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Hillsong Australia

y r o t s

2019 Annual Report


Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Global Senior Pastors’ Report

toward God and toward people. As we continually hear story after story of the Lord bringing restoration and blessing to people’s situations, God’s faithfulness is evident as He responds to our faith and prayers.

We are truly grateful for the dedication, generosity, and commitment of the people who call Hillsong Church their home. Thirty-six years on, we remain firmly focused on loving God, loving life, and loving people. We are still passionate about Jesus and making His name known; passionate about loving others and seeing them walk into all God has purposed for their life.

This past year we launched weekly services in Geelong, Launceston, Ku-ring-gai, Sunshine Coast South, and Denpasar in Bali, as well as in Milan, Italy; Dallas, Texas; and Monterrey, Mexico. In February of 2019 we launched our Online Campus - an exciting opportunity to reach people who cannot get to church due to location or health restrictions. This became the basis of the streamed church services being offered during the COVID-19 pandemic. Our Easter services included 80,501 attendees, an increase of over 3,500 people from 2018.

Although this Annual Report relates to the 2019 year, as I write this, we are facing unprecedented times as a nation. Never has it been more important as a church that we support the physical and pastoral needs of our community, particularly as we have stepped into this new decade with the impact of bushfires and floods, followed by the COVID-19 pandemic. Since we moved to online church in March this year, over 250,000 calls have been made to care for people suffering from the effects of isolation, supporting those who have lost their jobs or whose businesses have been affected, as well as partnering with organisations to provide food to those who are most vulnerable at this time. As a church we place value and dignity on the individual, and in this season of heightened cultural issues, it is also important we embrace diversity, and understand that Jesus died for every person, regardless of their race or creed. Whilst we are sensitive to those who are struggling, we also rejoice with people who have prayed and seen God open opportunities that counter the season we are in.

We want to extend our gratitude to the Board of Directors for all they do and for the Godly wisdom with which they govern our church. Thank you to our four state oversights who have led, pastored, and overseen the building of Hillsong Church locations within their state. Thank you to every single staff member – you continually excel in your sacrifice and effort to make church incredible for others. Thank you to every volunteer for your unseen, faithful service – we are always complimented on the army of volunteers we are so blessed to serve alongside. Bobbie and I are full of vision as we enter this new decade with so much to do, as we continue to learn and increase our capacity to reach our community with the love of Jesus. As a church, so many possibilities lie ahead with Godinspired vision and the guidance of His Spirit. God is ever faithful.

During our Vision Weekend in February 2019, we declared it to be A YEAR OF REVIVAL; an awakening in people’s lives, an awakening to God’s presence and purpose - for a REVIVAL in our hearts, in relationships, to see the prodigals return home, and for a REVIVAL in our finances. My prayer was that our church would experience a year of breakthrough and blessing as we live a life of extravagant generosity

Brian & Bobbie Houston

We acknowledge Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders as the traditional custodians of all the lands throughout Australia. We recognise and respect the connection to their land, cultural heritage and community, and we pay our respects to their Elders past, present and emerging.



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

w e N & d l O f o Revivals

By Professor Denise Austin and Professor Mark Hutchinson Revival, in church history, is a spontaneous divine act in response to the needs of humanity. It tends to have a sudden beginning (if only in the consciousness of the

The Hillsong phenomenon reflects some features of such revivals, particularly church expansion. Within 36 years, a church from distant Australia has grown to 150,000 in

participants), leaping into the public arena before slowly fading. The word for revival stems from the Hebrew (chayah ‫“ )הָיָח‬restore to life” – a spiritual mouth-to-mouth resuscitation of sorts. It is an historically observable movement which involves a stirring of passion within believers, and leads to the expansion of churches and transformation of societies.

weekly attendance in 30 countries on six continents. Its music is sung weekly by around 50 million people and is recognised as “shaping” global Christian youth culture. Hillsong UNITED’s album, People, released April 2019, was the top selling album in the USA across all genres in its first week.2 Revivals are a disruptive, counter-cultural force that breathe life into communities and nations. When Hillsong’s Young & Free sings “Lord Send Revival”, the ancient prayer of Christians (“Come now in power, cover this land, like You’ve done it before, would You do it again”) is made new again.

The Great Awakening (1720-1750) stirred religious passions in North America, birthing a unique vision for a nation under God, with common respect for human rights, compassion for native people and a desire for independence. It became the benchmark for revival in many traditions – inspiring Methodists into social reform, Wilberforce into the fight against slavery, Florence Nightingale to found modern nursing, and the Christian social movements into the founding of mutual associations and trades unions. Such innovative social impact is, perhaps in the future for Hillsong Church – it is clear, however, that in sheer size and rapidity of global network formation, Hillsong bears the early marks of becoming an awakening.

Professor Denise A. Austin Professor of History Deputy Vice President Research and Standards, Alphacrucis College Professor Mark P. Hutchinson Professor of History Dean, Faculty of Business, Arts, Social Sciences and Education, Alphacrucis College Fellow, Baylor University (USA) and Liverpool Hope University (UK)

Australian historian, Stuart Piggin, cites Billy Graham’s 1959 tour as the closest Australia has ever come to a nationwide revival. More than 130,000 people made commitments to Christ, crime rates plunged, new churches were planted, and older churches sprang to life.1



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

often unseen, we have a lot to thank them for as we operate in an ever growing and complex world of regulations. Working alongside of our team is the Audit, Risk and Compliance Committee which has been invaluable in supporting our church. These non-executive advisors, who are all from within our congregation, work closely with us to monitor and establish responses to the risks we face as an organisation. One of the key focuses this year has been on data security which has resulted from the introduction of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). The ministry of our church is a direct reflection of the faithfulness and generosity of the people in our congregation. It is largely through their volunteering that in Australia and Bali, we host 95 church services across 35 locations each weekend. The congregation’s desire to share their faith has led to growth in attendance with so many people each week accepting Jesus Christ as their Lord and Saviour. It is through their increased generosity that we have raised the funding of services such as Pastoral Care, as well as youth and children’s programs. It also enabled the establishing of four new Australian locations, the completion of Stage 1 of our Melbourne East site, and the commencement of two new building projects in Highland Park on the Gold Coast and Macquarie Park in Sydney. All of this while celebrating that Hillsong Church in Australia is debt free.

General Manager’s Report

It is through the collective generosity of our church that we received and donated 30,574 food and hygiene items through our Kilo of Kindness Easter campaign. At Christmas time, 81,230 food and toy items were collected and packed into 5,294 food hampers and 5,702 toy packs as part of our Kilo of Christmas campaign (previously known as Stuff the Bus).

Hillsong Church is a wonderful community where people of all ages and backgrounds can experience a sense of belonging. We work hard to achieve this through our weekly church services, mid-week connect gatherings and the opportunities to volunteer or serve. Our goal will always remain the same; to reach people with the gospel message of hope in Jesus, to help individuals grow in their faith, find wholeness, care for others, and realise their God-given potential. We are a church that is outward looking, offering practical assistance where possible and inspiring our congregation to live beyond themselves for the benefit of others.

We are grateful to report a surplus of $6,359,916 in 2019. Each year our surpluses are reinvested back into the ministry of our church which includes establishing new locations and providing facilities for our continually expanding congregation. Church buildings remain one of our greatest needs. We would like to express our thanks to those who gave sacrificially to the Hillsong Foundation this year. Along with our building programs, it enabled our church to support the charitable initiatives of CityCare and our partner charities including A21, Vision Rescue, ONE80TC, and the Hillsong Africa Foundation.

We are thankful for the leadership of our Global Senior Pastors Brian and Bobbie Houston and their consistent desire to reach those who have yet to come into relationship with our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ. They are inspirational leaders whose heart’s desire is that we never neglect the one and in turn the Lord entrusts us with the many.

We are expectant for all that God has in the future for Hillsong Church and its wonderful community of people who call it home.

We are a church that continues to grow and flourish. One of the reasons for this is because it is grounded in a strong framework of good governance and stewardship. Over the years, we have developed a team of highly trained professionals on staff to oversee our financial, HR, IT, legal and risk compliance obligations. While these individuals are

George Aghajanian



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Overview "To reach and influence the world by building a large Christ-centred, Biblebased church, changing mindsets and empowering people to lead and impact in every sphere of life." – Hillsong Church Mission Statement

01 6


Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019



People made a decision to follow Jesus Christ (35,689 in 2018)

Weekend church service attendance in Australia and Bali (45,367 in 2018)


16.2 Million Unique visits to our Hillsong Church website (10.4 million in 2018)

The people of Hillsong (Age breakdown*):


This Annual Report documents the collective activities of our Australian and Bali church locations in 2019 with financial results and governance relating to those entities that the Australian Board are responsible for, which make up the church operating in Australia. The report gives expression to our mission and vision statements, and seeks to answer some of the questions you may have about Hillsong Church.

0-9 years

10.7% 10-19 years

The report is divided into three sections; Jesus, Church and Community. These sections show how events and programs are outworked through our church community, and the local and global initiatives which demonstrate the church functioning together and in unity with others.

42.3% 20-34 years

26.6 %

Hillsong Church is a place where people can learn about faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, find friendship and a sense of belonging. Genuine faith and a supportive community can have significant and lasting impact on individuals, families, workplaces, and the wider community – even nations. While we focus on ’the ONE’, together we believe we can reach and influence many, and try to make the world a better place.

35-49 years

12.4% 50+ years *Age breakdown based on categories used in the Australian Bureau of Statistics Census data



Church services meeting each week in Australia and Bali (2018: 89)


Church locations in Australia and Bali (2018: 30)


Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Hillsong Growth & Expansion - Global

2012 Hillsong Amsterdam



Hillsong Brussels

Hillsong Oslo




Hillsong San Francisco

Hillsong Toronto

Hillsong London



Hillsong Los Angeles

Hillsong Edinburgh

2016 2019


Hillsong Phoenix

Hillsong Boston

Hillsong Dallas



Hillsong Copenhagen

Hillsong Moscow

2009 Hillsong Stockholm

2016 1992 Hillsong Budapest


Hillsong Kiev


Hillsong New York City



Hillsong Valencia

Hillsong Kansas City

Hillsong Rome

2019 Hillsong Milan



Hillsong Barcelona

Hillsong Konstanz



Hillsong Buenos Aires

Hillsong Zurich



Hillsong Monterrey

Hillsong Paris



Hillsong SĂŁo Paulo

Hillsong Cape Town



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Our Reach Pastors Brian and Bobbie Houston planted Hills Christian Life Centre in 1983. What began in its’ first week with a gathering of 70 people is now meeting in 30+ locations in Perth, Darwin, and across the Australian Eastern seaboard and has expanded to become a global movement. The words ‘Welcome Home’ will always greet you. Throughout our thirty-six-year history as a church, we have seen people from every walk of life, find ‘home’, a genuine relationship with God, a sense of purpose and opportunities to make a meaningful contribution to the world around them. Hillsong Church is a Christian church focused on loving God, loving people, and loving life.

131 Total Global Campuses

Through beautiful worship and practical, Bible-based teaching, our weekend services refresh, encourage and empower people for the challenges of everyday life. During the week, we offer a range of programs for all ages, as well as extending assistance through pastoral care and social justice programs in our local communities. In addition, in 2019 we had an average of 1,019 connect groups meeting each fortnight which are smaller groups of people who gather to simply share life and study the Bible together. Our desire is to encourage and equip Godly men and women to lead in their sphere of influence. A large part of how we do this is through Hillsong College which welcomes students from across the globe. It has been operating in Australia since 1988, and in 2019, for the first time, the college opened a campus in Phoenix, Arizona in the USA. The people of our church also give generously of their time and resources to the social justice and local impact projects, which seek to build stronger, healthier individuals and communities. We partner with a range of organisations to outwork this vision across Australia and beyond.


2019 New Hillsong Global Campuses

Hillsong Sydney

2017 Hillsong Bali (Kuta)


Brussels Belgium

Dallas USA

Bali (Denpasar) Indonesia

Edinburgh UK

Kansas City USA

Milan Italy

Monterrey Mexico

Valencia Spain


Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Our Thanks The effectiveness of our programs and services is only possible because of the collective sacrifice of many. We are thankful for the unwavering commitment of our Board and Elders, over 930 staff, and the thousands of volunteers who serve week in and week out across every area of church life. We are grateful too, for the dedicated participation of our Hillsong College students who take part in a wide range of church operations.

6,000 People made a decision to follow Jesus since Hillsong Bali began

Hillsong Church is also grateful to have partnered with numerous organisations in 2019, both within Australia and internationally, through a range of initiatives to support and facilitate projects, and to provide humanitarian assistance.

487 75

Volunteers in community-based programs and activities in Bali

Active Connect Groups in Bali

Hillsong Bali Many know of Indonesia as a travel destination, but for our team at Hillsong Bali, it is home, and a place of wild beauty and vibrant communities. Hillsong Bali began in 2017 in Kuta, with the energetic leadership of Campus Pastors, Eka and Englyn Mutty, and in 2019 this part of our global family also grew to include Denpasar. One of the challenges in building the local church in Bali, is navigating cultural and linguistic dynamics due to historical and ongoing complexities among different social groups, and in particular, religious groups. However, Hillsong Bali is becoming a place in which people feel they belong, and through its networks of support, this has become a key strength in dealing with the COVID pandemic and related challenges. Opportunities for leadership and influence in the wider community, have also come through building partnerships and relationship with local authorities.


Whilst Hillsong Bali comes under its own church governance, we are excited to provide the initiative for the establishment of this church. With 267 million people across thousands of Islands in Indonesia—and with many challenges and opportunities ahead—the future of Hillsong Bali is big and bright.



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Hillsong Growth & Expansion Australia

Online Campus Launched


Hills CLC (Hills Campus) held its first service in Baulkham Hills Public School Hall, NSW (with 70 people)


Inaugural Hillsong Conference (150 delegates)


Hills Care (which became CityCare) started care programs


Recorded first worship album Hillsong International Leadership College commenced courses


Geelong, VIC Launceston, TAS Ku-ring-gai, NSW Sunshine Coast South, QLD

Wollongong, NSW Perth, WA

Hillsong Channel Launched


Hillsong TV first aired


Inaugural Colour Your World Women’s Conference (602 delegates)


Sydney Inner West, NSW



Malak, NT Palmerston, NT

Sydney Christian Life Centre at Waterloo came under the leadership of Brian & Bobbie Houston North Shore, NSW

Surfers Paradise, QLD

Villawood, NSW Brisbane West, QLD

2015 2001

Brisbane Downtown, QLD Coomera, QLD

We became known as ‘Hillsong Church’ Macquarie, NSW


Merrylands, NSW

Burleigh, QLD Hobart, TAS


Hills Convention Centre opened by Prime Minister John Howard

Melbourne East, VIC Melbourne West, VIC


Melbourne Greater West, VIC Newcastle, NSW Alexandria, NSW

Melbourne City, VIC

Sydney Greater West, NSW Noosa, QLD



Sydney, South West, NSW Northern Beaches, NSW


Bondi, NSW


Brisbane Central, QLD




Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Jesus "I see a church … committed to boldly impacting millions for Christ … with the greatest of all causes – the Cause of our Lord Jesus Christ." – Brian Houston, 'The Church I Now See'

02 12


Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Why Jesus? ‘Faith’ is an interesting concept within the Christian tradition. Throughout church history there have been pushes to think of faith as something that only happens in the mind – a mental ascent, or an abstract belief that occupies the imagination.

From 1991-2016 Protestant churches have shown consistent growth within Australia. Pentecostal churches have exhibited the strongest growth rate within this group.8

Research highlights that contributing factors to this consistent growth, include:

And yet in the Bible, the Old Testament paints a very different picture. Instead, it portrays faith as 'demonstrated loyalty’; meaning that the person who exhibits faith in God is the one who trusts in the revelation that they have received, and then lives both individually and communally in accordance and alignment with that revelation of God.

The heart of the church life is focused on Jesus and an authentic, spiritual life

This demonstrated loyalty to God is fully realised through the revelation of Jesus Christ. And it is this faith in Jesus that the community of Hillsong seeks to embody through the lives, thoughts, words, and actions of our people.

Churches offer a sense of belonging and community

Growth of multicultural churches and ministries

Trusting that 2,000 years ago the God of the universe entered human history as the man, Jesus of Nazareth, and lived among us.3

Volunteer opportunities within church and the broader community for church members

Trusting that he taught and ministered for the purpose of rescuing humankind from our own corruption and failures, and even from death itself. Jesus’ ministry eventually led to him being executed on a Roman cross, a death that he had predicted throughout his teachings which would act as a perfect sacrifice for the sins and failures of all.4 However, we trust that death was not the end as Jesus was resurrected on the third day to a new transformed eternal life.5 After this he called his followers to live as the collected faithful - 'the Church’ - who would be loyal to his teachings and example, and to act within the world as “the visible plan of God’s love for humanity”.6

Clarity of vision that enables leadership and innovation amongst the congregation.9

As a church, we know that we have not yet ‘arrived’ or attained any semblance of perfection – after all we are a faith community that believes that ’the best is yet to come!’ There will always be more to learn and opportunities for us to grow.

