Readers may recall that in July 2003 Evangelical Times carried a report (‘Television, the modern marketplace’) on a new initiative for using satellite TV in the UK for biblical evangelistic preaching.
The plan was to broadcast a five-minute, twice-weekly, no frills, preacher-to-camera presentation by men of proven faithfulness to the gospel and the courage to declare it. The programme was to be called ‘Straight Talk’ – a name which expressed the desire of the producers to be clear and uncompromising in the televised declaration of God’s unchanging Word.
The purpose of the whole venture is to provide local Evangelical churches nationwide with a contemporary means of reaching the millions of ordinary people who are untouched by our current evangelistic activities.
The good news is that we are now on the brink of seeing the plan become reality. Among the encouragements of recent months have been the following developments.
* A broadcast-level studio has been constructed and completed in Plymouth, in premises belonging to a welcoming and enthusiastically involved local church.
* The Lord has brought on board the skills and experience of Ian Densham of St Ives, whose practical knowledge and advice have proved invaluable.
* Necessary and costly technical equipment has been provided and much of it paid for.
* Local Evangelical churches, organisations and individuals have sponsored the production of 20 programmes.
* Our first filmed recordings for ‘Straight Talk’, featuring Vernon Higham, Mike Mellor and Geoff Marshall, have taken place.
* The first televised broadcasts will soon be aired (see below).
* A ‘Seekers’ Website’ containing graded study materials for enquirers is now in place (www.straighttalktelevision.com).
* A postal address for viewers who respond to programming is now operational (see below).
* Hundreds of Evangelical churches have been informed by e-mail of our plans in an effort to motivate them to advertise the programmes regularly in their local and regional press, as well as by local literature distribution.
* Trailers for the programmes have been sent to Channel 202 Sky Digital, to provoke viewers’ curiosity.
We do earnestly ask readers to encourage their local church to make use of this resource – by advertising it widely and regularly, while at the same time identifying their church with the broadcast – encouraging people to understand that they can hear more of the same gospel in the local evangelical church.
Please encourage your church to include the programme in your regular prayer priorities.
Our goal as programme makers is not to create a name for ourselves but to serve the local church. To that end, the key aim of all our contacts with enquirers will be to put them in touch with their nearest Bible-teaching church.
If you would like to be kept informed by e-mail of news and future plans, or wish to know more about the work and how you can be involved, please contact us at [email protected] or Straight Talk TV, PO Box 328, Plymouth, PL2 3YO (01752 564444).
The first ‘Straight Talk’ preaching programme will be broadcast at 8.25am on Saturday 7 February with a repeat on Sunday 8 February at 12.30pm on Channel 202 Sky Digital (a free channel available to all Sky customers). The preacher will be Vernon Higham.