Brian Houston, the founder of the Hillsong Church, has said he will fight to clear his name after he was charged with allegedly concealing information about child sex abuse committed by his father.

“Police will allege in court the man knew information relating to the sexual abuse of a young male in the 1970s and failed to bring that to the attention of police,” a NSW Police spokesperson said.

His father, Frank Houston, was a Pentecostal Christian pastor who faced multiple allegations of child sex abuse in the years leading up to his death in 2004.

Frank Houston admitted to the abuse at the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sex Abuse, which occurred several decades ago in Australia and New Zealand.

Before the abuse became public, Frank Houston was allowed to retire from the church.

Brian Houston was charged following a two-year investigation.

After police served his Sydney-based lawyers, Mr Houston, who received an exemption to leave Australia with his wife during the pandemic, released a statement concerning the allegations.

“These charges have come as a shock to me,” he said.

“I vehemently profess my innocence and will defend these charges, and I welcome the opportunity to set the record straight.”

In a statement, Hillsong said it was “disappointed” that Mr Houston had been charged.

“[We] ask that he be afforded the presumption of innocence and due process as his right. He has advised us that he will defend this and looks forward to clearing his name,” the church said in a statement.

“Given that this matter is now before the court, neither Pastor Brian or Hillsong Church will be making further statements.

“We thank all who are part of our church for their support and prayers at this time.”

Mr Houston will be required to appear before a Sydney magistrate at Downing Centre Local Court on October 5.

This article originally appeared on Over60.