Archives For Youth Ministry


[easyazon_image align=”left” height=”333″ identifier=”1506446744″ locale=”US” src=”” tag=”douloschristo-20″ width=”216″]Honest, Knowledgeable Answers
to Pressing Science Queries
A Brief Review of 

Exploding Stars, Dead Dinosaurs,
and Zombies: Youth Ministry
in the Age of Science
Andrew Root

Paperback: Fortress Press, 2018
Buy Now: [ [easyazon_link identifier=”1506446744″ locale=”US” tag=”douloschristo-20″]Amazon[/easyazon_link] ]  [ [easyazon_link identifier=”B077XKQLBX” locale=”US” tag=”douloschristo-20″]Kindle[/easyazon_link] ]
Reviewed by Leslie Starasta
Many individuals inside and outside of the church feel that science and faith are incompatible.  An oft-repeated story is that of the active youth group member who heads off to the state university only to have their Christian faith shredded by a professor.  However, these questions are bubbling to the surface at an earlier age as high school and even junior high students, particularly in our STEM-obsessed society, are faced with these issues.  Church members, parents, and church staff, particularly youth ministers, are often unprepared to face the questions young people raise and can easily fumble the question.  Exploding Stars, Dead Dinosaurs, and Zombies: Youth Ministry in the Age of Science provides a much needed and engaging resource to help with these questions.

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[easyazon_image align=”left” height=”250″ identifier=”0664260659″ locale=”US” src=”” tag=”douloschristo-20″ width=”167″]One of the best new book releases of this week is:

Fear+Less Dialogues: A New Movement for Justice
Gregory Ellison II

Paperback: WJK Books, 2017
Buy Now: [ [easyazon_link identifier=”0664260659″ locale=”US” tag=”douloschristo-20″]Amazon[/easyazon_link] ]

I have started reading this book,
and am finding it very helpful!


These brief video clips are a great intro to the book…

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Zondervan has just launched a huge ebook sale with 800 titles on sale for 99c! LOTS of Youth ministry, theology, culture and community development titles…


There are a LOT of Youth Ministry books included in this sale.



Here are some of the essential youth ministry titles in the sale:


[easyazon_image add_to_cart=”default” align=”left” asin=”B007JK5APO” cloaking=”default” height=”160″ localization=”default” locale=”US” nofollow=”default” new_window=”default” src=”” tag=”douloschristo-20″ width=”112″][easyazon_link asin=”B007JK5APO” locale=”US” new_window=”default” nofollow=”default” tag=”douloschristo-20″ add_to_cart=”default” cloaking=”default” localization=”default” popups=”default”]Taking Theology to Youth Ministry[/easyazon_link]

Andrew Root

*** 99c ***


[easyazon_image add_to_cart=”default” align=”left” asin=”B008EGRA46″ cloaking=”default” height=”160″ localization=”default” locale=”US” nofollow=”default” new_window=”default” src=”” tag=”douloschristo-20″ width=”110″][easyazon_link asin=”B008EGRA46″ locale=”US” new_window=”default” nofollow=”default” tag=”douloschristo-20″ add_to_cart=”default” cloaking=”default” localization=”default” popups=”default”]Unpacking Scripture in Youth Ministry[/easyazon_link]

Andrew Root

*** 99c ***

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[easyazon_image add_to_cart=”default” align=”left” asin=”0830841121″ cloaking=”default” height=”333″ localization=”default” locale=”US” nofollow=”default” new_window=”default” src=”” tag=”douloschristo-20″ width=”222″ alt=”Len Kageler” ]Helping Youth Contribute to the Common Good

A Review of

Youth Ministry in a Multifaith Society: Forming Christian Identity Among Skeptics, Syncretists and Sincere Believers of Other Faiths

Len Kageler

Paperback: InterVarsity Press, 2014
Buy now: [ [easyazon_link asin=”0830841121″ locale=”US” new_window=”default” nofollow=”default” tag=”douloschristo-20″ add_to_cart=”default” cloaking=”default” localization=”default” popups=”default”]Amazon[/easyazon_link] ]  [ [easyazon_link asin=”B00HUCPUII” locale=”US” new_window=”default” nofollow=”default” tag=”douloschristo-20″ add_to_cart=”default” cloaking=”default” localization=”default” popups=”default”]Kindle[/easyazon_link] ]

