Jump directly to the Content

City Pastor, Country Church

Susan waited anxiously for John to come home from the church board meeting. As his car pulled up to the house, she could tell by the way John stopped the car and slammed the door that things had not gone well.

"I have had it with this church and this town," John growled. "All they want is a hired man to do their work so they can play church! They can have their dead church and small-town ways. The sooner we get out of here the better."

John had accepted the call to pastor Smallville Community Church two years before. He and his family came expecting a comfortable life in Mayberry with Andy, Opie, and Aunt Bea. But their excitement soon turned to frustration.

I spent ten years of ministry in rural Nebraska. Although born and raised in the city, I've enjoyed ministry in the country. Like John and Susan, however, I've felt moments of intense frustration as my urban way of thinking conflicted with the rural mindset. Now I know why.


Here are some of the dynamics making rural ...

Subscriber access only You have reached the end of this Article Preview

To continue reading, subscribe to Christianity Today magazine. Subscribers have full digital access to CT Pastors articles.

Homepage Subscription Panel

Read These Next

From the Magazine
Martha: Busy Hostess or Dragon Slayer?
Martha: Busy Hostess or Dragon Slayer?
The Gospel of John and medieval legend show Mary’s sister to value theology and hospitality.
Editor's Pick
Hard-Copy Bibles Aren’t Just Nostalgic
Hard-Copy Bibles Aren’t Just Nostalgic
As a seminary professor, I’m requiring the physical book in class. Church should do the same.