A new pastor tries to shepherd his flock in North Dakota
An Unlikely Blessing is a heartfelt story about a new pastor and life-long city dweller Alex Armstrong, who reluctantly accepts his first assignment, a two-point parish in the wilds of North Dakota. Hilltop Township, a farming community, blooms from the prairie like a wild pink rose-lovely and prickly all at once, much like the people who live there.
Alex quickly finds that this lovely place is in quiet peril. Farmers are struggling to make ends meet: Jonas Owens, a faithful member of Hilltop parish, is on the brink of losing the farm. Alex believes that part of why God called him to Hilltop was to help turn things around, and steps in with ideas for saving the Owens' land. But can even God's minister help save this rural community?
There are a lot of firsts for the new pastor-the annual Hunter's Breakfast, julebukking (also called Christmas fooling), King Oscar's fish balls, and the melody of the musical saw. And the new, single pastor creates remarkable excitement among the unmarried women in the community. If you could die of hot dish overdose, Alex would be a dead man. Whether performing weddings, counseling his flock, or herding cattle by snowmobile, Alex soon discovers that his new church home has as much to teach him as he will teach them. Day by day, he falls more in love with the people of Hilltop Church. People may leave Hilltop, but Hilltop never leaves them.
|About the Author|
Judy was born and grew up on a farm on the prairies of North Dakota. An only child, she spent most of her days with imaginary people-either those she read about or those she made up in her head. Her most ambitious conjuring did not succeed, however. She kept a clean stall with hay and oats for the horse she imagined would come but unfortunately, it never did. As an adult, however, she managed to make that dream come true and raised foundation quarter horses and buffalo for some years. A voracious reader, Judy learned to read with comic books, anything from Little Lulu and Superman to the Rawhide Kid. She sold her first story for $10.00 to a farm magazine. She still has the $10.00.
She graduated from Concordia College, Moorhead, Minnesota with a major in English and education and a minor in religion. At the time, she was simply studying what interested her, but now realizes that she was educating herself for her future career as an inspirational christian romance writer.
Judy wanted to write for Harlequin even in high school but it wasn't until her youngest child learned to say "No" that she realized that she'd better consider a second career to fall back on when mothering was done. Her first book was written with her little girl on her lap. Judy would type a few words, say "Now, Jennifer," at which time her daughter would hit the space bar before Judy continued typing. It wasn't the fastest way to work, but it offered a lot of mother-daughter time together. An over-achiever, she's written 75 books for various publishers. The mother of two and step-mother of three, she now has lots of family to enjoy.
In 2001, she went back to school and became a certified professional life coach. Currently she is working on her Master's in Human Development in the areas of writing, coaching and spirituality and writing inspirational Chick Lit which, she says, is the most fun she's ever had writing. For more about Judy and her other books, visitwww.judykbaer.com.
This was a super sweet book! You really feel like you are there, like a fly on the wall! Great characters & I can't wait for the next book in the series.