Daughter of Hillsong Church founders goes on anti-media rant

Laura Toggs, the daughter of Hillsong megachurch founders Brian and Bobbie Houston, took to social media to express her fury at how she perceives the press has handled the latest scandal in the church based in Australia.

This month, the controversial church found itself in hot water again for exploiting a COVID exemption for Australian religious institutions. The church has been reprimanded by the NSW Department of Health after images of young parishioners singing and dancing to secular songs during an annual youth camp surfaced. Hillsong then issued a lengthy statement to the Post denying wrongdoing.

In an Instagram video over 15 minutes long that Toggs posted on Monday, deleted, and then reposted, she said she blamed the media for the controversy surrounding the incident.

“I’ve seen the media willfully ignore any fairness in the name of click-bait and to accommodate any profit they make on their agendas,” Toggs said in the post, first reported by the site. news Australian News.com.au. “It’s destroying people’s lives one cheap title at a time and it’s heartbreaking to watch people believe the lies.”

She went on to say that she was apparently unaware of the current regional rules regarding song and dance because she and her husband – who together helped organize the youth camp – were so busy organizing it, and if she had known she would have been more sensitive to “singing”. Yet she claimed the government bowed to “media pressure” by changing the rules.

Part of Toggs’ social media post.
Courtesy of @lauratoggs

“To continue to bow to the media is essentially to allow them to continue to own the narrative worldwide, above the truth. It’s the most reckless thing you can do for your mind and your soul. Standing up for the truth is biblical,” she wrote in the post. “If you want to fill your mind and soul with bric-a-brac, then go ahead and buy whatever they spoon feed you, but if you want the truth to shape your heart, soul, and mind, let the Bible be your source of wisdom, truth, and direction.

She claimed the videos went viral following “a clear agenda to drag Hillsong through the mud and destroy our name,” she concluded in her post.

laura toggs hillsong camp
A photo of Toggs on his social media.
Courtesy of @lauratoggs

“It is important to clarify that the current youth camps we run are not music festivals… We have since spoken to NSW Health and been instructed to stop worshipers/students singing and dancing during services taking place at the campground and immediately and voluntarily enacted this instruction,” Hillsong told The Post as part of a much longer statement in response to the initial youth camp story.

Hillsong did not return the Post’s request for comment.

Jerry B. Hatch