Today the Global Senior Pastors, Brian and Bobbie Houston, envision Hillsong Church as demonstrating its loyalty to Jesus Christ through reaching and influencing the world by building a large Christ-centred, Bible-based church, that changes mindsets and empowers people to lead and impact in every sphere of life.7

However, we will continue to demonstrate our loyalty to God through our faith in Jesus; by serving one another and our community; placing value on ‘the ONE’; by practicing empathy and embodying love; or to put it simply, to love God and love people.

It is our belief that carrying on the work of Jesus is more than just a way of thinking, that it is also a way of living and serving; both each other and also the communities we are a part of.



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

s n a i l a r t s u A Are Spiritual? by Rev Tim Costello AO Over the years I have met many people in our nation who

I have watched for many years as Hillsong Church has led

don’t consider themselves to be ‘religious’ but will say to me, “Tim, I’m not religious but I do see myself as spiritual”. I remember speaking at a New Age conference out of Byron Bay and innocently saying to the audience, “I know a lot of young adults in churches on the same spiritual search as you”. They weren’t hostile, just genuinely surprised that a church would be interested in spirituality. It was a puzzling and novel thought. To me, this is a recognition that many ordinary Australians are skeptical and angry about religious traditions and the cover-ups of child sexual abuse, yet they know that secularism is a dead end; that it cannot nurture the mystery and sense of connection. There is a longing for something transcendent.

the way with breaking down barriers through innovation and generosity. I am grateful for this community that has ‘not become weary in doing good’ (Galatians 6:9). Whether that’s through providing hampers of food to the marginalised, empowering youth, or responding to global disasters, all these acts are signposts of God’s kingdom on earth—His church at work. And I believe now, more than ever, the everyday Australian is taking notice, and a spiritual hunger is stirring. Australians want to be a part of something bigger and connect to a great story. Rev Tim Costello AO Director of Micah Australia and Senior Fellow at Centre for Public Christianity

Australians love to be a part of and connected to something bigger than themselves. Whether it’s sporting clubs, music events, charity fundraising walks, even the ANZAC tradition points to this—and there is a heart hunger for being involved in something that’s bigger than the material— that’s more than just the rational, or our own little concerns. I am grateful that as people seek for something deeper, the Church stands ready to respond. The Church is not a service or program, but a community of people, practicing spiritual disciplines in their shared humanity through every season of life—whether joyful or full of loss and grief. The Church is always finding new ways to express this community.



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019



“One in two Australians (53%) consider Jesus’ life to be extremely or very important in the history and culture of the world.”10

“The key attributes of Jesus that Australians connect with the most are love (50%), followed by hope (39%) and care (34%).”11




Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Church "I see a church that is … personal enough for every ONE to find their place. I see a church that beckons ‘WELCOME HOME’ to every man, woman and child that walks through the doors." – Brian Houston, 'The Church I Now See'

03 16


Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019


Clearly, community and connection are a critical and pressing need in our nation. At Hillsong Church, we are committed to providing environments of nurture, belonging and worth with the goal of creating connection, support, and care for the people of our community.

As believers in Jesus Christ, we are passionate about putting our faith into action. Hillsong Church has always been about reaching out in practical and relevant ways to our community and beyond.

Programs are tailored to meet the needs of children, youth, seniors, men, and women, as well as offering education, creative pursuits, and pastoral care. These combine to provide a healthy structure and space for the development of essential emotional and mental wellbeing.

One in four Australian citizens – both male and female – experience loneliness, and over fifty percent feel lonely at least one day every week, while over twenty-seven percent feel lonely for three or more days every week. Among the contributing factors of this loneliness is a lack of social interactions, and nearly thirty percent of Australians rarely, if ever, feel a part of a group of friends.12

Hillsong Church is a broad, diverse and multicultural community. It is out of our diversity that we facilitate a range of cultural events and gatherings that further help build value, belonging and opportunities to contribute to the broader community.



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Language Services One of the ways we pastor, build inclusion and care for the people of our church is through the provision of language services, which have the potential to enhance social belonging, reduce feelings of isolation, lead to better community connections, and enhanced quality of life.13 Our language services include: • Translation • Interpretation • English as a Second Language Classes (ESL) • Specific cultural services • Cultural events In addition, people are supported pastorally and sustained through more serious situations involving visa issues and

Cultural Events

accessing support services for mental health or domestic violence.

Some of the cultural event highlights of 2019 included: • Over 4,000 people attended our various cultural events hosted at Hillsong locations. These events included Chinese New Year, Mid-Autumn Festival, Nowruz, Indonesian Independence Day and Philippines Independence Day. • Cultural groups that gathered in 2019 included: African, Brazilian, Chinese, Filipino, Indian, Indonesian, Korean, Latino, Pacific-Islanders, Persian, South East Asian, Spanish and Sri Lankan. • Our First Nation People also gathered, and a NAIDOC reception was hosted at Hillsong Conference. • At the Hills Campus, monthly cultural gatherings grew by 25% in 2019. • The Alpha Course (for new believers) was provided in Spanish at our City Campus in Sydney, and in Mandarin at our Chinese Service at the Hills Campus.

Interpretation Services In 2019, we provided interpretation services in 20 different languages over our weekend services and annual conferences, which included: Auslan (Australian Sign Language), Arabic, Bahasa, Cantonese, German, Farsi, French, Hindi, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Mandarin, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Sinhala, Spanish, Tagalog, Tamil and Thai. Praise and Worship songs were also translated into different languages.



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Strengthening Community Connections

• Support from the IndoMedia Newspaper, who promoted our gatherings and services to the broader community of Australia.

In 2019, our pastoral team and volunteers partnered with external organisations to strengthen our social connections, build networks, and enhance our ability to assist and advocate for people in our communities. The involvement and partnerships between these organisations and Hillsong have helped to foster a sense of belonging and appreciation for the uniqueness that our diverse cultural communities offer one another, and the power of relationship and connection.

• The Afrofest Group from Brisbane performed at an event for our African community.

Story: A Support Community "I first came to Australia from Lebanon due to the war, and although an Engineer by profession, I obtained my Masters’ Degree in Business, and then pursued different corporate roles as a senior manager and director.

Some of the highlights included: • Hillsong College hosted a variety of educational seminars and classes across the VET and Higher Education sectors. The content for these seminars was developed by Dr. Tanya Riches together with a group of stakeholders, including Aboriginal church members and community groups. Pastor Will and Sandra Dumas of Ganggalah Church provided a key leadership role in the consultation and strategic direction for these offerings.

Having been a migrant myself, I wanted to assist others on a similar journey, and some years ago, joined a notfor-profit (NFP) organisation that provides business support and microfinancing to Refugees and Asylum Seekers to help them economically and socially integrate into the community. Through this NFP, I am one of several businesspeople within our church who provide business support in three main ways including pre-lending, business loans and a post-lending mentoring program. We also assist in writing business plans and cash flow documentation for clients on a pro-bono basis. So far, we have helped over 1,300 applicants from over 50 different countries and have assisted with finance for more than 200 businesses."

• Broader collaboration with the Epping Chinese Community, enhancing and strengthening support to the Chinese community in Sydney. • The Philippine Language and Cultural Association of Australia performed for our Filipino Independence Day gathering. The Indonesian Batak Group, Cook Island Dance Group, and Haka Group performed after Hillsong Sunday services held during the year.




Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

s i t r a e H My e l p o e P y for M by Dr. Robyn Ober My name is Robyn Ober, a proud Mamu/Djirribal/Bulgun Warra Aboriginal woman from the rainforest regions of North Queensland. Along with my siblings, we have supported our parents as they pioneered churches throughout Northern Australia. For over 35 years, I have had the privilege of meeting and working with some amazing and wonderfully resilient people in outback communities and regional towns of the Northern Territory, including the cities of Darwin and Palmerston.

loneliness and anger. Recently my family took to the streets of Palmerston to serve our homeless people with a hot meal and bottle of water. Although they were grateful for the food, it was the conversations that bought joy, especially when some of them remembered my dad and then asked me to pray for them. It’s not so much about the food or water, or even the prayer for that matter - it’s about seeing people through God eyes. Treating people with dignity and respect, listening to the silenced voices and the marginalised is what impacts people most. This can only come about through having genuine and authentic conversations with people in your world.

According to the 2016 ABS census, ‘Indigenous Australians are now estimated to represent 3.3% of the total Australian population’,14 but alarmingly, ‘Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander prisoners account for over a quarter (28%) of the total Australian prisoner population.’15 Youth suicide is out of control with young Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people taking their own lives around the age of 15-24 years.16 Family violence confronts our people daily with almost ‘half of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women in Australia experiencing domestic and family violence’.17

As an Aboriginal woman, educator, researcher, volunteer service pastor, community member and family member I have access to people in my world who live tough lives. If I can make a small difference to their world this may lead towards making a big difference in their lives. Dr. Robyn Ober PhD Indigenous Perspectives (Batchelor Institute), MAPPLI (Charles Darwin University), GCIK (Batchelor Institute), BA. Ed. (Deakin University). Academic researcher and lecturer on Indigenous Knowledge/s at Bachelor Institute and Charles Darwin University

As an Aboriginal woman, it is easy to become overwhelmed and disheartened by these statistics, however it is also important to understand the stories behind the pain,



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Hillsong Kids programs are split into five age groups:

Cubby House: 1 to 3-year-olds

The Ark:


4 and 5-year-olds

Fun House:

Hillsong Kids attendance at weekend church services

Kindergarten to Grade 2

All Stars: Grades 3 and 4

Voltage: Grades 5 and 6

Each age group follows a curriculum suitable for their level of development, including interactive teaching, world-class media, music, games, crafts, peer-discussion and personal reflection. Our engaging curriculum is developed to teach biblical truth and values to equip children in every area of their life - physical, mental, spiritual and social. Leaders are trained to facilitate small group peer-discussions to foster inclusion. Children who attend Hillsong Kids build friendships with others from diverse backgrounds.

Children Childhood is an important time for healthy development, learning, and establishing the foundations for future wellbeing. This wonderfully inquisitive stage of life is also one of the most vulnerable, during which children have the right to live in safety and be protected from harmful influences.18

Hillsong Kids curriculum is used in churches around the world, in a wide variety of denominations and cultures.

Children develop holistically and flourish when they are safe, encouraged and connected with the social support of a community of peers and trusted adults. Hillsong Kids’ programs and initiatives aim to provide this environment as they work to develop self-worth, self-awareness and social understanding in children.19

Additional Needs: Treasure Chest is a specialised, holistic, development-based ministry that provides support, connection and community to families and children with additional needs. It includes specialised programs over weekend services, as well as pastoral support to families, and the opportunity through various events, for parents and carers to connect with each other. The programs and activities provided are developed with input and support from additional needs educators, occupational therapists and speech pathologists.

Children under the age of 10 make up 8% of the Hillsong Church community in Australia. Hillsong Kids is committed to partnering with parents and carers to see children and families flourish. This is outworked through weekly programs, annual events, leadership development, additional needs initiatives and community-based programs.

Children and young people are cared for either in dedicated specially designed additional needs spaces within our church buildings, or with a ‘buddy’ to assist them in larger Hillsong Kids and Youth programs.

Children’s Programs Hillsong Kids: Weekly age-specific programs for children are hosted during weekend church services. Parenting rooms are also made available for those with children, 0 to 12 months of age, and this allows them to care for their children while remaining engaged in the services.

In 2019, our Melbourne East location opened their new facilities with a Treasure Chest room, and we look forward to this space serving the wider community in the years to come.



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019



Kids registered for Kidsong 2019

Kidsfest Day Conference attendance (across Australia & Bali)

1,228 Summer camp attendance (869 kids & 359 leaders)


Children in Junior Leadership Program

needs, which included support by a specialised team throughout the event. A total of 28 children with additional needs were offered different activities that promoted holistic development – gross motor skills, fine motor skills, spiritual development and cognitive development, all in a space where children could feel calm and relaxed.

Children’s Events and Initiatives We host three large-scale children’s events each year as well as a number of ongoing initiatives which engage the children and families of Hillsong and the wider community. Kids Summer Camps: These camps are held annually during the summer school holidays for children aged 7 to 12 years. In 2019 Hillsong Kids held 10 camps across Australia in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Hobart, Perth and Darwin (held during the mid-year break in the NT). At summer camps children develop strong friendships with one another and are encouraged to reach new heights, overcome fears and cheer one another on through individual and team building activities. Leaders facilitate small group faith-based discussions empowering children to begin their year with fresh confidence. These dedicated camp events are especially significant for children in times of major transition, often between year levels, schools and developmental stages.

Kidfest: This is a one-day carnival event for children aged 3 to 12 years. Kidsfest is attended by families who are part of Hillsong Church and the wider community. Held in the September/October school holidays, Kidsfest is designed so that children can bring their friends for a memorable day with rides, games, praise and worship, and encouraging messages. In 2019 Kidsfest ran across six Australian and Bali locations. Junior Leadership Program (JLP): JLP is a skills-specific, age-appropriate program that develops leadership confidence and abilities in children. Participants in the program learn new skills that they can continue to develop over the years, such as leading peers and younger children in small group discussions, as well as problem solving skills.

Kidsong: This is a dedicated children’s conference running alongside our annual Hillsong Conference. As our global community gathers, children participate in activities which include peer-connection, worship, games, stage shows, rides, and with teaching aimed at instilling biblical morals to help children grow and thrive. In 2019, we provided a full time conference experience to children with additional

Hillsong Kids YouTube Channel: More than ever before, children are engaging in screen time – whether it’s video calling with family, playing online games or watching their favourite programs. Quality content can in fact enhance a child’s learning, encourage positive behaviour and spark



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Achievements in 2019 for Sydney & Brisbane Child Care Centres


imagination,20 and the goal of the Hillsong Kids YouTube Channel is to provide high quality content that is available 24/7. Globally, Hillsong Kids is currently the leading children's ministry in the YouTube space, and engages

2. 3.

with people around the world. This is done through Bible teaching, Christian music videos, comedy sketches, in addition to online church services for kids, as well as training for ministry leaders and parents. CityCare Playgroups: These playgroups are weekly gatherings for parents, carers and their children aged 0 to 5 years. Playgroups are designed to enable families with pre-schoolers to connect within a relaxed, social setting and provide a safe, nurturing environment where children can play and learn. Through providing healthy community connections, we give families the opportunity to foster long-term friendships as their children grow up together and engage in creative and unstructured learning through play. We currently operate playgroups in NSW, which are registered with the NSW Playgroups Association. These run each week in Sydney’s Inner West (Mortlake) and Hills District (Norwest) during school terms. Child Care Centres: Part of the vision of our church is to provide facilities that benefit families in our community, and the Hillsong Child Care Centres in Sydney and Brisbane enable us to practically do so. We are passionate about investing into the lives of children, and endeavour to create an atmosphere that facilitates growth and development, based on Christian values.


Implemented ELLA, an exciting digital language learning program for preschoolers

Implemented healthy eating and physical activity programs – ‘Munch and Move’ in NSW and ‘LEAPS’ in QLD


Continued implementation of ‘STEM’ – science, technology, engineering and mathematics into the program


Created environments that encouraged children to explore, wonder, think, investigate and problem solve using creative expression


Embedded Indigenous perspectives within service programs to enhance children’s educational experiences


Our Child Care Centres are licensed, award-winning early childhood services, and in 2019, we implemented initiatives at our Sydney and Brisbane centres, which include the seven achievements featured in the call-out box on the right-hand side of this page.

Became ‘Be You’ learning communities. ‘Be You’ is a national initiative for educators which aims to promote and protect positive mental health in children and young people in every early learning service and school in Australia

Continued development of the Australian Christian Early Childhood Educators Network, hosting ‘Communities of Practice’ in both our locations and participated in a national Early Childhood Christian Educators Conference


Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

100,000 Subscribers Hillsong Kids YouTube



CityCare Playgroups Attendance in NSW for 32 weeks per year (Average of 172 kids/adults per week)

Children enrolled at Hillsong Child Care Centres across Sydney & Brisbane

Treasure Chest Initiatives Date Nights: In 2019, our dedicated Treasure Chest team ran supervised mid-week programs allowing parents of children with additional needs to retreat for much needed time out together. Community Connection Nights: In 2019, supervised midweek programs for children with additional needs ran to enable parents, carers and families to meet together and build relationship as a community. These nights provided valuable support for these families and carers.

