‘Call FM’ radio blasts to South Florida’s youth
Miami-based playlist aimed at listeners 13-25
Feb 28, 2014
Florida Baptist Witness

MIAMI (FBW)—The name of a Christian radio station heard in South Florida, Call FM, reflects its mission and its philosophy, according to station manager Rob Robbins. Its “alternative Christian rock” genre may not attract many adult Christian listeners, but they are not the target audience.

“Like God calling for Adam in the Garden of Eden, we are called to reach the lost. We want lost people to know that they can call on the name of Lord. That’s why we were called to start this station,” he said.

Call FM, based in Miami, is heard from Ft. Myers to Miami to the Keys, and is aimed at listeners ages 13-25. Its playlist, music by Christian bands like Versus Angels, Rapture Ruckus, Nine Lashes, Finding Iris and Kids in the Way, attracts both Christian and non-Christian listeners.

Gary Johnson, Director of Missions of the Miami Baptist Association, told Florida Baptist Witness the music is not aimed at church people, but at “lost kids who wouldn’t go to church.”

“This is for the 19-year-old pierced kid,” Johnson said.

Responses from listeners reveal Call FM is being heard by its target audience. The station received a letter from a young man recently released from South Bay Prison in Clewiston. 

The prisoner, along with about 60 fellow inmates, listen to the station regularly, according to Robbins, who said the young man thanked Call FM for making a difference in his life.

The live Edge Morning Show invites listeners to call in with opinions on current topics. 

STUDIO TIME Band White Collar Sideshow in the studio at FBC Cutler Ridge. Courtesy photo

A recent program tackled an oft-asked question since the 2013 shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School: “How can we have an all-powerful, all-knowing, all-loving God, and have something like this happen?”

Christians and non-Christians offered opinions. Robbins said he likes to hear a caller begin, “Hey, I’m an atheist, and I think….”

“We don’t argue with them, and we don’t jump on them. We listen, and we can say, ‘This is what the Bible says…,’” Robbins said. “We ended the Sandy Hook discussions by saying, ‘God gives us free will, and He offers us a plan of forgiveness and redemption.’”

Along with music, Call FM presents the Gospel in 1-2 minute spots every half hour, and sometimes includes recording artists’ testimonies. Some listeners have told Robbins they at first would turn the volume down during the presentations, but they later wanted to hear them.

“They are listening, and they’re hearing the Gospel over and over,” he said.

Robbins, who grew up in Cleveland, Ohio, was in on the “early days of Christian radio.” He listened to the band Petra and to youth evangelist Ron Hutchcraft after he made a profession of faith at age 6. His family was active in Baptist and Nazarene churches.

When he moved to Miami in 1989 for post-graduate studies in marine biology at University of Miami, Robbins said he became active in Baptist Campus Ministries. Call FM had its genesis five years later as a “crazy idea” among BCM students and local musicians.

“The experts said that the idea would never work in Miami, and that there were no frequencies left here,” Robbins said. “We were young enough and naïve enough to not know how hard it would be.”

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