DAVID OSBORNE is the author of The Owl and the Stereo; An Introduction to Radical Christianity. He is the Rural Dean of Shepton Mallet, a member of the Church of England's General Synod and a member of the Iona Community.[But from other sources on the web, it does appear that he retired in 2007.]
Presently I have read three of the eleven chapters of this book. Any clergy who read this book will laugh at the stories at the end. Some spouses, and family of clergy, will laugh and cry.
Though there are far fewer country vicars than there were forty years ago the book focuses on the country vicar not as an endangered species but as a continuing key player in the life of the church. It looks at what country vicars do, at the pressures they are under and at the unrealistic ideas and expectations they have to live and work with. But more importantly it suggests a way forward not just for the country clergy but for the rural churches of which they are a part. It is intended for anyone who is involved or interested in the life of the church in the countryside.
As I read through this text I hope to be able to say that Osborne accomplishes his purpose. If he has, this book is of great value to those in rural ministry.
One of the delights of the Country Vicar are the almost real stories that wrap up each chapter.