothing to do with a conflict between the two bodies. He said the congregation has “no grief or dispute” with the Australian denomination.