Featured Member Of The Week: Jonathan Starr

Katie Allred

Featured Member Of The Week: Jonathan Starr

Katie Allred

What’s your name?

Jonathan Starr

Where do you serve, what is your title, and how long have you served there?

Apostolic Faith Church in Minot, ND Communications and GAP Conference Coordinator A long time! Officially maybe around 3 years. I have been involved in media and other related things for several years.

How would you describe your job to someone who doesn’t go to church?

My elevator pitch needs a ton of work (I am working on it) – I work with the marketing for the church, coordinate an annual conference with ministers from around the State and the United States and help handle most tech-related situations.

What were some of the things that you experienced that shaped the way you approach your work?

As you work with people you can become to get frustrated as they try to manipulate you to achieve the results they want. So, one I have worked to overcome that but, more importantly, I have worked to maintain relationships that are not manipulated. Sometimes, I have to reflect on my motive – why am I doing this? My passion is to help the church grow and spread the gospel to the lost. When this is kept at the forefront the rest seems to fall into line. This is something that is continually shaping the way I work. Further, it changes how you try to communicate things through flyers, ads, or general messages that are being used. As much as we want to focus on earthly things, what we are doing is truly spiritual and should be treated as such.

What’s the one thing you wish people knew about your job?

I can’t just do stuff. It takes time. Just because things seem and sound easy does not mean that they are. I run into this a lot as people want rush projects, etc. It can become a frustration, but I have learned that there is only so much I can do.

What is the one tool for your job that you can’t live without, and why?

My computer. My life seems to be my computer (I am working on getting better balance in my life). My worst nightmare is that it would get stolen or broken.

What is the biggest mistake that you see churches making when it comes to communications and marketing?

This will probably ostracize me a little, but being relatable. While it may be an effective tactic when marketing your business, I do not feel that it carries over to the church well. In church marketing, I feel, that the landscape is a little bit different. While we should not try to stand on a spiritual soapbox in our marketing, we definitely need to be who we are in our marketing. We don’t want to market ourselves in a certain way and then when people visit our church it is totally different. Sometimes it feels that churches try to focus more on being relatable than being themselves.

Who is someone that you look up to in the church communications world?

Well, there are a lot of people that have influenced my thinking but I would have to give the shoutout to Barbara Carneiro. She was the one that really opened my eyes to this whole thing in a more official capacity.

When passion meets the heart & soul of the individual, all work is done well. Thank you, Jonathan, for all the wonderful things you said that remind us of how we should do things – with a purpose. Keep on inspiring others!

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