And the rest, as they say, is history. On The Marty Smith Podcast, comedian John Crist details how his local church announcements led to comedy.
I can see it now: John Crist’s warm charisma leads to him becoming a perfect candidate for his community’s church announcements – which quickly becomes a venerable in-house standup gig. Crist’s comedy comes from the heart, and as he tells Marty Smith on the star’s latest podcast, that’s what it’s all about. He’s not in it for the laughs, but to make others feel good. To escape. To smile.
In many ways, this is how our local churches function for us, too. Which, “ironically,” Crist says, “is kinda how I became a comedian.”
“I was doing the announcements in church,” he tells Marty. “I was the guy being like ‘The church picnic is next weekend! Or, you know, ‘The food drive is on Saturday!'”
“But the pastor at the church I started with… he thought it was hilarious!” Crist continues of where he grew up.
As for a young John Crist, however, the thought confused him. It still does now. “How is this funny?” he thought to himself. Yet it clearly was, as the comedian has an innate knack for, well, comedy.
“I don’t really care – well, I do care. I don’t want to offend people,” he adds, citing that he still feels weird thinking of himself as “funny” on such terms to this day. “If one person says ‘Ah, I can’t believe you just said that!’… but, I’m cool with The Guy,” he points upward. “You know what I’m saying?”
Crist laughs at his own phrasing. “I don’t know if that’s good or bad,” he smiles. But if you ask us, John, it’s all good.
John Crist Is Comfortable with His Faith
In the end, John Crist is clearly comfortable with his faith. It forms a solid ground from which he can make light of touchy subjects and the sometimes messy sides of Christianity.
As for where this rock-solid formation comes from, Crist’s official website quotes the comedian with: “I grew up in the deep south, my dad is a pastor, and I was the third of eight homeschooled children. My first job was at Chick-fil-A. Coming from a background like that, how do you NOT write jokes?!”
It truly sounds like the perfect setup. But only if the audience knows you’re on their side. And at the start, that was a tough navigation. Before people knew who John Crist truly was, “At the start,” he says, “it was like… ‘Okay, is this guy with us? Is he with us?'”
“Because he’s with us, he can say whatever he wants,” the comedian smiles of his fans. “But if he’s against us, then that’s very offensive!”
Crist isn’t interested in being “the outsider making fun of the most sacred things of Christianity.” But that’s also one thing he’ll never be.