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Couple's faith provides base for radio, ministry

Staff writer

Thirty years ago Dan and Linda Catlin were bikers living in Wichita who wanted to change their lives. The couple moved to Florence and began pursuing ministry.

Their 1-year-old son and baby daughter were a driving force behind their decision to change their lives and help others, Dan said.

“There’s no way the person I was would have volunteered to change on his own,” he said. “That in itself was a miracle.”

The Catlins have hosted a live radio show for 15 years. Dan and Linda highlight Christian books and interview authors, which comes with its own surprises.

“You don’t ever know what people are going to say, and once they say it, it’s too late,” Linda said.

Since their interviews are never-face-to-face, Dan said it’s easier for him and Linda to be in the office together.

“If you sit in front of a microphone and talk but there’s nobody on the other end, that’s kind of hard,” he said. “That’s spooky. That’s why I have her on, so I have somebody to talk to.”

Both learned about broadcasting on the fly, but said their faith played a key role in helping them grow as interviewers, they said.

Researching an interview beforehand is key to having it succeed, Dan said.

“I don’t know how to do an interview with you other than to just have a conversation,” he said. “When we talk about the material in the book, because I actually read the book, they appreciate that.”

In addition to radio broadcasts, the couple broadcasts over the Internet with the help of their son. The radio show isn’t their only pursuit.

Dan also works as pastor of an unincorporated church he and his wife established to work in Wichita’s poorer areas. Given Dan’s history, he said it is an advantage that he can identify with his audience.

“Nobody likes to be told, ‘I know how you feel,’ when you don’t,” he said. “These people in the worst part of Wichita who I witness to are in a bad lifestyle. I understand that lifestyle.”

The Catlins thought about moving closer to their place of ministry, but every time there were factors that convinced them to stay in Florence.

“We put it before God and tried it,” Dan said. “We thought we could sell the house and move back to Wichita. The door was always slammed shut on us, so I’m sure.”

While they refer to their church as a charity, the Catlins prefer not to register it as a 501c3 because of legal stipulations.

They prefer not to use registering with the state because they don’t want restrictions on who they can donate to, Linda said.

“Everything is by God and by faith,” she said. “We can’t even get most donations because we’re not a 501c3. We’re not under the government, we’re under God.”

Last modified Feb. 19, 2020

 

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