or


[08/07/13 - 01:17 PM]
New Series "Snake Salvation" Takes a Look into the Religious Ritual of Snake Handling, Premieres 9/10, 9 PM
The National Geographic Channel series follows pastors Jamie Coots and Andrew Hamblin who "are determined to keep their tradition alive no matter the cost."

[via press release from National Geographic Channel]

IN THE HEART OF APPALACHIA, FAITH IN GOD CAN MEAN HOLDING DEATH IN YOUR BARE HANDS

New Series Snake Salvation Takes a Hissing Look at Two Pastors Who Lead Congregations in the Religious Ritual of Snake Handling

Snake Salvation Premieres Tuesday, September 10, at 9:00 and 9:30 PM ET/PT

(Washington, D.C. - August 7, 2013) Imagine if your path into heaven was contingent on holding deadly snakes above your head while speaking and singing in tongues. Based on a Bible passage that suggests a poisonous snakebite will do no harm as long as its handler is anointed by God's power, some devotees of this unconventional ritual practiced in 100 churches in the U.S. believe not participating will leave them destined for hell.

Following in the National Geographic Channel tradition of taking you inside the worlds of everyday people living unordinary lives, the new series Snake Salvation, premiering Tuesday, September 10, at 9:00 and 9:30 p.m. ET, follows two pastors of this creed who frequently battle the law, a disapproving society and sometimes their own families to lead their faithful followers to righteousness. For pastors Jamie Coots and Andrew Hamblin, the work is always hard, but always worth it, as to them, handling snakes is nothing short of a commandment from God. You can call them crazy, but they are determined to keep their tradition alive no matter the cost.

"Jamie and Andrew take huge risks in practicing their faith, not just in terms of the danger posed by the venomous serpents they handle, but also from law enforcement," said Matthew Testa, the executive producer for the series. "But they firmly believe they are commanded by the Bible to take up serpents as a sign to non-believers, and feel strongly they are exercising their religious freedom as guaranteed by the Constitution. They often say, 'God's law trumps the law of man.' "

Pentecostals who call themselves "Holiness" followers have been handling deadly snakes for more than a hundred years in the United States. Since its founding there have been as many as 100 reported deaths from church-related snake bites. The doctrine of the faith is based on a passage from the Book of Mark (Mark 16:17-18) that says, "And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover."

For nearly 20 years Pastor Jamie Coots has led the Full Gospel Tabernacle in Jesus Name, founded by his grandfather, in Middlesboro, Ky. His father, Greg, was also a snake-handling minister, and Jamie's son "Little Cody" hopes to one day carry on the family tradition. Though Pastor Jamie lost half of a finger to a rattlesnake bite, he still believes he must take up serpents to follow his faith. His biggest supporter is his wife, Linda, who plays instruments at every church service and adheres to their faith's strict tenets that forbid women from cutting their hair, wearing makeup or wearing pants. Though she gets nervous watching her husband at work, Linda feels no fear when handling snakes herself - describing it as "a calm" that overtakes her.

"My job as pastor is to kindly keep myself and my flock in line, and to do what we feel is right according to the word of God," says Pastor Jamie. "To me it's as much a commandment from God when he said 'they shall take up serpents,' as it was when he said 'thou shall not commit adultery.'"

Pastor Andrew Hamblin used to be a member of Pastor Jamie's congregation, and he is close enough to Jamie to call him "Dad." Now Andrew, only 22 years old, has started his own church of "sign followers," and though he is young and passionate, he is still working to prove himself to his flock. He is struggling to provide for his wife, Elizabeth, and their five children while on food stamps, and he is on a mission to grow his small church by appealing to a younger generation. The financial burden for running his own church may be too much for him to bear.

"I've got something in my soul greater than anything," says Pastor Andrew. "If I lost my wife to it, if I lost my children, God in heaven forbid I ever do, when my children get old enough to handle them � it would take all I had in me, because I love my wife. I love my kids. But it'd still be the word of God and I'd still have to do it."

Each episode of Snake Salvation will follow Pastors Jamie and Andrew as they fight to maintain their struggling churches. Their biggest obstacle is their most important: finding and sustaining a collection of venomous snakes to use in their services. Each will take viewers along as they head out on snake roundups, racing to find dens of their coveted cold-blooded reptiles before winter starts and the snakes go into hiding. With both pastors too financially strapped to purchase their supply, they are often forced to get creative to keep their stock thriving, be it snake trading at Repticon, the reptile convention, or illegally transporting venomous reptiles from warmer climates across state lines. Even if they can keep their snake population thriving, and stay out of jail, they're also challenged to find and retain followers to their unorthodox faith. Many community members scoff at their bizarre practices, members of their own families teeter on faithfulness and reformed criminals use it as their best defense against backsliding into sin. National Geographic's cameras were there when many church members were bitten by one of the poisonous serpents. But the pastors' own faith never falters that they'll be able to inspire their masses to seek their personal Snake Salvation.

Snake Salvation is a National Geographic Television (NGT) production executive produced by Jerry Decker and Matthew Testa. Ted Duvall is senior producer. For National Geographic Channels, Madeleine Carter is executive producer and Kevin Mohs is the vice president of production and development.

###

National Geographic Channel

Based at the National Geographic Society headquarters in Washington, D.C., the National Geographic Channels US are a joint venture between National Geographic and Fox Networks. The Channels contribute to the National Geographic Society's commitment to exploration, conservation and education with smart, innovative programming and profits that directly support its mission. Launched in January 2001, National Geographic Channel (NGC) celebrated its fifth anniversary with the debut of NGC HD. In 2010, the wildlife and natural history cable channel Nat Geo WILD was launched, and in 2011, the Spanish-language network Nat Geo Mundo was unveiled. The Channels have carriage with all of the nation's major cable, telco and satellite television providers, with NGC currently available in 85 million U.S. homes. Globally, National Geographic Channel is available in more than 440 million homes in 171 countries and 38 languages. For more information, visit www.natgeotv.com.





  [august 2013]  
S
M
T
W
T
F
S
    


· SNAKE SALVATION (NGC)





[02/17/17 - 11:09 AM]
TNT's "Animal Kingdom" Returns for Season 2 Tuesday, May 30
The second season has been expanded to 13 episodes, up from its 10-episode freshman run.

[02/17/17 - 10:31 AM]
The Top 20 Junior Home Cooks Are Revealed on "MasterChef Junior"
Throughout this season, the juniors will face a wide array of exciting new challenges, including one served up by former First Lady Michelle Obama.

[02/17/17 - 09:21 AM]
"The Walking Dead" Season 7 Mid-Season Premiere Delivers 15.9 Million Total Viewers
AMC further spins the numbers for Sunday, February 12.

[02/17/17 - 09:01 AM]
TBS's "Full Frontal with Samantha Bee" Is #1 in Late Night Among Young Adults in 2017
TBS spins the numbers for the year to date.

[02/17/17 - 08:37 AM]
Showtime Sports(R) to Stream First Ever Live Boxing Event on Twitter with Broner vs. Grandos, Live on Saturday, Feb. 18
The unique collaboration with Twitter is an extension of the Showtime Free Preview Weekend during which the premium network will be available to more than 73 million television households nationwide from Friday, February 17 through Monday, February 20.

[02/17/17 - 08:27 AM]
Thursday's Broadcast Ratings: ABC Continues Demo Win Streak
The Alphabet leads the night among adults 18-49 for the fourth consecutive week.

[02/16/17 - 11:28 PM]
Development Update: Thursday, February 16
Updates include: Kevin Smith brings "Sam & Twitch" to BBC America; Retta tapped for "Good Girls" at NBC; and Jonathan Krisel to helm "Ghosted" at FOX.

[02/16/17 - 05:24 PM]
The CW Expands "The Vampire Diaires" Series Finale to Two-Hour Event
Look for the one-hour retrospective "Forever Yours" to lead off the night at 8:00/7:00c followed by the show's final installment at 9:00/8:00c.

[02/16/17 - 03:03 PM]
Bravo Media Is Living the Highlife in the Low Country as "Southern Charm" Season Four Premieres Monday, April 3 at 9PM ET/PT
Get the bourbon flowing for the new season as Southern socialites Landon Clements, Craig Conover, Kathryn Calhoun Dennis, Cameran Eubanks, Shep Rose, Thomas Ravenel, and newcomer Austen Kroll balance business and pleasure in the Holy City.

[02/16/17 - 02:35 PM]
IFC Greenlights Scripted Comedy Series "Living With Yourself"
"I'm doubly thrilled to be working with IFC on this show," said Tim Greenberg. "Normally I'd make a joke out of a quote like this, but I'm too sincerely excited."

[02/16/17 - 01:11 PM]
Cosplayers Put Their Skills to the Test in Syfy's Newest Competition Series, "Cosplay Melee"
Premiering on Tuesday, March 21, the hour-long battle is hosted by actress and self-described "super fan girl" Yvette Nicole Brown and executive produced by Jay Peterson and Todd Lubin of Matador Content.

[02/16/17 - 12:36 PM]
Adam Carolla's Live Interactive Talk Show Premieres Tuesday, March 14 at 10:00 PM, ET on Spike
Late night host Jimmy Kimmel will be the special guest on the series premiere of "Adam Carolla and Friends Build Stuff Live."

[02/16/17 - 12:17 PM]
Chelsea Handler Announces Season Two Premiere Date of "Chelsea" on Netflix
"Chelsea" will now stream as an hour-long episode each week, giving her audience exactly what they want: more Chelsea on Friday nights.

[02/16/17 - 11:34 AM]
Santiago Cabrera to Star in "Salvation," A New Suspense Drama Series to Be Broadcast in Summer 2017 on CBS
Academy Award nominated director Juan Carlos Fresnadillo ("Esposados") will direct and serve as executive producer.

[02/16/17 - 10:22 AM]
"NY Prison Break: The Seduction of Joyce Mitchell," Premieres April 23, Starring Golden Globe Nominee Penelope Ann Miller
The movie tells the story of a prison staffer who helped two convicts escape, leading to a fatal manhunt.