Discovery+ plans to release a three-episode docuseries highlighting the recent scandal surrounding ousted Hillsong NYC pastor Carl Lentz and the corruption seen within megachurches as a whole.
In a press release on Monday, Discovery+ announced that the three-part docuseries, titled Breaking Hillsong, will stream on the service as a limited series.
“The project will chronicle the headline-making world of global star-studded megachurch Hillsong and the downfall of its ultra-hip, celebrity senior pastor, Carl Lentz,” a press release stated, according to PEOPLE.
Last November, Lentz was fired from Hillsong due to “leadership issues and moral issues.” Lentz later revealed that he had been having an extramarital affair.
Ranin Karim, a New York-based fashion designer who allegedly had a five-month relationship with Lentz ahead of his downfall, will be featured in the series.
Breaking Hillsong will also profile current and former members of the church “who have come forward en masse to share harrowing stories of the trauma, abuse, financial and labor exploitation, homophobia and racism that created a culture of chaos at Hillsong,” the streaming platform said.
Late last month, Leona Kimes, who once worked for Hillsong as a nanny for Lentz and his family, accused the former pastor of sexual and emotional abuse in a lengthy blog post on Medium.
An attorney for Lentz and his wife, Laura, however, denied the allegations.
“Laura and Carl Lentz vehemently deny the allegations and, in addition to that, have irrefutable proof the events did not happen as Leona Kimes has described,” the attorney previously told PEOPLE in a statement. “Further, due to the high degree of the ongoing reckless and slanderous misstatements by Leona Kimes, Laura and Carl Lentz are exploring all legal actions available to them.”
In a letter published by Hillsong founder Brian Houston and his wife, Bobbi, the couple commended Kimes “for her courage and have assured her of our utmost compassion in their journey forward.”
“Abuse of any kind, in any circumstance, is always deplorable,” they contended. “As a church, we are committed to learning more about how to identify such trauma and bring meaningful support to anyone who has experienced it.”
Additionally, the Houston’s noted that Kimes’ experience will be “central to our process” after they issued an “independent investigation and lengthy investigation into the culture of all four Hillsong East Coast locations” of which Hillsong NYC is a part.
In preparation for Breaking Hillsong, Discovery+ has partnered with the New York Post and investigative journalist Hannah Frishberg, who has written multiple articles on Lentz and Hillsong.
Photo courtesy: ©Carl Lentz Facebook
Milton Quintanilla is a freelance writer. He is also the co-hosts of the For Your Soul podcast, which seeks to equip the church with biblical truth and sound doctrine. Visit his blog Blessed Are The Forgiven.