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Local

Where's Justin? Everyone wants to know

Princeton pastor turns into pitchman

Justin Bullington (left) is pitching pizzas for Paisano's Ristorante with Johnathon Meusel (right) in Princeton. The Princeton Bible Church Associate Pastor is helping to promote businesses in town while sharing the Gospel.
Justin Bullington (left) is pitching pizzas for Paisano's Ristorante with Johnathon Meusel (right) in Princeton. The Princeton Bible Church Associate Pastor is helping to promote businesses in town while sharing the Gospel.

Forget about Waldo. Where's Justin?

That's what everyone has been wanting to know in Princeton lately.

Justin Bullington has often privately posted social media satire, whether it's about his office at Princeton Bible Church "mysteriously" being ransacked or a strange garbage can winding up his front yard following the August derecho.

When his cousin shared his garbage can post on the Let's Talk Princeton Facebook page, Bullington became an overnight social media sensation with many inquiries for his next adventures and posts.

The Dos Equis man on TV may have been the "most interesting man in the world," but Bullington has certainly become the most interesting man in Princeton.

He's been approached by a pair of horse riders while he was fishing at the canal and as they recognized him, they said, "Oh, please don't put us on Facebook." Later that same day, another person at the gas station said, "Hey man, I really love your videos."

Bullington said his new-found popularity is strange, but it's indicative that people are looking for some laughs in a time of much national strife.

"You spend a lot of time on social media and watching the news, you can get really depressed pretty quickly," he said. "The thought of serving people with a sense of humor and helping people out with their local businesses, I think it gives me a new kind of outlook."

A preacher by trade, Bullington, 30, has quickly turned into a Princeton pitchman, visiting numerous establishments to help them promote their business with social media videos. Most of the time, his trademark, off the cuff commentary and dry humor is at the expense of himself, and he's OK with it.

"They're stupid videos and I don't really put a whole lot of thought into it. I just try to put a humorous angle," he said. "I'm OK making fun of myself and looking stupid. Apparently, people think that's funny, too. As long as I look stupid, and their business is helped, I'm OK with that. I'm secure who I am in Christ.

"I had one lady tell me she likes 'how you play stupid,' and I said, 'Yeah, I'll just let you think I'm playing stupid.'"

The business owners and his many followers on Facebook are much appreciative.

One post said, "Justin you are great. Such an excellent example of a person who truly cares about our community! And the videos are PRICELESS!!"

Another posted, "I don't know you, but your videos are da bomb. Thank you for promoting Princeton businesses and bringing something fun and positive to social media."

While he's found there to be some perks to his new trade - one business owner offered to buy Bullington and his family lunch after he made a video and another offered up a dozen cupcakes to stop by - that's not why he does it. In addition to helping out his community, Bullington is using his new-found popularity to reach people and spread the Gospel.

"My only demand is (I tell them), 'I get to pray for you afterward,'" said Bullington, associate pastor at Princeton Bible Church. "For most of the businesses, I've had the opportunity to pray for people and their families and their hope in Christ. That's the only thing I ask for and anything else they're willing to give me I just take it as they're being generous and kind.

"I've had more joy just meeting them and praying for them, than popularity. I don't really care about that, although I'm glad it's making people laugh."

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