Media respond to arrest/removal of critic & Mark Driscoll speaking at Hillsong Conference 2015

Recently, Brian Houston lied to the media about not allowing the internationally disgraced Mark Driscoll. This week Driscoll spoke at the ‘Speak, we’re listening’ Hillsong Conference 2015. The media reacted to this, resulting in one media group bring Hillsong critic ‘Tanya Levin’ outside the Conference to make a story.

ACA got their story. However, the police arrested Tanya Levin and removed her off the public grounds because of ‘trespass’. As a result of all the commotion with Brian Houston’s immoral stunts and behaviour, the media have unleashed numerous articles. This article is a collection of media stories surrounding these controversies.

The Sydney Morning Herald reports,

Hillsong conference shows interview with controversial US Pastor, Mark Driscoll

Hillsong has played an interview with controversial US pastor Mark Driscoll at its national conference on a giant screen in Sydney this week despite Church organisers saying they had cancelled his appearance.

Hillsong founder Pastor Brian Houston announced he had cancelled Mr Driscoll’s visit to the megachurch’s conference in Homebush after the once-disgraced pastor’s attendance sparked a fierce public backlash.

I can’t read some of the things I said in text … I feel horrified that I shared some of this sentiment

Pastor Mark Driscoll
Mr Driscoll caused outrage ahead of his planned trip to Australia for a number of his sermons dubbed “more macho than thou” and online missives deemed demeaning to women and people who did not conform to traditional gender roles.

‘It’s one of my greatest regrets in life’ … Controversial US pastor Mark Driscoll on his infamous suggestion that women were created to house a man’s penis.
‘It’s one of my greatest regrets in life’ … Controversial US pastor Mark Driscoll on his infamous suggestion that women were created to house a man’s penis. Photo: Periscope
But video footage captured by a conference attendee shows a pre-recorded interview with Mr Driscoll and his wife facilitated by Mr Houston was displayed on a massive screen at a packed Allphones Arena on Tuesday.

During the interview, Mr Houston told Mr Driscoll said that some conference delegates had wanted a refund when they heard Mr Driscoll was off the program.

“Now that you’re not appearing at the conference we’ve had some delegates, not many but some, who wanted a refund,” Mr Houston said.

US Pastor Mark Driscoll was featured in a video interview played on a giant screen at the Hillsong national conference at Allphones Arena in Sydney this week.
US Pastor Mark Driscoll was featured in a video interview played on a giant screen at the Hillsong national conference at Allphones Arena in Sydney this week. Photo: Mark Driscoll
The Australian pastor repeatedly invited Mr Driscoll to address the controversy surrounding his ministry.

“There is no way for me to say that I have always acted with grace or with appropriateness,” Mr Driscoll said. “There has been anger.

“I don’t believe that every day I was a combative, maybe a loud-mouthed person, but certainly, sadly, that was part of my ministry, and I think that can be confusing for people.

Controversial US pastor Mark Driscoll and his wife Grace, who defended him during the interview.
Controversial US pastor Mark Driscoll and his wife Grace, who defended him during the interview. Photo: Periscope
“Some people have seen me primarily as a loving, gracious person and others have seen me as more short-tempered or careless with words, and harmful, and so that contributes to the confusion,” he said.

Mr Driscoll said he was “horrified” to recall some of his inflammatory missives, the most infamous being his suggestion that women were created to house a man’s penis.

“It’s one of my greatest regret in life,” he said of a slew of comments he made early in his career under a pseudonym online.

Hillsong founder Pastor Brian Houston introduces the video of his interview with Pastor Mark Driscoll at Allphones Arena in Homebush.
Hillsong founder Pastor Brian Houston introduces the video of his interview with Pastor Mark Driscoll at Allphones Arena in Homebush. Photo: Periscope
“I can’t read some of the things I said in text … I feel horrified that I shared some of this sentiment … that perception of what I think about women is entirely my own fault. I have no one to blame but myself,” he said.

“Looking back on that, that was not a healthy person working from a godly place,” he said.

