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It is uncomfortable to note that Hillsong ‘Pastor’ Pat Mesiti was restored to ministry while the Hillsong worship leader Geoff Bullock was left with no help, having his image maligned by Hillsong.
Why was Hillsong and Phil Pringle of Christian City Church (C3) more concerned about restoring immoral Pat Mesiti and not others like Geoff Bullock (who were not immoral)? Below is an excerpt that examines Pat Mesiti, Hillsong and another victims story more closely.
The following is an interesting extract from a book titled ‘A life of unlearning – a journey to find the truth‘ by Anthony Venn-Brown. (We do NOT endorse the doctrinal content of this book.) Emphasis ours.
“It was time to find someone else to take on Youth Alive and so I approached Mark, an experienced youth leader, who was managing a Christian organisation in New Zealand. As I’d been supporting myself through Every Believer Evangelism, Youth Alive had no salary to offer him and he declined. Pat Mesiti, the youth pastor of an Italian congregation in Sydney, had been my enthusiastic assistant, so he was my next choice. Pat did a tremendous job and under his dynamic leadership, Youth Alive continued to grow, opening up opportunities for him to preach around Australia and overseas. Seeing the potential in Pat, Brian Houston, the senior pastor of Hillsong Church, invited him to join their team. Basing himself at the large church in Sydney, Pat became a very popular speaker and sold thousands of tapes, videos and books on youth topics, as well as speaking regularly at multi-level marketing conferences for companies like Amway.
It hurt me when I heard, not long after I had fallen off the radar so to speak, that Pat had taken on the title of ‘founder’ of Youth Alive NSW. My teenage daughters were finding it difficult enough to come to terms with what had happened to their dad, but hearing Pat regularly acknowledged for what their father had done caused them even more pain. My sense of pride and achievement in founding a successful youth organisation, eventually growing to events of 20,000 or more people, was now, along with many other things, also to be taken from me.
However, Pat would eventually discover himself what it’s like to have your humanity become public knowledge, with all the pain and grief this brings to your family. In 2002, Pat was stood down from all ministry in the Assemblies of God because of misconduct, the result of a sexual addiction. I’m sure he was unaware how blessed he was to have a pastor like Brian Houston support him and his family in counselling and other ways. This support meant Pat could focus on getting his life and marriage back on track in order to be restored to the ministry. Sadly, even with that support, Pat’s marriage didn’t survive. Phil Pringle, the Senior Pastor of another mega-church in Sydney, willingly took Pat’s healing and rehabilitation in hand. In his new church home and with his new wife Andrea, Pat was re-instated as a preacher on Sunday 19 February 2006 and serves God with a new awareness and humility.
The Christian Church—a place of love, forgiveness and restoration—proved to be so for Pat. His repentance opened doors and people came to his rescue. Why hadn’t it worked like that for me? I wondered. Was my sin so unforgivable?” – Anthony Venn-Brown, A life of unlearning – a journey to find the truth, 15/11/2007.