Tim Keller's advice to young ministers -- "Consider Becoming a Country Parson."
That's good advice for those who are eager to get out into the field of ministry. As a solo pastor, you'll get a chance to do just about everything everything.
Most young people upon graduation, hope for a staff position in a larger suburban church, but that kind of ministry does not equip one for the multiple demands of senior/solo pastorate or church planting.
The fact is -- there is a shortage of rural/small town pastors -- and a glut of people hoping for staff positions.
One important reminder, however, is in order: a country pastorate is NOT merely the stepping stone to a "bigger and better" ministry. It may BE the bigger and better ministry for you.
With over 18 years of experience as a country parson, I can honestly say it is the most rewarding ministry position I could possibly imagine.