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Schuller family paid fraction of claims, sent packing - Los Angeles

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
November 27th, 2012
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Robert Schuller is done. The charismatic, 86-year-old minister will receive $700,000 of the $5 million plus he asked for in court and be on his way following Monday's court ruling. The ruling is the final chapter in Rev. Schuller's career that once saw him as the nation's leading televangelist.

LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online)  - Schuller and his family sued what was formerly their own ministry for over $7 million claiming intellectual property theft among other obligations and damages. The church fought back, claiming the Schullers were owed nothing and that they were facing bankruptcy.

However, the bankruptcy court judge was unpersuaded by most of the Schuller family claims and awarded them only $700,000. The ruling clears the way for the Crystal Cathedral to honor outstanding obligations to creditors.

The Crystal Cathedral has been in bankruptcy for several years, going so far as to sell the iconic Crystal Cathedral itself to the Catholic Church. The ministry will relocate to a much smaller venue next year.

Schuller rose to prominence in the 1980's as one of the leading national televangelists, hosting the "Hour of Power" program. Millions watched the program on television.

However, Schuller came under criticism for employing family members and paying them generous salaries. The family is accused of taking millions from the ministry in past years.

The ruling should close out what has been a painful episode in the history of the Cathedral and pave the way for rebuilding - and paying off of creditors.

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