10 episodes

Subscribe to Crime X+ today. From humble beginnings in a suburban Sydney warehouse to an international pentecostal powerhouse, Hillsong has changed the world around it, counting politicians, business tycoons and A-list celebrities among its true believers. Talking to one of those who has since turned her back on Hillsong, reporter Stephen Drill found himself asking: How did the church get so powerful? And is Hillsong really everything it claims to be? On his journey to find out the truth, Stephen follows the money, exposing disturbing claims of worker exploitation, complicated consensual sexual relationships and a culture where women are allegedly told to physically submit to their husbands.

A ground-breaking eight-part investigation, Faith on Trial: Hillsong will leave you asking what you can believe in. 

Faith on Trial is hosted, written and produced by Stephen Drill and Andrea Thiis-Evensen. The executive producer is Dan Box. 

Go to faithontrial.com.au for more. 

Theme song: The Jordan Singers, By His Grace, 2022. 

Faith on Trial: Hillsong Crime X

    • True Crime
    • 3.4 • 312 Ratings

Listen on Apple Podcasts
Requires subscription and macOS 11.4 or higher

Subscribe to Crime X+ today. From humble beginnings in a suburban Sydney warehouse to an international pentecostal powerhouse, Hillsong has changed the world around it, counting politicians, business tycoons and A-list celebrities among its true believers. Talking to one of those who has since turned her back on Hillsong, reporter Stephen Drill found himself asking: How did the church get so powerful? And is Hillsong really everything it claims to be? On his journey to find out the truth, Stephen follows the money, exposing disturbing claims of worker exploitation, complicated consensual sexual relationships and a culture where women are allegedly told to physically submit to their husbands.

A ground-breaking eight-part investigation, Faith on Trial: Hillsong will leave you asking what you can believe in. 

Faith on Trial is hosted, written and produced by Stephen Drill and Andrea Thiis-Evensen. The executive producer is Dan Box. 

Go to faithontrial.com.au for more. 

Theme song: The Jordan Singers, By His Grace, 2022. 

Listen on Apple Podcasts
Requires subscription and macOS 11.4 or higher

    The Big Eagle

    The Big Eagle

    Subscribe to Crime X+ today. Hillsong's rise to global megachurch - or how Hillsong founder Brian Houston took over the world.
    Go to faithontrial.com.au for more. 
    See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    • 27 min
    Slave Labour-ish

    Slave Labour-ish

    Subscribe to Crime X+ today. Are Hillsong's faithful willing volunteers or simply being exploited?
    Go to faithontrial.com.au for more. 
    See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    • 25 min
    First fruits

    First fruits

    Subscribe to Crime X+ today. God wants you to be rich, according to Hillsong. He also wants you to give 10 per cent of your money to the church.
    Go to faithontrial.com.au for more. 
    See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    • 27 min
    Miracles tonight

    Miracles tonight

    Subscribe to Crime X+ today. What it’s like to lose yourself inside a Hillsong service. 
    Go to faithontrial.com.au for more. 
    See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    • 27 min
    The Affairs

    The Affairs

    Subscribe to Crime X+ today. What happened when a New York pastor met a girl, ruining his own life and rocking the faith of his followers.
    Listen to Faith on Trial early and ad free by subscribing to Crime X+ on Apple Podcasts. New episode released every Wednesday.
    Go to faithontrial.com.au for more. 
    See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    • 27 min
    The Missing 40 Minutes

    The Missing 40 Minutes

    Subscribe to Crime X+ today. What really happened in the Pullman Hotel when Brian Houston knocked on the wrong room door.
    Listen to Faith on Trial early and ad free by subscribing to Crime X+ on Apple Podcasts. New episode released every Wednesday.
    Go to faithontrial.com.au for more. 
    See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    • 31 min

Customer Reviews

3.4 out of 5
312 Ratings

312 Ratings

Rinnswimmer ,

Keep in mind this is a non-Christian perspective with mostly negative interviews

I had to write a review because I think some other reviews seem a bit unfair and one was unacceptably cruel to victims mentioned here. If you keep in mind from the start that this podcast does NOT come from a Christian perspective, it could ease some frustration. Some topics the hosts express shock at are actually pretty standard doctrines in the Bible-believing Church as a whole, such as tithing 10% (although it does seem Hillsong has had some issues with transparency in this area, and not all churches prioritize this in their preaching, and Hillsong may not have been wise with their use of funds). I did learn some new things and was able to take it all in with a grain of salt, as someone who knows of Hillsong Church mostly because I’ve been a fan of their music over the years. I am a bit uncomfortable with Brian’s early prosperity gospel and grieved over the church leaders’ treatment of victims of sexual misconduct, and see a great need for change in this area. I still have more positive than negative views of the church because of the impact they’ve had and my own growth as a result of their music and resources, but hope that it is being purified as some of these things come into the light. Power and influence can easily corrupt, no matter who you are.

Keep in mind that there were far more people interviewed here who had a NEGATIVE experience at Hillsong, and very few interviewed who stayed and still love it. The latter will be a much bigger number in actuality, although it does NOT negate the experiences of the others. When your church is that large, you tend to have a wide range of experiences as people come in with their own baggage and triggers and tend to hurt each other. That does not excuse some of the behavior mentioned here but it is an unfortunate reality that megachurches can struggle with oversight of these things. My knowledge of the church is still relatively minimal but it does seem there is a need for a robust, fair and accountable system for reporting misconduct in leadership. I do wish Hillsong had responded to the host or that there was more perspective from the other side of the coin, as people are likely to make a lot of assumptions after listening to this podcast.

hugh.g.reckshon ,

Hi😃

So personally, I was miraculously healed of my anxiety through a vision of Jesus one night in my bedroom during COVID. I had really bad anxiety, thoughts wouldn’t stop, and then I cried out to the Lord that night and said “if you’re real and really died on a cross and rose three days later I need you to show up I can’t do this anymore” and then after my mental breakdown as I closed my eyes to go to sleep I couldn’t feel my entire body not even my ears and I saw Jesus, the next day my mind was completely blank not a thought in sight. And has never been bombarded with thoughts like that since. I say this all to say is I didn’t know hillsong existed at this time when this happened, shoot I wasn’t even going to church, but Jesus met me and I am healed. I think interviews with people with stories like this are important to include as well because many people have been encountered by the supernatural power of the Holy Spirit, the Holy Spirit I know reveals trauma from my past and shows me, exactly, specifically where he was when it happened and shares in my weeping and despair and brings me solution and perspective of true lasting healing. hillsong is the problem, not Jesus. And I think that could’ve been made clear. In regards to 1 Corinthians 7:5, in the same book in chapter 13 of the Bible it says that love is patient, and love is kind, and a man is called to love his wife like Christ loves the church, God gives us a choice. So a husband should be patient with his wife in when she wants to have sex and not force her for the Lord doesn’t do that with us. The word does not make consent seem weird so let’s not push that incorrect narrative. These people had an expectation and placed a weight on hillsong to do things the Holy Spirit was meant to do with them alone in their private time with him, not blaming them but hillsong tried to take on the role of the Holy Spirit instead of letting him be who he is, the helper. And when you do that bad things are gonna happen because we aren’t meant to take on such a role. That’s all thank you.

MaryAnn.from.Michigan ,

No Excuses

I don’t agree with much of what Hill song did, and Brian Houston should be removed as pastor but I also understand the journalist, not being a Christian cannot understand the importance of scripture, especially when he said it’s s 2000 year old book that’s not relevant (something like that) Gods word is TIMELESS. I Corinthians 2:14 states;
The natural person does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are folly to him, and he is not able to understand them because they are spiritually discerned.

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