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(RNS) Religious broadcaster James Dobson will leave the “Focus on the Family” radio program in late February but will continue on the airwaves through a new ministry.
Officials at the Colorado-based ministry that Dobson founded three decades ago say they don’t see his plans, which Dobson announced on his Facebook page, as competition.
“No, we don’t view that as competition,” said Focus spokesman Gary Schneeberger on Tuesday (Jan. 5). “We believe that people believe in what Focus on the Family is doing and that they’ll continue to do so.”
Focus plans to continue the radio program, which will feature Focus president and CEO Jim Daly, on-staff family psychologist Juli Slattery and other experts on parenting, marriage and culture, possibly including Dobson.
In his announcement, Dobson said his new 30-minute daily program, which will be called “James Dobson on the Family,” will begin in March and feature his son, Ryan, as co-host.
“The program will be much like what you have heard on Focus on the Family for the past 33 years,” said the 73-year-old broadcaster. “It will deal with marriage, child-rearing, family finances, medical and psychological concerns, national issues, the sanctity of human life, and the gospel of Jesus Christ.”
He said he “sensed that the Lord would have me hand the reins of Focus to gifted successors,” but still feels called to address the nation’s “moral decline of shocking dimensions.”
Dobson’s announcement included a request for donations toward the estimated $2 million first-year costs for his new ministry, including radio airtime. But he also urged continuing support of Focus, saying it “must not be allowed to languish in the days to come.”
In a statement issued after Dobson’s announcement, Daly said of his
predecessor: “He has the chance to share his life’s work and passion with his only son. What man wouldn’t choose to do that?”
— Adelle M. Banks
Copyright 2010 Religion News Service. All rights reserved. No part of this transmission may be distributed or reproduced without written permission.

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