Book Review: A Theological Journey through Youth Ministry

BY: Dietrich Kirk

 

Andrew Root’s A Theological Journey through Youth Ministry book series is one of the most exciting things to come off a youth ministry press in years. Thank you to Youth Specialties for turning an off-handed conversation into vibrant, essential theological conversation for youth ministry. I believe this book series is a theological journey worth taking.

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A Theological Journey through Youth Ministry series includes:

Taking Theology to Youth Ministry

Taking the Cross to Youth Ministry

Unpacking Scripture in Youth Ministry: Released Jan. 3, 2013

Unlocking Mission and Eschatology in Youth Ministry: Released Jan. 3, 2013

The series follows the adventures of Nadia who continues to be challenged theologically in her new youth ministry job. Whether you are new to youth ministry or a veteran I believe you will hear echoes of your own journey in hers.

Andy maybe a rookie to writing fiction, but Nadia’s stories will feel like familiar ones. What is unfamiliar is to have a youth ministry theologian (which is just someone who is a great practical theologian) tackle these important theological issues. Andy weaves together Nadia’s story with solid theological reflection challenging readers to grapple with their own understandings of theology, the cross, scripture, and mission and eschatology.

I have only had the chance to review the first two books in the series, but I look forward to getting the next two books in the coming days. I especially enjoyed Taking the Cross to Youth Ministry and Andy and Nadia’s look at the meaning of Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection. Having an understanding of how our theology impacts our methodology is essential to effective youth ministry. Exploring these theological concepts help youth ministers build their youth ministry on a strong foundation instead of being tossed to and fro by theologically weak curriculum and charismatic personalities.

CYMT will be using these books to prompt our graduate residents to begin to think deeply about the intersection of theology and youth ministry. I think all young youth ministers, whether you have been to seminary or not, would do well to read all these books to engage you in conversation as you travel along your own theological journey through youth ministry!

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