Deprecated: mysql_connect(): The mysql extension is deprecated and will be removed in the future: use mysqli or PDO instead in /home/a26f9f83/public_html/articles/includes/config.php on line 159
Doctors of the Air > NetSparsh - Viral Content you Love & Share

Doctors of the Air

We met at a Saturday afternoon fund-raising and promotional rally sponsored by a para-church organization. His calling card introduced him impressively. He was the pastor of an independent church congregation not aligned with any denomination, and a radio preacher. They called him "Doctor". And why not? After the good reverend's name, his calling card displayed the symbol D.D. for his honorary Doctor of Divinity degree.

He was at least fifteen years my senior. For reasons I cannot explain, we became friends. I learned he never attended college or seminary. One day I dared to ask about his degrees. With what I hoped was jest, he quoted part of the thirteenth verse from the third chapter of the apostle Paul's first letter to the young pastor Timothy, which says that a minister "doth purchase to himself a good degree." So I was not surprised to learn later that his honorary degree was from a diploma mill--the same school from which ultimately earned his doctor of theology (Th.D) degree.

Radio and TV preachers, who are typically within the charismatic, evangelical, fundamentalist fold, are not known for having much formal education or having credible academic credentials. Some religious media ministry celebrities are college or even high school dropouts. One college drop-out who conducted a religious radio broadcast for decades told inquirers that he took a few correspondence courses from a Bible Institute but received most of his training from the Holy Spirit. Still he introduced himself as "Dr," and used an N.D. (Doctor of Nutripathy) degree to promote himself as "Dr." in media ministry and as a nutritional therapist.

What is nutripathy? Gary A. Martin, D.N., Ph.D., Th.D., D.Sc., who originated the system in the late 1970s, allegedly thanks to divine influence, taught that "nutripathy is a religious science of experiencing mental, financial, physical, social and spiritual health using specific universal laws."

While no other media minister I know holds the highly suspect Doctor of Nutripathy degree, other radio and TV preachers rely on honorary degrees as the base for their "Dr." title. I doubt that the use of the honorary doctorate and the abuse of the "Dr." title it conveys has been more popular than among ministers, including media ministers. While the honorary doctorate has no academic standing, because of the "Dr" title, it is a popular degree among those in some ministry settings who have little or limited formal education.

When a featured speaker is introduced as "Dr," people who listen to religious radio and view religious TV programs have reason to ask, what kind of "Dr" the title means: Is the reference to a D.D., (honorary doctorate with no academic value), the Th.D. (doctor of theology), a research degree strictly in theology, a D.Min. (doctor of ministry) a degree based on the practice of ministry, or a Ph.D. (doctor of philosophy), a research degree that adds knowledge to the field in which the degree is pursued?

With the information in hand that the answer to the degree question asks, the next would be: What school awarded the degree? Just as it is no surprise that so many ministers, including those in media, seek honorary doctoral degrees, it should surprise no one that some Doctors of the Air are created by doctorates granted that are diploma mill degrees.

Dr A H Barbee is a minister and educator. He has served as church pastor, conference speaker, consultant to nonprofit organizations, businesses, Fortune 500 corporations, and professor offering courses in the humanities, management and organizational studies with five colleges and universities. He holds the Ph.D. in Human Resource Development.

In The News:

This RSS feed URL is deprecated, please update. New URLs can be found in the footers at

ABC News

Buddhist extremism: Meet the violent followers of a religion widely known for its pacifism
ABC News
Myanmar's "Buddhist Bin Laden" has made a return to public life, appearing at a rally in support of the military generals condemned globally for a brutal crackdown on the Muslim minority Rohingya.

Religion News Service

Silenced forever: Saudi Arabia admits Khashoggi is dead
Religion News Service
“He could have done much better for himself, his family and his religion if he remained moderate,” Khashoggi said after bin Laden was killed by a U.S. raid in Pakistan in 2011. In a column for The Daily Star in Lebanon on Sept. 10, 2002, Khashoggi ...
OUR OPINION: Religion tensions underpin Khashoggi deathNortheast Mississippi Daily Journal

all 4,711 news articles »


Does freedom of religion protect Americans who have a religious duty to shelter migrants?
Scott Warren is a Unitarian Universalist, active in a faith-based Arizona humanitarian aid group called No More Deaths. His religion compels him to help people in need, he argues—and that includes helping migrants who cross the US-Mexico border into ...
Religious freedom advocate Charles Haynes: 'It's not a choice ...Religion News Service

all 3 news articles »

The Gate Appears & a New Religion is Proclaimed
Patheos (blog)
Siyyid Ali Muhammad Shirazi was born on this day, the 20th of October, 1819, in Shiraz in Iran. His family fit into that broad category of “middle class,” his father a successful merchant. Through both his parents he was a descendant of the prophet. In ...