Hillsong Kids Leaders and Volunteers There is a team of over 1,800 dedicated staff and volunteers who serve across Hillsong Australia locations as part of Hillsong Kids, including small group leaders who lead and mentor groups of children on a weekly basis. We are grateful for this team who work tirelessly to create a fun and safe environment for children to build friendships and grow in their relationship with God. To be part of the Hillsong Kids team, each member undergoes the following preparation: • Careful screening including pastoral interviews and reference checks • Successful clearance of a current state-based Working With Children Check (WWC) • Completion of Safe Church training including tailored Child Safety modules • Ongoing supervision, skills training and leadership input.



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Children & g n i w o r G e l Young Peop g n i h s i r u o l & F

by Murray Norman

We live in a world of uncertainty, and people of all ages need hope for the future. Our young people, particularly, are looking to a future where they are not sure about whether they will have job security, be able to own their own home or even have confidence in the security of their relationships.

making through values education, creates a safe space for students to discuss deep questions of faith and belief, and strengthens multiculturalism and social cohesion.21 One of the strengths of the NSW schooling system is that approved providers of all faiths have the opportunity to go into schools and teach children from their faith background – so people from all cultures and religions can feel welcome in our schools and our society.

The message of the gospel is that we are completely and unconditionally loved by the Creator of the Universe - and we can be certain of our future with Him both in this life and the next through trusting in Jesus.

Working with the Hillsong team – who are not only passionate about the good news of Jesus and giving people hope through this, but are also at the cutting edge of engaging well with society and young people – has been a real blessing for us as we work together in helping young people grow and flourish, and know the love of God as shown in the Lord Jesus.

This message of hope, love, peace and joy is what we get to share with school-aged children through SRE (Special Religious Education) classes. We encourage them to ask those big questions of life - “Who am I? What is my purpose?” They explore answers by looking in the Bible and discover for themselves what faith in Jesus looks like, then decide how they want to respond. Recent research by international scholars into the benefits of SRE, presented at both state and federal government levels, shows that it improves student wellbeing, empowers decision

Murray Norman CEO, Christian SRE Churchill Fellowship Recipient 2019



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Youth and Young Adults

Support and guidance are needed in the following areas throughout this critical period of development: Emotionally: Young people need assurance, acceptance and unconditional love and a sense that they belong. More than one in seven young people suffer from mental health issues, and reports of self-harm are at the highest for many years.23 In 2019 young people indicated their top three personal concerns were coping with stress, school and study problems, and mental health issues.24

Every young person is unique, talented and has a wealth of untapped potential yet to be discovered. Each individual has a one-of-a-kind contribution to make in this world. In order to thrive, young people need an environment of love, encouragement and support as they mature and develop through the exciting but often challenging years of adolescence to adulthood.

Physically: Accidents, self-harm and poor lifestyle choices have a significant impact on the wellbeing of young people. In the 18-24 age group, one in five males and one in ten females are dependent on recreational drugs.25 This can have long term consequences for an individual and affect

At the heart of Hillsong, is our desire that every young person has a sense of hope and expectation about their personal future. Part of the mission statement of Hillsong Church is to empower people to lead in every sphere of life.22

families and communities as well. Early investment into young people can help achieve positive socio-economic outcomes for all.26

We are a church that is committed to raising and releasing the younger generations. 39% of our church community are between 10 and 29 years of age and are a vital and dynamic part of church. According to the unique Hillsong data from the Mission Australia 2019 research, 4.3% of the Hillsong Youth community also identify as Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander.

Intellectually: The postmodern world is challenging many of the conventional definitions of truth. This makes the proclamation of the timeless Biblical truths all the more important. Access to education and training in school and at tertiary levels is a priority – along with mentors to encourage the attitude of being a ‘lifelong learner’.

The adolescent years are marked by great change which can bring many pressures, especially as a young person is learning to form relationships that extend beyond the family unit.

Spiritually: More than two in three Australians (68%) follow a religion or have a spiritual belief. One in three Australians (32%) do not identify with a specific religion – yet there is an increasing trend where people see themselves as spiritual but not religious. Gen Z (born 1995-2009) are quite comfortable talking about religion and spirituality (65%) compared to older generations.27 Socially: The Australian Loneliness Survey highlighted one in six adolescents (12-17 years old) and one in three young adults (18-25 years old) experienced significant levels of loneliness. Elevated levels of loneliness are linked to social anxiety, depressive symptoms, and social isolation. This research shows a healthy, active life that includes regular social interactions, engagement with interests, sport, great friendships, and opportunities to volunteer, all help contribute to positive outcomes for a young person.28

2,199 Average attendance at weekly programs

In light of these challenges, throughout 2019, Hillsong invested heavily in its youth and put in place a multicultural program designed to meet the needs of a diverse range of young people from different socio-economic backgrounds.



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Youth Events and Initiatives

Our youth are split into the following three ‘life-stage’ groups and have a range of programs, initiatives and events targeted specifically for each group:

A variety of international, national and local events are held for youth each year. Youth Summer Camps & Young Adults Summerfest: These are camps hosted in various locations in January each year during the school holiday break. They include fun activities, opportunities to build lasting friendships, learn Christian values and make positive decisions.

Fuel: Years 6-8 at school

Young & Free Conference: This conference is part of the annual Hillsong Conference held in July each year, and is an incredible week of inspiration from youth communicators, plus activities and the chance to meet young people from many denominations around Australia and the world.


Years 9-12 at school or equivalent


Encounterfest: In 2019, Encounterfest’s ‘Movers, Makers, Shakers’ event was hosted in the October school holidays. Along with mentoring, impartation and a lot of fun, this three-day event sets young people up for a strong finish to the school or university year.

Ages 18-25 at TAFE, university and/or working

Youth Programs

Young Leaders Lab: In 2019 we hosted a one-day leaders lab, including online participation. Using face-to-face and online presentations, the Lab taught students leadership skills and equipped participants to be able to handle the issues that relate to young people today.

Weekly Youth programs: These are weekly faith-based youth events hosted at our campuses across Australia. The activities are designed to be empowering and include fun nights where young people can share their feelings with honesty and without ridicule. Hillsong continues to adopt a contemporary and participatory style of worship that young people can relate to through faith-based activities. These programs also support initiatives like the Fifth National Mental Health and Suicide Prevention Plan (2017-2022),29 where issues can be discussed in a positive and safe environment, with the goal to reduce stigma, mental illness and discrimination. Mid-Week Youth Connect Groups: These are Bible study small groups that are held during the week. With the rise in challenges being faced socially, together with solitary recreational habits (and much of it screen-based), providing opportunities for youth and young adults to meet, strengthen friendships and build social skills and confidence – is essential. We recognise too, that ‘social capability’ is one of the seven general capabilities built into the National Schools Curriculum, which amongst other benefits, develops effective life skills in young adults, including understanding and handling themselves, their relationships, learning and work.30



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019


4,334 Youth Summer Camps & Young Adults Summerfest Students registered

Young & Free Conference Students registered

5,461 Encounterfest Students Registered

Schools Tour: As a church we believe it is important to care and invest into our communities. Schools Tour is one of the many ways we outwork this. During Schools Tour, sessions tailored to each school are delivered to students, and encourage positive and informed life choices on issues such as drug and alcohol abuse and bullying. Religious education sessions are also offered as part of this.


Young Leaders Lab Participants registered

Leadership Development and Volunteering: Throughout 2019 significant emphasis was placed on releasing leadership potential. School students and young adults were strongly encouraged to develop their gifts, talents and hobbies and find meaningful avenues of contributing to the lives of others. Our young people can be found serving in positions of leadership in their schools, serving in church in the creative arts, and mentoring children, or in the greater community in the political, environmental, or social justice space. According to the unique Hillsong data from the Mission Australia 2019 research, over 50% of Hillsong youth surveyed, are engaged in student leadership activities, over 50% in arts/cultural/music activities and over 60% engaged in volunteer work.

The Secret Garden TV (#TSGTV): This is a project dedicated to placing a message of value and worth on young women through conversations about real issues by using digital platforms. During Colour Conference 2019 we opened our very first TSGTV POP-UP in downtown Sydney. This was a beautiful and safe space hosted by our youth team that facilitated lots of conversations with young women in the heart of Sydney. Hillsong Young & Free: We acknowledge the contribution of songwriters, musicians and a vast creative team who capture the sound of the youth ministry and serve the wider church through the creation of worship music and at events both nationally and internationally throughout the year. (refer to Hillsong Music & Resources on page 51 for more details).

In 2019 the young people of Hillsong raised $22,522 through a one-day event to support young people from disadvantaged communities in South Africa, through the Hillsong Africa Foundation. In November 2019, students who completed Grade 12 exams, travelled to Hillsong Church in South Africa to volunteer in these programs and meet young people their age. This trip has become an important milestone for young people as they transition from school into adult life.

Mission Australia Youth Survey: For the sixth consecutive year, Hillsong youth participated in the Mission Australia Youth Survey. We appreciate the significant research and insights that Mission Australia bring to the youth sector in Australia.31



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

: g n i ll o r c S d n o Bey ch

ar e S e th d n a Z n e G ce n a c i f i n Sig & g n i g n for Belo by Claire Madden But how are we tracking? There are some indicators of significant gaps and cracks for our emerging generation. The Australian Bureau of Statistics reports that anxietyrelated conditions are higher in the younger age groups, with almost one in three (30%) females aged 15-24 and just over one in five males (21%) having a mental or behavioural condition. The data shows that the proportion of young people with anxiety-related and other mental health conditions has been increasing over the past three years.34 The Mission Australia Youth Survey Report reveals what young Australians are concerned about more than anything else is: Coping with stress (45% are extremely or very concerned), school or study problems (34%) and mental health (33%).35

It is so easy to assume that young people are having more fun on their screens than they would if you stopped to talk to them in real life; that they’re satisfied with their entertainment-saturated and screen-obsessed world, and that they are relationally fulfilled through the hours they spend each day connecting with others on social media. Yet when we scratch beneath the surface, we find that these activities may keep them busy and temporarily distracted, but rarely satisfied. There is a lot more going on in the hearts and minds of many young people I have interviewed. Two far deeper themes repeatedly emerge through the research – the longing for belonging and significance. Indeed, it is perhaps the desire for acceptance, approval and affirmation that drives a lot of the online behaviour of young people. Through many interviews, Generation Zs (born 1995-2009), repeatedly emerge with two intertwined, core priorities - meaningful relationships and the desire to make a difference in the world. This sentiment is further reflected in the 2019 Mission Australia Youth Survey Report, which showed that more than anything, young Australians value their relationships with friends and family (extremely or very important for 83% and 82% respectively).32 When it comes to what they’re looking for in a career, among the most frequently mentioned trends are having a friendly workplace, having fun at work, and a fulfilling purpose - once again, the themes of meaningful relationships (belonging) and an opportunity to make a difference (significance).33

While mental health and wellbeing are complex, the value of being part of a supportive, accepting, positive community that fosters a sense of belonging and significance cannot be underestimated. Churches that are intentional in reaching young people are positioned to foster a young person’s sense of identity and value, model and encourage healthy ‘offline’ relationships, and enable them to find meaning and purpose. This speaks directly into the felt needs of our emerging generations. Claire Madden BA (Comms), MA (Lead), PhD Candidate, CEO of Hello Clarity Social researcher, media commentator and author of Hello Gen Z: Engaging the Generation of Post-Millennials



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Hillsong Youth Leaders and Volunteers

• Our youth leaders have also engaged in Mental Health First Aid Training (see Pastoral Care Training on page 57 for more details).

Hillsong recognises that living a healthy lifestyle is one of the Key Learning Areas of the National Curriculum. We actively seek to engage outstanding mentors, role models and cross-cultural ambassadors to live a health promoting lifestyle.

We are thankful for the dedication of our incredible youth pastors and staff, and many volunteer leaders who are committed to ensuring that young people enjoy life today and are positioned for a brilliant future.

Our youth ministry is led by dedicated teams of youth pastors and hundreds of young adults who volunteer to run the many ministries and functions of Fuel, Wildlife and Powerhouse.

Story: Empowering Youth Two members from our Indonesian community who attend Powerhouse and are active members of our Sydney City campus, have started a business with a mission to empower young Indonesian adults across the globe. They have also hosted a three-day online conference featuring notable Indonesian speakers talking about passion, mission, vision, as well as practical sessions on topics like time management, creating a resume and preparing for job interviews.

• All Hillsong staff and volunteers responsible for working with youth are required to complete the relevant state Working with Children Check (WWCC). • In addition to the WWCC, each leader and volunteer must be interviewed by one of our Safe Church appointed pastors and complete a training course dedicated to learning safe behaviours with minors and preventing misconduct. This is mandatory and is designed to protect all children and young people.



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Women Hillsong Sisterhood We believe in the value of every ‘ONE’ and recognise that the world over, women face a disproportionate disadvantage in many respects. Women encounter challenges unique to being female, and actively pursuing and valuing unity is about addressing areas of inequality. Hillsong Sisterhood is part of a church-wide response to seeing every ‘ONE’ supported and empowered to flourish individually, and as part of a collective. Sisterhood addresses these needs locally through connection, and in turn releases women to be bold, effective and influential in every sphere of society. In a world where women are objectified, commodified, exploited and excluded there is need to stand with one another. Wage and workplace inequality36, ‘glass ceilings’ and the challenges of navigating family and careerrelated responsibilities, are issues broadly and on our own soil. Fulfilling a mandate to empower and support, therefore means addressing the inequalities and systemic disempowerment. In a diverse church, intersectionality means recognising these challenges are overrepresented in some groups. The compounding factors can also mean they disproportionally impact37 groups such as First Nations Australians, other BIPOC, migrant and refugee groups, people impacted by disability and other marginalised groups. Where inequality takes hold, so does violence and further suffering.38 In Australia, one in three women will be affected by family or domestic violence.39 Where women are included and given opportunity, communities, organisations and families reap the benefits.40 We believe in the importance of equipping and empowering women to help bring about a positive change in our world, and to advocate for those who have been marginalised and silenced. In line with and as part of a wider community response,41 the church is able be an active participant in, a resource for, and a source of leadership in transformation. At the core of Sisterhood is a message of value and genuine desire for women to ‘unite in friendship and cause’ and to bring hope where hope has been lost.

and compassionate women step up and step out in local neighbourhoods and places of influence to raise awareness and work with the community, seeking change for those who are facing disadvantage, hardship and suffering. It can be seen and felt in the prayers of the women who faithfully uphold communities and nations where injustice prevails. And it can be seen and felt, as the Sisterhood demonstrate faithful evidence of a good God in their everyday life, and look to the future with expectation that God can and does use everyday people to make a difference. Throughout 2019, women gathered for Sisterhood initiatives as well as partnering with external organisations in practical community initiatives to offer support, create connections and to bring about awareness and effect change.

The spirit of Sisterhood can be seen and felt in the intergenerational and diverse networks within our church. This is recognised when innovative, inspiring



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Sisterhood Initiatives The Sisterhood gathers weekly on Thursday mornings for inspiring, Biblical teaching, building friendships and uniting in cause and purpose to bring about change in our world. We believe in the power of community and a collective spirit.

Story: Girls’ Night Out Party “I love having people over to my home, so I couldn’t wait to be a host for the Sisterhood Dinner Parties. Five friends and I decided to have a Sisterhood dinner party, looking forward to meeting new people from church. Having a mix of friends and yet-to-be-friends made me feel more confident that conversation would flow easily. Over a simple but lush grazing table, we shared food and stories, and everyone connected well. In my attempt to be a good host, I tried to make a way for people to leave easily at 9pm, as I didn’t want them to feel they had to stay … but no one wanted to leave! Everyone just kept telling stories and laughing and enjoying getting to know one another. It ended up being the perfect example of true Sisterhood.”

Shine Women is a solution-focused personal development program that empowers women regardless of their cultural, educational, or socio-economic background. The goal is to help individuals on their journey of discovering their personal value, resilience, and potential. Pink Morning is an annual event honouring those who have fought and are fighting the battle against cancer. We bring awareness to this painful journey and hear inspiring testimonies from women journeying through this harsh reality. Girls’ Night Out Parties were launched in 2019 – birthed out of women’s’ need for connection. We encouraged women to open their hearts and homes and host informal parties around the country with the simple goal of creating a space for women to connect, relax and have fun. 531 parties were hosted with a total of 4,440 in attendance.




Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Colour Conference

2019 Highlights:

Colour Conference is an annual global women’s gathering, hosted by Bobbie Houston and the Hillsong Church team, in Sydney, London, Cape Town, New York, Los Angeles, Kiev and Moscow. With a strong humanitarian focus on the issues women face around the world, Colour has continued for the past 24 years, to instil value in everyday women of all ages, background, and cultures. For more information about Colour, refer to the Conferences section on page 80.

