The Producers Of “The Bible” Mini-Series Meet With President Obama

Actress Roma Downey says President Barack Obama congratulated her on the success of “The Bible” — the ten-hour TV series she co-produced with her husband.

Downey met with the president and first lady at the White House, and she say the Obamas were thankful that the show has “engaged the country in a conversation about the Bible.”  Downey plays Mary, the mother of the adult Jesus in the mini-series.

She says she was upset that some people claimed the actor who played Satan looked like the president. She dismisses that as “nonsense” and a distraction.

Downey says 68 million people have viewed the episodes shown on the “History” and “Lifetime” channels.  She also thinks it’s God’s timing that “The Bible” is being shown as the seating of a new pope in Rome has people thinking about faith.

The final episode airs this Sunday on Easter.

I don’t know if you’ve been watching American Idol this season, but you won’t BELIEVE how many of the finalists are Christians!  8 of the top 10 are Christians and they aren’t ashamed to share their faith.

Angela Miller could be crowned the winner this year, and she often tweets about her faith.   Angela became a fan favorite after performing an original worship song called “You Set Me Free” during auditions.

Curtis Finch Jr. is another finalist, and he left the judges praising God after his rendition of “I Believe I Can Fly”.

Finch is a gospel singer and a worship leader, and he received a standing ovation from the judges and the audience.

Remember to keep Angela, Curtis, and all the other Christian contestants in prayer, that God will give them an opportunity to boldly share their faith with the other contestants and the audience!

I’m Bill Maier for Shine.FM.

Click here for the audio version of this article.

The Bible On The History Channel

Have you seen the new mini-series “The Bible” on The History Channel?

As you may have heard, it’s produced by Mark Burnett and Roma Downey.  Mark is the reality TV producer of shows like “The Voice” and “Survivor,” and Roma is best known for her lead role in the CBS series “Touched By An Angel.”

When “The Bible” kicked off two weeks ago, Pastor Rick Warren of Saddleback Church in Southern California gave a close up look at the production of the mini-series during a live webcast.

The 90-minute simulcast featured an overview of the series and a behind the scenes look at the show with Burnett and Downey,

Pastor Warren says that “The Bible” series is a great opportunity for pastors and church leaders to reach out to people who will be watching the mini-series, but may not attend church.

He is incorporating the series into his Sunday sermons every weekend that it airs.  Saddleback Church is showing “The Bible” on big screens at the church’s main campus each Sunday evening until Easter.

He is encouraging other churches to do the same.

By the way, the actor who plays Jesus in the “The Bible” admits he panicked when he got the part.  Diogo Morgado is an actor from Portugal, and he says he wondered, “How can you play Jesus Christ? How can you play the son of God?  — You can’t.”

Morgado said just speaking the words of Jesus was a privilege that he’s “still digesting.

“The Bible” will be shown on the History Channel each Sunday night this month, with the final two hours on Easter Sunday.

If you’d like more information on the series, just go to

I’m Bill Maier for Shine.FM

Click here for the audio version of this article.

What Was Your Favorite Commercial From The Big Game?

It’s Garrett from Shine Afternoons.  Did you watch the “Big Game” last night? One of my favorite parts is watching the commercials (apparently 1 in 3 Americans are just like me). A couple of my favorites were the “God made farmers” [Paul Harvey-Dodge Trucks], and the “no worries mon” [Jamaica VW]. What was your favorite?

Meredith Andrews Live Event 01/24/13 6pm ET

Join the New Shine.FM, Worship Leader Magazine and Word Worship recording artist Meredith Andrews, along with her husband and band-member Jacob Sooter on Thursday, January 24 at 6 pm ET for a live streaming event. Meredith will be sharing live, acoustic versions of select songs from her new album, Worth It All, which releases two days prior, January 22.

Meredith will also share stories behind those songs and from her own experiences as a worship leader at Harvest Bible Chapel in Chicago, where she and Jacob currently serve.

The live stream event will last approximately one hour with the last 15 minutes devoted to viewers’ Q&A.

Watch the stream at www.worshipleader.comThursday, January 24 at 6 pm Eastern Time.


Christmas Vacation…Keep On Rollin’

We took our kids roller skating yesterday since they are on Christmas break, and I figured I would lace up my skates and spend the afternoon on the skate floor since I was a pretty good skater back in the day! Well….three laps later as my legs were throbbing and feeling like rubber.  It was then I realized that I’m not as young as I used to be, and maybe a little stretching would help!  It wasn’t too long afterwards that I was cruising around the rink with kids….oh and even mustered up the courage to do some back-wards skating with my daughter.  What fun family activity have you done with your children over Christmas vacation?  ~ Garrett

Entertainment Affecting Attention Spans

America’s teachers are concerned about the impact that entertainment is having on learning.

In a new poll, 71% of teachers say they believe that entertainment is hurting their student’s attention spans, and nearly 50% believe that it’s keeping them from doing their homework well.

The study was done by Common Sense Media Research—and it described texting and spending time on social networks as “entertainment,” alongside watching television, playing video games and listening to music.

The majority of teachers believe that such media is also hurting students’ ability to write coherently and communicate face-to-face. Many teachers also say entertainment and technology are impairing critical thinking skills.

One elementary school teacher wrote this for the study, “Attention spans seem to be decreasing, as does students’ abilities to persist through difficult tasks. (They’d rather just push restart and start over.)”

By the way, another new study on the impact of technology found that the “auto-complete” functions on smartphones seem to make teens faster but less accurate in cognitive tests. Time Magazine reports that kids who are frequent texters tend to score higher in their verbal reasoning ability, but lower on actual literacy.

Scientists also believe search engines are reshaping our memories. With so much information at our fingertips, we no longer have to store it in our brains.

And while email may be an effective way to communicate on the job, employees who juggle looking at email with other tasks suffer a temporary 10-point drop in their IQ by the end of the day.

I’m Bill Maier for Shine.FM.

CLICK HERE for the Audio Version of this post.