Tag Archives: Television

Review: Margaret Register and STAR Ministries

Register, Margaret. A Place for People, Puppets, and Cockroach Soup: Pioneering Delightfully Over-the-Top and Seriously Under-Budgeted Christian TV Productions. [S.n.] : CreateSpace, 2012.

Once again, Margaret (Maggie) Register delights us with an outstanding memoir. This time she chronicles, with humor and pathos, the formation of STAR Ministries, an Assemblies of God World Missions television and radio production studio. Margaret Register speaks in a conversational tone, drawing the reader first into her experience in Guatemala where 18,000 children came to a basketball stadium to see the “stars” of Lugar Secreto, the children’s show she and her husband, Joe, produced. She is authentic in describing, sometimes with great humor, the struggles, setbacks, and joys of learning television production—first as “talent,” then as floor director, and finally as producer—and the unexpected traumas of life as a “foreign” missionary based in the States and working with dozens of volunteers.

After ten years as missionaries in Chile and Paraguay, South America, Joe and Margaret Register wanted to produce a television talk show in Spanish. But, how does one begin a first-time-ever ministry of Spanish Television and Radio? Joe and Margaret did not even consider doing a show for children. Not at first.

A Place for People, Puppets, and Cockroach Soup recounts amazing, funny, heart-warming, sometimes near-tragic stories of how God took His plan and wrapped it around the far-reaching dreams and hard work of a dedicated family—Joe, Margaret, daughter Crysti, and son Timmy—and a host of God-sent volunteers. They did not know how to build sets, run cable, operate cameras, develop “characters” or write scripts. They learned by trial and error, with a budget always stretched to the limit. But God gave creative ideas and sent gifted volunteers and delightful puppets. The result was El Lugar Secreto (The Secret Place), a series of award-winning shows for Spanish-speaking children.

These true stories display fascinating, unique events as God’s grace and wisdom astound Joe and Margaret as they developed a very successful television ministry that would eventually reach all of Latin America and be broadcast on fourteen satellites into 200 countries.

From language study in Mexico to the country of Chile and then to Paraguay, Margaret, in her first book, No Place for Plastic Saints, recounts vividly an earthquake, a dead body on a table, and chicken feet in soup. Joe and Margaret lived in Temuco and in Viña, Chile, and later in Paraguay, where they began a very successful television ministry that would eventually reach all of Latin America (the story she tells in this, her second book).

Margaret Register has done a great service to the body of Christ in writing A Place for People, Puppets, and Cockroach Soup. She excels in painting delightful and vivid word pictures so that you, the reader, feel you are there with her as she walks through each dramatic story. This is truly an authentic account of the good, the bad, and the miraculous in the life of a dedicated missionary family. This book is a must read!

Reviewed by Juanita Cunningham Blackburn, Assemblies of God missionary

Paperback, 273 pages. $17.99 retail. Also available in Kindle. Order from: Amazon.

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Rex Humbard Biography

Rex Humbard Biography

The Soul-Winning Century, 1906-2006 : The Humbard Family Legacy … One Hundred Years of Ministry, by Rex Humbard. Dallas, TX: Clarion Call Marketing, 2006.

Since almost the beginning of the twentieth century Pentecostal movement, members of the Humbard family have been engaging in earnest, energetic ministry to reach the lost for Christ. Rex Humbard, whose preaching has graced the airwaves for over 65 years, has now told his family’s story in his memoirs, The Soul-Winning Century.

While Rex Humbard became a household name through his groundbreaking television ministry, his father, Alpha E. Humbard also was an important pioneer preacher in his own right. Alpha Humbard, born in 1890 sixty miles north of Little Rock, Arkansas, had a rough childhood. Poverty, fights, liquor, and hard work dominated the world in which young Alpha was reared. However, he sensed God’s calling at a young age and overcame the odds to answer this call. Alpha was a practical, direct, no-nonsense kind of preacher whose compassion for people, according to this telling, overcame any deficit created by his lack of formal education. Perhaps it was this lack of haute couture – combined with a dependence upon God — that allowed him to touch the masses where they were at.

Alpha once recalled that a seminary-trained minister bitterly complained that, while he was a learned man with good diction and degrees, he could not draw the crowds like Alpha, whom he described as “an old farm boy, a clodhopper who can’t talk good English.” Alpha recalled that he recommended that the minister throw away his cigar, which he was smoking while complaining, and get on his knees and pray (p. 27). Alpha was not alone – his innovative, sometimes rough-and-tumble ways reflected a whole generation of early Pentecostal preachers. Continue reading

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Amanda Benedict remembered after 82 years

Amanda Benedict Memorial Service

Participants at the Amanda Benedict memorial service (l-r): Assistant Archivist Glenn Gohr; Rev. Hubert Morris of Central Assembly; FPHC Director Darrin Rodgers; Dr. James Bradford, pastor of Central Assembly; General Secretary George Wood; Jewell Woodward, adminstrative assistant to George Wood; National Prayer Center Director John Maempa; and Archivist Joyce Lee.

Benedict Grave Stone 1

Front of marker

Benedict Grave Stone 2

Back of marker

Photographs by Sharon Rasnake


As part of the celebration of 100 years of Pentecost in Springfield, Central Assembly chose to honor one of the early leaders in the church, Miss Amanda Benedict, who is remembered as a fervent prayer warrior.

Educated in New York, her home state, she later conducted a rescue home for girls in Chicago and was connected with a faith home for children in Iowa. She moved to Springfield, Missouri, sometime before 1910 and met Mrs. Lillie Corum while working as a door-to-door salesperson. The two ladies and others began praying together regularly, and soon Amanda Benedict received the baptism of the Holy Spirit. She had a burden for lost souls and that God might bless the gospel work in Springfield, Missouri.

Sister Benedict would fast and pray for days on end, until a burden was lifted or victory came. Often, like Napoleon, she would say, “There shall be no Alps!” She had a tremendous burden that God would make Springfield a center from which his blessings would flow to the ends of the earth. At one point she felt led to fast and pray for Springfield for one entire year — living only on bread and water.

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Can you identify this St. Louis area C.A. photo?

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This appears to be a group of high schoolers (note the Christ’s Ambassadors emblem on the drum set) in the 1960s. One of the television cameras says “KTVI TV” which would indicate this choir and orchestra were taped by Channel 2 – KTVI in St. Louis, Missouri. If you can identify the director, any of the group members, the date, or the occasion of the photograph, please contact FPHC staff member Glenn Gohr.

Posted by Glenn Gohr

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