Hillsong New York pastor refuses to judge gays and hopes they’re always in his congregation

Pastor Carl Lentz of the New York branch of the global Pentecostal Hillsong megachurch says Jesus never condemned gay people so he’s not going to either

Hillsong New York pastor refuses to judge gays and hopes they’re always in his congregation
06 June 2014

Carl Lentz, the tattooed pastor of the New York branch of the global Pentecostal Hillsong megachurch, has refused to condemn gays and lesbians in an interview with CNN in a sign of growing acceptance of LGBTI people among Pentecostal Christians.

The Australian founded megachurch was connected to ‘ex-gay’ groups less than a decade ago but in August of 2013 church founder Pastor Brian Houston sent a message to all Hillsong church campuses saying that they should welcome openly gay and lesbian people into their congregation.

Lentz has now made one of the strongest statements to date welcoming LGBTI people into his church telling CNN, ‘Jesus was in the thick of an era where homosexuality, just like it is today, was widely prevalent.’

‘And I’m still waiting for someone to show me the quote where Jesus addressed it on the record in front of people. You won’t find it because he never did.’

Lentz said he was glad to count openly gay and lesbian people among his congregation, saying, ‘We have a lot of gay men and women in our church and I pray we always do.’

Lentz’ Australian born wife Laura Lentz backed him up in that sentiment, saying, ‘It’s not our place to tell anyone how they should live … that’s their journey.’

Carl Lentz refused to be drawn on his political affiliations but said that it annoyed him when people said that true Christians could not belong to one political party or another.

‘My thing is that Jesus transcends politics,’ he said.

‘Some Christians say you can’t even be a Democrat and follow Jesus. That really bugs me.’

The Hillsong church boasts 75,000 members across twelve countries.



41% of Russians say authorities should persecute gays to 'exterminate the phenomenon'
No thumbnail available

Justin Timberlake 'sorry' for trans joke wedding video

Pop star turned actor Timberlake says friend's 'joke' video was not intended to offend and denied rumors it was shown at his wedding to Jessica Biel
No thumbnail available
No thumbnail available

Champion of TV's Top Chef posts Instagram pic to come out as lesbian

Kristen Kish shares photo of herself with girlfriend in celebration of their 1 year anniversary
No thumbnail available

See unseen Glee footage of Kurt and Blaine

Creator Ryan Murphy shares scene after reaching 500,000 followers on Twitter
No thumbnail available

Survey: White gay men who put 'no blacks' on dating apps would be offended if they saw a profile with 'no whites'

'Indian gay men smell', and other racist misconceptions of some gay Londoners are revealed
No thumbnail available

What lesbian women really do

Facebook's ‘What people think I do’ now has a lesbian version
No thumbnail available

Soldier tells why he came out on YouTube

Randy Phillips talks about coming out on YouTube
No thumbnail available

South Carolina voters punish mayor who sacked their lesbian police chief

Voters in the South Carolina town of Latta have voted to strip their mayor of his executive powers after he fired their popular lesbian police chief and was recorded making a homophobic rant
No thumbnail available

Labour abandons support for 'wrecking' gay marriage amendment

Shadow Women and Equalities Minister Yvette Cooper tells opposition party MPs to not vote for Tim Loughton's opposite-sex civil partnerships amendment