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New reality show focuses on six ‘Preachers of L.A.’

New reality show focuses on six ‘Preachers of L.A.’

Non-denominational pastor Jay Haizlip, featured in the Oxygen Network’s new program “Preachers of L.A.,” thinks the reality show is going to be “phenomenal for the church.” Christianity Today notes that the show, “is billed as ‘a rare glimpse into the lives of six high-profile pastors from Los Angeles.’


The show drew controversy because of its apparent focus—per promotional clips—on the seemingly ostentatious lifestyles of some of the featured pastors, who sport glitzy jewelry, drive expensive cars, and appear to live in palatial homes.” In a CT interview, Haizlip says:

The traditional church is scared to death right now because this is a non-traditional approach to getting outside its walls. This isn’t a Jesus crusade in a stadium. This isn’t a method that’s been used traditionally in the past. It’s not a talking head Christian show on Christian TV. It’s scaring the heck out of the church, but it’s going to be very beneficial.

What’s the gospel message you hope people get out of this show?

My desire for this show is that people see God in a way that’s relatable—I can be real with him. God doesn’t demand that I was in some condition of perfection before I approach him. I can genuinely connect with God like I am, where I am, and God will help me to become who I need to be. My desire would be that it spark interest in people, that it would be a seed, water a seed, or draw someone back to God who may have drifted away.

This show isn’t about preaching to the choir. I want the church world to be proud of the fact that six leaders within the Christian faith are out here willing to do something outside the box, and I want to do it in a way that the Christian church is proud of. But my goal personally isn’t so much to minister to the Christian church. I want to minister to the world that won’t ever come in our churches.

Read more. What do you think? Is this new show going to draw the unchurched to become believers?

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Chris H.

This is "reality" tv we're talking about, so no "ordinary" Christian will do, even those on the evangelical side. The true Amish would never be on one of their shows, etc. Who would they choose for an Episcopal show? Spong, Forrester, a Pagan/Episcopal priest, some priest that doesn't believe in miracles, the resurrection, eternal life or an immortal soul, etc. Maybe the inventor of the clown or pirate Eucharist. The show's just not interesting unless the people on it are crazy. I can only hope viewers don't tar all Christians, Evangelical, Liberal, and the ones being killed in the Middle East with the same brush.

Please don't pretend the prosperity gospel is not alive and well in parts of TEC, too. It is the "country club" church after all. It' members are richer on average than any other denomination. You can't say that a church with as many endowments as this or Trinity Church in Manhattan doesn't like money;it's just the "old money" folk are more discreet.

Chris Harwood

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Malcolm French+

I'd like to see a documentary about clergy that preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ instead of hue he false gospel of wealth, conspicuous consumption and American Exceptionalism.

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tgflux

"The traditional church is scared to death right now because this is a non-traditional approach to getting outside its walls."

That's one way of putting it. The Father-of-(GREED&)Lies is REALLY INTO this sort of "non-traditional approach". }-/

JC Fisher

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mscottsail

This isn't the only such show coming. There is also the show from Bravo TV (an NBC channel) called "Thicker than Water." The subject is the family of Ben Tankard, Gospel singer and producer. The promo I've seen for it is just as focused on wealth - in this case a pretty explicit expression of the prosperity Gospel. This isn't really that much of a surprise from someone who received commissioning from Creflo Dollar (http://www.bentankard.org/bios.html). There is a hint, too, that this will highlight some family stress (and perhaps dysfunction); although that may be more ad hype than actual content.

It seems to me that the evangelical churches will feel this the hardest; but I fear it won't do any of us any good. There's that old saying, "There's no such thing as bad press." Somehow, that seems to me apt if all you want is attention to yourself - any attention. If you think you're pointing beyond yourself, then I can't agree.

Marshall Scott

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