On February 7, 2011, our U.S. viewing audience nearly tripled with the start of our daily broadcast on Trinity Broadcasting Network (TBN) at 6:30 a.m. EST. I’ve been believing for this for a long time.
In just the eleven years and one month since our first television broadcast was aired on January 3, 2000, we have covered and are well on our way to saturating the U.S. with the Gospel Truth. I believe everyone deserves to hear the true Gospel. Thank You, Jesus, and thank you to all our partners whom the Lord has used to accomplish this. Just as the conservative talk shows have provided an alternative to liberal media, I believe the Lord has raised up our Gospel Truth broadcasts as an alternative to mainstream religion.
In January of 2011, we received 29,000 calls in our Phone Center. With the addition of our daily TBN broadcasts, I expect to be receiving over 50,000 calls, or more, per month before the year is out. This means we will need more staff and that a lot more free materials will be going out. With the cost of the airtime, we estimate an additional $400,000 per month will be necessary to accommodate this growth.
I’ve proven over forty-three years of ministry that in time, the people who receive ministry respond financially, but it does take time. Most people are skeptical about our free CD offers. They check us out to see what the catch is. When they find it’s genuine, many start supporting us. History has shown us it takes at least six months to a year before a new expansion like this is self-supporting.
And all of this comes when we are in the midst of building a new campus for our Charis Bible College (CBC) at The Sanctuary in Woodland Park, Colorado. It was one year ago this month when I shared this new vision with you. In this last year, we’ve been able to pay all the planning, architectural, and some construction costs we have encountered so far. But come late spring, it will be time to start the building project in earnest.
Our next step at The Sanctuary, called “Paving the Way,” will cost about $3.5 million and will include putting in the roads and utilities and grading the building site. Then, this fall, we will start construction. This will cost $25-30 million over the next two years.
So, in summary, we need $10 million extra in the next year to keep pace. When you consider that our annual income is just over $20 million, that is huge. But I know this is what the Lord has led me to do.
I could scale back our building plans and just concentrate on TBN. I will do so if necessary. My priority is getting the Gospel out. But accommodating the growth of CBC is getting the Gospel out. In the end, I think the impact of CBC may be the biggest thing God does through this ministry.
Both television and CBC are integral parts of the vision the Lord has given us for making disciples. We reach vast numbers of people through television and disciple them to a degree. But our greatest way of making disciples is through the Bible college.
Hundreds of thousands of people have been reached through our graduates in Uganda. Graduates in Russia have translated and put our Gospel Truth television programs on a network there that reaches 160 million households across eleven times zones. That’s 30 percent more households than in all of the U.S. And similar things are being done all over the world right now. We are in the process of trying to start CBCs in Hong Kong and Singapore in order to fulfill the request we received in November to train 200,000 Chinese pastors.
Jamie and I have spent our whole lives trying to get the true Gospel out to as many people as possible. This television expansion and our new CBC campus are both vital results of all we’ve been doing for the last forty-three years. This isn’t coincidence or poor timing; this is God. I believe with all my heart that God has raised us up for such a time as this (Esth. 4:14).
It’s an absolute miracle what God has accomplished through partners like you. You are the best. Millions of lives are being touched all around the world because of your generous giving. Jamie and I thank you from the bottom of our hearts. We will never forget where we’ve come from. We know we couldn’t do this without you.
Eighty-five thousand people are receiving this letter. A $10 gift per month for a year from everyone would meet this need. It’s really that simple. However, I know that not everyone can or will respond to this. So, I need those of you who can do more to pray about it and do whatever the Lord enables you to do.
Let me remind you that monthly giving can enable those of you who don’t have much extra cash to make a big contribution. Giving sixty cents per day equals nearly $20 per month, or $240 per year. Most people spend more than that on coffees or sodas. It’s just a matter of priorities. Obviously this is a priority for Jamie and me, and we pray it becomes a priority for you too.
We don’t want anyone who is truly unable to give to feel any pressure. Jamie and I were basically homeless once. We didn’t live on the street or take government assistance, but we had to live with family for nearly a year. We’ve been there. But we kept giving, and I’m convinced that was an important part of God bringing us out of poverty. So, be faithful with what you have, and the Lord will multiply it back to you.