Brian Houston says ‘girls kissing’ tweet was made to embarrass him by someone he knows

Former Hillsong Church Senior Pastor Brian Houston of Sydney, Australia, speaks at Catalyst Conference in Atlanta, Georgia, on Oct. 7, 2016.
Former Hillsong Church Senior Pastor Brian Houston of Sydney, Australia, speaks at Catalyst Conference in Atlanta, Georgia, on Oct. 7, 2016. | Catalyst

Less than a week after vowing to find out who hacked his X account and tweeted the words "ladies and girls kissing," Hillsong Church founder Brian Houston claims the post was made by someone he knows who was attempting to embarrass him.

"Final comment: A number of people have had access to my social media accounts. We have concluded that someone known to me posted an unauthorized tweet in a deliberate attempt to embarrass and discredit me. Password now changed," Houston tweeted early Monday morning.

In another tweet shortly after, Houston cited the words of Proverbs 19:28: "An unprincipled witness desecrates justice; the mouths of the wicked spew malice."

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The sexually suggestive tweet was posted on Houston's X account last Tuesday at 11:41 p.m. Australian Eastern Daylight Time, according to Relevant magazine. It remained on the megachurch founder's X page for 16 minutes before it was removed. Houston reportedly tweeted, "I think my Twitter may have been hacked."

Last Wednesday, Houston reposted a statement tweeted by a woman claiming to be one of his assistants, asking the public to disregard any recent posts that "seem out of the normal."

"Rest assured we are working on discovering how Ps. Brian was hacked," the statement said. "Our team has ascertained that someone logged into his account from a location within the USA. We've changed his password so here's hoping they no longer have access. Please disregard anything that seems out of the normal. For your safety remember Pastor Brian does not contact anyone privately."

Last December, nearly two years after he formally resigned as global senior pastor of the megachurch network he founded amid revelations that two women made allegations of misconduct against him, Houston announced that he and his wife Bobbie were getting ready to make a comeback with a new online ministry and church in 2024.

The announcement came about two months after Houston's daughter Laura Toganivalu and her husband, Peter, who resigned in 2023 as global pastors of Hillsong's youth ministry, Hillsong Young & Free, also announced the launch of a new church.

Houston initially stepped down from the Hillsong's boards in September 2021 as he faced criminal charges related to allegations he concealed sex abuse committed by his father, Frank Houston, decades earlier after he heard about it in 1999. 

Hillsong Church announced in January 2022 that Houston was stepping down from his role at the church's helm for all of 2022. Houston denied any wrongdoing, and last August, an Australian court found him not guilty of the charges.

In March 2022, Houston permanently resigned from Hillsong after it was revealed that two women had made complaints of misconduct against him in the previous decade. Hillsong alleged Houston broke its pastoral code of conduct by entering the hotel room of an unidentified woman for 40 minutes while under the influence of alcohol and prescription drugs at Hillsong's conference in 2019. Houston was also accused of sending a staffer an "inappropriate text message" in 2013. 

Four months before the acquittal of criminal charges, Houston pled guilty to driving under the influence of alcohol and driving with a blood alcohol content of .08% or more. He was also sentenced to three years probation, a $140 fine and other penalties.

The court also required him to complete a three-month first-offender alcohol program by May 11, victim impact counseling by July 10 and participate in self-help meetings for one year until April 11, 2024.

Contact: Follow Leonardo Blair on Twitter: @leoblair Follow Leonardo Blair on Facebook: LeoBlairChristianPost

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