Former Hillsong Church pastor Carl Lentz revealed in an Instagram post on Thursday, November 5, that he was fired from the institution after cheating on his wife, Laura Lentz.
“This is a hard ending to what has been the most amazing, impacting and special chapter of our lives. Leading this church has been an honor in every sense of the word and it is impossible to articulate how much we have loved and will always love the amazing people in this church,” Lentz, 41, wrote. “When you accept the calling of being a pastor, you must live in such a way that it honors the mandate. That it honors the church, and that it honors God. When that does not happen, a change needs to be made and has been made in this case to ensure that standard is upheld.”
The pastor — who has become known for his close relationship to Justin Bieber — continued, “I did not do an adequate job of protecting my own spirit, refilling my own soul and reaching out for the readily available help that is available. When you lead out of an empty place, you make choices that have real and painful consequences. I was unfaithful in my marriage, the most important relationship in my life and held accountable for that.”
It was first reported that Lentz was fired from the Christian mega-church for “leadership issues” on Wednesday, November 4, after Hillsong Church Global Senior Pastor Brian Houston released a statement revealing that they “terminated the employment of Pastor Carl Lentz.”
“This action has been taken following ongoing discussions in relation to leadership issues and breaches of trust, plus a recent revelation of moral failures,” Houston’s statement read. “It would not be appropriate for us to go into detail about the events that led to this decision.”
After revealing the reason for his termination, Lentz went on to say that he is now beginning “a journey of rebuilding trust” with his wife and children.
“I am deeply sorry for breaking the trust of many people who we have loved serving and understand that this news can be very hard and confusing for people to hear and process,” Lentz added in his Instagram statement. “I would have liked to say this with my voice, to you, in person because you are owed that. But that opportunity I will not have. So to those people, I pray you can forgive me and that over time I can live a life where trust is earned again. “