“Sisterhood is no small thing. Empathy is no small thing. Being a woman with a heart to be a world changer is no small thing”


Average weekly attendance at Sisterhood across Australia and Bali


Total participants at the 2019 Colour Conference in Australia


Total participants attended the global 2019 Colour Conferences


Women attended the annual Pink Morning for breast cancer across Australia in 2019


Women attended 531 Girls' Night Out Parties


- Bobbie Houston


Distributed from Colour Sisterhood to organisations and ministries including A21 and World Vision Australia


Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

g n i t c a p m I Positively m u l y s A g n i People Seek s e i t i n u mm o C in Our by Kon Karapanagiotidis OAM The Asylum Seeker Resource Centre (ASRC) has greatly valued the collaborative approach to community developed with Hillsong throughout 2019. As an organisation

That’s what makes Hillsong’s donations so important – and why we’re so grateful. These regular acts of compassion in the form of supplies of fruit and vegetables, provide our members with nutritious food for their family, distributed through the ASRC Foodbank. Each week, more than 700 people will access our Food Bank, the majority of whom have no income – while more than 200 meals are distributed daily through our Community Meals Kitchen.42 This food provides people with stability and some control, plus the capacity to put food on the table and maintain good health for themselves and their family in a time of flux and limbo. That’s the difference Hillsong is helping us make in providing a sense of hope through generosity and collaboration toward a welcoming and just Australia - and why I can’t thank them enough.

independent of Federal Government funding, our foundations are built by those in the community. We are both an aid and advocacy organisation, working to ensure people seeking asylum can survive the complex and often harsh environment they face as they seek permanent refugee protection. We achieve this by providing basic needs such as food, housing, healthcare, and legal support, while advocating and lobbying for better refugee policy that will positively impact people’s lives. We aim to support people at the most critical junctures, whilst ensuring their long-term independence and integration into the community. This work was never more important than in 2019, when the ASRC was faced with increased demand and more complex needs of the people we serve. People seeking asylum are among the most vulnerable groups in our community, having no access to a safety net while they seek protection.

Kon Karapanagiotidis OAM CEO and Founder, Asylum Seeker Resource Centre



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Community Initiatives Supporting families at Westmead Children's Hospital: We spent time connecting with families and offering support for those who are impacted by their children’s cancer. We were able to engage a professional massage therapist to provide services to families, and volunteers from our church also offered hand/arm massages as well as pedicures to parents of children receiving treatment. Recognising the value and challenges of support roles43 to children going through treatment, we honoured parents and staff in the clinic in the form of a High Tea event, offering a welcome break, connection and some delicious food. Supporting women affected by domestic and family violence: Self-Image and self-worth often suffer in the cycle of abuse.44 We have been able to come alongside women affected by this, to spend time with them and communicate value and dignity. This has been done through pamper teams of volunteer makeup and nail artists, hairdressers and masseurs, as well as hosting morning teas, and preparing gifts for the participants.

Partnering with the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre (ASRC) to support parents: Through collaboration and partnership, we were able to assist the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre in Melbourne and the vital work they do in supporting some of the most vulnerable people in communities. In 2019 the Sisterhood coordinated a truckload of nappies that were delivered to the ASRC to provide practical support to refugee and asylum seeker families. Caring for others in the local community: In October 2019, we hosted ‘Fight Club Month’ at Sisterhood, with the highlight of the month being our ‘Be the Change’ Week. This included simple ideas to ‘be the change’—from making a meal for someone doing it tough, to finding creative ways to reduce waste—it was a tool designed to help us find ways to care for others and keep inspiring one another to do good. These initiatives increased inclusion and developed belonging as well as driving active and practical change. 1,575 women participated in activities in our local community as part of our ‘Be the Change’ Week, in partnership with Hillsong CityCare. This included preparing emergency relief and practical assistance items, participating in training sessions, honouring community sector workers through appreciation gifts, and hosting playgroups for young mums.



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

and care to the following aged care facilities: Doutta Galla Footscray (VIC west), Homestyle Clarendon Grange (VIC east), Cagarra House (Brisbane Central), Terrace Gardens (NT), and Jininga Indigenous Aged Care Facility (NT).

'Be The Change' Week National Highlights Foster Carers’ Thank You Dinner: We assisted Wesley Mission in hosting this dinner to thank foster carers for their love and support for the children in their care. 153 adults and 91 youth and children enjoyed a relaxing evening with beautiful food and good company.

Story: Sisterhood Nappy Drive “Founded 18 years ago, the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre (ASRC) is an independent, not-for-profit association, and Australia’s largest human rights organisation. We champion the rights of people seeking asylum and mobilise a community of compassion to create lasting social and policy change.

Community Mentors and Volunteers: Bringing our best to the community we serve, is part of demonstrating value. This includes training and resourcing communitybased volunteers, which then improves the effectiveness of programs, as well as supporting the longevity of commitment.45 With this as our focus, we attended training and information sessions to be equipped to facilitate CityCare’s Shine and Strength courses (personal development programs to empower young people), as well as Youth COACH training (a mentoring program for vulnerable young people).

Many people seeking asylum live with trauma and uncertainty, trapped in a political limbo that is out of their control. The ASRC provide programs which support and empower them to maximise their own physical, mental, and social wellbeing.

Emergency Relief Hampers and Baby Hampers: We prepared 787 hampers to be delivered to families in need, as well as packing 193 baby hampers for delivery to new mums who were facing hardships or challenging circumstances, as a gesture of care and support to new mums who may be feeling isolated.

The ASRC Material Aid Program provides necessities such as nappies, Myki top-ups, and gift cards for members to buy household essentials. In 2019, Hillsong Sisterhood organised a nappy drive for us, collecting a truckload of nappies which were delivered to our centre. These nappies went a long way towards easing the burden for families with infants and toddlers.

The School Pantry Initiative: Hundreds of non-perishable food items were brought in by women as part of this initiative for vulnerable children who go to school without lunches, and 346 school pantry packs were then delivered to schools as part of the School Pantry Initiative. This program assists children and young people by removing barriers caused by inadequate access to nutrition.46

In addition, Hillsong CityCare donates large quantities of fresh produce to our Foodbank. The volume and high quality of the donated goods plays a critical role in helping us meet our objective to provide food security to people seeking asylum, and allows mums and dads to prepare familiar meals from their homelands.

Open Doors Partnership: Open Doors is an organisation who work with the persecuted church in over 70 countries. They provide discipleship and help people follow Jesus as they face persecution, poverty and war, as well as help develop the local church in their communities. We joined with them, by writing letters of care and encouragement to Christians facing violence and oppression under persecution.

We are incredibly grateful to Hillsong for their support. Without it, we would not be able to help our members to the extent that we do." Karen Quist Donations Coordinator, ASRC Community Food program

Aged Care Facilities and Nursing Homes: Up to 40% of aged care residents do not receive regular visitors and it is recognised that loneliness affects many older Australians.47 So, we visited and delivered gift packs to show our support



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

$49, 264


Raised at the Annual Men’s Event + donated to the Salvation Army and other charities for bushfire aid relief

Men attended the Annual Men’s Event


Community Support As a collective, Hillsong Men and the broader church, continue to support ONE80TC, a residential drug and alcohol rehabilitation centre. As part of the organisation’s commitment to foster a healthy and lasting community, staff members and clients of ONE80TC have the option of attending Hillsong services and/or men's midweek gatherings. For more information about the programs for both men and women that are offered at ONE80TC, visit one80tc.org or call 1800 679 657

We aim to create a range of opportunities for men of all ages to gather in faith-filled environments and receive practical messages and meaningful connection amidst their family and work commitments. It is our passion to see Godly men become pillars in their homes, communities, and society at large.

Hillsong Men Our 90-minute, weekly gathering consists of worship, teaching from the Bible and connect time where everyone breaks up into small groups. These small groups have been transformational in offering a safe environment that builds lasting and healthy community.

Story: Courage to Face the Future “This year I came into ONE80TC to address my drug abuse. Since I’ve been here, God has given me a hope that I never had before. I’ve discovered He is a rock I can lean on in hard times to help me battle my issues and give me the courage to face the future. My God is someone I can talk to without judgement and someone I can live my life towards.”

Annual Men's Event Our annual Hillsong Men’s Event is a powerful evening that strengthens social connection, and brings encouragement and inspiring messages. In November 2019, the event gathered men from across Australia, bringing awareness to the bushfire issue across the nation, and attendees responded by generously donating to assist those affected by the fires.




Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Hillsong Creative

'The Others' Project Across 2019, an area of focus for Hillsong Creatives was on encouraging and inspiring our volunteers and conference delegates to use their creative gifts in service of others. This focus was crystallised at the Worship and Creative Conference, where a wide range of inspiring speakers— all who exemplify the use of creativity for the benefit of others—gave expression to how art can be a vehicle for change. They included Jeremy Cowart, artist and founder of ‘The Purpose Hotel’, and ‘Thankyou’ social enterprise founders Justine and Daniel Flynn. Outside the conference sessions we curated a gallery that told stories of the poor, the marginalised and the oppressed in a way that inspired artists and creatives to look for similar stories in their own world and to create, in order bring change, attention, education, awareness and/or funding to these situations. This ‘others’ focused use of creativity and the arts was well received, and we will continue to mobilise creatives in this way in the future.

Hillsong Church has long been known both at home and abroad for its worship music, yet our creative team is framed with opportunities that give people a way to discover and develop their gifts, express their love for God and to serve the local church. Though now substantial in size and influence, the heartbeat of our creative teams remains to serve the vision and people of our church. Pastored by Cass and Rich Langton, Hillsong Creative continues to pursue Pastor Brian’s ‘The Church I Now See’ in new and innovative ways that include and build on our amazing worship music history. This involves a wide array of creative additions to our conferences and events worldwide, along with film and television endeavours, media productions, supporting and developing worship through the arts in all our campuses around Australia and the globe, not to mention the continued development and success of our creative platforms.



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019



Million hours of Hillsong content was globally viewed on YouTube in 2019 (140.5 million hours in 2018)

Dove Awards

Dove Awards





People attended our Christmas Spectacular and Christmas services (104,312 in 2018)

Hillsong Creative Podcast The Hillsong Creative Podcast explores worship and creativity within the church, as well as reaching and inspiring creative listeners in the marketplace. In only its second year, the Hillsong Creative Podcast celebrated 1 million downloads, with a growing community of 20,000+ weekly listeners from over 190 countries. 29 new episodes were released in 2019, with exclusive interviews from industry-leading creatives, award-winning filmmakers, best-selling authors, and biblical scholars.

Albums Released in 2019

Christmas Spectacular

• People: Hillsong UNITED

Christmas Spectacular is one of our largest annual events and a key opportunity to welcome the local community into our church during a significant season. This stunning musical and dance production requires thousands of hours of planning and rehearsals with performances across 18 of our locations in Australia and Bali. In 2019, a total of 117,501 people attended our Christmas Spectacular and Christmas services.

• People en Español [EP]: Hillsong UNITED • Awake: Hillsong Worship • Hay Más: Hillsong Worship • III (Reimagined): Hillsong Young & Free • III (Studio Sessions): Hillsong Young & Free • Songs of Some Silliness: Hillsong Kids

Amplified Arts Academy (AMP) AMP is the performing arts academy of Hillsong Church, offering training in dance, drama, music, and vocals for children aged 2 to 18. AMP provides an outreach into the community by offering a safe and inspiring environment to nurture the next generation of talent.

Hillsong Music & Resources Hillsong Music & Resources equips local churches and ministries in Australia and the world through the distribution of our core music brands, Hillsong Worship, UNITED, Young & Free and Hillsong Kids, plus curriculums, teaching, Bibles, study guides and apparel.

In 2019, AMP ran for 37 weeks and completed the year with 257 enrolments, of which over 50 were new enrolments— this represented a growth increase of 30% on enrolments from the previous year. Throughout 2019, AMP provided 1,073 classes and 1,300 private classes. Approximately one third of families in the academy are from the local community, outside of Hillsong Church.

This year Hillsong Worship won a Dove Award for Worship Song of the Year for 'Who You Say I Am'. Hillsong United was awarded Worship Album of the Year for their People album.



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Hillsong College

Vocational Ministry Training Hillsong College trains Christian leaders in vocational courses in Christian ministry, which include:

Hillsong College is committed to training, teaching and equipping students with leadership, practical ministry and Biblical studies within the local church context. As a registered training organisation (RTO) and regulated by ASQA and TEQSA, our accredited Vocational and Higher Education courses provide options for people to enhance both knowledge and experience.

• Certificate IV in Ministry • Diploma of Ministry • Advanced Diploma in Ministry

It's been a significant year for Hillsong College, not only with the increase in Australian student enrolments, but with the launch of Hillsong College USA, marking the continuous commitment we have to raising, empowering and releasing leaders across the globe. In response to both the challenges and need to innovate that COVID has placed upon us, the College has made the strategic decision to launch VET Online and Hillsong College Short Courses. These two digital programs bring our classroom experiences and content to

Higher Education Hillsong College offers a range of courses in partnership with Alphacrucis College, including: • Bachelor of Theology (B.Th.) • Master of Arts (M.A.) • Master of Theology (M.Th.)

wherever students are.

Our Partners


We are also grateful for partnerships with the following institutions, and appreciate the mutual commitment to academic excellence, practical experience, as well as inspiring leaders in their education endeavours.

Hillsong Night School

Full-time and part-time students enrolled in Hillsong College in Australia (1,929 in 2018)

Bible Stream This stream explores the essentials of the Bible, and what it teaches about life and ministry

Leadership Stream

Hillsong Night School is committed to equipping people for a life of impact. We offer flexible course options designed for people who have a commitment to work, study or parenting but desire to study and pursue learning and personal development.

This stream provides training to lead and impact in your spheres of influence in life

Creative Stream This stream enables you to learn about and practice your craft, and be equipped in your gifting and calling to create

In 2019, 1,222 students enrolled in locations across our Australian campuses in Sydney (Hills and City), Melbourne, Hobart, Newcastle, Noosa, and Northern Beaches.

Life Stream This stream equips you in addressing life's challenges and provides information on leading a successful and productive life

Hillsong Night School offers 29 courses across the four streams that are listed on the right of this page.



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Alpha Course This is a free course created by an organisation called Alpha and is run by different churches all around the world. It focuses on the essentials of the Christian faith, and is for anyone who is exploring what this is about and how it relates to their life. The Alpha course is run at many of our Australian campuses and is translated into Spanish and Mandarin in some of our locations. For details about Alpha courses offered at Hillsong visit hillsong.com/australia/alpha



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Pastoral Care Approach Pastoral care support in 2019

Life Skills

Health Health/surgery Cancer Long-term illness Care for elderly Support for whole family affected by a health situation (2018: 30%)



Spiritual Life skills/guidance Behaviour Work Financial literacy People who feel disconnected (2018: 17%)

5% Trauma Victims of abuse Bullying (2018: 4%)



Additional Needs Specific program (Treasure Chest) Integration with support for people with mild – moderate additional needs (2018: 2%)

Grief / Crisis Grief/Crisis Funerals Wakes Grief/loss support (2018: 10%)

25% 12% Mental Health Mental illness Eating disorders Addictions (2018: 9%)


Relationships Relationships Engagement Marriage Parenting Family relationships Separation Parents separated Solo parents (2018: 28%)


Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Pastoral Care Our Pastoral Care department offers practical support and care to our church community in times of crisis, change and hardship, aiming to support people in every season of life. Once notified, our team of trained and compassionate pastors, come alongside people and walk out the journey of providing ongoing spiritual and practical support. Statistics gathered show that Australians most value the church and Christian organisations for their work with those in need, and the supportive community provided.48 As such, the community of Hillsong also facilitates acceptance, care and love for one another by implementing initiatives that seek to address issues prevalent in the community and nation.

Story: Pastoral Care Volunteers

At Hillsong we also have a dedicated pastoral team who are committed to seeing every child and young person with diagnosed disabilities or special learning needs, reach their full potential in a community of friendship and support. Additional assistance is also provided to parents and carers who face unique challenges in providing care for children with additional needs.

Our pastoral care team is made up not only of pastoral staff but also devoted volunteers who willingly give their time to support and care for our church community alongside the team. Hazel Cooper Williams (pictured above) is one of the key volunteers in Pastoral Care. After an extensive career as a scientist working in research, Hazel has volunteered at the Hills Campus for the last nine years. She has supported numerous people who were facing terminal illnesses and serious health challenges. Hazel makes herself available to assist these people in getting to and from their appointments, she shares communion with them, and has walked families through terminal cancer journeys, in addition to conducting funerals as their final wish. One of Hazel’s greatest gifts to those she is supporting with a terminal illness, is to assist them in writing a bucket list and helping them to work towards completing these dreams. As a result of this, some of these people have miraculously continued in good health to live for much longer than had been expected by the doctors. Hazel and all our pastoral care volunteers are a wonderful blessing to our church family.



