John Schmid is the founder and director of Common Ground Ministries. This unique ministry, based in Berlin, Ohio, is a singing ministry with a focus on prisons in the Ohio Corrections System. During an average year, this ministry goes into more than 50 prisons, 30 churches, four to five camps, six evangelistic crusades, 40 banquets, a street fair or two, several weekend seminars, numerous concerts, and a fair amount of living rooms. They provide Bibles and Gospel Echoes Bible study correspondence courses to prisoners in the Ohio system at no cost to the prisoner or the system.
John and his wife, Lydia, have three children, Adam, Amy and Katie. They live near Berlin, Ohio and are active members of Mennonite Christian Assembly in Fredericksburg, Ohio.
John's unique style of singing, a blend of country/folk/gospel, with a touch of the contemporary, has gained him audiences in a wide variety of settings, from prisons to embassies, high schools, rest homes, churches, army bases, concert halls, and living rooms. His honest, genuine voice is easy to listen to and his message is made acceptable through humor, true life stories, a love for people, and a wide selection of songs (not to mention the Holy Spirit).
He was singing in a country western band at the time of his conversion in 1972. God changed his desire for stardom in Nashville to service in God's Kingdom. He went to school, then overseas, back to church ministry and now back to singing (this time for Jesus). He has sung in over thirty different countries and takes an annual work/mission trip to Central America to help Christians overseas as well as helping American Christians get a vision for missions, both foreign and at home.
John and his family reside in Benton, Ohio. They are members of Mennonite Christian Assembly in Fredericksburg, Ohio. His son, Adam, is an RN in Charlottesville, Va. Amy is studying photography at Eastern Mennonite Universtiy in Harrisonburg, Va. and Katie is an international conusultant service provider (OK, she's a waitress at IHOP).