NFL Pulls Plug On Big-Screen Church Parties For Super Bowl

For years, as many as 200 members of Immanuel Bible Church and their friends have gathered in the church’s fellowship hall to watch the Super Bowl on its six-foot screen. The party featured hard hitting on the TV, plenty of food — and prayer.

But this year, Immanuel’s Super Bowl party is no more. After a crackdown by the National Football League on big-screen Super Bowl gatherings by churches, the Springfield church has sacked its event. Instead, church members will host parties in their homes.

Immanuel is among a number of churches in the Washington area and elsewhere that have been forced to use a new playbook to satisfy the NFL, which said that airing games at churches on large-screen TV sets violates the NFL copyright.

Ministers are not happy.

“There is a part of me that says, ‘Gee, doesn’t the NFL have enough money already?'” said Steve Holley, Immanuel’s executive pastor. He pointed out that bars are still allowed to air the game on big-screens TV sets. “It just doesn’t make sense.”

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, Law & Legal Issues, Religion & Culture, Sports

6 comments on “NFL Pulls Plug On Big-Screen Church Parties For Super Bowl

  1. Wilfred says:

    Fine. I’m not watching it then. Is this what they want?

  2. Florida Anglican [Support Israel] says:

    I emailed the NFL today (realizing it will most likely be deleted before it is read) just clarifying that they are OK with being associated with the message that viewing the game in a bar or at the typical private SuperBowl party (drink ’til your drunk, eat ’til your stuffed, scream obscenities at the TV screen in front of the kids, etc.) but that they aren’t OK with being associated with the message of Christ (love, acceptance, respect, dignity, salvation, eternal life, etc.). I’m sure I won’t get a response, but I do feel better.

  3. Fr. Andrew Gross says:

    This is insane. Can anyone tell me what the NFL gets from this, besides bad press? If 200 people watch the game in groups of 10 in each others homes, how is that more advantageous to the NFL than if they are all watching it together in the church fellowship hall? I’m sincerely looking for answers here. Anybody?

  4. Tar Heel says:

    N o F un L eague.

  5. robroy says:

    I wonder if the advertisers, who spend billions, agree with this policy? They probably want the most number of viewers. Some letters to the advertising firms, probably would get some attention.

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