NAPLES, Fla.- Luna halo, Switchfoot, Earthsuit. No, these aren't names for a constellation, a particular ailment or a new line of hip clothing. But throw out these names to the average Christian teenager who is "in the know" about the progressive side of Christian music, and you'll learn that these are the names of some of the most popular alternative Christian music groups around, quicker than you can say "Joy Electric" (yes, another one of those groups with a funny name).

       And it's music groups like these that are the epitome of TVU, a new alternative Christian music video channel making its television debut last month on Sky Angel, the nation's only Christian based, direct-to-home satellite television service offering 33 channels of Christ-centered and family-friendly TV and radio programming to homes, churches and businesses nationwide via a small 18-inch satellite dish.

        "The vision for TVU is to take the best music videos from Christian artists and package the Gospel in a relevant manner that will communicate to a 12-24 year old," said John Owens, operations manager for TVU, which is based in Westerville, Ohio, a suburb of Columbus. "Our target viewer is the skateboarding, nose pierced, tattooed teen who would never step foot in a church or watch a traditional Christian TV program."

        "We do what Jesus does in all of our lives...reach the lost on their turf, and tell them God wants a relationship with them," said Owens. "This is the same method Jesus used when He walked on the earth, and like Jesus, we draw a lot of criticism, but we feel that this is what God had called us to do, and the response from teens confirms we are doing the right thing."

       TVU can be found on Sky Angel channel 9705; Radio U airs on channel 9753. For more information about TVU and Radio U, go to and

       Launched on December 10, 1996, the Sky Angel programming service became the first and only multi- channel direct broadcast satellite (DBS) system with a mission to provide television and radio programming based on Judeo-Christian values to homes equipped with a small, inexpensive 18-inch DISH-brand satellite dish and set top receiver box. Among the types of programming available on the Sky Angel system of 33 TV and radio channels are biblical teaching and ministry, wholesome family entertainment, dramas, comedies, classic movies and sitcoms, gospel films, shows geared to kids and teens, Christian music from sacred to gospel to contemporary, music videos, concerts, news and talk, sports and home life shows, special events, and much more.

       All 33 Sky Angel TV and radio channels, including TVU and Radio U, are available for a low monthly subscription rate of only $9.00. Pre-pay subscription plans are also available. To request a free Sky Angel information packet or to order Sky Angel programming, call 1-800-SKY ANGEL (1-800-759-2643). To visit the Sky Angel Web site, go to

Reprinted with permission from The Kansas CHRISTIAN.