The Small Town Churches Network exists to share ideas, research, and tools for ministers and churches in small towns and rural locations. The vision is to:
- Create a relational network of small town clergy and lay leaders who explore new possibilities for rural ministry in the 21st Century.
- Partner with organizations in rural and emergence Christianity to create new dialogue concerning emerging rural culture, and the impact post-modernity is having on rural congregations.
- Raise awareness of unique issues and challenges small town congregations and clergy face through regular research, blog posts, conference presentations, and our weekly news roundup, The Small Town Weekly.
- Develop resources to equip small town churches for ministering in emerging rural culture including spiritual formation curricula, congregational assessment tools, and worship resources.
Jonathan Davis is the founder of the Small Town Churches Network, and pastor of Beale Memorial Baptist Church in Tappahannock, VA. Much of the content on this site comes from his doctoral research and ministry experience, focusing on rural ministry in North America – in an increasingly postmodern context. Jonathan serves on the Virginia Baptist Mission Council, the Opioid Addiction Task Force for Virginia’s Tidewater Region, and writes opinion columns featured in religious news outlets around the country.
Jonathan holds an MDiv from Baptist Theological Seminary at Richmond (Richmond, VA), and is nearing the completion of his DMin through Hardin Simmon’s University’s Logsdon Seminary (Abilene, TX). He is an ordained minister with over a decade of ministry experience in a variety of contexts- from a church with over 4000 in Sunday attendance to gatherings of fewer than twenty. In addition to lead pastor experience, Jonathan has served as a youth pastor, worship pastor, associate pastor and in Christian camping ministry. As a musician and songwriter, Jonathan has been mentored in songwriting a Grammy winning artist and opened for a number of headlining acts in the Christian music industry. He has served at churches nearing 200 years in age, and in church plant environments. Jonathan’s varied ministry experience gives him a broad sense of the challenges associated with ministry in a variety of contexts, and helps him think out-of-the-box in whatever context he finds himself in.
Jonathan’s heart is to help his church become the most effective congregation it can be, and to help other ministers and lay leaders discover the joys, challenges, and complexities of ministering in a small town church. The Small Town Churches Network will help provide tools for conversation and dialogue about ministry in rural places. Jonathan lives and ministers with his beautiful wife Audrey and their three boys in Tappahannock, VA.
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