Reviewed by John W. Morehead
Evangelical books and other resources that address youth ministry usually do so without much reference to the pluralism and multifaith context of America and the West. Len Kageler’s volume, Youth Ministry in a Multifaith Society, fills a much-needed void in this area.
Kageler’s book examines youth ministry in multifaith contexts through nine chapters and two appendices. His approach is unique in that he does not follow a typical doctrinal contrast template found in so many other Evangelical volumes that touch on other religions. Instead, he helps Evangelical youth workers understand their ministry in light of social scientific data, as well as similar approaches being taken by youth workers in other religious traditions. In the first chapter he draws attention to the concepts of youth and adolescents as well as the youth work activities of Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists and Jews. He concludes the chapter by noting that exposure of Evangelical youth group members to the members of other religious youth groups can have a positive function that can “call into question previously held assumptions” (31) which then aids in spiritual formation.

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[easyazon-image align=”left” asin=”B00HFV64SY” locale=”us” height=”160″ src=”” width=”107″ alt=”Brandon McKoy” ]An excerpt from the recent book…

Youth Ministry From the Inside Out: How Relationships And Stories Shape Identity

Brandon McKoy

Paperback: IVP / Praxis, 2013
Buy now:  [ [easyazon-link asin=”0830841067″ locale=”us”]Amazon[/easyazon-link] ] [ [easyazon-link asin=”B00HFV64SY” locale=”us”]Kindle[/easyazon-link] ]

Bestselling Youth Ministry Books

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[easyazon-image align=”left” asin=”0310670810″ locale=”us” height=”333″ src=”” width=”237″ alt=”Andrew Root”]A Joyful Maddening Contemplation


A Review of Four New Books by Andrew Root on Theology and Youth Ministry.


Part 2


Unpacking Scripture in Youth Ministry.
Hardback: Zondervan/Youth Specialties, 2013.
Buy now: [ [easyazon-link asin=”0310670799″ locale=”us”]Amazon[/easyazon-link] ] [ [easyazon-link asin=”B008EGRA46″ locale=”us”]Kindle[/easyazon-link] ]


Unlocking Mission and Eschatology in Youth Ministry.
Hardback: Zondervan/Youth Specialties, 2013.
Buy now: [ [easyazon-link asin=”0310670810″ locale=”us”]Amazon[/easyazon-link] ] [
[easyazon-link asin=”B008EGUE80″ locale=”us”]Kindle[/easyazon-link] ]


CLICK HERE for Part 1 of this review…


Reviewed by Jasmine Smart


The most frequent complaint I’ve heard from fellow seminarians about studying systematic theology is that it doesn’t seem to matter. The people I meet every day in my ministry just want to know that there is something to live for, and that Jesus can work in their lives. In the words of a popular internet meme: “Ain’t Nobody Got Time For” something like the Trinity, or Atonement, or other theological jargon like that.


Andy Root continues to impress me with his ability to take theological issues and contextualize them into a contemporary ministry setting.  The implication is, even without recognizing it, everyone is working from a theological perspective, and because of that, it is better to be aware of your own theology (and those theologies others might have which might clash with yours).

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[easyazon-image align=”left” asin=”0310670764″ locale=”us” height=”333″ src=”” width=”233″ alt=”Andrew Root” ]Passionate Reflection on God’s Action

A Review of Four New Books by Andrew Root on Theology and Youth Ministry.

Part I

Taking Theology to Youth Ministry
Hardback: Zondervan/Youth Specialties, 2012.
Buy now:  [ [easyazon-link asin=”0310670764″ locale=”us”]Amazon[/easyazon-link] ] [[easyazon-link asin=”B007JK5APO” locale=”us”]Kindle[/easyazon-link] ]


Taking the Cross to Youth Ministry
Hardback: Zondervan/Youth Specialties, 2012.
Buy now:  [ [easyazon-link asin=”0310670780″ locale=”us”]Amazon[/easyazon-link] ] [
[easyazon-link asin=”B007JK5A9A” locale=”us”]Kindle[/easyazon-link] ]


Watch for Part Two of this review tomorrow,
covering Books Three and Four of this series!


Reviewed by Jasmine Smart


I did not start thinking about a possible future in Youth Ministry until I was close to completing college. I was not the type who left high school wanting to still be a kid myself, which I think, accurate or not, is a stereotype I hold about youth ministers. I was definitely ready to grow up, and if I went into ministry, I wanted it to be with adults, that way I could bring the theology I loved to ministry.


