I enjoy reading history because I cannot find a comfortable place to sit and look at what happens today unless I can figure out what led up to today. One of the reasons that we seem to be in such a mess is that very few people that I know want to talk about history. Young leaders in our church do not want to listen when old codgers like me point out that what they are doing or attempting was done and attempted 20 years ago. There is a sense that the world only began when we were born and that is sad.
There has been a lot of talk about the issues facing the rural church and how we have gotten to the place where we are today not only in rural churches but all churches. It was fascinating to me to find this little blurb written the year before I was born (1951) explaining how some were looking at the past to figure out what the problem was even back then.
“Dr. Calvin Schnucker, professor of Rural Church Work at the University of Dubuque, Iowa, told a group of pastors of the Wisconsin Council of Churches who met at Madison that the rural church has an “important mission” in strengthening the family and centering its program in the family. Dr. Schnucker charged that for the past twenty-five years the rural church “has sought to destroy the family either by ignoring it or by advocating the things that destroy it.” Mechanization, rapid transportation, emphasis on money and on college degrees, have all been factors in the family disintegration program, he contended.”