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Thursday, 23 April 2015

Prosperity Gospel preacher and ecumenist Rev. Robert H. Schuller who died on April 2, 2015 has been honored at public memorial service outside Crystal Cathedral

 
Rev. Robert H. Schuller is seen in this 1991 file photo.
Rev. Robert H. Schuller

SCHULLER: Tell me, what do you think is the future of Christianity?
GRAHAM: Well, Christianity and being a true believer--you know, I think there's the Body of Christ. This comes from all the Christian groups around the world, outside the Christian groups. I think everybody that loves Christ, or knows Christ, whether they're conscious of it or not, they're members of the Body of Christ. And I don't think that we're going to see a great sweeping revival that will turn the whole world to Christ at any time. I think James answered that, the Apostle James in the first council in Jerusalem, when he said God's purpose for this age is to call out a people for His name. And that's what God is doing today, He's calling people out of the world for His name, whether they come from the Muslim world, or the Buddhist world, or the Christian world or the non-believing world, they are members of the Body of Christ because they've been called by GOD. They may not even know the name of Jesus but they know in their hearts they need something that they don't have, and they turn to the only light that they have, and I think they are saved, and that they're going to be with us in heaven.

SCHULLER: What, what I hear you saying that it's possible for Jesus Christ to come into human hearts and souls and life, even if they've been born in darkness and have never had exposure to the Bible. Is that a correct interpretation of what you're saying?

GRAHAM: Yes, it is, because I believe that I've met people in various parts of the world in tribal situations, that they have never seen a Bible or heard about a Bible, and never heard of Jesus, but they've believed in their hearts that there was a God, and they've tried to live a life that was quite apart from the surrounding community in which they lived.

SCHULLER: I, I'm so thrilled to hear you say this. There's a wideness in God's mercy.

GRAHAM: There is. There definitely is.

 

FIRST READ: 

FROM SCRIPTURE TO STRIPTURE: PASTOR ROBERT SCHULLER’S AMAZING NEW AGE ‘CHRISTIANITY’

Deceptions: Graham, Peale & Schuller

Billy Graham Says Jesus Christ is Not the Only Way

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4MZWug3QAvs&feature=related

"Self-Esteem: The New Reformation"

Rev. Robert Schuller honored at public memorial service outside Crystal Cathedral

Pallbearers carry the casket of Rev. Robert H. Schuller during a public memorial service for Schuller at the Christ Cathedral, Monday, April 20, 2015, in Garden Grove.
Pallbearers carry the casket of Rev. Robert H. Schuller during a public memorial service for Schuller at the Christ Cathedral, Monday, April 20, 2015, in Garden Grove.
Hundreds of people gathered Monday at a memorial service for televangelist Rev. Robert H. Schuller outside the glimmering cathedral he built in Southern California.


Schuller died on April 2 after a battle with esophageal cancer. He was 88.

The memorial was held on a plaza at what was formerly Schuller's Crystal Cathedral in the heart of Orange County and is now a Roman Catholic cathedral.


Among those listening to family members and religious leaders was Theresa Boyd, 54. She said Schuller inspired her with his uplifting message and by inviting speakers including political leaders and an Olympic athlete.


"He brought in successful people (as speakers) and said, 'you can do it too if you believe in God,'" Boyd said.



A private burial was to follow the service.

Schuller started preaching from the roof of a concession stand at a drive-in movie theater in California in 1955. He began the televised "Hour of Power" in 1970 to spread his upbeat messages on faith and redemption - that "possibility thinking" and love of God overcome hardships - to millions.


At its peak in the 1990s, the program had 20 million viewers in about 180 countries.


In recent years, Schuller faded from view after watching his church collapse amid a disastrous leadership transition and declines in viewership and donations that forced the ministry to file for bankruptcy in 2010.


The glass-paned, 2,800-seat sanctuary where Schuller once preached was sold to the Roman Catholic Diocese of Orange.