In his pursuit to empower young men to be strong leaders he had somehow demeaned women, Mr Driscoll said.

His wife Grace Driscoll told Mr Houston she had never seen her husband of 27 years as a misogynist, but conceded that sometimes his methods had been wrong.

The US pastor resigned from his own Seattle congregation, Mars Hills Church, in October last year after an internal review found he was “guilty of pride”, as well as exhibiting abusive, controlling and manipulative behaviour.

Asked by Mr Houston if “bullying” was an accurate way to describe some of his past behaviour, Mr Driscoll answered, “Yeah … I think for sure, on occasion”.

But he hoped there was a way he could become a “person of peace and not division”.

It is unclear when or where the interview was filmed from the recording seen by Fairfax Media.

Hillsong has been contacted for comment.

Source: By Kate Aubusson, Hillsong conference shows interview with controversial US Pastor, Mark Driscoll, Sydney Morning Herald, http://www.smh.com.au/national/hillsong-conference-shows-interview-with-controversial-us-pastor-mark-driscoll-20150630-gi1y6d.html, Published 01/07/2015. (Accessed 01/07/2015.)

The Sydney Morning Herald reports,

Outspoken Hillsong critic arrested for trespass at Sydney conference

“An outspoken critic and former church member was arrested for trespassing at Hillsong’s national conference in Sydney Olympic Park on Tuesday.

Tanya Levin, 43, was banned by church management in 2005 from attending any Hillsong events or setting foot on Hillsong premises. 

But she assumed she was on safe ground when a reporter from Channel Nine’s A Current Affair invited her to be interviewed outside the Allphones Arena at Sydney Olympic Park while the megachurch’s conference took place inside.

During the interview Ms Levin was approached by two police officers who told her she was trespassing and would be fined if she did not move on.

“I had thought Sydney Olympic Park was public property and that’s why I agreed to go,” Ms Levin said.

“I didn’t think I was doing anything wrong. I have complied with Hillsong’s request to stay away for the last ten years,” she said.

Ms Levin moved to about 200 metres from the arena to an area she believed the officers had indicated and had a brief conversation with a young conferencegoer.

About 15 minutes later she was arrested for trespassing.

Ms Levin was escorted into the arena where she was interviewed by police and served with a banning notice for Sydney Olympic Park before being allowed to leave through the car park. 

“They said I crossed the perimeter, but there was no fence or barrier or anything,” she said. 

The officers were not attached to any specific local area command, but were user-pay officers contracted to patrol the conference site. 

Ms Levin wrote An Insider’s Story Of A Life In & Out Of Hillsong after becoming disillusioned with the multinational pentecostal church in 2001 and began asking questions about the church’s leadership and its ministry. 

But Hillsong said Ms Levin’s actions were “a cheap publicity stunt”.

In a statement to Fairfax Media, Hillsong alleged A Current Affair and Ms Levin were “harassing minors in an unethical manner” outside the conference. 

“The behaviour of A Current Affair is reprehensible and this pending story will be no more than a continuation of their anti-Christian agenda and hate,” the statement read.

Ms Levin denied her presence was a stunt.

“I don’t have a criminal record. I didn’t want to get arrested, and have to go to court,” she said.

“It’s very stressful when I know that the people I speak to who have been very badly treated by Hillsong are very distressed that a critic of the church would be arrested,” she said.

Hillsong banned Ms Levin in 2005 for causing “significant disruption” to its Colour Your World Women’s conference, according to a letter sent to Ms Levin by the church’s general manager George Aghajanian.

But Ms Levin said the only disruption she caused was to express her disgust at a fundraising tactic used by the church to a handful of delegates including a relative of Hillsong’s leadership.”

Source: By Kate Aubusson, Outspoken Hillsong critic arrested for trespass at Sydney conference, http://www.smh.com.au/national/outspoken-hillsong-critic-arrested-for-trespass-at-sydney-conference-20150701-gi2sp1.html, Published 01/07/2015. (Accessed 03/07/2015.)

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: