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Pastoral Care in Paradise

In 1984, Maynard and Ruth Mathewson accepted the call to serve Paradise Valley Community Church, a nondenominational congregation of about seventy-five people, eighteen miles south of Livingston, Montana.

In the middle of Paradise Valley, the stuccoed church sits a couple hundred yards off of the Yellowstone River. The river writhes through the Montana valley floor from Gardiner to Livingston.

Just outside of Gardiner, the north entrance of Yellowstone Park, a highway sign serves notice: "Day Speed Limit: Reasonable and Prudent." Ergo: Go as fast as you like; just don't hurt anyone.

In this ungoverned environment, Maynard and Ruth care for one of the valley's worshiping communities. The following photos capture the work of countless pastors charged with the everyday care of souls.

Main Street in Paradise Valley


Livingston, Montana, a hard-living town that caps the north end of Paradise Valley. The town, born in 1882, owes its beginnings to the building of the Northern Pacific Railroad. At that ...

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