Schuller picks daughter to lead Crystal Cathedral: An administrative position

July 14, 2009

Robert H. Schuller, the founding pastor of Crystal Cathedral in southern California, has announced that he has turned over the administrative duties of his ministry to his daughter, Sheila Schuller Coleman.

The transition comes after Schuller’s son, Robert A. Schuller, resigned late last year as senior pastor. The son recently contracted to broadcast a show on AmericanLife TV, a cable network.

In October, the father said the two men differed over the “direction and the vision” of the megachurch and its Hour of Power television program. The senior Schuller was supported in the change by regional officials of the Reformed Church in America, with which the Garden Grove congregation is affiliated.

“I believe God has called me back to give leadership once again to this ministry,” the elder Schuller, 82, wrote in a June 10 statement on his Web site. “I have committed to giving two more years of casting God’s vision for this ministry, and Sheila has accepted my request to put legs to the vision.”

Coleman, a 58-year-old author, has been the director of family ministries at the church and the superintendent of its private school. Now she will be the administrative leader of Crystal Cathedral Ministries.

“We’re excited that a woman has an opportunity to step forward and do something like this,” said church spokesperson John Charles. He said Coleman will assist in the worship services by reading scripture or making announcements.

“She’ll be preaching occasionally,” Charles said. “We will still be using Dr. Schuller and some visiting pastors.” Juan Carlos Ortiz, interim senior pastor, will continue at the church as a teaching pastor, the elder Schuller said. –Religion News Service