Shannondale Ministries

Turn to a center for economic and environmental justice.

Shannondale is a historic mission of the United Church of Christ in Shannon County, Mo. The ministry has multiple components, guided by a vision for economic justice and environmental stewardship. These components include the:

  • Church and Community Center, worshiping on Sunday mornings and hosting local events, as well as the Timber Community meals
  • Wobus Craft Center, a volunteer-run shop providing economic opportunity for local artisans (open Memorial Day through mid-October)
  • Timber Lodge, a retreat center providing hospitality, rental space and housing for mission trips, retreat groups, and other community gatherings
  • Tree Farm, a managed forest with an annual timber harvest and active education program for university forestry programs

Also connected to Shannondale Ministries is Shannondale Carbon LLC, a separately-incorporated carbon sequestration project, which generates income that partially supports the mission of Shannondale.

Shannondale Ministries has been serving the spiritual, educational, and economic needs of people in Shannon County and the surrounding area for nearly 90 years. Created in 1929 as a church and community center, Shannondale is a longtime mission center for economic and environmental justice. Shannondale comprises 4,040 wooded acres along Highway 19 and the Ozark National Scenic Riverways.

To arrange visits, retreats, and mission trips, contact the Shannondale office at (573) 858-3284.

Shannondale is, first and foremost, a community connecting place. Timber Lodge is a frequent site for community events and family gatherings.

The Lodge along with nearby cabins, RV hookups, and campsites provide rental accommodations for all kinds of visitors: sabbath-seekers, church mission groups, work camps, private retreats, and more.

This fair-trade store features handmade Ozark crafts from more thab 30 local artisans. Unique collections include baskets, rugs, quilts, baby items, towels, jams, t-shirts, wall hangings, jewelry, Christmas decor, walking sticks, games, and much more. Artisans work all winter in order to prepare their items for the season opening at the end of May.

The Wobus Craft Center was named for Rev. Paul Wobus, who founded Shannondale in 1929. The craft store as we know it now opened in 1989, after it was originally a co-op store in the early years.

The Wobus Craft Center is staffed entirely by volunteers, so that 100% of the proceeds can be paid to the artisans. The Craft Center operates from Memorial Day through mid-October.

The Froeschner Memorial Nature and Visitor Center features exhibits teaching about the ecology of the Ozark mountains and the history of Shannondale. Hours of operation are variable. Contact the Shannondale office if you would like to make a visit.

The Bucher Memorial Tree Farm is the oldest continuously operating tree farm in the state of Missouri. Rev. Vincent Bucher came to Shannondale in 1934 as the first resident pastor of the Shannondale Community Church. Bucher’s vision was one of “brotherhood economics,” what we would now call economic justice, organizing community members to support one another through farm cooperatives and resource sharing as a spiritual practice. In 1949, Bucher collected “pennies for Shannondale” in order to purchase the 4000 acres that became the Shannondale Tree Farm. After clear-cutting forestry practices had damaged the economy and the ecology of the Ozarks, Bucher was determined to use the tree farm to provide economic stability and teach sustainable forest management. Shannondale is now the oldest continuously-owned tree farm in Missouri and the last surviving of the first 10 tree farms designated by the State in 1949. 

Today, the Tree Farm is a teaching site for several university forestry management programs, and implements an annual rotating timber harvest. In 2016, the Missouri Mid-South Conference formed Shannondale Carbon LLC, a carbon sequestration project based at the Tree Farm. Income from the harvest and carbon credits partially supports the mission of Shannondale Community Center.


Shannondale UCC is a small, vibrant congregation that worships together in the Shannondale Church and serves as a core group enlivening the spirit of hospitality in the community. The congregation is affiliated with the United Church of Christ, and takes seriously the UCC’s proclamation that “No matter who you are, or where you are on life’s journey, you are welcome here.”

The congregation worships every Sunday at 10:00 a.m., and welcomes all Shannondale visitors to join them.

Rental and Retreat Options

Want to schedule a visit to Shannondale? Learn how to bring your retreat group, mission trip, forestry class, or to set up a personal sabbath retreat.

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