News Briefs

The following reports were released during the last month by Charisma News Service. Go to our Web site at to subscribe to the free weekday service or to access full-length versions of each day's stories. The site also includes a search engine so you can access archived news.

After six months of legal wrangling, Christian TV networks Daystar and FamilyNet will be allowed to remain on the Dish Network. On Jan. 30, a federal appeals court reversed a July preliminary injunction that would have forced both networks to be immediately removed from Dish, which has 10 million viewers. The dispute stems from a lawsuit filed by Dominion Sky Angel, a Christian satellite company, against EchoStar, which owns Dish Network. Dominion claimed EchoStar breached its contract with Dominion by allowing Christian stations other than SkyAngel, Trinity Broadcasting Network and the Eternal Word Television Network to air on Dish. Though the ruling allows Daystar and FamilyNet to air on Dish, Dominion said it is still in litigation with EchoStar. Meanwhile, FamilyNet has announced plans to expand its programming to include a news show in partnership with Fox News, as well as Focus on the Family's Adventures in Odyssey children's series. The programs are scheduled to debut in September.

Benny Hinn, Marilyn Hickey and Christ for All Nations are among several ministers and Christian groups that helped start a compensation fund for the victims of a three-year Ponzi scheme involving International Product Investment Corporation (IPIC), which bilked mostly churches and Christian ministries out of $160 million. Though some investors lost all their money, others received profits. The fund was established with excess money the ministries or their leaders received through their dealings with IPIC head Gregory Setser, who was arrested in November and charged with securities fraud and money laundering.

Two state-sanctioned churches are under construction in communist China, which has repeatedly been criticized by the U.S. State Department for harassing and persecuting Christians there, the Associated Press reported. The Beijing Religious Affairs Office said the new facilities in eastern and western Beijing should be completed by Christmas. The structures would be the first churches built in Beijing since 1949. Critics believe the move is an attempt to get Chinese Christians to abandon their underground congregations for state-sponsored churches, thus making them less of a threat, the AP said.

The head of American Airlines apologized Feb. 13 for remarks a Christian pilot made during a recent cross-country flight. At the start of the Feb. 7 trip from Los Angeles to New York, pilot Rodger K. Findiesen, who had recently returned from a missions trip, asked all Christians on board to raise their hands so fellow passengers could search them out for discussion about faith, the Associated Press reported. In a letter to Anti-Defamation League Director Abraham Foxman, American Airlines' Gerard Arpey said: "Let me assure you that we take this very seriously and are conducting a thorough investigation. [The airline] promotes an environment of respect for the diversity of all persons, regardless of religion, race, ethnicity, disability, gender, age or sexual orientation." Findiesen has been grounded with pay.

Church Planter and Missionary Earl Kellum Dies

Missionary Earl Kellum, who planted dozens of churches across Mexico and Latin America through his Irving, Texas-based Latin America Missions, died on Jan. 21 of an apparent heart attack at his Iguala, Mexico, home. He was 77. Born in Mississippi, Kellum moved to Mexico in 1954 and went on to plant more than 400 churches there and another 100 in Guatemala, Costa Rica, Honduras, Nicaragua and Peru. He is survived by two adult daughters and two brothers. Memorial services were held in Mexico Jan. 23 and Oneonta, Ala., Jan. 26.

Singer Stacy Orrico Decries Sexy Pop Image

Contemporary Christian singer Stacy Orrico, 17, decried the revealing clothing worn by pop stars Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera during an interview Feb. 14 in Singapore, where she was preparing for the MTV Asia Awards, the Associated Press (AP) reported. Calling the pair poor role models for girls, Orrico said: "I don't think that's sexy, I think it's degrading. I think that a truly sexy woman comes from being confident and being classy, respectable and mature," the AP said.

Israeli Official Calls for Muslim Conversion

During a February meeting with Christian leaders visiting from Europe, Israeli Tourism Minister Benny Elon asked missionaries to try to convert Islamic militants, the Associated Press (AP) reported. Elon said Israel would not tolerate evangelism among Jews, but recommended missionaries "remind all the Muslim killers that thou shalt not kill. Make them good Christians and good people," according to the Yediot Ahronot daily, the AP said.

If you have a news tip for Charisma News Service, e-mail us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

Draw closer to God. Experience the presence of the Holy Spirit every month as you read Charisma magazine. Sign up now to get Charisma for as low as $1 per issue.

Get to know the Holy Spirit and how to interact with Him on a daily basis. Learn to enter God's presence and hear His voice clearly for yourself! Go deeper in your faith with Life in the Spirit and change your life and destiny. Are you ready to start your journey?

Your Turn

Comment Guidelines
View/Add Comments
  • There are some ways the Holy Spirit will never lead you.

    4 Ways the Holy Spirit Does Not Lead You—and 1 Big Danger

    Wrong teaching, ignorance, laziness and a failure of the five-fold to equip the saints for the work ...

  • Chuck Pierce

    Prophetic Word: 'The Winds of Heaven Are Now Entering the Earth'

    Chuck Pierce says we need to brace ourselves.

  • What if You Could Save $500 This Week?

    What if You Could Save $500 This Week?

    Start saving for emergencies today with the $500 Savings Challenge by brightpeak financial. It's chock-full of inspiration, great savings tips and the motivation to make a dent in your savings—for real! Go to to sign up!

  • Lee's ministry photo

    10 Ways to Pray for a Troubled America

    God is always willing to rescue His people if they pray.

  • Hillary Clinton

    What if Hillary Clinton Wins the White House?

    Polls have Mrs. Clinton leading by 11 points. The church must be prepared.

  • Low-Rate Church Loans Available!

    Low-Rate Church Loans Available!

    Whether it's purchasing a property, remodeling or refinancing, Christian Community Credit Union has a loan package that's customized for your budget and situation.

  • Holy Spirit prophetic

    7 Ways to Cultivate Sensitivity to the Holy Spirit

    Too many of God's people are led by fear, doubt, man-pleasing, presumption, assumption, idols ...

  • God doesn't usually shout, so you should listen carefully.

    What Happens When You Actually Listen to God

    It will surprise—and most likely shock—you.

  • Is there any unconfessed sin in your life?

    Scripture Says Pain, Health and Sin Share This Unexpected Connection

    If you're experiencing chronic pain, this may offer you the answer you need.

  • Guarding the gates of your heart will keep the demonic and evil out of your life.

    Keep the Demonic Out of Your Life With This Oft-Overlooked Spiritual Warfare Strategy

    The enemy knows his limitations. Limit him.

  • Continue Your Journey with the Holy Spirit

    Continue Your Journey with the Holy Spirit

    Follow God on the most fulfilling journey of your life with Encounter the Holy Spirit! Break away from past hurts and press into the One who wants a personal encounter with you.

  • Dream the Unimaginable In His Presence

    Dream the Unimaginable In His Presence

    Reach your full potential and be led by His Spirit. In His Presence takes you to a deeper understanding of who God is and how he communicates with us.

  • Set Your Spirit on Fire

    Set Your Spirit on Fire

    Receive the power and gifts that come through the Holy Spirit Baptism. Don’t go empty-handed; accept all that He has for you! His power is available to those who ask.

  • Put on the Full Armor of God

    Put on the Full Armor of God

    Break every stronghold with the power of the Holy Spirit. Use the power of your tongue to declare and decree the Word of God. Witness heaven move on your behalf.

Use Desktop Layout
Charisma Magazine — Empowering believers for life in the Spirit