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Pastoral Care Training Story: From Cancer to Healing

We are committed to equipping our team to build awareness and develop skills to come alongside people with varying needs. This past year we ran Mental Health First Aid Training in two locations with a total of 48 people receiving accreditation. In 2019 over 455 youth leaders, including youth pastors, RDG leaders and volunteers, attended Suicide Prevention training in New South Wales, Queensland, and Victoria. If you or someone you know needs assistance with mental health crisis support please contact Lifeline on 13 11 14.

"I am a GP, and my husband, Paul and I, both work at Griffith University in Queensland, and we have been part of Hillsong, Gold Coast for the last 12 months. This week I leave behind the season I have been in as a patient with cancer, to step into a post cancer ‘resurrected life’! The reality of this season began in 1992 while Paul and I were attending NZ Bible College, when my sister died from ovarian cancer at the age of 35 years. Then, in October 2019, I was diagnosed with stage 3 ovarian cancer, and was given between eight months and eight years to live.

Story: Marriage Reconciliation "Our marriage still exists today because of a God

Although I am a Christian who has been going to church for over 40 years, this season was too big for my faith alone, and I could only rest in God, calling on the faith of his wider community and the Hillsong Pastoral Care team who have journeyed through this season with me. I held on to my tiny mustard seed of faith, and truly felt it grow as my Christian friends and family from around the globe prayed for me.

who loves and cares about us, and the help of Hillsong’s Pastoral Care team. 2016 was the most challenging year in our marriage when both of us held no hope nor purpose for this in our lives anymore. Our 5-yearold son was heartbroken, seeing us avoiding each other and deciding to end the marriage. However, God had not given up on us, and He sent pastors who diligently prayed and spoke life into each of us, despite how emotionally affected we were, and adamant about our decision to separate.

My medical team see me as an outlier, and I believe God’s Kingdom has come on earth for me personally, as it is in heaven. I am standing on this, and excited for what this next season holds."

There were moments where hatred, bitterness, and even suicidal thoughts took place, however, in those moments too, God’s presence and intervention were so real. He spoke to one of us about how much He loves our marriage and family, and that He didn’t want us to give up. At the same time, He placed peace and assurance in the other one’s heart that God’s protection and guidance will always be with us.


“Live a life filled with love, following the example of Christ. He loved us and offered himself as a sacrifice for us, a pleasing aroma to God.”

It took almost three years for us to reconcile, but in 2019 we decided to renew our wedding vows. We are convinced we would not have arrived at this place, had we not had the support of the pastoral care team, and the willingness to involve God in this process." (Names withheld for privacy, but story is shared with permission from the couple)

(Ephesians 5:2, NLT)



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Seniors Hillsong Church values the contribution of the older generations within our church, offering support, involvement in church activities and the opportunity to provide wisdom, leadership, and a sense of family for the younger generations. Activities and support include: Monthly Meetings: Providing opportunities for support, social interaction, and community engagement. Social Activities: Bible studies, garden visits, knitting, craft, prayer and walking groups.

Story: A 5-Star Experience

Visitation and Care: A key service we provide for our elderly people is pastoral care and practical support including services such as transportation, hospital and home visitations as well as meals when someone is unwell.

"In 2019, the Seniors group from our Sydney Inner West Hillsong location, were involved in a classical music concert held in partnership with a local chamber orchestra, 'Sympiphany', run by a talented member of our Hillsong Church community.

Volunteer Opportunities: Weekend service involvement, Scripture teaching, hospital visitations and various community programs.

The dream was to bring a 5-star experience to the Inner West where seniors from our church and the local community, could experience a quality event with family and friends. From Vivaldi to Disney to old hymns, the concert was filled with all the classics people could relate to. Great feedback was received from locals and churchgoers alike. It was especially heart-warming to see many with their grandkids in tow, aspiring musicians who had come to see their first classical concert with 'Nana' and 'Pop'.

Community Connections: Each year, we organise our seniors community to connect with ONE80TC – a residential alcohol and drugs rehabilitation centre – where they share morning tea and encourage one another as they exchange life stories. This year, our seniors visited the newly opened ONE80TC women’s centre.


Senior Knitting Group: In 2019 and in partnership with Hillsong Sisterhood, our seniors knitting group contributed 1,220 teddies, headbands, and beanies, which were donated to various hospitals.

We are always grateful for a church which has created a home where all are valued and can find their place, no matter what season they are in." Amy Naidoo Hillsong Pastoral Care, Sydney Inner West



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Community "The church that I see is committed to ‌ a mandate that drives us to do all we can, to bring help and solution to a needy world." – Brian Houston, 'The Church I Now See'

04 60


Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Introduction Hillsong Church understands the impact of joining with people and organisations in maximising our potential to make the world a better place. Our local and global reach is facilitated by the Hillsong Foundation which allows the people of our church to purposefully focus their resource.

and vulnerable of our world. Hillsong Channel reaches over 21 million people with the gospel. Our new Online Campus extends into 99 countries and our conferences empower and equip local churches across the globe. The Hillsong Leadership Network offers pastors and leaders connection, training and support. Our missions arm, called Nation Builders, provides ongoing support to many missionary endeavours in Australia and overseas.

In partnership with other like-minded organisations, the Foundation is the overarching framework through which many of our local and global initiatives are supported. These initiatives begin at home with our Local Community Services responding to the very real needs of our communities and to offer care and assistance. Overseas Aid and Development initiatives provide advocacy for many of the impoverished

Each of these initiatives work together in partnership to facilitate our reach, bringing much needed help to countless lives in Jesus’ name. By offering practical solutions and much needed hope for the future, our goal is always to improve the lives of precious individuals and families, so they can find wholeness and the freedom to reach their God-given potential.



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

The Hillsong Foundation

We continue supporting the work of ONE80TC in rebuilding the lives of young men and women through transformational programs that equip each participant in overcoming addiction and other life-controlling issues.

The Hillsong Foundation is a charitable foundation that exists to finance the outworking of Hillsong Church’s vision, and to partner with like-minded non-profit organisations across the globe in an effort to bring care and justice to vulnerable groups in the name of Jesus. This includes supporting welfare and development programs through Hillsong CityCare and partnering charities, developing educational and church facilities and planting new locations. This support underpins the Foundation’s three areas of focus—Our Home, Our Backyard and Our World.

Our World In 2019, through the Hillsong Foundation, Hillsong Church continued its financial support of charities across the globe that bring sustainable change to struggling individuals, families, and communities. It was through the generosity of those who gave to the Foundation, that we launched our Online Campus, sharing the gospel and building communities for people in 99 countries. Hillsong Foundation also continues to support Hillsong Channel which reaches over 160 million households

Our Home

around the world.

Australia is our home. It is the church’s desire to provide answers to those who are asking the deeply personal questions about life, purpose and a connection to God.

For more information about the Hillsong Foundation visit: hillsong.com/australia/foundation/

Church facilities provide a space for people to connect in a caring community where practical needs are met, and answers are found in Jesus. For this reason, we are diligent to continually upgrade our facilities, as well as adding new locations to accommodate our growing Australian congregation.

Story: Hillsong Foundation A Game Changer "The Hillsong Foundation has been a game changer for the people of Brisbane. Through their generosity, we opened the new Hillsong Theatre in the heart of Downtown Brisbane. The impact on the community since opening at the end of 2018 has been significant. 500 people have since joined our church family, requiring the need for an additional morning service to accommodate the growth.

This year, the Foundation invested $8,577,254 of funds received to these ventures including a new facility and fit out, set for completion in 2020 for our Macquarie and Gold Coast locations. Hills, City, Newcastle, Brisbane Central, and Darwin campuses received upgrades, and ongoing support went to our Perth campus toward finding a new facility to call home.

Our Backyard

We launched a brand-new service on Friday nights—being late night shopping in Brisbane, it has meant people are constantly walking through the doors. We welcome them in and many stay in the service. Over 2,000 people have made decisions for Jesus since the opening. Revival has certainly been in the air in Downtown Brisbane!"

Hillsong Foundation continues to be committed to playing an active role in supporting the most vulnerable in our community. To facilitate this commitment, the Foundation focuses on investing into strengthening families, empowering young people, and providing practical, emotional and medical support to those facing difficult life circumstances.

Tim and Michelle Andrew Brisbane Downtown Campus Pastors

The Hillsong Foundation is the primary supporter of Hillsong CityCare, whose activities to support disadvantaged Australians are described in the Local Community Services section within this Annual Report.



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

The Hillsong Foundation Income Allocation






Australian facilities

Global & Local benevolent activities

Media & arts

Missions & church planting

Fundraising & accountability costs



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Local Community Services

Community Gatherings Community Gatherings (previously known as Street Teams) made 13,635 contacts with local residents through our community events, nursing home visits and personal visitations.

CityCare is a part of our church’s expression of God’s love for the community around each of our campuses across Australia. Hillsong CityCare’s mission is to create healthy families and safe, inclusive communities for vulnerable groups, empowering them to lead and impact in every sphere of life. We outwork this mission through our core programs for youth, children, families, and women, and key campaigns to mobilise volunteers and contribution from Hillsong Church. We work through partnerships with local organisations, schools, community groups, police, and others to ensure that our programs have the biggest impact in our communities.

Homes of Peace 13 families (24 women and children) who experienced domestic and family violence, successfully transitioned into independent living after being supported through our Homes of Peace program.

Emergency Relief Program 5,730 individuals and families in total, were provided food assistance through our Emergency Relief Program for 48 weeks of the year, and with an average of 119 people assisted each week.

Kilo of Kindness 30,574 food and hygiene items were donated towards our Kilo of Kindness Easter campaign.

CityCare Storehouse Initiatives CityCare’s Gold Coast Storehouse, supported 5,951 people including school students, vulnerable youth, and families, in collaboration with food rescue agencies, Foodbank and OzHarvest. In October 2019 it transitioned to the Hillsong Storehouse model.

CityCare Youth Program Reached 31,896 students through all our schools outreach programs across Australia.

Kilo of Christmas

English Conversation Classes

(previously known as Stuff the Bus) 81,230 food and toy items were packed into 5,294 Christmas food hampers and 5,702 toy packs and delivered to 128 partners across Australia.

11,301 people attended our English Conversation Classes across Brisbane and Sydney over 42 weeks, and with an average attendance of 269 people per week.



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Empowering People

Story: Shine and Strength We’ve been running the ShineGirl program for young girls incarcerated in a NSW Juvenile Justice Centre for the past 14 years. The relationship and trust that has been established with management over this time, plus the positive impact observed in their young people, resulted in an opportunity in 2019 to facilitate the Strength program for boys at the Reiby Youth Justice Centre. We also hosted a Shine and Strength Formal for the young people who were part of the courses and had participation too from Council members and the senior management team of the facilities, who were also invited to attend.

CityCare Youth Program The CityCare Youth Program applies a positive youth development approach with an early intervention focus to support young people who may be vulnerable and facing barriers to pursuing their potential. Our goal is to develop resilient and connected young people who are equipped, confident and contributing. Our CityCare Youth team facilitate a range of key program activities including Youth COACH mentoring, Safe Spaces, and ShineGirl and Strength personal development courses. Youth COACH matches young people with a mentor for 12 months to increase their resilience and goal setting. Safe Spaces provide access to environments of physical and psychological safety providing opportunities to connect with positive role models. The Strength course (as with ShineGirl too) is aimed at instilling a sense of identity, and improving self-esteem in students as well as increasing resilience and their sense of purpose.

ShineGirl Course: Built on foundational concepts of worth, strength and purpose, the aim of the ShineGirl program is for participants to develop an understanding of their own personal worth, strength and purpose, and to realise their capacity to build a meaningful and contributing life.



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Responding to Domestic Family Violence

Youth COACH Mentoring In 2019, our Youth COACH pilot program was run in a Sydney High School in partnership with COACH Network, operated by Crossway Lifecare, and Mission Australia. The Youth COACH program involved matching a group of students with an adult mentor for weekly sessions over a 12-month period, to support goal setting and to increase the students’ resilience. Our team were honoured to attend the High School graduation of their mentees at the end of 2019, some of the students being the first in their family to do so. We were requested to run this program with a second group of students and mentors, in another Sydney High School in the latter half of 2019, which will continue into 2020. The significant positive change seen in the students’ academic results, confidence, and relationships with others, have been the consistent feedback we have received from running Youth COACH in these two schools.

According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), an estimated one in six women (1.6 million) aged 18 years and over have experienced violence by a partner since the age of 15. New analysis of the data by ABS Director of the National Centre for Crime and Justice Statistics, William Milne, identified sociodemographic characteristics that were connected to this violence, including financial stress, unemployment, health issues and low levels of life satisfaction.49

Homes of Peace The Homes of Peace program provides transitional housing and case management support to increase safety, wellbeing,

Funding from NSW Department of Communities and Justice

empowerment and social connections for women and their families impacted by family and domestic violence. The program also provides aftercare services for families requiring an extended period of assistance after moving from a domestic violence shelter. Women are supported to identify their goals and work on plans to achieve these within an average duration of six to nine months. In 2019, we increased our transitional housing capacity to eight homes, after acquiring and renovating two additional properties.

The NSW Department of Communities and Justice helps to fund activities for CityCare Youth (also known as Hillsong Youth Services), facilitated within the Sydney local government area of Blacktown and Baulkham Hills. In 2019 we received $170,462 which contributed towards the running costs of the program and wages of two full-time youth workers. This enabled our CityCare Youth Hills team to connect with 10,068 students in the local government areas of Blacktown and Baulkham Hills in 2019.

Story: Permanent housing and career goal on track When Michelle* came into the Homes of Peace program she was working as a full-time cleaner. As a result of sessions with her case manager, she identified a goal of wanting to be in an office role, particularly given Michelle had previously been an accountant and finance lecturer at university in her country of origin. Michelle’s caseworker researched training courses, which subsequently led to her being offered a paid finance/bookkeeping traineeship which is close to completion. Michelle and her family have also successfully transitioned into permanent housing.

Supporting Mental Health & Wellbeing CityCare Counselling Services Professional and affordable counselling is provided to the community through a team of qualified psychologists and counsellors. These services are for clients navigating a range of challenges including depression, grief, trauma, relationships, self-image, mental health, and behavioural challenges.

* Name has been changed for confidentiality and security and the story is shared with the subject’s permission.

We also recognise that financial constraints can sometimes prevent individuals accessing valuable services, and in response to this, counselling at no charge to the client can be provided through professionals who volunteer their services.



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

ll A n a C e Yes! W e f a S d l r o W e th e k a M s d i K r u O for by Tracy McLeod Howe Compassion for all, and the protection of children, is at the heart of the Christian faith. It makes sense for Church to direct efforts to the whole family. In practice, this means firstly understanding the uncomfortable truth of domestic and family violence, knowing it is all around and then moving to action. There are many ways to make an impact; men as mentors to other men, calling out behaviour, supporting children by spending time with them, partner with others to wraparound support to a struggling child, looking for red flags where violence may be in the home – the list is endless. But ultimately the power is within each one of us.

As a long-standing advocate for the rights of children, ex-manager of a women and children’s refuge and past CEO of Domestic Violence NSW, I take comfort knowing communities of faith are supremely placed to make a positive difference in the lives of children experiencing domestic violence and abuse. At Hillsong, I have already witnessed pro-active and meaningful collaborative efforts to keep women and children safe. But there is more to do. When I had the privilege of working in a domestic violence refuge, our focus was always on mum while the kids’ trauma was invisible. But children require and deserve their own response. And children love their dad, so what to do? I very quickly concluded we need to find ways to also support a dad, for the sake of the children. Simply shaming him does not help the child.

The first step is action - change is possible! Tracy McLeod Howe Lawyer. Postgraduate qualifications from the Cambridge Judge Business School. Tracy also holds various ministerial appointments and government advisory roles.

It also requires more than a service system response. Community must be part of the solution. After all, ‘it takes a village’.



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Responding to Food Insecurity

Responding to Social Isolation

CityCare Emergency Relief

Community Gatherings Previously known as Street Teams, Community Gatherings provide a safe, consistent meeting place for individuals and families in neighbourhoods facing challenges or vulnerabilities, including those who are sleeping rough as well as the elderly. Partnering with various community services, these gatherings in local neighbourhoods provide positive social connections and avenues to access other services and supports.

According to the 2019 Foodbank Hunger Report, in the last twelve months, more than one in five Australians have experienced food insecurity,50 that is, the inability to secure enough food to have safe and nutritious meals needed to live a healthy life. CityCare’s emergency relief activities provide food hampers and support to individuals and families experiencing food insecurity. We also advocate for those who require longerterm support through our referral networks. Our nationwide, Kilo of Kindness food drive, as well as partnerships with local not-for-profit organisations, and dedicated volunteer teams, enable us to facilitate food relief services each week

English Conversation Classes Elementary to upper level intermediate English Conversation Classes are run in Sydney and Brisbane during school terms for members of the community, including migrants and refugees. Classes focus on practical topics to enable people to navigate daily tasks such as shopping, banking, completing application forms or making appointments. Many students who have attended classes have said they now feel connected into a healthy community and the classes have helped them with adapting to their new environment.

in Brisbane, Hobart, Melbourne, Newcastle and Sydney.

