Category: Hillsong Church

Hillsong stripped of more funding

Hillsong Church‘s benevolent arm has parted with its third source of federal funds in a month, amid allegations the organisation misused millions of dollars in grants intended for Aboriginal communities. A funding arrangement in which Indigenous Business Australia provided Hillsong Emerge with $610,968 to run “enterprise hubs” to encourage indigenous entrepreneurship – but which failed to enable a single Aborigine to become fully self-employed – has been halted. This follows a decision by IBA to dump a funding relationship with Hillsong worth $1.6 million for “micro-credit” loans, and a federal Justice Department decision to strip it of $414,479 for community

Hillsong Church dumped from funding arrangement

The Hillsong Church‘s benevolent arm has been dumped from a second federal funding relationship amid claims it spent indigenous development grants on itself, rather than on the Aboriginal entrepreneurs for whom it was intended. Indigenous Business Australia (IBA) has announced it would cease funding a “micro-enterprise development” program that paid Hillsong Emerge $965,421 to administer $280,000 in loans, The Australian newspaper reports. The news comes after Hillsong Emerge was stripped of a $414,479 grant for crime prevention after claims it obtained the funds by deceiving the Aboriginal community that was supposed to benefit from it. NSW Labor MP Ian West

Department did not verify Hillsong references

A federal department failed to check whether an Aboriginal group, named by the Hillsong church in a grant application, supported the project. The church’s charitable arm, Hillsong Emerge, has been stripped of a $414,479 federal grant after claims that it obtained the funds by deceiving the Aboriginal community that was supposed to benefit from it. Hillsong Emerge first applied for a grant of almost $500,000 with the support of the Riverstone Aboriginal Community Association, in Sydney’s northwestern suburbs. It withdrew the application and submitted a second, which led to its being granted $414,479 in August last year – a grant

Hillsong accused of misleading Indigneous community

An Aboriginal community association in Sydney’s west says it has been misled by the charitable arm of a prominent pentecostal church over grant funding from the Federal Government. The Riverstone Aboriginal Community Association (RACA) says it co-wrote an application with the Hillsong Emerge charity to receive a financial grant worth hundreds of thousands of dollars. But the RACA says the Hillsong Emerge group then withdrew the joint application before resubmitting another application without the RACA’s permission. Hillsong Emerge was successful in winning the grant but the money has since been withdrawn by the Federal Government. RACA spokeswoman Vilma Ryan says

Hillsong Church’s benevolent arm stripped of grant

Hillsong Church‘s benevolent arm has been stripped of a $414,479 federal grant following allegations it obtained the funds by exploiting and deceiving the Aboriginal community that was supposed to benefit from it. Federal Justice Minister Chris Ellison, who approved the grant under a community crime prevention program late last year, withdrew the offer this month following exposure of the controversy by The Australian. The backflip follows a growing row over the millions of dollars the Federal Government provides to Hillsong Emerge for a range of programs, with claims the money goes mostly into the pentecostal church’s administrative coffers. Hillsong’s auditorium

Hillsong rejects Indigenous grant spending claims

An evangelical church’s charitable arm has rejected claims it has not been transparent in spending a Federal Government grant to help Indigenous business. The Federal Opposition has claimed the bulk of a $600,000 micro-credit program, administered by the group Hillsong Emerge, is being spent on administration and staff. The Federal Government awarded the grant to the group more than a year ago to set up two enterprise hubs in Sydney’s inner city and west, to encourage business through small loans. Hillsong spokeswoman Maria Ieroianni says the group has not hidden its work and has been fully accountable to the Federal

Hillsong Church ‘spent indigenous grants on staff’

Indigenous development grants to Hillsong‘s benevolent arm have gone almost entirely to employing and providing offices for church staff, with only a trickle reaching Aborigines. In one case, Hillsong Emerge spent $315,000 in federal funds employing seven of its own staff in Sydney to administer a “micro-credit” project that made only six loans to Aborigines worth an average of $2856 each. Hillsong also failed to enable a single Aborigine to become self-employed under a $610,968 federal grant to encourage indigenous entrepreneurship. The revelations are contained in answers from senator Eric Abetz, representing Employment Minister Kevin Andrews, to a detailed series

Hillsong preachers run $1.3m business

The ministry established by Brian and Bobbie Houston, senior pastors of the dynamic Hillsong Church, has become a $1 million-plus business. Financial returns filed for Leadership Ministries Incorporated (LMI) this week show the not-for-profit association posted revenue of $1.329 million last year. LMI, which is registered as a ministry, derives its income from the couple’s teaching resources, books and international speaking engagements, and their wider national and international church commitments. Statements for 2003 and 2004 show LMI’s revenue increased by more than 20 per cent in the year, indicating the growing influence of the Houstons. The $1.329 million revenue was

Hillsong Church: Interview with Brian Houston

When Brian Houston established a tiny house of worship in Sydney 20 years ago, he never dreamed he would be at the helm of Australia’s largest indpendent church. He tells Australian Story what the experience has been like. I think I’m a genuine person. I think I love life, I love God. I love people, I think enjoy the simple things. I’ve got role models probably in different walks of life. In church life I’ve got role models that would range right from Billy Graham through to people that would generally not be known. People obviously who have stood for

Hillsong Church: The Life of Brian

CAROLINE JONES, PRESENTER: Hello, I’m Caroline Jones. Tonight, a revealing look at the family behind the Hillsong phenomenon. When Brian and Bobbie Houston established their own tiny house of worship 20 years ago, they didn’t dream they’d end up at the helm of the biggest independent church in Australia. While Hillsong revels in chart-topping CDs and the beaming approval of some prominent politicians, it does divide observers. Some admire the church’s material and spiritual success. Others suspect a political agenda and worry about Hillsong’s financial arrangements. Through it all the Houstons have avoided personal media scrutiny, but tonight, for the