Finding a network to watch that provides family-friendly programs and religious offerings can be difficult, but the Inspiration Network meets these requirements. Families searching for age-appropriate programs for children of all ages can turn on the Inspiration Network.
The History of the The Inspiration Network
The Inspiration Network was founded in the 1970s by Jim and Tammy Faye Bakker as an outlet for their Christian televangelism work. Originally called the PTL Satellite Network, the network’s name was changed after Bakker’s company filed for bankruptcy in the late 1980s and lost control of the network. Financial scandals that further marred the Bakkers’ reputation prompted new owners to distance themselves from the televangelist couple.
Televangelist Morris Cerullo has owned the Inspiration Network since the Bakkers lost control of it over 30 years ago. As focusing heavily on broadcasting televangelist programming had been unsuccessful for the Bakkers, Cerullo added family programming to the network’s lineup in order to draw in viewers.
Although the Inspiration Network once filled night and weekend hours with infomercials, the channel moved away from airing infomercials to provide viewers with entertainment options. Major changes began in 2010.
Traditional family shows like the Waltons and Highway to Heaven are regularly aired on the channel to appeal to people with families who prefer wholesome, inoffensive television options. Rather than focusing on the full name of the network, the Inspiration Network now goes simply by the shortened name INSP in order to appeal to a more secular audience.
While most shows aired on the Inspiration Network are now secular in nature, the channel does reserve the morning time slot for Christian programming. All of its programming is carefully selected to be appropriate for children of all ages to reach a variety of families across the United States.
More information about the Inspiration Network can be found at http://www.insp.com/.
Top Inspiration Network Shows
Shows aired on the Inspiration Network are reruns of older family-oriented shows. The most popular rerun shows are listed below.
• The Waltons originally aired between 1972 and 1981. Taking place in the the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia in the 1930s, the series follows the Walton family as they run a lumber mill and handle raising seven children during the Great Depression.
The boys of the family enlist in the military during World War II, and the show follows the struggles of the boys adjusting to military life and the Walton family that is left at home without four of its members.
Each episode is started with a voice-over by the grown up Walton son John-Boy, who was played by Richard Thomas. John-Boy becomes a writer during the series and is known for his story-telling abilities.
• Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman originally aired from 1993 to 1998. Set in Colorado Springs after the Civil War, the series focuses on Michaela Quinn, played by Jane Seymour. Dr. Quinn is a female physician who moves to the west from Boston, and the doctor has trouble convincing the people of Colorado Springs that she can effectively practice medicine because of her gender.
Dr. Quinn finds herself as the mother figure of three children after their mother dies, and a romantic relationship with Byron Sully, played by Joe Lando, is a highlight of the series.
• Little House on the Prairie originally aired between 1974 and 1983. The series is based on children’s books written by Laura Ingalls Wilder about her childhood in the Midwest. Set in the late 1800s, the series primarily focused on issues related to family values and morality. The Ingalls family portrayed in the show included father Charles Ingalls, played by Michael Landon, mother Caroline, played by Karen Grassle, and daughters Mary, played by Melissa Sue Anderson, Laura, played by Melissa Gilbert, Carrie, played by both Lindsay and Sidney Greenbush and Grace, played by both Wendi and Brenda Turnbaugh.
The network also plays movies that are themed toward holidays or seasons. For example, Christmas movies are played throughout the month of December. These movies are family-friendly and socially conservative in nature. While many of the films presented on the Inspiration Network were originally aired during the same time period as the network’s rerun shows, some newer straight-to-television movies are also aired.