One of Hillsong Church’s locations was attacked by armed robbers in Cape Town, South Africa, this morning. Three church workers—a man and two women—were tied and robbed of their cell phones. The suspects are still at large.
“Please call security! Please call security!” one of the Hillsong workers shouted at workers at a construction company next door to the church building. One of the three who had been tied, the man managed to escape and run next door for help. The man was in “total shock” according to a witness who was present at the construction company.
Workers at the construction company called for help. Shortly afterward, the police, including a dog unit and armed tactical team showed up. The police unit entered the building carrying rifles.
It is believed there were two men who entered the church and robbed the workers of their cell phones, however it was not a hostage situation, which some claims on social media were purporting.
Hillsong Church Century City released an official statement following the incident. It is reprinted here:
On Monday morning there was an attempted armed robbery at our Hillsong Church building in Century City, Cape Town. The two perpetrators gained entry by pretending to be delivery men. There were four staff members in the building at the time, including a security guard, who called the police. No one was hurt. The perpetrators are still at large and police are investigating. We would like to thank the South African Police Service and Century City Security for how they handled the situation, arriving promptly, ensuring the safety of our staff, and securing the building. We are very thankful that everyone is okay. We have significant security measures in place. We are currently also considering additional ways to further ensure the safety of our congregation and staff. The incident has only served to strengthen our resolve to build a church that will help build this nation, which we love, and which we know God loves deeply too.
Hillsong Church, which is based in Sydney, Australia, has nine locations in South Africa, six of which are located in the greater Cape Town area. The church has campuses in 21 countries throughout the world. Recently, Hillsong’s founder, Brian Houston, made headlines for his plans to start a unique denomination for the burgeoning church movement.