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The Bible and Pop Culture

Who was the first televangelist?

Bishop Fulton Sheen. Sheen was already a respected teacher, priest, and author by the time he began a weekly radio show in 1930. The show, The Catholic Hour, proved immensely popular. In 1951, Sheen began a weekly television show, Life Is Worth Living. The show was praised by critics and viewers alike. In 1952, Sheen won an Emmy for his work on the show. The substance of the show consisted mainly of Sheen’s talking about the roles of faith and religion in the workaday world. His use of technology to reach a much bigger audience paved the way for future televangelists, including Pat Robertson, Billy Graham, and Joel Osteen.


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