Archive for Tuesday, May 12, 2009

GOD TV co-founders buy historic home

May 12, 2009


Linwood is not Hollywood, but the small Leavenworth County town of about 400 people is now home to a pair of international TV personalities.

The historic Harris House — a 15-room, 1883 mansion west of Linwood — recently was purchased by the co-founders of GOD TV, an international Christian television network that is available across the U.S. on the DirecTV satellite system.

Rory and Wendy Stephen — who in 1995 started the Christian television network in Britain — purchased the home and its 11 acres in mid-April, according to records at the Leavenworth County Register of Deeds office.

But don’t expect Linwood to become the new headquarters of GOD TV. Even though the historic house has previously been used to host conferences and special events, an executive for the network said there are no plans for the house to be used as part of GOD TV’s operations.

Instead, the couple — who are best known by their on-air names of Rory and Wendy Alec — purchased the home to serve as one of their private residences, said Jeffrey Levinson, an executive for the network’s U.S. operations.

“The attraction of this particular property to the Alecs is that it has stunning grounds and will make a wonderful family home,” Levinson said via e-mail.

The home is a showpiece in Linwood. The house is on the National Register of Historic Places. It was built by former U.S. Sen. William A. Harris, who during the late 1800s was active in the area as a buyer of land for the Union Pacific Railroad.

“It just has beautiful architecture inside and out,” said Steven Hertzog, who along with his wife sold the home after moving their photography and marketing business to Lawrence.

Levinson said he wasn’t sure how often the couple — who according to their Web site have two children — will be at the property.

GOD TV is now based in Jerusalem and has U.S. offices in Washington, D.C., and Orlando, Fla. The network also has international offices in South Africa, Kenya, India and China, according to its Web site.

According to the Web site, Rory, who serves as CEO of the network, is a native of South Africa, while Wendy, the network’s director of television, was born in England and grew up in South Africa.

The duo regularly host events on GOD TV, such as the Global Day of Prayer celebration later this month, and a program called “Apocalypse and The End of Times.”

— City reporter Chad Lawhorn also writes a Town Talk blog.


Keith 8 years, 9 months ago

Still trying to figure out why you need so much real estate if the world is coming to an end.

zettapixel 8 years, 9 months ago

I want to know what happened to all the comments that were posted with this article yesterday!

ClaroAtaxia 8 years, 9 months ago

I guess they missed the part in the Bible where it commands you to sell all of your worldly possessions and serve the lord. Most of the hippies downtown are more Christian than that!

myvotecounts 8 years, 9 months ago

The church business is booming. It's too bad Kansas won't get any income tax from GOD TV's activities here.

newsreader 8 years, 9 months ago

Didn't the founder of that crazy Hollywood religion say the fastest way to make a million bucks was to start a religion?

beatrice 8 years, 9 months ago

Don't forget, it is tax exempt money at that!

denak 8 years, 9 months ago

If Rory and Wendy Stephens are even half as pompus and judgemental as some of the posters on this thread, it really is a bad day for Linwood.

But since no one on this thread even knows the Stephens family, I'm wondering how they know what these people really stand for. In relation to their wealth, do you know how much they do (or do not) give to charity?

And contrary to what some people think, (erroneously so that they can sneer), God does not want His children to be poor and starving. There is nothing wrong with having nice things. Wordly things (wealth, houses, sex, power, etc) only become "sinful" when they become more important to the individual than their relationship with God and their family.

Personally, I don't care if they are moving here or not. If I care about anything they do, it is that they take care of that historic house they are purchasing.

I just find it funny that so many people are so quick to jump on the Stephens family and judge them and by extension Christianity, when they,the posters, are being more judgemental and hateful then the Stephens family may or may not be.


Keith 8 years, 9 months ago

But we're not claiming to be Christian.

denak 8 years, 9 months ago

It isn't their claim to be Christian that is wrong, it is certain posters erroneous assumption as to what it means to be Christian that is wrong.

It is not the Stephen's hypocrisy that is glaringly obvious but that of certian posters.


hujiko 8 years, 9 months ago

Isn't Christianity about charity? What do they need a mansion for if there are countless homeless people starving in the streets?

tonymontana 8 years, 9 months ago

logicsound04 (Anonymous) says…

I want to know the point of having an on-air name of “Alec” instead of “Stephen”.

Alec must be their favorite Baldwin.

BigPrune 8 years, 9 months ago

I wonder if Sunflower Broadband will broadcast their network when they move GOD TV's world headquarters from Jerusalem to Lawrence, Kansas?

......Imagine the protestors if that happens.

bearded_gnome 8 years, 9 months ago

as I posted on this yesterday, these people are as crazy as TBN, and air many of the same "word faith" charismatic heresy teachers: john hagee; joyce meyer; kenneth copeland; et al.

they promote a cultic view of prayer, salvation, and of God Himself. they are deeply destructive to people's faith.

bearded_gnome 8 years, 9 months ago

the "word faith" teachers teach a very false view, that prosperity is God's will for everyone. that if you just pray the right words, have the right attitude, that God is indebted to give you wealth.

some of the ministries which air on God TV have recently gone under senate investigation for scamming their supporters. Creflo A. Dollar, Joyce Meyer, Copeland, being three of them.

no, it would be easier for a cammel to pass through the eye of a needle than for these two to pass into heaven.

Robert Marble 8 years, 9 months ago

and they might possibly deserve linwood....hard to say since I don't know crap about them, but bible thumpers aren't exactly at the top of my list of respectable people.

headdoctor 8 years, 9 months ago

bearded_gnome (Anonymous) says… some of the ministries which air on God TV have recently gone under senate investigation for scamming their supporters. Creflo A. Dollar, Joyce Meyer, Copeland, being three of them.

I guess the clowns in Washington are upset that there might be some serious competition or they want to learn a better way for their scams.

Robert Marble 8 years, 9 months ago

eh... all religious zeolots are crap regardless type

jonas_opines 8 years, 9 months ago

If you can trust an evangelist by the name of Crefro Dollar, then who can you trust?

patrick25 8 years, 9 months ago

Alot of people are quick to judge. Have any of you did you homework so see the real numbers on this couple? What if I told you that they might have 3 properties that are combined worth less than $800,000, the Linwood home included. But they gave over $5 million to the help the poor in 2008 alone. What you you say then??? I don't think you should be putting anyone down, expecially if you don't know the facts.

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