Mega-church pastor Carl Lentz has been fired from his position as lead pastor at Hillsong Church in New York City for cheating on his wife.
The termination was confirmed on Wednesday by founding pastor Brian Houston who sent an email to staff and congregation members. Houston said that the firing was due to “leadership issues and breaches of trust, plus a recent revelation of moral failures.” However, he would not elaborate further.
“I know this will come as a shock to you, but please know that this action was not taken lightly and was done in the best interests of everyone, including Pastor Carl,” the email read.
Just one day later, Lentz confessed to having an affair in a lengthy Instagram post. He confirmed that this was the reason behind his termination. Lentz admitted that he had been “unfaithful in my marriage, the most important relationship in my life.” He added “this failure is on me, and me alone and I take full responsibility for my actions.”
The 41-year-old is most widely known as pop star Justin Bieber’s pastor. GQ magazine described him and several other popular pastors as “hypepriests” who oversee churches that celebrities often visit.
Lentz admitted to his followers that he did not always practice what he preached.
“When you accept the calling of being a pastor, you must live in such a way that it honors the mandate. That it honors the church, and that it honors God. When that does not happen, a change needs to be made and has been made in this case to ensure that standard is upheld.”
Lentz became a staple for modern leaders in religion, sporting tattooed covered arms and dressing much more like a hipster. He helped establish the HillsongNYC location in 2010.
Church services will continue as scheduled as normal.