Community Partnerships Tasmania CityCare: Tasmania CityCare supports Small Steps, a mediumto long-term housing facility for teenage mums, with emergency food relief hampers and welcome packs to help new tenants set up home, as well as hospital care packs for expectant mums. Tasmania CityCare also partners with Mission Australia Hobart to provide emergency food relief for their clients in immediate crisis.

Prison Chaplaincy Program Our Prison Chaplaincy program supports men and women who are currently incarcerated in the NSW prison system or detained in Sydney’s Villawood Immigration Detention Centre.

Storehouse Initiatives: The Storehouse supports schools, vulnerable youth, and families in collaboration with key food rescue agencies such as Foodbank Queensland and OzHarvest to create an eco-sustainable partnership. The Gold Coast Storehouse operated under CityCare until 31st October 2019, when it transitioned to the Hillsong Storehouse model.

The program provides pastoral care, weekly chapel services and midweek Bible studies through a team of trained volunteers. Our goal through Prison Chaplaincy is to bring hope to vulnerable groups who are currently incarcerated and awaiting visa/tribunal outcomes.

Kilo of Kindness Food Drive: Kilo of Kindness was launched as a part of the Cross Equals Love campaign at Easter, and engaged the people of Hillsong Church to donate non-perishable food items to help families facing food insecurity in communities across Australia. Kilo of Christmas Campaign: The Kilo of Christmas campaign (previously known as Stuff the Bus) mobilised the people of Hillsong church to provide toys and Christmas food items for hampers given to families in need in local communities across Australia. The heart of the appeal is to place dignity on parents, carers and extended family by empowering them to give gifts to their children and put food on their table.



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Sports Chaplaincy

Games on the Gold Coast in 2018, and she has also built a connect group community of female athletes all over the world via social media.

As a church, we see the importance of sport in the Australian landscape, and we continue to partner with Sports Chaplaincy Australia (SCA) to place volunteer sports chaplains in both local and elite sporting communities. With mental health challenges and loneliness being key issues currently facing Australians, our chaplains are placed on the forefront to offer athletes a complete approach to care— body, mind and soul—on and off the field.

ONE80TC Hillsong has partnered with ONE80TC for over two decades, by providing resources to help in rebuilding families as people are rescued from the devastating influences of drug and alcohol addiction and other life-controlling issues.

In 2019 we saw more female chaplains trained and appointed to support athletes and teams in the AFL Women’s League, Super Rugby Women’s, and Women’s League Football. Twenty-one additional chaplains were placed last year, with sixteen volunteering in elite sport, plus more being trained and equipped for future sporting seasons.

ONE80TC’s vision is to help men and women put their lives back together, and set them on a pathway to success. This is done in a number of ways through either their long-term residential rehabilitation program, their aftercare outreach program, or their day rehabilitation program.

Hillsong also now supports two sports chaplains through our missions giving. George Dansey is the team chaplain and plays a vital part in the Wellbeing and Education Team at the Parramatta Eels in the NRL competition. He has been there for over 10 years and involved in many pastoral care situations, both on and off field. Hannah Johnson has pioneered female sports chaplaincy in event-based sports such as the Olympic and Commonwealth Games. Hannah was Manager of the Multi-faith Centre at the Commonwealth

In addition to rehabilitation services, ONE80TC have a focus on self identity, family, relationships and personal development. Once participants complete their programs, they are then empowered to integrate back into the community and enter the workforce or gain further education. For more information about ONE80TC visit: one80tc.org/ or call 1800 679 657



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

n r e d o M o t Responding a i l a r t s u A Slavery in by James Condon The Global Slavery Index 2018, estimated that 40.3 million men, women and children, were in slavery around the world in 2016, including in Australia.54 In 2016 more than fifty Taiwanese nationals were discovered locked in two

The Australian Freedom Network was launched at Parliament House in Canberra on December 2, 2015, coinciding with the International Day for the Abolition of Slavery.

Brisbane mansions, being forced to work seven days a week in a fake call centre with no pay.55

At the launch, Margaret, who is a survivor of modern-day slavery in Australia and a Freedom Advocate, said, “I am a person of faith. My faith has been a pillar of strength and has guided me to where I am today. I’m encouraged that Faith Communities across Australia will respond to this Call to Action by their leaders. Together we can end slavery.”51

Since 2015, the Australian Freedom Network has been a powerful voice for justice and modern slavery - and has played a key role in the introduction of The Modern Slavery Act in Australia in 2018. The Modern Slavery Act 2018 commenced in January 1, 2019 across all States and Territories within Australia.

Prior to this on December 2, 2014, the Global Freedom Network was launched by Pope Francis and initiated by Andrew Forrest. The Global Network Agreement was signed by Faith Leaders recognising that religious faith can be a powerful motivating force to inspire individual and community action – both spiritually and practically.52

This Act requires entities based or operating in Australia with an annual turnover of more than $100 million, to report annually on modern slavery risks within their supply chains. This represents a significant step in the fight to combat slavery in all its forms.56

In Australia, eighteen Faith Leaders signed the “Joint Declaration of Faith Leaders against Modern Slavery” and in signing, committed their respective communities to engage in practical actions to tackle slavery here in Australia.53 Some of the key goals of The Australian Freedom Network are to raise awareness of slavery amongst faith communities, inspiring people to engage with the issue of modern-day slavery as an extension of their faith in Australia.

Commissioner James Condon of The Salvation Army, Chairman of the Australian Freedom Network, has greatly valued the strong support of Hillsong Australia since the inception of the Australian Freedom Network. James Condon Commissioner Emeritus The Salvation Army Australia Chairman of Australia Freedom Network Roundtable on Family & Communities.

The founding members of the Australian Freedom Network included Pastor Brian Houston and Pastor Wayne Alcorn, National President of Australian Christian Churches. Pastor Donna Crouch has been a key representative of Hillsong Church in numerous meetings that have ensued since the launch.



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Overseas Aid and Development

A21 Thailand As a church, we have been partnering with A21 for over 10 years and have been supporting their work in Thailand through the SAFE Repatriation Program. In 2019, $258,508 was distributed to this program, providing services and support to enable survivors of trafficking to return to their home country. These services included access to legal support, transport, family-based care options, livelihood support and ongoing social work support.

If you have a secure place to sleep, access to safe, running water, electricity and food security, education and essential health services and earn a regular income that allows you to send your children to school and have disposable income— that is a privilege that hundreds of millions in our world do not have. According to the UN, 736 million people in the world live on less than US$1.90 a day.57

2019 Highlights:

As Christians, we believe we have a responsibility to advocate for others (Luke 12:48). At the 2019 Justice Conference in Melbourne, Reverend Tim Costello said, “To follow Jesus is to do justice. If you don’t do justice, you aren’t following Jesus.” In other words, our faith in Christ enlists us into the work of justice in our world. Individually and collectively, we have a responsibility to live lives that reflect the love of Christ in us and compels us to love our neighbours as ourselves - whether they live on our street or in another part of the world. Informed and motivated by our understanding of poverty and what it means to ‘do justice’ through a biblical lens, the international aid and development initiatives of Hillsong Church are supported through the Hillsong Foundation, The Colour Sisterhood Foundation and Hillsong CityCare Global. We have a strategic partnership with ACC International Relief, who are an approved Overseas Aid Fund and member of the Australian Council for International Development (ACFID). We partner with organisations outworking initiatives with a focus on children, women and nations experiencing vulnerability. Our 2019 partnerships focused on trafficking survivors in the Mekong region, marginalised communities in Cape Town, children without access to education in slum communities in Mumbai, and children and families affected by war and displacement in Iraq and Syria.

“ To follow Jesus is to do justice. If you don’t do justice, you aren’t following Jesus.” Reverend Tim Costello



A21 Thailand assisted the government to identify and help 23 victims of trafficking, in addition to assisting in 17 police rescue operations


Nine survivors were repatriated through the SAFE Repatriation program, as well as nine new survivors brought into the program, and assistance provided for five others awaiting repatriation


The Child Advocacy Centre in Pattaya interviewed 75 children and adults, identifying 16 as victims of trafficking who then received a full range of services from A21. A new Child Advocacy Centre was also opened in Siem Reap, Cambodia, in partnership with local and foreign organisations


Transition support was provided for 10 cases, and 12 survivors received monthly support and supervision.


A primary school trafficking prevention program was developed and facilitated in schools


Strong collaboration continued with the Thai Government, the law enforcement agencies, and the Office of the Attorney General in Thailand. A21 hosted seminars and meetings and was invited to contribute to government operational planning


Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Vision Rescue Vision Rescue now have programs in 14 local public schools in Mumbai, running teacher appreciation sessions, self-defence and sporting programs specifically aimed at kids who are at risk of dropping out, and they are soon to start their teacher training modules in these public schools.

Vision Rescue’s mission is to free children from exploitation by engaging and sustaining them in education, which empowers them to change mindsets and make good life decisions that promote intergenerational transformation. In 2019 we distributed $368,940 to Vision Rescue, to help provide children with formal and non-formal education pathways, giving them the opportunity to end the cycle of poverty for themselves and their families. Vulnerable families are engaged through case management to identify and work towards goals for their family, with a focus on education for their children.

They also now have 1,397 children in formal education through public, private and preschools. The exponential increase in numbers is a phenomenal achievement and we are cheering them on, all the way! But the real power of Vision Rescue lies in people like community managers who are dedicated and tireless in their care and belief that there is a better future for the children, and are giving their lives to making that a reality.

Over the past three years, significant impact has been seen from a change in strategy that has borne considerable fruit. This includes an increase of 902 children receiving formal education, the introduction of programs into 14 public schools (representing over 1,120 children as well as their families). In real terms, the total impact on individual lives

Catherine Thambiratnam Head of Social Justice, Hillsong Australia

has increased ten-fold from 1,000 in 2016 to 10,000 in 2019.

2019 Highlights:

Story: Thinking Outside the Bus (Vision Rescue) In just three years Vision Rescue have been able to increase their impact from approximately 1,000 children to directly impacting over 10,000 people each year. This ten-fold increase came from a narrowing of focus of their mission, placing clear and achievable goals and outcomes around their work and being singularly dedicated to keeping their target group, front and centre of their work. Their focus has always been on education for the children who, for various reasons, can't access education in Mumbai, but it is these very barriers that caused Vision Rescue to look outside their existing model of bringing a bus into a community, to running non-formal education programs. In the last three years Vision Rescue has hired community workers to work directly with the families of the children they are targeting, creating plans to help the family overcome the issues relating to their children not enrolled or sustained in education. It is this focus that has led to over 900 families in their two target communities having a specific case manager, ensuring that the children in the program are sustained in education.


1,397 children were enrolled in the Vision Rescue Beacon Learning Centre, and 500 students were enrolled in local government schools


Over 1,600 parents attended parent teacher meetings and open house sessions


A dental awareness program reached almost 1,800 community members. Oral screening was done for 568 children and a dental camp was held for 423 people


992 students received a health assessment and 128 students were immunised. 656 people were reached through a health awareness program and a medical camp was able to serve 1,329 people

5. 6. 73

212 women enrolled in vocational training and 135 completed training. Two self-help groups were formed and are engaged with Vision Rescue for income generating opportunities

279 people are now enrolled in the Community Champion Program, bringing positive change to their community


Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Hillsong Africa Foundation

2019 Highlights:

In 2019, $476,926 was distributed to the Hillsong Africa Foundation helping to reach 47,143 people with practical support, and facilitating 2,146 different activities. These included Kids Club and after-school programs giving children from vulnerable communities the opportunity to come to a safe, fun, and encouraging environment to connect with friends, gain confidence and learn how to deal with challenges. Unemployment programs also placed 118 participants into job employment.

1. 2. 3. 4.

The ‘Our Community Project’ facilitates a range of initiatives across South Africa in order to empower strong, selfdetermining individuals and families to move their lives and communities forward and build leaders and role models who will have a positive influence at all tiers of society.

“… What God is looking for in men and women, it’s quite simple: Do what is fair and just to your neighbour, be compassionate and loyal in your love …”


(Micah 6:8 MSG)


Over 1,500 women and girls participated in the SHINEWomen and SHINEGirl courses and boys and men participated in the STRENGH course, receiving a message of worth, strength and purpose

79 people reached through the GROW course with valuable early childhood and parenting knowledge and skills

294 individuals were engaged with the Accelerate Centres, developing skills to gain and retain employment Over 1,200 children were involved in Kids Club, providing a safe and fun environment to connect and learn life skills Over 600 children—an average of 160 per week—were reached through the Sports Development Program, which was run in some of the most vulnerable communities across South Africa, focusing on social, educational and spiritual wellbeing


Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Preemptive Love Coalition In 2019, Hillsong Church contributed $50,000 to emergency response activities in Syria and Iraq, as well as supporting families with small business start-ups, farming and agricultural projects that will lead to long-term sustainability and security in Syria and Iraq. The Syria Agriculture Project and Child Friendly Space project in Iraq supported by Hillsong, helped to sustain livelihoods of war-affected families and children dealing with trauma due to war and displacement.

2019 Highlights:


Through the Syria Agriculture Project, displaced families were able to return to their farmland in rural Aleppo and 500 jobs were created, which allowed approximately 3,000 people to benefit from renewed livelihoods


A farming cooperative was established, equipping farmers with seeds, tools, and machinery to sell crops again. A mushroom nursery was also established, which enabled 250 families to access training and begin producing and selling mushrooms locally



The Child Friendly Space Project in Arabat Camp, Iraq, worked with an average of 1,000 children between 7-17 years of age every month in Arabat, Iraq. Quality child protection interventions improved equitable access for girls and boys impacted by the Syria crisis


Community-based child protection and psychosocial support were made available to children in targeted locations, reaching an average of over 250 children per month


Safe learning spaces were provided for children with resources and services including daily homework sessions, referrals to aid organisations and other medical and family services


Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Hillsong Channel

Online Campus

Hillsong Channel is dedicated to bringing programs that give expression to the life-giving message of Jesus Christ in fresh, innovative and creative ways. Hillsong Channel has a global reach, with teams that work both locally and internationally to produce content that reaches over 160 million households across the world. This past year we saw a 75% growth in our Hillsong Channel NOW subscriptions and our live stream was accessed over 278,000 times. With the expansion onto Pluto TV – a free digital network – Hillsong Channel’s content is being viewed on average over 175,000 hours per week. We also started in the Philippines where Hillsong Channel can be viewed on the top two cable companies: Cignal and Sky. So far over 21 million people have access to this opportunity via these platforms. We continue to receive thousands of stories from around the globe of how lives have been impacted through watching our programs. We are filled with expectation for the potential this new decade holds for Hillsong Channel.

In February 2019, we launched our Online Campus with service streaming on Facebook and YouTube platforms. Since then, attendance and interactions have continued to grow each weekend, and we now have a reach to 99 countries. Our Hillsong Online Campus exists to make room for those who consider themselves a part of the Hillsong family but cannot attend a physical campus. What makes our online campus different, is the community we are building by reaching people who cannot get to church due to location or health restrictions including those in outback Australia. Our Church of the Air community – those living in remote and outback Australia - now comes under our online campus. A team of volunteers and staff oversee all areas of our campus, with a pastoral care team who continue to care for and pray with online members who are facing many life challenges. This team is motivated to assist people with finding a pathway forward to wholeness with the goal that they can eventually join a physical campus.

“I see a church that is constantly innovative ... A church with a message beamed to people around the globe through their television screens, bringing JESUS into homes, palaces and prisons alike."



- Brian Houston, The Church I Now See

Online Campus launched in 2019


99 Countries reached in 2019


Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Hillsong Leadership Network The Hillsong Leadership Network exists to champion the cause of local churches everywhere. This network provides opportunities for pastors and leaders to connect with the Hillsong team and other like-minded leaders at events, training intensives, informal gatherings, conferences, and luncheons. The Hillsong Leadership Network partners with churches of all denominations, traditions, sizes, ages, and cultural groups, and equips them with the fundamental cultural responsibilities and leadership development principles of Hillsong Church.

Nation Builders

Partnered globally with 670 churches and 51,325 leaders (+12% growth from 2018)



Nation Builders is the missions giving of Hillsong Church supported through Connect Groups and other midweek activities such as Creative Team Nights. This giving is separate to weekly tithe and offering contributions, as well as overseas aid and development activities. It specifically supports church planting initiatives and individuals who are furthering the gospel message and impacting lives with the good news of Jesus Christ around the world. In 2019, our missions giving through Nation Builders raised $159,093 and supported the following missions’ endeavours:

Hosted 32 webinars with 5,026 leaders joining live across three days of Online Open Week

Sent teams to 8 cities across Asia to train and equip 985 pastors from 136 churches Hosted 2,002 church leaders from 327 churches at Open Houses in Amsterdam, Bali, Barcelona, Brisbane, Buenos Aires, Dusseldorf, London, Oslo, Paris, Phoenix and Sydney

2019 Nation Builders Endeavours

3,239 leaders receive weekly preaching tip emails from Robert Fergusson

Story: All About Relationship "The Hillsong Leadership Network is brilliant because it gives practical insight on how to train leaders, see people discipled, win the lost, and bring good management processes into the life of the church. But I think also what’s really important, is relationship. In leading a church, it can be tough and lonely sometimes, you need to find peers or people ahead of you that you can pick up the phone and ask for help. So, relationship and practical insight to leadership management are two really massive keys."


