Over the last year, SAT-7’s Persian channel has seen a significant surge in responses from viewers in Afghanistan wanting to know more about the Christian faith. The huge increase in viewer responses came after the channel launched on a second satellite platform, Yahsat, a year ago. Compared to Hotbird, the satellite platform SAT-7 PARS has been broadcasting on since 2006, […]
Being a voice
When SAT-7 first launched in 1996, a Christian viewer in Egypt was so startled to see an Arab presenter wearing a cross on TV, he called the channel straight away. “Mish Ma’oul! This is unbelievable!” he said. For more than 21 years, SAT-7 has been committed to being a voice for Christians and for many others who often go unheard in the Middle East and North Africa.
Since those first days, SAT-7 has given the region’s Christians the ability to go out from behind church walls (the only place where many MENA states legally permit them to teach and preach) to share God’s love wherever people live and are watching.
It also enables them to speak up for the equal value of women and children in patriarchal societies, to give support to people with disabilities in countries where disability is often associated with shame, and to promote dialogue and reconciliation across divided communities.
Smyrna Khalef - presenter and psychologist
Parents sometimes don’t give children a voice to explain that ‘I need to be respected; I need to be cared for; I need to be talked to in a positive manner and I will listen.’
Shoaib, presenter of 'Secrets of Life'
“For 800 years Christianity was destroyed in Afghanistan. Now the church is growing rapidly. From a handful of Christians 20 years ago, today we have thousands. Afghanistan doesn’t permit official churches. They meet in pockets of small groups and most are under 25 years old. They are the hope of the country that they will build the church.”
Challenging stigmas and discrimination
An array of programmes for women seeks to show them their God-given value. Semsa Deniz, presenter of Homemade, says, “the correct image of a normal Christian woman does not exist in Turkey. This programme wants to show a modern but ethically strong Turkish Christian woman.” Programmes like Insiders for viewers in Iran, Needle and Thread and Start from Here for Arabic speakers do a similar job of inspiring women and grappling with the challenges they face – from pressure to marry to domestic abuse.
SAT-7 has tackled the burden of stigma attached to disability in various ways, from a game show where able and disabled children competed together through to Obstacle Overcomers, a series that counters negative stereotypes by telling the stories and achievements of individuals with a range of impairments.
Programmes like Arabic current affairs show Bridges frequently spotlight cases of discrimination and persecution of Christian believers. But the show also invites representatives of different churches and faiths and various political and civil society leaders to offer a range of perspectives so that viewers can be better informed. The SAT-7 TÜRK Haber news programme is a unique TV news service for Turkish viewers, sharing worldwide news from the Body of Christ.
As divorce rates skyrocket in the Middle East, new programme From Heart to Heart is encouraging couples to open up about their struggles. The live show’s married presenters bravely share their own issues and bring a biblical perspective, to help strengthen viewers in their own relationships. “People want to feel free to talk about their struggles,” says Marianne, who presents the SAT-7 ARABIC […]
A new SAT-7 ARABIC discussion show is revealing the important role Christians have played in building Arab societies and culture. With the input of guests from across the Middle East and North Africa (MENA), House of Wisdom raises awareness of the region’s Christian past and key historical figures, including poets, physicians, and scientists. The programme’s title comes from the name of a landmark academic […]
New SAT-7 KIDS show Chat-o seeks to answer the everyday questions of Middle Eastern children by turning to the guidance of the Bible and its heroes. Growing up in the Middle East can be tough for children, particularly when they have no one to turn to for advice. “Children ask why they lost their loved ones, others ask why they […]
Lindsay Shaw reflects on a visit to Egypt over Eastern Palm Sunday Last Saturday I stood on the spot where 18 people lost their lives to a suicide bomb just one year ago. I was in the gateway of St Mark’s Coptic Cathedral in Alexandria, with local SAT-7 colleagues and three UK journalists. We had come to see SAT-7’s work […]
Turkey has a rich Christian heritage stretching back to the Early Church. But today, because of centuries of discrimination, attacks and social pressure, there are fewer than 200,000 believers left – less than 0.2 per cent of Turkey’s population. These believers are often isolated and lack resources in their own language, so SAT-7’s Turkish channel may be the only support […]
As I reach for my pen this evening, I am reminded by the many posts on social media that it is International Women’s day. Of course, for many, it is a day like any other. But in Bethlehem, we have taken the day off to remember the great achievements of women; to thank them for their ambitions and dreams, […]
Rachid, a pastor serving in several areas of Morocco, describes his experiences and faith in his day-to-day life. I am Pastor Rachid from Morocco. I lead a Church here and serve Christ in several parts of the country through discipleship training, education, church planting and media. My journey to faith in Jesus Christ and service in Morocco has involved many […]
By Hengameh Bourji Hengameh Bourji is one of the presenters of Insiders, a women’s talk show on SAT-7’s Persian channel. Here, she reflects on the hope that Jesus brings to women of all backgrounds, both in the Bible and in modern-day Iran. For us as Christians, the season of Lent and Easter is a time of rejuvenation and renewed hope. […]