Schuller, who wrote more than 30 books, including several best-sellers, lost a legal battle in 2012 to collect more than $5 million from his former ministry over claims of copyright infringement and breach of contract.

Robert Harold Schuller was born in Alton, Iowa, in 1926 and ordained in 1950. He was pastor of Ivanhoe Reformed Church in Chicago from 1950 to 1955 before moving to California.


Besides his son, Schuller and his wife had four daughters: Sheila, Jeanne, Carol and Gretchen. Wife Arvella Schuller died Feb. 11, 2014, after a brief illness.


Robert Schuller, Crystal Cathedral founder, dies at age 88

The Rev. Robert H. Schuller, the Crystal Cathedral megachurch founder, died Thursday at the age of 88.




The Rev. Robert H. Schuller, the Southern California televangelist and author who beamed his upbeat messages on faith and redemption to millions from his landmark Crystal Cathedral only to see his empire crumble in his waning years, has died. He was 88.

Schuller died early Thursday at a care facility in Artesia, daughter Carol Schuller Milner said. He was diagnosed with terminal esophageal cancer in 2013.

Once a well-known televangelist, Schuller faded from view in recent years after watching his church collapse amid a disastrous leadership transition and sharp declines in viewership and donations that ultimately forced the ministry to file for bankruptcy.

The soaring, glass-paned Crystal Cathedral - the touchstone of Schuller's career - was sold to the Roman Catholic Diocese of Orange in 2011, and Schuller lost a legal battle the following year to collect more than $5 million from his former ministry for claims of copyright infringement and breach of contract.

Schuller, who preached in a flowing purple robe and outsized aviator glasses, led an evangelical Protestant ministry that was a product of modern technology. He and his late wife, Arvella, started a ministry in 1955 with $500 when he began preaching from the roof of a concession stand at a drive-in movie theater southeast of Los Angeles.

The church's motto - "Come as you are in the family car" - tapped into the burgeoning Southern California auto culture and the suburban boom of post-World War II America.
Mary Doyle Keefe, the model for Norman Rockwell's iconic 1943 Rosie the Riveter painting, died Tuesday, April 21, 2015. She was 92. Jim Cole

By 1961, the church had a brick-and-mortar home and Schuller began broadcasting the "Hour of Power" in 1970.

In 1980, he built the glass-and-steel Crystal Cathedral to house his booming TV ministry, which was broadcast live each week from the 2,800-seat sanctuary. At its peak in the 1990s, the program had 20 million viewers in about 180 countries.

Schuller's message - that "Possibility Thinking" and love of God overcome hardships - was a uniquely American blend of Bible and psychology.

Unlike other televangelists, Schuller's message lacked fire-and-brimstone condemnations or conservative political baggage. Fundamentalists attacked him for statements they believed denied the need for personal repentance of sin.

Schuller had admirers that ranged from fellow evangelist Billy Graham to Presidents Richard Nixon, Gerald Ford and Ronald Reagan. His friendship with President Bill Clinton raised some eyebrows among the conservative Republicans.

In the start of a carefully choreographed leadership transition, Schuller's only son, 51-year-old Robert A. Schuller, was installed as senior pastor in 2006.

The younger Schuller left amid a bitter family feud in 2008. His father had removed him from the "Hour of Power" broadcasts, and he quit as senior pastor a few weeks later.

The tumult worsened a pre-existing decline in viewership and donations, and in 2010, Crystal Cathedral ministries filed for bankruptcy, citing debt of more than $43 million.

Bankruptcy filings indicated the ministry was paying significant tax-exempt housing allowances to Schuller family members and insiders. The allowances were legal but raised concerns among vendors and other creditors who had gone unpaid for months.

Robert Harold Schuller was born in Alton, Iowa, in 1926, and ordained in 1950. He was pastor of Ivanhoe Reformed Church in Chicago from 1950 to 1955 before moving to California.

Besides his son, Schuller and his wife had four daughters: Sheila, Jeanne, Carol and Gretchen. Wife Arvella Schuller died Feb. 11, 2014, after a brief illness.


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