Extreme Commuting

It has become more and more common for people to have long commutes to work. Some folks even drive 3 to 4 hours every day!

This week I found myself driving 3+ hours Monday (to Blackstone), again on Tuesday (back to Warrenton), 2 hours on Wednesday (to Winchester and back), and 4+ hours on Thursday (to Richmond and back)! I am not cut out for a life of commuting. (Without complaining, because I do not want to switch the “complaint free band” as I type…) I imagine that if this were a normal occurrence for work I would develop back problems from driving, allocate more of my budget to gas than food, and never have time to see people apart from work or from behind the steering wheel!

I am so impressed with those of you who face a long daily commute and still make it here to church for Bible study, choir practice, and meetings. How does this car-driven culture shape our church?

Twenty years ago when my family moved 7 miles away from my home church it took us 30 minutes to get to church every Sunday morning and evening, and longer during the week. We were highly unusual for that congregation – there was only one or two other families who drove that far. Everyone else could walk or drive to the church within 15 minutes. That meant it was easier for most members just to pop into church during the week for activities and meetings.

Many of our WUMC members do live in Warrenton, but there are many who drive 30 minutes to be part of the community life here at the church! How does having to commute to church influence faith life? Does it hinder participation in activities because of distance…or is there simply no time left during the week after fighting traffic to get home before dark?

As we look toward the fall programs and activities in the life of the church I am wondering how our church can meet the spiritual needs of folks who feel their time limited by commuting?

  • Audio CDs of spiritual formation / Bible Study / prayer time to listen to in the car?
  • More home based / neighborhood based Bible Studies and Small groups?
  • Fellowship dinners on Saturdays or Sundays instead of Wednesdays?
  • Small groups on Sunday when people have already traveled to WUMC for worship?
  • Other ideas? Comments welcome.
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One Response to Extreme Commuting

  1. Pingback: How to retire without chaning a thing about your lifestyle | Saving the Environment - One Commute at a Time

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