cartoon, Philippines, religion, television

GMA Pits Cartoons vs. Sunday Mass on Other Networks

In an unexpected change of schedule, GMA decided to move ‘In Touch with Dr. Charles Stanley’ to an even earlier timeslot, at the wee hours of 4:00 a.m. Then come 6:00 a.m., a mix of cartoons and anime started airing on the network.

What GMA did is disrespectful and insulting to the Christian religion. Sunday is supposed to be a day of relaxation, rest, recreation and recollection, and yet GMA decided to become desperate by airing cartoons at 6:00 a.m. in hopes of drawing more kids who lacked the motivation to go to church. It is a counter-programming strategy that has gone too far, and GMA deserves a lot of flak for it.

Putting cartoons on an early Sunday morning were nothing new to GMA. Older viewers of the network may remember the time when ‘Word of Hope’ and Cathedral of Praise’s ‘Dawn of Revival’ were being aired before the general entertainment programs. That was back when GMA’s logo was a rainbow. But once the network decided to change its logo into a rainbow-colored heart, they decided to drop most of the religious programs by 7:00 a.m. and air animated programs. From then on its religious programming was restricted to the sunrise hours, before relegating them to the wee hours as of today.

GMA should realize that the majority of the Philippine population remains under the Roman Catholic religion. Going to church, if not watch the whole mass on television, is an obligation for every Catholic family. But by counter-programming them with cartoons every Sunday at 6:00 a.m., GMA seems to promote the notion that they are ‘anti-Catholic’, and in doing so, they try to lure away people from the church and back into their homes, which is not a good idea.

In the end, GMA’s decision to counter-program the Sunday Mass with cartoons will backfire on them. Sorry to the loyal Kapuso viewers, but it is a decision that definitely does not sit well within the Catholic majority in the Philippines.

Notes: Family Rosary Crusade resumed its broadcasts on the new ABS-CBN Sports+Action yesterday. It now airs at 5:00 a.m. Also, the Healing Eucharist on ABS-CBN Channel 2 is now simulcast on Sports+Action Channel 23 every Sunday at 6:00 a.m.

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Philippines, religion, television

Sunday Mass on Philippine Television

Sundays are family days, and one obligation of a family every Sunday is to attend weekly Mass. During early Sunday mornings, a majority of television stations air a live Sunday Mass for families who have no time going to church. However, there were some exceptions.

GMA, for some reason, does not broadcast a weekly Sunday Catholic mass. Instead, they air programs that preach the word of God in a different way. Bro. Eddie Villanueva‘s Jesus is Lord Church has been loyal to the GMA Network for over three decades, airing the flagship program ‘Jesus the Healer’ every Sunday morning. In addition, the said program also airs on sister station GMA News TV on Saturday mornings. After ‘Jesus the Healer’, Dr. Charles Stanley‘s In Touch Ministries air their flagship program on the said network. Like JIL, In Touch and GMA have a loyal relationship that has stretched over two decades.

Even though network affiliate GMA Pinoy TV has committed to air a live Sunday Mass for OFWs every week, the fact that GMA does not commit to air a live Sunday Mass on a weekly basis still baffles me. Although they have aired a Mass on occasion, such events are only aired every Christmas and Holy Week, and is aired via satellite from the Vatican. GMA needs to air a weekly Sunday Mass like its competitors ABS-CBN and TV5, unless they prove that their braintrust are not practicing Catholics.

Net 25, for obvious reasons, is owned by the Iglesia ni Cristo, whose flagship programs likewise air every weekend morning on the said network. Although the INC has its own television network, unfortunately they still air their programs on Net 25, despite the fact that both were UHF television networks. Still, its loyalty to the INC is immeasurable.

Exceptions aside, Sunday Mass on television has been a tradition since the 1960s. Sunday Mass always kicks off the Sunday schedule for most television networks, whose programming that day is normally dedicated to families everywhere. For those who have no time going to church, tuning in to Sunday Mass on television is a need to rediscover both Jesus Christ and salvation.

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