Australian music artists have condemned Hillsong for a concert at a youth camp. At the camp, around 200 people were singing without masks. The camp took south of Newcastle last Thursday.
Artist, Catherine Alcorn condemned the event as a “complete slap in the face” and a “disgrace” on Sky News Australia.
However, despite the controversy, the New South Wales police didn’t fine Hillsong.
Hillsong has issued an apology, but has also claimed that covid protocols were in place.
Australian artists express outrage over camp
The Australian music industry has taken a major hit the past two years. This year, organisers cancelled Grapevine Gathering in the Hunter Valley.
It isn’t surprising artists were outraged over Hillsong’s camp and their special treatment.
Country singer Troy Cassar – Daley expressed outrage on social media:
While all other music festivals are heading down the toilet same as last year, Hillsong are no masks, singing and dancing like we’ve all been told not to do.
Montaigne accused the New South Wales government of double standards.
Governments give churches special treatment
Technicalities aside, one thing seems clear here. Hillsong have been given special treatment. And they (as well as other churches), have received special treatment for years.
The most obvious, is the tax exemptions. And while, yes, many churches do charity work and work with limited resources, Hillsong should be treated as a business. I’m sorry, but they should be.
Over the years, Australian churches and church – run institutions such as schools, have been exempt from sections of laws such as the Sex Discrimination Act 1984.
Sections 37 and 38 of the Sex Discrimination Act allow Christian organisations the right to refuse to employ or fire openly LGBTQ+ people if in “good faith”.
Is it any wonder why religious organisations flout rules and laws? From anti – discrimination, to covid restrictions?
Jesus didn’t bend public rules
Before people come on here and slam me for “persecuting Christians” (I am one, by the way), let me just say this.
While Jesus was on earth, he didn’t advocate for anyone to flout the law. He demanded that his followers pay taxes. And they were under Rome.
Not once did he seek special favours from the government (again, they were under Rome).
Do you think he would have breached — or at least arrogantly taken advantage of grey areas in safety protocol? I can’t see it myself.
True worship happens in the heart. It happens in Spirit. True worship doesn’t demand that we take the law into our own hands. It doesn’t require us to expose loopholes in health mandates.
Christians should be a beacon of God’s light. And, yes, plenty of them are. However, it’s a shame that too often, scandals and law – bending are what Christians known for. Let’s reverse it. Go back to shining Christ’s light again. Within restraints of the law and to an extent, public expectations.
What do you think? Was Hillsong in the wrong? Should have they been fined? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below.