As our own Dr. Michael Brown previously reported, during a Hillsong-hosted I Love New York celebration, a Hillsong youth pastor was onstage, dressed up as the Naked Cowboy.
But Hillsong's Brian Houston says the media is not reporting all the facts even while admitting it was inappropriate. In the spirit of telling both sides of the story, here is Houston's response to the stirring controversy:
So how did someone come onstage resembling a cowboy, (during a fun moment involving lots of other people), at the Color Conference in NYC? It's a good question, I've been trying to work that out myself.
I do know that Bobbie—my wife—who was convener of the conference was clearly unaware that this was going to happen and was taken aback by it. She was at the dress rehearsal, and there was no sign of a cowboy there. Carl and Laura Lentz were also not part of the decision. I can only guess at this point, that someone thought it would be funny and sent him out there without thinking about the ramifications.
What I do know is that those who perpetuate the story do so mainly with the help of a video, no context, and a good dose of what the Bible describes as hearsay and rumor. He was wearing proper shorts, not underwear, and he had a flag draped over him—bare-chested and perhaps inappropriate, certainly unexpected and unauthorized; but not naked.
What I also know is that talk of apostates etc., is nonsense. Some well-meaning person just made a silly decision. It won't happen again.
Jennifer LeClaire is senior leader of Awakening House of Prayer in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, founder of the Ignite Network and founder of the Awakening Blaze prayer movement. She is author of over 25 books. Find her online at jenniferleclaire.org or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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