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Church-going Farmers and Foot and Mouth Disease

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Foot and mouth disease caused much human suffering and economic distress in a virulent outbreak in the Craven District of North Yorkshire between May and August of 2001. This work is an enquiry into the experience of a sample of church-going farmers, both Anglican and Methodist, who were farming at that time. Some of their farms were directly infected by the virus and reported by MAFF/DEFRA veterinarians, others were caught up in the contiguous cull, and yet others were in the area of the infection, but their stock remained unculled. Enquiry was made into how useful church, church-sponsored agencies, and other secular agencies were in support of their condition. Finally they were asked how they viewed the future and what steps, in their opinion, were necessary to deal with the aftermath of the disease. The enquiry highlights some issues that the wider church needs to ponder and address and also bears witness to the exercise of Christian faith in times of stress and to the spiritual depths of its subjects.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Research Assistant, the Centre for Studies in Rural Ministry, Normal Site, University of Wales, Bangor LL57 2PX, UK

Publication date: August 1, 2003

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