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How to Start a Radio Ministry

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Most ministries interact with the people by offering material help. Other ministries — particularly those that disseminate information — can thrive as a radio ministry. Through the radio, you can take your ministry into the homes and cars of those you serve, allowing them to tune in at their convenience. Starting a radio ministry takes time to plan the purpose, discover the appropriate radio medium and file the correct forms.

Write the purpose of your ministry. For example, you can launch a Christian preaching ministry, but you can also launch a ministry meant to offer advice to people, such as “The Dave Ramsey Show” which offers free financial advice.

File the necessary forms. File Form 1023 with the IRS if you accept donations from anywhere. Alternatively, if you don't accept donations, you may not need to file any forms. Consult a qualified lawyer for details.

Raise the money to launch your ministry. Pay the initial cost out of pocket or ask for donations from family, friends and other ministries after obtaining 501(c)(3) status.

Create partnerships with other ministries and local churches. Ask other ministries or local churches to host programs on your stations consistent with your ministry's purpose.

Obtain a license from the FCC to host an AM or FM radio station, or create an online website and online radio station. Each comes with its own costs, pros and cons (see Resources).


When you file your forms, you may also need to submit a constitution and by-laws.


Colby Stream has been a writer since 2007. His work has appeared in "The Arbiter," the student newspaper of Boise State University, as well as various websites. Stream graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in communication as a presidential civic leadership scholar.