Thursday, March 22, 2007

Outsourcing Prayer Requests?

From the Dallas Morning News, with a tip of the gimme cap to The Curt Jester:

Benny Hinn Ministries is letting go about 60 workers at its Grapevine headquarters. The organization plans to outsource the handling of calls from people with book and tape orders and prayer requests. Spokesman Ronn Torossian said the move, announced to employees this week, was not about economics. "It's really due to our growth," he said. "The biggest issue is simply our ability to handle the incredible call volume at the hours and times it comes in from throughout the world." The ministry is led by Mr. Hinn, who regularly appears on Christian network TV and also travels the world leading evangelistic crusades. He has been the subject of media investigations and much criticism within Christianity for his emphasis on faith healing and fundraising. Mr. Torossian said the laid-off workers will get severance packages and help with finding new jobs.

For those not familiar with Benny Hinn, he is a rather off-the-wall, Word-of-Faith, charismatic-type preacher who is always making outrageous claims and prophecies on the Trinity Broadcasting Network. My Catholic and Orthodox friends might get a hoot out of watching him, but keep the portable defibrillator handy (and a copy of the Catechism).

How do you out source prayer requests?

“You have reached Benny Hinn Request Services. Please follow the directions on our automated system so we can route you call to best serve you. Para Espanol, marque el dos.


“You may enter a response at any time. To back up a menu, please press the star button on your touch-tone phone. For pledges, press 1. For book requests press 2. For tape requests, press 3. For prayer requests, press 4...”


You have selected prayer requests. If your prayer request involves money, press 1. If you need to confess a major sin, press 2. If your prayer request involves members of your immediate family, press 3. If your prayer request involves your crazy Aunt Edna, press 4. If your prayer involves your health, press 5…”


“You have selected prayer requests for your health. For ailments of the head, eyes, or neck, press 1. For ailments relating to the lungs, bronchii, or nasal passages, press 2. For ailments involving the heart or circulatory system, press 3….”


“You have selected heart and circulatory system. For diseases of the heart, press 1…”


“Thank you. Please hold for the next available operator…Rock of Ages, cleft for me. Let me hide myself… Hello, my name is Ramachandran. Welcome to Benny Hinn Prayer Request Solutions. In order to provide you with the best possible service, this call may be recorded for quality control purposes. How may I help you?”

“This is Douglas in Arkham, Massachussetts. I think I’m having a heart attack.”

“Excellent sir. Let me transfer you to our heart prayer specialist for immediate assistance…click…beep…the water and the blood, from thy wounded side which flowed, be of sin...Hello, you have reached the order line for Mortie’s Flying Pizza. Para Espanol, marque el dos…”