Religion News Service

The name “Mormon”: Why all the fuss, and why now?
Religion News Service
In fact, it was a bête noire of President Nelson's long before he assumed the religion's top post in January of this year. In the April 1990 General Conference talk “Thus Shall My Church Be Called,” then-Elder Nelson made many of the same points he ...

and more »

Arizona Daily Sun

Upcoming Religion Events: Oct. 20, 2018
Longview News-Journal
Fall festivals/ trunk or treats. Alpine Presbyterian Church, 135 Hiett Lane in Longview; 6 to 8 p.m. Oct. 27. For information, call (903) 663-1368. Dalton Lipsey State Farm, 421 W. Cotton St. in Longview; 5 to 7 p.m. Oct. 31. For information, call (903 ...
Religion CalendarThe Decatur Daily
Religion News Oct. 20The Republic
Flagstaff Religion NewsArizona Daily Sun
Hot Springs Sentinel -The Daily News of Newburyport
all 141 news articles »

Waco Tribune-Herald

Religion: Armstrong's words reflect the greater miracle
Waco Tribune-Herald
Last weekend, we slipped into one of the premiere showings of “First Man,” the movie portraying Neil Armstrong's first steps on the moon. The movie takes us on board the X-15, Gemini and Apollo. We feel that we are there, experiencing the sheer terror ...

and more »

Religion News Service

Pastor talks of breakdown in Turkey, but also forgiveness
Religion News Service
VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (AP) — The American pastor recently released after two years of confinement in Turkey said Friday that he suffered a breakdown during his time in prison and was put on anti-anxiety medication. Andrew Brunson said he was deprived of ...

and more »

Data mining gets religion as campaigns target voters of faith
WASHINGTON, D.C. — In 2004, as George W. Bush was running for a second presidential term, his campaign asked religious supporters to share their churches' directories, which staffers hoped to combine with voting registration records. The strategy was ...

News-Press Now

Faith important when it comes to dating, marriage
News-Press Now
“Oftentimes when people complain about relationships, it's about not having shared interests, and of course having that shared religion is a part of that,” he says. “Religion is more than just what you believe, it's oftentimes connected to a community ...

Google News

Is Christianity Losing America?

2 Thessalonians 1:3-1:4Is Christianity Losing America? The apostasy of the... Read More

Thought Produces Desire, Produces Results

(Channelled)Roy? this week you learned something about yourself. You learned... Read More

Jesus the Pharisee

RESPONSE TO PAULINE CHRISTIANITY: - The whole of Christendom is... Read More

Organized Religion is Great for Humanity; Rants from Lance

Organized Religion has served mankind well, by uniting civilization and... Read More

The Story of Adam and Eve

To really understand how we all got here, what it... Read More

Do You Have a Name For Me?

MAN: Good afternoon Professor Knowledge. Let me cut to the... Read More

Your Mission Field At Work

One point many Christian Working Moms who have been interviewed... Read More

Freedom of Religion

We were all taught in school that our forefathers left... Read More

Heads I Win, Tails You Lose

In a time when public scrutiny is becoming tighter and... Read More

How to Solve a Wonderful Mystery

The first issue we must recognize is the way God... Read More

Amy Grant Cashes in Once Again on Jesus Coat-Tails

Jesus made her famous, now Amy Grant cashes in one... Read More

Life as Simulator

Recently I met an interesting Gentleman at a Coffee Shop,... Read More

While the World is on Fire - Part Two

Luke 19:49-19:46 This world is a tender box, of political,... Read More

Church Building and Church Buildings

Church building is a term used to designate both the... Read More

Following In the Masters Footsteps

In these interesting times of change, millions of people the... Read More

Spiritual Healing or Spiritual Malpractice?

Christians with chronic illness need to know there is a... Read More

Why Churches Die: Denying The Gift Of Healing The Sick

Recently a question was posted on a Christian forum asking... Read More

Gods Armorbearer & The Ministry of Details

And God hath set some in the church, first apostles,... Read More

Moslem America Conclusion

Isaiah 55:7-55:9Moslem America conclusion Let the wicked forsake his way,... Read More

It is Written: Alien Invasion of Planet Earth PART ONE

IT IS WRITTEN. Satanic Panic and the Alien Connection -... Read More

Christian Leaders: Nazi or Mass Murderer? A Fun Who?s Who Quiz

Figure out which Christian Leader goes with which description ?A.... Read More

Understanding How To Pray - Part 1 of 2

Being in the Ministry for a few years now, I've... Read More

As The Storm Clouds Gather

Revelation 20:8-20:9 Jesus warned us of a time of great... Read More

Islamic World Domination

The question is not whether terrorism is now a world-wide... Read More

Moses v. Jesus: Why do Conservative Christians Prefer Moses Commandments to Jesus Beatitudes?

Why are conservative Christians so concerned about displaying the Ten... Read More