Focus on the Family (FOTF), a Colorado Springs-based Christian ministry which helps families through various forms of media, counseling and other resources, reports that it helped save a marriage every six minutes in 2012.
"The state of marriage is difficult, and I don't know of any Christians who aren't touched by divorce in some shape or form," John Fuller, married father of six and vice president of FOTF's audio division, told The Christian Post on Monday.
But "for every marriage I know that's breaking down, it seems I know one that's hitting 40, 50 or 60 years of faithfully living out what marriage is all about," he later added.
Fuller, alongside FOTF President Jim Daly, is co-host of the ministry's Daily Broadcast, which has aired on the radio since 1977 and was named the 2012 Radio Program of the Year by the National Religious Broadcasters.
Over 65 percent of the show's airtime in 2012 was spent talking about marriage and parenting issues, an FOTF press release states, and Fuller says the program has covered topics that are pertinent to "pre-married" couples, newlyweds and long-time spouses alike over the course of the year. Those who find the broadcast helpful and want further assistance with their specific problems are also encouraged to call the ministry, consult with a counselor and get set up with a local, more permanent counseling solution when necessary.
"What we do in the broadcast is try to reach out...The broadcast in particular has great emotional impact on people, so they hear something, they resonate with what's heard, and what we try to tell them is: If you don't have someone to turn to, if you don't have a pastor or trusted friend that you feel comfortable confiding in or talking to about some steps to get where you need to be, give us a call," said Fuller.
FOTF's licensed professional counselors helped over 75,000 people this past year alone, and the most common problems they dealt with were marriage and conflict resolution issues.
The ministry also claims to have helped a family through a crisis involving children every 60 seconds this year, and its efforts have led to individuals in more than 80,000 households either committing or recommitting their lives to Jesus Christ in 2012.
"That number is just astounding to us – to think that there's a football stadium or baseball stadium full of people who are either walking with Christ for the first time, or they have recommitted their lives to him, just because of our radio, and our video, and our online effort," said Fuller.
One memorable FOTF moment from 2012 was a 30-second long television commercial that was shown during an NFL playoff game last season. The commercial, which featured young children quoting and explaining John 3:16, caused the Bible verse to become the top trending Twitter topic worldwide, and one Texas pastor even sent a Twitter message to FOTF after the commercial aired and said his two sons put their faith in Jesus Christ because of it.
Fuller says the numbers highlighting the ministry's effectiveness in 2012 are "conservative," because they aren't worldwide statistics. An estimated 238 million people in 124 countries and 25 different languages saw or heard an FOTF program this past year.