Judge Rules Against Crystal Cathedral's Schuller Family

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  • crystal cathedral
    (Photo: via YouTube)
    The Rev. Robert H. Schuller, founder of the Crystal Cathedral Ministries, speaks in a video address to the public published on March 10, 2012, the weekend when the pastor declared he is stepping down from the ministry's board of directors.
By Michael Gryboski, Christian Post Reporter
November 27, 2012|12:28 pm

A California judge has ruled against the Schuller family regarding their claims to millions of dollars relating to a breached contract with Crystal Cathedral Ministries.

According to the Orange County Register, U.S. Judge Robert Kwan of Los Angeles granted an estimated $615,000 to the Rev. Robert H. Schuller over issues pertaining to a breach of contract dispute leveled by the Schuller family against CCM.

While the amount given to the reverend behind the famous "Hour of Power" program may seem large, it is well below the several millions sought by the Schuller family, including $5 million for breach of contract.

Judge Kwan decided that the Schullers had failed to provide adequate evidence that they were owed the large sum of money from Crystal Cathedral Ministries. John Charles, chief executive officer of the Crystal Cathedral, said in an emailed statement to media that, "A long and difficult period in the history of the Crystal Cathedral is over."

"The ruling will enable the final creditors to be paid and give us the money we need to move on with our ministry, spreading a message of hope and love to the people of Orange County and, through the 'Hour of Power,' to the world," wrote Charles.

"The trial was painful for everyone involved, and our congregation is ready to move on. We love the Schullers and wish them well."

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On Thursday, Nov. 1, the Rev. Schuller and his wife, Arvella, took Crystal Cathedral Ministries to court over a claim that CCM owed them financial support made years ago. This contract allegedly granted the Schullers an estimated $337,000 annually for housing and insurance, as well as other expenses. Schuller had retired from active ministry in 2006.

Due to Crystal Cathedral's 2010 bankruptcy and eventual restructuring, the retirement payments given to the Schullers began to decrease considerably.

A week after legal proceedings began, the 86-year-old Schuller took the stand. Onlookers noted that Sculler seemed "confused and forgetful" and made multiple errors when recalling certain details regarding his association with the Crystal Cathedral.

Carol Schuller Milner, Schuller's daughter, explained to the media that these memory issues were not a sign of dementia but rather a side-effect of being under a great deal of stress.

Crystal Cathedral Ministries was founded in the 1950s by the Rev. Schuller. By the 1980s, it had an estimated 10,000 members and broadcasted its "Hour of Power" program internationally.

Due to its financial situation, Crystal Cathedral sold its famed sanctuary via bankruptcy sale to the Roman Catholic Church's Orange Diocese, who gave it the new name "Christ Cathedral." At present, the Protestant congregation will remain at the campus until June, when they will move to nearby St. Callistus Catholic Church per their agreement with the Orange Diocese.

 

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