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Evangelism in Rural Churches

Journey To Faith: a local church training course

[Jump straight to the downloadable resources here]

Sharing our faith with others is not just something for the professionals or for the specially holy or gifted but needs to be at the heartbeat of the local church, woven into the fabric of our life together”


Evangelism is part of the local church’s ongoing life but many rural churches struggle with it. A lack of understanding or experience, fear or confusion over roles, and small congregation sizes are all factors that can contribute to this struggle.

Journey to Faith is a simple training programme, produced by the Arthur Rank Centre, which is designed to equip local rural congregations The programme can be run by any local church or group of churches over two half-days. No outside help is required and all the necessary materials are free to download below. We also provide optional supplementary resources, links to useful material/ideas elsewhere and a Resource Manual for every participant to take away.

This resource has been developed by Capt. Gordon Banks (CA), Chichester Diocesan Evangelist, and Simon Martin, ARC Training & Resources Officer. Please email us any relevant feedback on this resource! –  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

“Some courses tell you 'what', and leave you feeling rather nonplussed about how to move from where you are to where you should be.  This course was so practical and geared specifically to a rural setting that it helped us to know the 'how' and be motivated to do it because it had been made to seem infinitely do-able!" (St Margaret’s in West Hoathly, Sussex)

Downloadable Resources:

The Complete Training Module - revised (as a zip file)

Introductory Material:
•    List of all Material in the Module Pack
•    Introduction for Facilitators

Material for Both Sessions:
•    List of all Equipment & Supplies Needed
•    Participant’s Resource Manual

Material for Session 1: We're All Part of the Story
•    Facilitator’s Notes
•    Power point Presentation
•    Six Serving Men poem by Rudyard Kipling
•    Quotes on Evangelism

Material for Session 2: Heartbeat Not Hiccough
•    Facilitator’s Notes
•    Power point Presentation
•    Rural Church Cycle
•    Jane’s Story
•    Closing Liturgy sheet

Supplementary/Optional Material:
•    Five Is & Intentional Evangelism
•    A Truthful Story
•    B2CS (Back to Church Sunday) in a Rural Parish
•    B2CS (Back to Church Sunday) in a Year
•    Rural Church Year Cycle – document template - revised (and as a simple .pdf)
•    Rural Church Year Cycle– slide template - revised
•    Simple Church & Community Profiling Tools
•    Six Serving Men with notes
•    The Big Welcome (2012) and also see the website here
•    Useful Resources

Advent Agencies Agricultural Show Agriculture All Age All Saints All Souls Anglican Church ARC Sunday Arts and Crafts Ascension Baptism Baptist Church Bees Buildings Candlemas Celtic Material Children Children and Youth Christingle Christmas Church Administration and Management Church Bells Church Buildings Church Closure Clergy Clypping Commissioning Communities Community Community Development Community Engagement Community Life Community Services Congregational Federation Countryside Creation Crib Service Cricket Crisis and Loss Dance Discipleship and Faith Development Easter Sunday Economy Ecumenical Energy Enterprise Entrepreneurial Environment Epiphany or New Year Ethics Evangelism Faith Farewells Fasting Fathers' Day Finance Flood Food Gardens General Worship Resources Good Friday Harvest Health Holy Communion or Eucharist Holy Week Horses and Riders Housing Infant Death Journeys Justice and Trade Lambing Lammas Land Lay People Leadership Learning Lent Light Maundy Thursday Methodist Church Migrant Workers Milking Ministry Mission Mothering Sunday Multi Church Ministry Offertory Older people Older People Open Farm Sunday Outreach Palm Sunday Partnership Pastoral Care Peace Pentecost Pets and Companion Animals Plough Sunday Policy Prayer Presentation of Christ Quakers Reburial of Bones Remembrance Research Rogation Roman Catholic Church Rural Rural Issues Rural Officers Saint's Days Salvation Army Schools Seasonal Calendar Sheep Shearing Shepherds and Sheepdogs Small Churches Spirituality Stewardship St Francis Summer technology Theology Training Transport Trinity Sunday Unitarian Church Urban Rural URC Visitors and Tourism Vocations Water Welcome Well Dressing Wilderness Woodland Work Worship Liturgy and Services Young People