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Harvest of Joy and Renewal

The Emerging Missional Way in a Rural Church

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It has been an assumption among those who study the church that the emerging church movement found its home among urban centers ministering to a specifically postmodern context. However, many hallmarks of this movement are appropriate for smaller churches even rural congregations that have been frustrated in attempts to appropriate church-growth models that do not fit their ministry settings. At Leetown United Methodist Church, we set out to create a faith community within a community both to revitalize our own membership and to reach a newly-developed part of the city closest in proximity to us. We turned some of our understandings of church upside down with a program for doing ministry. This project, named the Harvest of Joy and Renewal, traces our efforts to use our hands and hearts to enliven the work of the Holy Spirit within our church body. This book examines the factors that we used to define emerging church within our context, as well as the process used to determine our path toward renewal. It will describe the journey that this congregation took to find a new sort of revival in a culture that is ever-changing.


Author: Melissa Rudolph