Jon Barr grew up in a Christian home and trusted Christ as Savior as a young man. Later, he surrendered his life to the Lord and planned to enter the music ministry. After learning sign language in 1976 and working in the deaf ministry for one year, the Lord called Jon to full-time deaf ministry. Upon graduation from Bob Jones University, Jon followed that calling first as an assistant pastor. Then, in 1984 he and his wife, Diane, began serving the Lord as full-time missionaries to the Deaf in America. Jon has also preached in Christian camps, revivals, and mission conferences in several foreign countries. In 1998, Jon received certification by the Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (RID). In 2000, they joined SWM, where he now serves as President, Director of Operations, and Director of the Silent Word Mission Board. He is also on the SWM Executive Operating Board. Continuing as missionaries, the Barrs also conduct area-wide Fantastic Saturday meetings in many locations, summer ASL Institute training for deaf ministry workers, and deaf ministry training and Deaf Awareness Weekends in local churches. In addition to their traveling ministry, Jon and Diane have a ministry to local Deaf people. Jon also coordinates SWM’s online ministries. Both are writers and authors with the Silent Word Newspaper and SWM books and materials.
SWM Jon Barr: “I grew up in a Christian home, going to church every week. At the age of 10 I went forward in church to receive Christ. I thought my decision saved me. Our family moved to Florida, where we got involved in a good church. I learned to led other people to Christ and actively told others about Him. I began to realize that my heart was still unsettled about my salvation, but I was afraid of what other people would say if I got saved “again.” Finally, one Sunday morning I had to make sure of my salvation. I again went forward in church. This time I trusted Christ to save me — and He did! I thank God that I can now confidently share Christ with others.”