Dec. 9, 2020 by Luis Andres Henao, David Crary, & Jessie Wardarski, AP

NOEL, Mo. (AP) — Thirty miles of rural Missouri separate the two churches, and so much else. One is mostly White; the other hosts services in five languages for a flock that spans the world. Still, every Tuesday the pastors meet midway between their houses of worship, seeking each other’s counsel, sharing their joys — and, more often, their burdens. Because in these pandemic-wracked days, they are sometimes overwhelmed by the crucible of ministering.

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Alinia Rogers distracts her mother, Nicole Rogers, as Pastor Joshua Manning of the Community Baptist Church delivers a sermon on Nov. 22, 2020, in Noel, Missouri. (Jessie Wardarski/Associated Press)

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