Joni and Friends Radio Celebrates 35th Anniversary this Month

  • By: Joni and Friends
  • May 9, 2017
  • In the Media, Radio

Joni and Friends Radio Celebrates 35th Anniversary this Month

As Joni marks her 50th year using a wheelchair this summer, this May she also celebrates the 35th anniversary of her popular Joni and Friends radio program, providing hope and encouragement through the airwaves. Since starting in 1982, she has voiced over 9,200 programs, which now reach more than 1,500 stations throughout the U.S. and 36 nations around the world, and are translated into both Spanish and Mandarin.

“It’s hard to believe I’ve been doing this more than three and one-half decades – I had no idea where this journey would lead,” Joni said. “I am so thankful for the team at Ambassador Advertising Agency, who recognized that people need to hear a voice of real encouragement from someone who has not only experienced challenges such as discouragement, depression, pain and loss, but someone who has searched the Bible for answers and has applied them.”

The program went on the air for the first time on May 3, 1982, just two years after the founding of Joni and Friends, and five years after Joni released her autobiography, “Joni: An Unforgettable Story.” In addition to her daily four-minute radio program, Joni hosts a one-minute inspirational radio program and a 30-minute television series called “Joni and Friends,” which takes an honest look at people’s toughest questions about the goodness of God in a world shattered by pain and suffering.

“I’ve always considered our radio programs as an avenue God uses to speak strength, courage and comfort into the hearts of His children,” Joni said. “I see ‘Joni and Friends’ as a vehicle to help listeners learn how to live – and live well – in a world of pain and suffering.”

The program also keeps people informed on issues that really matter, providing a biblical worldview and life-giving truth on topics pertaining to life, dignity, justice, and equality that affect people with disabilities. Looking back at where Joni and Friends radio started, Joni sees that the tone of the program has changed, as surviving cancer and experiencing chronic pain have increased her heart for those who are hurting and has deepened her perspective.

“Why have I done this for 35 years?” she reflects. “The stories from listeners who have found comfort, the reports of people lifted from despair and the knowledge that there are so many more people who need the hope found only in Jesus.”

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I pray for you almost every night. I am my mother's caregiver; almost five years. My husband helps when he gets home from work. Just the two of us taking care of her. She has alzheimer's. My concern is that she is not saved. Please pray for her. Her name is Maria.
  • May 22, 2017
  • 8:34 p.m.
  • Esther Dameron
Dearest Joni. I have been listening to you on the radio for years and you always put a smile on my face when I listen to your message you teach me something new and you always do, you are a blessing to your many listeners,I love your Heart Joni. God Bless you and congratulation for 50 years of ministry on the radio. Blessing Kathleen McGuinness
  • May 17, 2017
  • 12:45 a.m.
  • Kathleen McGuinness