Church planting and support in Moscow and Barcelona


Supporting the operations of ACC International Missions who equip and support individuals serving overseas across Africa, North and East Asia, South East Asia, Central Asia, South Asia, and Europe

3. 4. 5.

Glynn & Sophia Barrett Audacious Church, Manchester, UK


Providing direct support for missionaries living in East Asia, South East Asia, and Europe

Enabling Hillsong Leadership Network training for churches across Asia

Supporting sports chaplaincy in sporting clubs and teams in communities across Australia


Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

104,175 19

Total attendance in 2019




Children sponsored through Compassion in 2019


Represented globally at Hillsong Conference in 2019

Globally at Hillsong Conference, Colour Conference and Worship and Creative Conference

Conferences Hillsong Conference Our annual Hillsong Conference continues to champion the cause of the Church globally, gathering pastors and leaders from a host of nations, denominations, ages and backgrounds. It is a Christian leadership conference that equips people with practical tools and Biblical teaching to inspire fresh vision and hope for the future. In 2019, a total of 49,212 people attended Hillsong Conferences in Sydney and London, and the sessions were translated into over 20 different languages.



Total Attendance Hillsong Conference Sydney, Australia

Compassion Child Sponsorship Through our global conferences and Compassion Sunday event, 4,821 children were sponsored in 2019 by individuals and families, continuing a pivotal partnership that has spanned over two decades to bring holistic care to children living in poverty around the world.


From our global conferences and annual Compassion Sunday


Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Colour Conference The Colour Your World women’s conference is hosted annually by Hillsong’s Co-Global Senior Pastor, Bobbie Houston and the Hillsong team. Colour Conference is held in six locations globally - Sydney, London, Cape Town, Kiev, Los Angeles, and New York City. In 2019, our global Colour conferences saw a total of 46,490 participants of all ages, backgrounds and cultures gather together. The conference seeks to place value upon women and help bring solution to the needs within communities, believing that together we can make a significant and positive difference in our world.

Worship and Creative Conference Worship and Creative Conference (WCC) is a two-day, threenight gathering of people from various creative disciplines, which seeks to provide a range of different environments for creativity to flow, friendships to form and worship to resound. In 2019, a total of 8,473 participants representing 76 nations and from 20 different denominations, gathered for this conference both at our Sydney Hills Campus and online from around the world.



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Story: Hillsong Conference 2019 and the Lajamanu Community Leaders On the 5th of July 2019 at 5am, a group of fourteen church leaders from Lajamanu Community, NT, embarked on the unknown. Many had never left Lajamanu before as they headed north for an almost thirteen-hour drive to Darwin airport, to then board a plane to Sydney, arriving just after 6am the following day. Eager to be at Hillsong Conference, the ladies attended everything available, and encountered JESUS in a fresh way through the worship, sermons, masterclasses, pastoral care, good food, and kindness from volunteers, as well as enjoying the same comfortable seating area each day—to bring perspective to this, one seating community at Hillsong conference is almost three times as large as their entire community! During conference, Hillsong hosted a NAIDOC tea, which was an unexpected and heart-warming surprise. The ladies were able to chat with pastors about how they lead in the Lajamanu Community, and provide answers to some key cultural questions, plus give a visual representation of the crucifixion moment.

Story: Colour Gift Moment This year’s Colour Conference gift included a ‘pamper package’ of shower cap and soap handmade by a group of Iraqi refugee women, brought together by Preemptive Love Coalition, to earn a living for themselves and their families in a refugee camp in Northern Iraq. This one order consisting of thousands of soaps, allowed the women to raise enough income to support their families for a whole year. Not only did this bring dignity and hope to women in desperate situations, it allowed us to be a part of their story by using products made with natural ingredients in an ancient practise of soap making, going back for generations in Iraq. From this order these women have been able to believe for more, and have organised themselves into an official cooperative with an export license so that they can continue to make soap, support their families and believe for a better future for their children. The wonderful by-product of the Colour gift was that our delegates were able to participate in making a difference for these women and bring awareness to the refugee crisis yet again as a Sisterhood.

Since the church leaders returned from Hillsong Conference, there has been an overwhelming reignited flame of reconciliation and unity within the Lajamanu Church, with more prayer meetings, encouragement calls, Bible studies, artwork, and testimonies than in the past three years combined! We will always be grateful for the opportunity Hillsong gave the Lajamanu ladies. - Jenn


Financials & Governance

Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Financials & Governance "I see a church that is … constantly looking towards the future – filled with vision that inspires and influences many." – Brian Houston, 'The Church I Now See'

05 82

Financials & Governance

Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Our Sources of Revenue


2% Youth & Kids Camp


Donation Breakdown: Tithes & Offerings 77%


Others 23%





Child Care

How Proceeds Are Spent 6%

Benevolent Programs, Church Planting & Missions


Arts, Media & Conferences


Corporate Services


Venue Operating Costs


Church Life

What’s Included in Church Life?







Pastors, Leaders & Support

Campus Operating Costs

Worship & Creative Programs

Children & Youth

Community Awareness



Financials & Governance

Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Ernst & Young 200 George Street Sydney NSW 2000 Australia GPO Box 2646 Sydney NSW 2001

Tel: +61 2 9248 5555 Fax: +61 2 9248 5959 ey.com/au

Report of the Independent Auditor on the Summary Financial Report Opinion The summary financial report, which comprise the statement of financial position as at 31 December 2019, the statement of comprehensive income, statement of changes in equity and statement of cash flows for the year then ended, and related notes, are derived from the audited financial report of The Activities of Hillsong Church Australia (Hillsong Church Australia) for the year ended 31 December 2019. In our opinion, the information reported in the summary financial report is consistent, in all material respects, with the combined financial report from which it was derived.

Basis for Opinion We conducted our audit in accordance with Australian Auditing Standards. Our responsibilities under those standards are further described in the Auditor's Responsibilities for the Audit of the Summary Financial Report section of our report. We are independent of Hillsong Church Australia in accordance with the ethical requirements of the Accounting Professional and Ethical Standards Board’s APES 110 Code of Ethics for Professional Accountants (the Code) that are relevant to our audit of the concise financial report in Australia. We have also fulfilled our other ethical responsibilities in accordance with the Code. We believe that the audit evidence we have obtained is sufficient and appropriate to provide a basis for our opinion.

Summary Financial Report The summary financial report does not contain all the disclosures required by Australian Accounting Standards. Reading the summary financial report and the auditor’s report thereon, therefore, is not a substitute for reading the audited combined financial report and the auditor’s report thereon.

The Financial Report and Our Report Thereon We expressed an unmodified audit opinion on the audited financial report in our report dated 4 June 2020.

Emphasis of Matter - Basis of Accounting Our auditor’s report on Hillsong Church Australia’s audited Financial Report for the year ended 31 December 2019 draws attention to Note 2 of the financial report which describes the basis of accounting. That financial report has been prepared for the purpose of fulfilling the directors’ financial reporting responsibilities to the members. As a result the audited financial report may not be suitable for another purpose. Our opinion is not modified in respect of this matter.

A member firm of Ernst & Young Global Limited Liability limited by a scheme approved under Professional Standards Legislation


Financials & Governance

Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Emphasis of Matter: Subsequent Events – Impact of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) Outbreak Our auditor’s report on Hillsong Church Australia’s audited Financial Report for the year ended 31 December 2019 draws attention to Note 19 of the financial report which notes the World Health Organisation’s declaration of the outbreak of COVID-19 as a global pandemic subsequent to 31 December 2019 and how this has been considered by the Directors in the preparation of the financial report. As set out in Note 19, no adjustments have been made to financial statements as at 31 December 2019 for the impacts of COVID-19. Our opinion is not modified in respect of this matter.

Responsibility of the Directors for the Summary Financial Report The directors of each of the related entities comprising Hillsong Church Australia (the ‘common directors’) are responsible for the preparation and presentation of the summarised financial report in accordance with accounting policies described in Note 1 to the summarised financial report.

Auditor's Responsibilities for the Audit of the Summary Financial Report Our responsibility is to express an opinion on whether the summary financial report is consistent, in all material respects, with the audited financial report based on our procedures, which were conducted in accordance with Auditing Standard ASA 810 Engagements to Report on Summary Financial Statements.

Ernst & Young

Anthony Jones Partner Sydney 4 June 2020

A member firm of Ernst & Young Global Limited Liability limited by a scheme approved under Professional Standards Legislation


Financials & Governance

Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Charitable h c i h W s n o i Organisat e c n e r e ff i D Make the by Anne Robinson AM People are often surprised to hear that the Christian church, from its very first beginnings, has been distinctive for its ‘good works’ – not only for its own people, but more extraordinarily for people outside its community. We are so used to the notion of doing good to ‘all people, but especially to those who belong to the family of believers’58 that we in the church and also in the wider community think this is normal. It’s not.

we found that some 23 of the largest 25 charities in Australia were Christian – not only in name, but also in character.61 With more up-to-date data available since then with the introduction of the Charities Register (and more aggregation of entities by mergers and group reporting), that figure is still some 17 of 25. However you report the data, the fact is that, over the millennia since our Lord established His Church, it has been a uniquely Christian thing to establish charitable organisations which exist to care for everyone.

This distinctive putting into practice of the Biblical commands to love God and neighbour – which incidentally also sits squarely within the Old Testament law mandating care for the stranger within their midst - has led to a proliferation of Christian charities and charitable ministries, which perform everything from poverty relief and social welfare, to aged and disability care, education, overseas aid, and even human rights – for everyone – all driven by the model of the Lord Jesus to see every person as ‘imago dei’—as made in the image of God.59 Our neighbour includes everyone, friend and enemy alike.

Hillsong Church also plays its part in this wonderful ministry. Without fuss. Without drawing attention to itself. It just gets on and serves. Loving God. Loving neighbour. Anne Robinson AM Founder and partner, Prolegis Lawyers, a specialist charity and NFP firm Board Chair Bible Society Australia

As a result, a significant majority of charities, especially in Australia, are Christian. When we first started researching this for Driven by purpose: Charities that make the difference60 although it was difficult to analyse the data,


Financials & Governance

Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Statement of Comprehensive Income

For the year ended 31 December 2019 2019 ($)

2018 ($)








Educational expenses






Other expenses













Total revenue Church and other benevolent activities

Surplus from operations Financial income, net Net surplus available for church and ministry projects Other comprehensive income Total comprehensive income for the period

Statement of Changes in Equity

For the year ended 31 December 2019 Common control reserve ($)

Retained surplus ($)

Total ($)




Transfer of assets




Related party debt forgiveness







Balance at 31 December 2019




Balance at 1 January 2018










Balance at 1 January 2019

Total comprehensive income for the period

Total comprehensive income for the period Balance at 31 December 2018


Financials & Governance

Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Statement of Financial Position

As at 31 December 2019

Current assets

2019 ($)

2018 ($)



Trade and other receivables






Other assets







Property, plant and equipment



Total non-current assets





Trade and other payables



Interest bearing liabilities



Employee benefits



Other payables





Other payables



Interest bearing liabilities















Retained surplus






Cash and cash equivalents

Total current assets Non-current assets Other receivables

TOTAL ASSETS Current liabilities

Total current liabilities Non-current liabilities

Employee benefits Total non-current liabilities

Accumulated funds Common control reserve


Financials & Governance

Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Statement of Cash Flows

For the year ended 31 December 2019

Cash flow from operating activities

2019 ($)

2018 ($)





























Net increase in cash and cash equivalents



Cash and cash equivalents at the beginning of year





Cash receipts in the course of operations Cash payments to suppliers and employees Interest received Interest paid Net cash provided by operating activities

Cash flow from investing activities Payments for property, plant and equipment Proceeds/(Purchases) of other financial assets Net cash used in investing activities

Cash flow from financing activities Loans to related parties Repayments from related parties Loans from related parties Repayments to related parties Payments of finance lease liabilities Net cash used in financing activities

Cash and cash equivalents at the end of year


Financials & Governance

Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Our Board The Board of Directors serve Hillsong Church in Australia by ensuring there is effective governance and financial management. The Board supports the vision established by our Global Senior Pastors for Australia, and sets strategic direction by resolving key decisions, and providing accountability to the senior executive leadership of Hillsong Church. The Board comprises of church leaders, people in business and professionals, the majority of whom are non-executive.

Brian Houston

George Aghajanian

Dr. Min. (Honoris Causa), Dip. Min. & Bib. St.



Company Secretary

Board Member since 1988

Board Member since 1996

Brian is a credentialed minister of religion. Together with his wife, Bobbie, he is the founder of Hillsong Church, and the Global Senior Pastor of Hillsong churches across the world. Pastors Brian and Bobbie planted what was then known as Hills Christian Life Centre in 1983. What began in a local school hall with 70 people on the fringe of Sydney, has since grown to become a global movement with campuses in 30 countries across six continents.

George is the General Manager of Hillsong Church, and has gained extensive experience in management, customer service, sales, and marketing in the private sector. He possesses a wealth of senior management experience, working with both Australian and international organisations and brings a strong balance of faith and practical business application to his role.

Meeting attendance: Board

Meeting attendance: Board Audit Committee (In the capacity of General Manager)

Dane Gambrill

Phillip Denton

Don Cooper-Williams

Board Member since 2008

Board Member since 2010

Board Member since 1993

Dane oversees the Enterprise and Media Video division in Asia-Pacific for IBM and serves as a member of IBM’s Global Media and Entertainment leadership team. With a number of technical and business-related qualifications, Dane is a trusted advisor regarding business transformation in the digital era for the media and entertainment industry.

Phillip is an Executive Director of Hillscorp, a property development company. With his 28 years of experience in the industry, he offers business acumen and facilities development expertise to the Board.

Don is the founder of AltoPoint Consulting. With over 40 years of experience in executive management within the IT industry, Don offers a wealth of experience in business leadership, church leadership, corporate governance, and growth strategy to corporations.




Meeting attendance: Board Audit Committee Remuneration Committee

Meeting attendance: Board


Meeting attendance: Board Audit Committee Remuneration Committee

Financials & Governance

Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Nabi Saleh

Melinda Dwight

B. Sc.

Board Member since 2016


Board Member since 1990

Melinda is the National Director of Alpha Australia, previous Chair of The William Wilberforce Foundation and the previous Chair of Harvest Bible College. Melinda is a credentialed minister of religion and previously served as the Senior Pastor of a thriving church for 15 years. Melinda served on the Victorian ACC State Executive and was previously on the board of ACCI and Youth Alive Victoria.

Audit, Risk and Compliance Committee - Chairperson

Nabi is the former Executive Chairman of Gloria Jean’s Coffees worldwide and Executive Chairman of Praise International USA, which operates It’s a Grind Coffee Houses. His drive, passion and belief in people, coupled with his strong business acumen and Godly wisdom, has enabled him to continue to sit on several boards for large, non-profit organisations. Meeting attendance: Board Audit Committee Remuneration Committee

Meeting attendance: Board

Leigh Howard-Smith

Board Member since 1993

Leigh is the Director and Owner of Freight Specialists, a national logistics and transport business. He has been a long-standing Board Member of Hillsong Church and brings experience in managing business growth, corporate governance, as well as risk and compliance management. Leigh resigned from the Board, effective 22nd January 2020. We greatly appreciate his contribution to the Board and are thankful he remains a valuable member of the congregation. Meeting attendance: Board Audit Committee (Chairperson)

Grant Thomson

MAICD, MA, MBA, SSM Cert. (Harvard), LLB (Hons.) (Cand.), Grad. Cert. Man., Dip. APMA, OMC Board Member since 2008

Grant is the Bible Society Australia CEO. In addition to its extensive global translation and mission work, Bible Society Australia owns and operates Koorong, Eternity News, Centre for Public Christianity and Acorn Publishing. He is a credentialed minister of religion and was previously the Global Marketing Director and Hills Campus Pastor at Hillsong.

Peter Toganivalu

Amanda Tay

Board Member since 2017

Board Member since 2019

Peter and his wife, Laura, are Global Pastors of Hillsong Young & Free. Peter is a credentialed minister of religion and is passionate about seeing young people rise up across the earth, finding their God-given identity and calling in knowing Jesus Christ. Peter is a visionary, dynamic communicator, and a creative leader.

