Former Hillsong pastor and wife file for divorce


Sam and Toni Collier are getting divorced. (Photo: Hillsong)

Former Hillsong pastor Sam Collier and his wife Toni are getting divorced, with both sides publicly accusing the other of wrongdoing.

Sam Collier led Hillsong Atlanta, in Georgia, and was the first-ever African American lead pastor of a Hillsong church.

In March last year, he resigned, stating that it had “become too difficult to lead” after a string of scandals in the denomination.

They released separate statements to their Instagrams moments apart on Friday.

Toni Collier claimed in her statement that she had decided to divorce Sam Collier because of alleged infidelity.

“I’m in the middle of the hardest season of my life. I am heartbroken, yet still hopeful. If you could see all the ways God has been kind to me and my kids your jaw would be on the floor. After years of discovering and enduring repeated acts of infidelity, I have chosen to end my marriage with Sam,” she said.

In a since-deleted post, Sam Collier said the decision to divorce had been mutual and accused his wife of being “a liar and abuser”.

He then posted a follow-up statement in which he apologised for his deleted comments.

“It did not reflect the leader I am or my sincere feelings. I was emotionally overwhelmed and angry at the highest level. These past two months have been extremely exhausting,” he said.

The former couple share two children together. Toni Collier said they were divorcing after failed attempts at reconciliation and counselling.

She said she had come to the conclusion that it “wasn’t a sustainable or God-honouring marriage anymore”. In her post, she revealed her intention to take a break “to focus on healing with my kids”.

“I have no desire to hurt Sam but do want to vigorously protect my heart and my children,” she said. “Thanks for giving us privacy to do that, and for prayers that will undoubtedly be felt. Love y’all.”





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