Rev. Randy Strickland says you can’t necessarily measure what a small town church’s impact is on the community by the number of people sitting in the pews each Sunday.
It’s with this in mind that Strickland, a retired United Methodist Minister, agreed to become the “part-time” pastor at Danielsville United Methodist Church in Danielsville.
“I would love for the community to know that this church wants to be a big part of it and of Danielsville, just as it has been for many years,” he said, and he hopes to help its members find ways to grow, both in number of members and in ways to reach out to the community.
He said he feels a small church like this needs to be ready to be open for the whole town in times of trouble and in times of celebration and joy, whether or not those coming to the church are members or not.
Strickland said the church already opens its doors on a regular basis to various groups including an AA group, the local drug court, a Cub Scout pack and that they provide space as needed to Christian counselors.
Strickland, who lives in Commerce, pastored a number of churches over his 41 years in full-time ministry with he and his family moving from parsonage to parsonage when they were assigned to different churches so he says it’s nice to live in his own home now and be able to work in his own garden. He and his wife, Evelyn, have been married for 46 years and have one son and two grandchildren, both teenagers now.
“This is close to where I grew up (Gainesville) and I love the small town feel around here,” he said. He also loves that their home is close to his son and his family and has become a good stopping off point for his granddaughters after school (both attend East Jackson Comprehensive High School).
“The ministry has never been a job to me, it is something I love to do, I still have my health and my enthusiasm and I’m glad to be part of this new church family,” Strickland said.
Regular services for the church are 10 a.m. for Sunday School and 11 a.m. for worship.