Thursday, 30 August 2012

FCN writes about this year's Harvest Festival

The price of a pint of milk has thrust farming into the spotlight over recent weeks and has demonstrated just one area of difficulty which faces our farmers. Over the next few weeks, while many churches will be organising Harvest Festival services, we shall discover just how  this year’s harvest has fared in the face of such unusual weather conditions. For many people, Harvest Festival is the only occasion on which they give thought to the problems and difficulties faced by farmers in producing the food that we need and looking after the earth that God has given to us. The volunteers at Farm Crisis Network (FCN) see those difficulties at first hand and walk with farmers and the members of their family helping them to see a way out of their troubles.

We take as our example the confused and frightened disciples on the road to Emmaus being joined by a seeming stranger who listened to their problems. Our volunteers listen without making judgement and provide practical and pastoral support for  as long as it is needed.

Farmers and their families face the same domestic and social problems as everyone else but the relative isolation of rural living can make discussions with friends and neighbours less convenient and problems which cannot be shared can become intractable. Added to that are financial problems, animal health and welfare, bureaucracy and red tape, personal ill health or accident, coping with the weather, dealing with legal problems such as tenancy agreements and dozens more challenges.

At this Harvest time FCN ask for the prayers and practical support from churches who share a concern for those in farming who need FCN's help

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