Yet I never could quite get teenagers out of my mind as I realized for many of my peers in college, much of their worldview and ideology had already been shaped in high school or earlier. So when I discovered a series of publications committed to making youth ministry more aware of its theology, I had to take interest. Andrew Root describes this phenomenon in a previous book a “theological turn” in youth ministry, and he says: “I believe a small but growing (in numbers and depth) group of youth workers are ready, even yearning, to think theologically about youth ministry” (Taking Theology to Youth Ministry, 10).

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Mark Oestreicher - Understanding Your Young TeenA Review of

Understanding Your Young Teen:

Practical Wisdom for Parents.

Mark Oestreicher.

Paperback: Zondervan / Youth Specialties, 2012.
Buy now: [ Amazon ]  [ Kindle ]

Reviewed by Eric Judge.

The teen years loom large in our popular imagination as a time of epic upheaval and potential disaster. None loom larger than the dreaded middle school years.  Ask almost anyone what they think of middle schoolers and you are likely to get a negative response and stories of about how awful their own middle school years were.  As for me, my middle school years were really pretty fine.  Aside from one depantsing incident in the halls, which taught me not to wear sweat pants to school, I don’t recall that middle school was very traumatic for me.  My mother may remember differently and if she does, the discrepancies between our memories may be explained by me having selective amnesia.

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TEACHING THROUGH THE ART OF STORYTELLING - Jon HuckinsWe’re giving away 5 copies of

Teaching Through Storytelling:
Creating Fictional Stories
that Illuminate the Message of Jesus
Jon Huckins.
Zondervan /
Youth Specialties, 2011.

[ Read our review… ]


Enter to win a Free copy of this book
(It’s as easy as 1, 2, 3!) :

NOTE: You may enter to win once per day as long as the contest is running…
(Additional entries only need to complete steps #2 and #3.)

1) Receive our free weekly online edition via email -or-
LIKE our Facebook page (LGT: More info…
Sorry, following us on Twitter does not count here… )

2) Post the following message on your blog, Facebook Page, or on Twitter:
I just entered to win the book TEACHING THROUGH STORYTELLING by Jon Huckins from @ERBks ! You can too:

3) Leave a comment below noting which option you chose
for #1 and a link to your post for #2 before 12PM ET on Tuesday September 6, 2011.


We will draw the winners at random after the contest ends, and will notify them within a week.

[ Thanks to ContestGirl for publicizing this giveaway… ]


Ultra-brief Reviews of

The Whole Youth Worker:
Advice on Professional, Personal, and Physical
Wellness from the Trenches
Jay Tucker.

Paperback: Loving Healing Press, 2009.
Buy now: [ Amazon ]


Healthy Meals for Less:
Great-Tasting Simple Recipes
Under $1 a Serving
Jonni McCoy.

Paperback: Bethany House, 2009.
Buy now: [ Amazon ]

Reviewed by Chris Smith.

I don’t know much about youth ministry, and I’m a little cautious about segmenting the Church up into age groups, but I was intrigued by a recent book that crossed my desk The Whole Youth Worker by Jay Tucker.  Recognizing at the outset that youth ministry can be grueling (as well as rewarding), Tucker offers advice on how youth workers can remain sane and their work, sustainable.  He even goes so far – and this was particularly striking – as to explore how the health (especially diet and exercise) of the worker is intertwined with his/her work.  If only, we all as ministers and priests of Jesus Christ would reflect upon how of our bodies affects the Kingdom work that we do.  Tucker is to be commended as well for his theological emphasis on the Church as the place where youth ministry occurs (versus parachurch ministries).  There was a fair amount of material here that didn’t sit well with me or at least made me raise my eyebrows, but Tucker’s holistic focus and ecclesiological firmness make this a good book that should be read by youth workers everywhere.

In a similar holistic vein, the recent book Healthy Meals for Less: Great-Tasting Simple Recipes for Under $1 a Serving by Jonni McCoy appeals to our pocketbooks as it makes a case for healthier diets, nixing the excuse that we cannot afford the costs of eating better.  I imagine that there are a number of similar cookbooks available (for instance, it reminds me of one of my favorites, Doris Janzen Longacre’s classic More-With-Less Cookbook), but it was particularly interesting to me that this cookbook was published by the fairly conservative publisher, Bethany House.  McCoy offers us many tasty recipes here, providing a cost-per-serving figure for each one; this serving cost will likely need to be taken – pardon the pun – with a grain of salt, but it does provide a means to compare the relative cost of recipes within the collection.