At the Pennsylvania Farm Show, a non-denominational church service has been a part of the program for some time. This year, the Pennsylvania Nonbelievers, a group of atheists, agnostics, and humanists, decided to host an event, a “non-church service” for atheist farmers. In their promotion for the event, one of the organizers said that there were not many atheist farmers and their group did not have any farmer-members.
As to why there are not many atheist or non-Christian farmers, I think the reason is simple, when you work so closely with creation – growing crops, assisting with livestock births and witnessing things the miracles of nature on a daily basis – it can provide an affirmation that there is a “higher power” at work. In times of crisis, it is that faith-based belief system that comforts many farmers helping them through the trials of life.
- Charlene M. Shupp Espenshade, Special Sections Editor