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Cahaba Association, Judson launch new cowboy church comment (0)

June 26, 2014

By Maggie Walsh


Jeans and boots are standard attire for the newly developed cowboy church held in the Judson College Equestrian Center the fourth Sunday of each month.

A collaboration between Cahaba Baptist Association and Judson College in Marion, the cowboy church services have become an important outreach ministry for the area.

“It has reached an element of the population in our community that would feel very uncomfortable entering a church building,” said John Nicholson, pastor of Siloam Baptist Church in Cahaba Association.

Nicholson is one of the key innovators of the cowboy church, along with Jennifer Hoggle, assistant professor of equine science and equestrian team director, and Janice Williams, adjunct faculty member in equine science, and her husband, Bill. 

Seeing the need for an unconventional approach to reach this group, Nicholson viewed the creation of a cowboy church as “an opportunity as much as anything [else].”

The services every month are varied, with different speakers and musical styles weaving together to minister to a crowd that ranges from 40–80 people each meeting.

“The change of venue makes a huge difference [in how people respond to the Word],” Nicholson said.

Altogether the cowboy church is a very strong point of contact for ministry, he said. The strong support of the Cahaba Association churches has been a vital source of encouragement for Nicholson.

Whatever the future holds for the cowboy church, Nicholson is enjoying stepping out of the box to minister to a more casual crowd every month in a dusty arena at Judson College.  

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