[Warning: The following contains MAJOR spoilers for FX’s The Secrets of Hillsong Episodes 1 and 2.]
Ousted Hillsong Church pastors Carl Lentz and Laura Lentz give their first ever interviews about the disgraced megachurch in FX‘s The Secrets of Hillsong. Reports of Carl’s affair have been well known since 2020, but he admits to a second affair for the first time in the second episode of the documentary.
The Secrets of Hillsong premiered on Friday, May 19 at 10/9c with its first two of four episodes on FX (next-day streaming on Hulu). The first episode establishes why Carl was so popular through interviews with former Hillsong NYC congregants, where Carl was once the star pastor. Once viewers understand how the church functioned and uplifted its congregants, the documentary then dives into how it failed them, positing Carl’s scandals as just the tip of the iceberg of the abuses of power going on behind the scenes. For some former congregants, the abuse was blatant and the help was nonexistent.
Carl and Laura’s interviews begin in Episode 2, “The Prodigal Son.” He admits to some of his wrongdoings, but denies the claims of sexual abuse from Leona Kimes that came out in 2021. Kimes, his and Laura’s former nanny, was the woman involved in Carl’s second affair. She and husband Josh Kimes resigned as pastors at Hillsong Boston in 2022.
While Carl’s scandals are the most well known of recent Hillsong memory, the documentary aims to show how he was merely “a cog” in the wheel of Hillsong’s culture of abuse under the leadership of founder Brian Houston.
Houston resigned from Hillsong in March 2022 after internal investigations revealed he engaged in inappropriate conduct with two women. This year, Houston is on trial for allegedly concealing sexual abuse committed by his father, Frank Houston, against a young boy from their church in 1970. Frank confessed his crime to the police in 1999, and Brian is accused of failing to report the abuse to the police following the confessions. The trial takes place in June in Australia.
Citing his legal troubles, Houston did not give on-camera interviews for the documentary but did answer some questions. The biggest reveals come from the on-camera interviews from Carl, Laura, and former Hillsong leaders and congregants.
Scroll down for the biggest takeaways from the first two episodes of The Secrets of Hillsong, in no particular order. Tune in next week for updates on the second half of the documentary, airing Friday, May 26 on FX.
The Secrets of Hillsong, Episodes 3 and 4, Friday, May 26, 10/9c, FX
This story originally appeared on TV Insider