Amanda is an experienced banking executive, with a Bachelor of Business Studies majoring in finance, with over 17 years in the finance industry. Her leadership and expertise have allowed her to navigate an ever-evolving economic climate. She has a passion for developing people and has championed and chaired multiple women’s events, both locally and internationally.

MAICD, Dip. Min

Meeting attendance: Board


Meeting attendance: Board

Meeting attendance: Board


Financials & Governance

Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Governance Global Senior Pastor

While Hillsong Church in Australia is one church, there are many legal entities that operate the various programs offered. These individual entities have been established for various reasons, which include legislative requirement, tax status distinction and resource allocation. Each of these legal entities have their own unique purpose and requirements. These requirements include such things as who they are accountable to and how they are governed. Hillsong Bali is separately governed and operated under the umbrella of Gerja Sidang Jemaat Allah – the Assemblies of God, Indonesia.

The Global Senior Pastor, in the context of Hillsong Church in Australia, is the ordained minister of religion who has been commissioned with the ultimate responsibility of the spiritual oversight of the church. The fulfilment of this role includes leadership of the Executive Management, Chairperson of the Board and an Elder.

Board Composition To maintain Board independence, the majority of Directors are non-executive members who are independent of the management team.

Directorship The primary responsibility of the Board of Directors is governance. The governance regime is outworked within three principle activities, which are compliance, assurance and risk management.

Board Remuneration


relationship between the packages received by Executive Directors and the church’s financial performance and no equity-based remuneration packages are entered into.

As outlined in the church Constitution, ‘no director shall receive remuneration in respect to his duties as a Director of the church.’ Remuneration received by Executive Directors is in respect of their executive duties. There is no

The Board is responsible for adherence to all compliance requirements of the church. The scope of this compliance goes beyond financial reporting. The breadth of compliance ranges from matters relating to employment, WH&S, commercial contracts, funding covenants, medical, child protection and building regulations.

Material Personal Interests When conflict arises, each Director acknowledges their duty to notify other Board Members of a material personal interest, which relates to the church. Furthermore, the Board Member who has a material personal interest in a matter that is being considered at a Board Meeting, must not be present while the matter is being considered at the meeting, nor vote on the matter.

Assurance The responsibility of the Board is to seek assurance from the organisation and its management that the organisation is complying and managing its risks effectively. An effective assurance tool is audit. This is annually conducted on the financial statements of the church by a top tier audit firm.

Ethical Standards and Values Hillsong Church is a Christ-centred ministry and therefore the Directors, Management and Employees are expected to conduct themselves with the highest of ethical and Biblical standards. The expectations of Directors are outlined in each respective constitution as well as the governance standards of the Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission (ACNC). Employees are bound by the Code of Conduct and the Terms and Conditions within their employment contract, and pastoral staff are accountable to Hillsong's Pastor's Code of Conduct.

Risk Management Effective risk management is the responsibility of the Board. Members of the Board require that risks facing the church have been identified and assessed and that the risks are being properly managed. The Board of Hillsong Church Australia is committed to the practice of risk management to assist with strategic decision-making and operational oversight.


Safety and Child Protection

The Constitution provides the Board with the power to establish one or more sub-committees. To ensure governance effectiveness, the Board has determined standing sub-committees will be formed in the key areas of audit, risk, compliance and remuneration.

The Board is responsible for monitoring the performance of safety measures being implemented within the Church. The Board is committed to the safety of all those who participate, in particular those who are vulnerable.


Financials & Governance

Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Safe Church National Office for Child Safety

Hillsong provides physically, emotionally, and spiritually safe and secure environments for all people who are connected to Hillsong Church, in compliance with relevant legislation. Through the outworking of the Safe Church Framework, our aim is to provide a caring and appropriate response should any suspicion, allegation, disclosure or complaint of misconduct or abuse occur.

Hillsong Church ensures its support for the National Office for Child Safety through the consistent nationwide implementation of child safety measures, including the National Principles for Child Safe Organisations

For more information, email safechurch@hillsong.com or call 02 8853 5352.

Transport Safety • Providing direction and resource to staff and volunteers in relation to their use of passenger and load carrying vehicles

Beyond the key developments mentioned on this page, the Safe Church Office has continued to maintain its operational support in the following areas:

Key Developments

Child Safety • Working closely with the Hillsong kids and youth teams to ensure good safety practices at camps, conferences, and other activities

Online Training Platform A significant improvement during 2019 was the deployment of an online training platform which enabled our teams to better understand and fulfil their responsibilities in the key areas of child protection, as well as transport, food and work health safety

• Ensuring that those who work with our children and young people are properly approved • Dealing with concerns that arise in relation to risk of harm

Staff and Volunteer Safety

Food Safety

With the establishment of the online training platform, it has provided an effective way to deliver essential training for staff and volunteer safety in relation to the current COVID-19 requirements. In addition, training has been able to seamlessly continue in other key areas, despite not being able to gather in person

• Providing food safety audits of food facilities • Training food supervisors and volunteers at levels appropriate to their responsibilities • Responding to food recalls and food related incidents

Redress Scheme In 2019, Hillsong Church applied to join the National Redress Scheme and was formally approved on 6th February 2020. This outcome follows a lengthy process undertaken by Hillsong’s Insurer ACS, together with the ACC, to formalise a way to opt-in to the Scheme whilst remaining covered by insurance. Now having finally been approved, it further demonstrates Hillsong’s commitment to the Royal Commission recommendations and the welfare of children and survivors of child sexual abuse

Work Health Safety • Reviewing incident reports and responding as required • Supporting other departments in the preparation of risk assessments for key church activities • Electrical testing and tagging of equipment



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

References Reports 1 Piggin, S. & Centre for the Study of Australian Christianity. Billy Graham in Australia, 1959: was it revival? Centre for the Study of Australian Christianity, North Ryde, NSW. 1991. 2 Asker, J. “Hillsong United's 'People' Debuts as Week's Top-Selling Album Among All Genres”. Billboard, 2019. Accessed August 2020. https://www.billboard.com/articles/columns/chart-beat/8510763/hillsong-united-people-debuts-weeks-top-sellingalbum

Jesus 3 1 John 1:14; 1 John 4:2; Cf. Romans 3:25; 2 Corinthians 5:19 (NRSV) 4 Hebrews 5:7-9; Cf. John 3:16-17; Romans 5:18; 1 Corinthians 15:22; 2 Corinthians 5:14-15, 18-19 5 Matthew 28; Mark 16; Luke 24; John 20-21; 1 Corinthians 15:3-8 6 Pope Paul VI, "The Church is the visible plan of God’s love for humanity" June 22, 1973. Catechism of the Catholic Church: 776. https://www.vatican.va/archive/ccc_css/archive/catechism/p123a9p1.htm 7 Hillsong Church, “The Church I Now See” 2014. https://hillsong.com/vision/ 8 Powell, R., Church Vitality: NCLS Leaders Briefing. Sydney, Australia. NCLS Research 2019. 9 Powell, R., M. Pepper, S. Sterland, and N. Hancock, 2016 NCLS Attender Survey. [Data file]. Sydney, Australia: NCLS Research. 10 McCrindle Research Pty Ltd, Australia. “Faith and Belief in Australia” Report, 2017. 11 Ibid.

Church 12 Australian Psychological Society (APS) and Swinburne University of Technology, “Australian Loneliness Report” 2018. 13 Federation of Ethnic Communities’ Council of Australia (FECCA), “Australia’s Growing Linguistic Diversity: An opportunity for a strategic approach to language services policy and practice.” Executive Summary 2016. http://fecca.org.au/wp-content/ uploads/2016/09/feccalanguagesexecsummary.pdf 14 Australian Bureau of Statistics, "Estimates of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians", (cat. no. 3238.0.55.001) 2016. Accessed August 2020. https://www.abs.gov.au/ausstats/abs@.nsf/mf/3238.0.55.001 15 Australian Bureau of Statistics, "Prisoners in Australia", (cat. no. 4517.0) 2019. Accessed August 2020. https://www.abs.gov.au/ ausstats/abs@.nsf/mf/4517.0 16 Beyond Blue, 2016, "Inquiry into Aboriginal Youth Suicides" May 2016. Accessed August 2020. from https://www.beyondblue.org. au/docs/default-source/policy-submissions/bw0404_wa-aboriginal-youth-suicide-inquiry97295baaf37161bc846eff0000e9d3fc. pdf?sfvrsn=9b583aea_0 17 Department for Child Protection, "Perpetrator accountability in child protection practice: A resource for child protection workers about engaging and responding to perpetrators of family and domestic violence" Perth, WA, Western Australian Government 2013. Accessed August 2020. https://www.dcp.wa.gov.au/CrisisAndEmergency/FDV/Documents/Perpetrator%20Accountability%20 in%20Child%20Protection%20Practice.pdf 18 Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, “Australia’s Children”, (cat. no. CWS 69). Canberra: AIHW 2020. Accessed August 2020. https://www.aihw.gov.au/reports/children-youth/australias-children/contents/background/australian-children-and-theirfamilies 19 Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA). “Personal and Social Capability”. Accessed August 2020. https://www.australiancurriculum.edu.au/f-10-curriculum/general-capabilities/personal-and-social-capability/ 20 e Safety Commissioner, “How to Choose Good Online Content”, Australian Government. Accessed August 2020. https://www. esafety.gov.au/parents/children-under-5/how-choose-good-online-content 21 Rutland, S.D. & Zehavit, G., “Study of Special Religious Education and its value to contemporary society”, Australia 2018, 8. 22 Hillsong Church. “Mission Statement” 1993. 23 Carlisle E., Fildes, J., Hall, S., Perrens, B., Perdriau, A., and Plummer, J., Youth Survey Report 2019, Sydney, NSW: Mission Australia 2019, 2. 24 Ibid. 25 The Department of Health, “Some Physical Health Issues for Young People”, Module 2, 5.2. Australian Government 2004. https:// www1.health.gov.au/internet/publications/publishing.nsf/Content/drugtreat-pubs-front2-wk-toc~drugtreat-pubs-front2-wksecb~drugtreat-pubs-front2-wk-secb-5~drugtreat-pubs-front2-wk-secb-5-2 26 World Bank and UNDESA. “Youth As A Smart Investment” Fact Sheet: 2. https://www.un.org/esa/socdev/documents/youth/factsheets/youth-smart-investment.pdf 27 McCrindle, Faith and Belief in Australia. 28 APS & Swinburne. Australian Loneliness Report. 29 Australian Government, National Mental Health Strategy. “The Fifth National Mental Health and Suicide Prevention Plan” October 2017. https://www.mentalhealthcommission.gov.au/getmedia/0209d27b-1873-4245-b6e5-49e770084b81/Fifth-National-MentalHealth-and-Suicide-Prevention-Plan.pdf 30 ACARA, Personal and Social Capability.



Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Carlisle et al., Youth Survey Report. Ibid., 4. 33 Madden, C., "Hello Gen Z: Engaging the Generation of Post-Millennials". 2019. https://clairemadden.com/product/hello-gen-z 34 Australian Bureau of Statistics, “National Health Survey: First Results, 2017-18”, (cat. no. 4364.0.55.001) 2018. 35 Carlisle et al., Youth Survey Report, 4. 36 Australian Bureau of Statistics, “Labour Force”: Status by Sex, (cat. no. 6202.0) December 2017. 37 Australian Bureau of Statistics, “Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples’ Labour Force Outcomes”, Australian Social Trends, (cat. no. 4102.0) November 2013; Parliament of Australia, Senate Standing Committees on Community Affairs, "The impact of income inequality on disadvantaged groups", Chapter 4. 2014. https://www.aph.gov.au/Parliamentary_Business/Committees/ Senate/Community_Affairs/Income_Inequality/Report/c04 38 Australian Human Rights Commission, “Face the facts: Gender Equality 2018” 2018. Accessed August 2020. https://humanrights. gov.au/our-work/education/face-facts-gender-equality-2018#:~:text=In%20recent%20decades%2C%20women%20 in,women%20and%20girls%20to%20follow 39 Jahan, S., and UNDP, “Violence against women, a cause and consequence of inequality”. November 2018. Accessed August 2020. http://hdr.undp.org/en/content/violence-against-women-cause-and-consequence-inequality 40 McKinsey & Company, “Women in leadership: Lessons from Australian companies leading the way”. November 2017. https:// www.mckinsey.com/~/media/mckinsey/featured%20insights/gender%20equality/women%20in%20leadership%20lessons%20 from%20australian%20companies%20leading%20the%20way/women-in-leadership-lessons-from-australian-companiesleading-the-way.pdf 41 New South Wales Government, “NSW Women’s Strategy 2018-2022”. https://www.women.nsw.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_ file/0009/641646/NSW-Womens-Strategy-2018-2022.pdf 42 Asylum Seeker Resource Centre, "Community Meals", Accessed August 2020. https://www.asrc.org.au/get-involved/donatefood-and-goods/ 43 The Children’s Oncology Group, “A to Z Guide to Supporting Families”. Accessed August 2020. https://www. childrensoncologygroup.org/index.php/community-support/a-to-z-guide-to-supporting-families 44 ANROWS, “National burden of disease study examining the impact of violence against women” 2016. Accessed August 2020. https://www.anrows.org.au/project/national-burden-of-disease-study-examining-the-impact-of-violence-against-women/ 45 WA Government, “Pathway to improving food security: A guide for local government ”, 2014. https://ww2.health.wa.gov.au/~/ media/Files/Corporate/general%20documents/SMHS/Reports%20and%20Publications/SMPHU/PathwayToFoodSecurity.ashx 46 Longbottom, J., “Australian children going hungry, report finds, with one in five kids missing meals”. ABC News, April 2018. Accessed August 2020. https://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-04-15/report-shows-one-in-five-children-suffer-from-foodinsecurity/9653532 47 Yaxley, L., “Up to 40 per cent of aged care residents get no visitors, minister Ken Wyatt says”, ABC News, October 2017. Accessed August 2020. https://www.google.com.au/amp/s/amp.abc.net.au/article/9085782 48 McCrindle, Faith and Belief in Australia. 31


Community Australian Bureau of Statistics, 2017, “Personal Safety Survey (PSS)”, (cat. no. 4906.0). McCrindle, “Foodbank Hunger Report 2019”. https://www.foodbank.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/10/Foodbank-HungerReport-2019.pdf, 8. 51 Australian Freedom Network, "Faiths United to End Modern Slavery". Accessed August 2020. https://afn.org.au/what-is-the-afn/ 52 Global Freedom Network, "Why faith leaders should be engaged". Accessed August 2020. https://www.minderoo.org/globalfreedom-network 53 Australian Freedom Network, "Joint Declaration of Faith Leaders". Accessed August 2020. https://afn.org.au/joint-declarationof-faith-leaders/ 54 Minderoo Foundation, "Global Slavery Index 2018 Findings/Highlights", Global Slavery Index 2018. Accessed August 2020. https://www.globalslaveryindex.org/2018/findings/highlights/ 55 Branco, J., "'Slave houses' hiding in inner-city Brisbane", Brisbane Times, April 17, 2016. Accessed August 2020. endslavery. salvos.org.au/index.php/learn/resources/ 56 "Modern Slavery Act 2018", Federal Register of Legislation, (cat. no. C2018A00153), Item 16. Accessed August 2020. https:// www.legislation.gov.au/Details/C2018A00153 57 "Ending Poverty", United Nations. Accessed August. 2020. https://www.un.org/en/sections/issues-depth/poverty/ 49


Financials & Governance Galatians 6:10, (NIV): "Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers." 59 Genesis 1:27, (NIV): "So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them." 60 Robinson, A. and Judd, S. with Errington, F. Driven by purpose: Charities that make the difference. HammondCare Media, 2012. 61 McGregor-Lowndes and O'Halloran (ed.), “Modernising Charity Law: Recent Developments and Directions.” In Religion as a head of charity, Part II, Section 8, Robinson, A. and Lucas, B., Edward Elgar Publishing Limited, UK, 2010. 58


Index of Content

Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019

Index of Contents Reports

02 03 05

Global Senior Pastors’ Report General Manager's Report

Overview Introduction Hillsong Growth & Expansion - Global Our Thanks Hillsong Growth & Expansion - Australia


06 07 08 10 11

12 13

Why Jesus?


Index of Content

Hillsong Church Annual Report 2019


16 17 22 30 38 46 48 52 52 54 58

Introduction Children Youth and Young Adults Women Men Hillsong Creative Hillsong College Hillsong Night School Pastoral Care Seniors


60 61 62 64 71 76 76 77 77 78

Introduction The Hillsong Foundation Local Community Services Overseas Aid and Development Hillsong Channel Online Campus Hillsong Leadership Network Nation Builders Conferences

Financials & Governance


Financial Reports Our Board Governance Safe Church

83 90 92 93

References Index of Contents

94 96


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Profile for Hillsong Church

Hillsong Annual Report 2019  

Hillsong Annual Report 2019  

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