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Oil patch ministry: North Dakota church faces local population boom

from UM Portal

After a national news report on his hometown aired a few weeks ago, the Rev. Rod Tkach of Williston, N.D., fielded calls from people as far away as Texas and California who wanted to know if he’d rent them space in the church as temporary housing. The callers had seen an NBC news story about once-tiny Williston, now home to an oil business boom—and an unemployment rate of less than 1 percent. While Faith United Methodist Church, Dr. Tkach’s flock of about 120 souls, doesn’t fret over the kind of economic woes that plague many other congregations, the boom has proved a mixed blessing. And the church is wrestling with the best way to cope and to minister to the influx. more

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