Who is writing this website?
The website is written mainly by Sam Adams, with some contributions from his wife, Cindy. Some years back, they managed a couple of farms in Cape Town, South Africa. They now live in Bath, UK. There is a brief bio of Sam on the Connect page.
What is the purpose of the website?
FaithfulFarming.com is a place for sharing and planning a dream, the dream of Sam and his family to live on a farm inspired by principles of the Christian faith. In 2015, Sam felt inspired to develop a detailed plan for the farm, detailing each component, potential costs, and a timeline of implementation. The website is intended to be a collaborative space as this plan take shape. We are aware there are other people with similar dreams and wanted to use this website to connect with such people.
Where will the farm be?
We are not sure! It is likely to be in Africa, as this is Sam's primary experience of farming and is where we feel most at home. However, we are open to it being in other places. The farm will benefit from good soil and a mild climate, although the crops and livestock chosen will be appropriate to the local conditions. We would also like a diverse terrain, with some rocky highland for Sam's mountain biking passion, some mature forest, and access to water either as a river, dam, or lake.
How big will the farm be?
We are not sure! We have lived on a 5-acre farm in South Africa and desire something bigger than this. We know the American frontier 'homestead' was 160 acres in size. For the purposes of this website, a working example of 40 acres is used. This is much larger than the average two acre family farm in sub-Saharan Africa and much smaller than commercial farms of many hundreds of acres. If four families were to live on the farm, 40 acres provides a neat equation of ten acres per family.
When are you planning to do this?
We are not sure! We are excited and 100% committed to the vision, at the same time we feel no urgency to make the move yet. It feels right to spend time dreaming, planning, and collaborating, hence this website. We await the right doors to open before taking any further steps.
What has faith got to do with farming?
At least for the monotheistic religions of Islam, Christianity and Judaism, there is great relevance of faith to farming. These faiths share a story of creation where God gives an instruction to Adam to care for the garden. It teaches us that humanity has been given a divine mandate to manage and nurture animals and plants, the two core roles of farming. Faithful farming means adopting and advocating land practices that mimic natural (God-created) systems. A few years ago, Sam was involved with a programme of the same name that worked with people of faith in sub-Saharan Africa. You can read about that here.
What has farming got to do with faith?
Farming can benefit from many principles of faith. The specific agricultural principles emphasised in the Old Testament teach wise management and business acumen alongside social and environmental responsibility. The values of the New Testament are more broad in application, yet continue the relevance to farming through stressing stewardship, commitment, generosity, faith, and joy. Caring for God's creation is also an act of worship, bringing honour to God as we use our skills and time to nurture the created world. As farming is by no means an easy vocation, farming with faith provides hope and perspective, giving farmers vision for the future and encouragement to get through tough times.
How can I get involved?
We would be thrilled to connect with you! The first step would be to start a conversation, either through commenting on individual articles here or by sending a direct message. In the long run, we would love to explore possibilities of working together with like-minded people, sharing our farm journey, and supporting similar projects.