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Justin Bieber Cancelled World Tour To Focus On Faith, May Start New Church, Says Source

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(Photo by Mat Hayward/Getty Images)
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Following the sudden announcement that Justin Bieber will be cancelling the remainder of his "Purpose World Tour", a new claim suggests the move may have been connected to the singer's faith.

In a statement released by Bieber's team, the cancellation was said to stem from "unforeseen circumstances." However, on Tuesday, Australia's The Today Show reported that Bieber may have left the tour to "focus on his faith" and possibly even start his own church.

The claim apparently came from a source at the Hillsong Church Conference in Sydney. “I am led to believe that the real reason he has come off the road is because he wants to reconnect with his faith and he may be even planning to start his own church,” TV presenter Richard Wilkins told The Today Show (video in tweet above). “We know that he was in the country a few weeks ago having meetings and attending the big Hillsong convention that they had here. [He’s] very close to a lot of the Hillsong people. Whether he’s looking at teaming up with them in something of a more permanent situation or doing some sort of religious activity on his own - starting his own church - we’re not quite sure, but that’s the word from an inside source.”

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Bieber and Hillsong pastor, Carl Lentz, have been close for several years now. In a 2013 tweet, Bieber praised (is that the right word?) Lentz for a recent sermon.

Hillsong was founded in 1983 by Brian Houston and his wife Bobbie in New South Wales, Australia. Today, the church boasts some 100,000 across 80 affiliates globally. Lentz is the lead pastor at Hillsong NYC, and graduated from Hillsong College.

Whether the 24-year-old pop icon is in fact finding The Way, or even starting The Church Of Bieber, the crew of his tour remain very upset at the unexpected cancellation and the financial impact it will have for them individually. According to TMZ, the tour's crew is "incredibly pissed off at him."

"I'm sorry for anybody who feels disappointed or betrayed," Bieber later said in a video posted by TMZ.

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Scooter Braun, Bieber's long-time manager, took to Instagram to further quell any anger at the cancellation.

Meanwhile, Bieber was spotted Monday afternoon on a beach in Santa Monica, relaxing and enjoying the Southern California sun. "Just resting, getting some relaxation," he said, according to TMZ. "We're gonna ride some bikes."