24 hour Christian Satellite TV is impacting in Arab world

By April 12, 2004

Middle East (MNN) — Christian television programming is making its presence known in the Middle East and North Africa. SAT-7 is satellite television for designed specifically for this region. The network just recently started airing programming 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

SAT-7’s Glen Hartson says while they don’t have a rating service to help them gauge the number of people listening, but he believes the numbers are increasing. “We’re getting phenomenal reports on the ground and well as letters, emails, and telephone calls to our counseling centers that (have an great impact),” says Hartson.

The programming has had an impact in Africa. “The government of Algeria just recently recognized the creation of 12 new Christian churches. And, that’s just phenomenal. For the government to recognize them, that’s a phenomenal step. That wouldn’t have happened five years ago,” says Hartson.

The war in Iraq has also given SAT-7 more ministry opportunities. Hartson says, “I have a picture sitting in front of me right now on my desk — a bunch of men in Iraq that are huddling around these satellite dishes because it’s given them freedom now to get information from the outside world that they did not have.”

SAT-7 is seeking funding to help in program production, as they have 24 hours of programming to fill each week. Hartson adds, “technology is changing every second. For us to produce quality programming, we need material, we need talented people, and we also need quality equipment. That part is expensive and that part is something that we continue to struggle with.”

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