Monday, July 31, 2006
Rural Church: The Connection Between the People of God and God's Spirit in a Depopulating Rural Community
From a Rural Church Pastor:
I serve a rural United Methodist Church in north central Kansas - a county
The two characteristics of this community are:
1.) The impact of agriculture on the economy. The three major employers
beyond the government are agriculture related. There is a farm implement
mfg., a farm chemical business, and the Coop. The government is a key
piece as we have public schools, state, county and city government
employees as well as the support checks funded by the gov't - Social
Security, social services and farm subsidy.
2.) The family / church relationships that are generations deep in the
community. Since many families in this community are several generations
deep, the impact of family history is an integral part of the way in which
families relate within the community.
There is a significant Roman Catholic population that is balanced by a near equal population that relates to the protestant churches in the area.
These dynamics in a part of the United States that is depopulating and
being significantly impacted by the drought changes the way in which we
are able to do church.
In light of the above thoughts, there is still a place for the church as
it continues to seek that relevant connection between the people of God
and God's spirit.
Posted by The Rev. Suzanne Watson at 11:51 AM