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Middle East’s largest Christian TV network celebrates 20 years on-air

Friday 27 May 2016, by SIGNIS

Cairo, May, 27th, 2016 (SAT-7). From broadcasting two hours to 840 each week; from one channel to five; from one to three languages; all achieved in just 20 years. SAT-7’s first Arabic program aired on 31 May 1996 to millions across the Middle East and North Africa. SAT-7 will celebrate this milestone with a special event in Egypt.

Alongside 700 guests, SAT-7 will celebrate its 20th Anniversary with a four-hour-long festival in Cairo, on 30 May 2016. “SAT-7: Beacon of Light – 20 years of Broadcasting God’s Love” will be broadcast live and also streamed for viewers to watch online.

Egyptian dignitaries, representatives from the Egyptian government, and church leaders from many denominations will attend the festival. Clergy from the Coptic Orthodox Church, the Catholic Church and the Evangelical Church will deliver speeches. Many choirs and bands will perform – and an operetta has been written especially for the occasion.

Though this event will be a colossal celebration, the first two-hour SAT-7 broadcast 20 years ago was a far humbler affair. A small studio, rented by the hour with limited staff, took on the incredible challenge of videotaping the first production. But, they were driven by a vision: to make God’s Love Visible to millions of people in the Middle East and North Africa.

The success of SAT-7’s growth is due to several key developments. The establishment of Farsi (SAT-7 PARS) and Turkish (SAT-7 TÜRK) language channels has enabled SAT-7 to reach a wider audience. The development of digital technology, 24/7 broadcasting and the introduction of live shows also furthered the organisation’s capacity. Additionally, the creation of Audience Relations centres opened up dialogue between individual viewers and channel spokespersons. Every viewer has the opportunity to communicate directly with SAT-7, asking for prayer or sharing their testimonies.

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