Independent investigation into Hillsong NYC to be launched after Carl Lentz firing

Carl Lentz led Hillsong NYC for 10 years before being fired amid a cheating scandal

An independent investigation into the management of Hillsong NYC is to be launched after its pastor Carl Lentz was fired last week for cheating on his wife.

Lentz had been at the helm of the popular Manhattan church since its founding in 2010, and was also the leader of Hillsong East Coast.

Announcing his firing last week, Hillsong senior pastor Brian Houston said the decision had been made following "ongoing discussions in relation to leadership issues and breaches of trust, plus a recent revelation of moral failures".

He also confirmed that the church had started the process of searching for Lentz's replacement.  

In his own statement, Lentz admitted to marital unfaithfulness.

"I was unfaithful in my marriage, the most important relationship in my life and held accountable for that. This failure is on me, and me alone and I take full responsibility for my actions," he said.

"I now begin a journey of rebuilding trust with my wife, Laura and my children and taking real time to work on and heal my own life and seek out the help that I need."

Houston has now announced an independent investigation as the church moves into its next chapter. 

"We are launching an independent investigation into the inner workings of Hillsong NYC/ East Coast. We need a solid foundation for a fresh start and new beginning. The best is yet to come," Houston confirmed on Twitter.

Lentz was popular with celebrities, most notably Justin Bieber, whom he mentored through his return to his Christian roots, even baptizing the pop star in a bath tub. 

After news of Lentz's unfaithfulness emerged, a 34-year-old designer in New York claimed she had a five-month affair with him.