Our Story

Our Story

Family Broadcasting Corporation is the third generation broadcast company that began over fifty years ago through the vision of its founder Dr. Lester Sumrall.  God first spoke to Lester Sumrall’s heart concerning television in 1966.  The inaudible voice of the Lord directed him to become not only a station owner, but to build a network of TV stations as a channel for truth to America. That vision laid the foundation for decades of growth and development into what FBC is today.

 Lester began with an FM-radio station in South Bend, Indiana. After five years of complications and red tape, WHME-FM began broadcasting in 1968. Since its inception, WHME 103.1 FM has continuously blessed the Northern portion of Indiana with quality Christian music and teaching programs.

 In November of 1972, FBC acquired its first TV station, WHMB-TV 40 in Indianapolis, Indiana. For the next five years, Lester and his sons would shuttle from their home base in South Bend, IN down to Indianapolis to produce programs, live telethons and original programming. WHMB- TV 40 is now the oldest, consecutively running, Christian television station in the United States and was able to celebrate its 50th year of broadcasting in November of 2022. The station has attracted a loyal and enthusiastic audience and is active in the local Indianapolis church community and events.  Well over one million people throughout central Indiana can enjoy WHMB-TV’s family programming and Christ centered message.

 On September 10, 1977, WHME-TV 46 began airing inspirational television to the South Bend area.  The headquarters for FBC were moved from Indianapolis to South Bend.  With the purchase of WHME-TV, studio facilities were now available within a few minutes of Christian Center Church making it easier for the ever-busy Lester Sumrall to produce his programs. In 1983, the studio and transmitter for WHME-FM moved into the WHME-TV building.

 By 1986, FBC was ready to grow once more and did so with the purchase of KWHE-TV 14 in Honolulu, Hawaii. KWHE offers the very best in family-friendly and inspirational programming across all the islands of Hawaii.

 In 1988, tragedy hit the network, as the headquarters in South Bend, Indiana burned to the ground destroying all of WHME- TV and WHME- FM.  Thankfully, none of the staff had been burned or injured in the fire, which began in the phone lines set-up for that week’s telethon.  The television station was miraculously back on the air within seven hours.  The broadcast was handled through the equipment at Christian Center Church in South Bend. The FM-radio station began transmitting again just four days later.  Upon returning from a preaching trip and seeing the devastation of his stations, Lester stated: “We are not quitters. Our God is a good God.  Our people are winners. When tragedy strikes, we know who our enemy is.  We also know who is for us.  If God is for us, who can be against us? We are more than conquerors through Christ!”  When tragedy struck, Lester discovered he, his family and the staff had the strength needed to overcome adversity.  Lester’s ministry would not perish in the ashes of defeat; but would rise again to be a witness to the faithfulness of the Lord. By 1990, the facility had been rebuilt and included a set wall made completely of Jerusalem stone.

 In 1996, Dr. Sumrall passed away leaving the broadcast stations and his vision to his son Peter Sumrall. With passionate resolve, Peter Sumrall was able to increase the size and outreach of the ministry.  Some of that growth includes the cable channels Family Entertainment Television or FETV,  and World Harvest Television.

 Upon Peter Sumrall’s passing in 2015, his son Drew Sumrall became the third generation of the Sumrall family to shepherd the mission of FBC. Through Drew’s leadership, FBC has been able to expand FETV into 50 million homes and is considered not only to be one of America’s fastest-growing family-friendly networks but is also a top 50 cable channel. The channel is focused on providing entertainment to its audience through quality TV shows and movies that provide real family entertainment. FETV can be seen on DirecTV, Dish Newtork, AT&T U-verse, Frontier Communications, Xfinity, Spectrum, Sling, Select TV, Vidgo, Frndly, Evoca, Altafiber, Optimim and Philo.

 In addition to FETV, a second national entertainment channel was launched by FBC in 2021 called Family Movie Classics. FMC’s goal is to entertain their audience with quality films featuring the biggest stars in Hollywood history. FMC can be seen on Dish Network, FrndlyTV, Evoca, Altafiber, Evoca, Xfinity, and Philo right now with more to come.

 FBC believes that forward thinking is what shapes history. They continue to celebrate their legacy, as they strive to take the next big steps toward reaching the billions yet untold, boldly carrying the torch into the present and future darkness, to bring the hope of Jesus Christ to a dying generation in desperate need of God’s redeeming love.

Press Releases

August 24, 2023

Family Broadcasting Corporation, Lesea Inc., and LeSEA Global Feed the Hungry Granted Summary Judgment By Federal Court Ruling Allows Dr. Lester Sumrall Legacy Website to Relaunch

July 10, 2023

FMC Launches on DIRECTV, DIRECTV Stream, and AT&T U-verse Network Now Available in 25 Million Households

May 2, 2023

Family Entertainment Television, Inc. Renews John Wayne Films for FMC and FeTV 

March 23, 2023

Adam-12 Series Coming to FeTV April 3rd 

December 8, 2022

Jaclyn Rann Cohen Named One of Cablefax’s Most Powerful Women of the Year

September 27, 2022

FMC Launches in Select Comcast/Xfinity Markets, Adds Over 5 Million Subscribers

September 23, 2022

FeTV Achieves Highest Monthly Ratings In History Of The Network.

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