24 of 27 people found the following review helpful
Poignant View on Teenage Faith in America,
This review is from: Almost Christian: What the Faith of Our Teenagers is Telling the American Church (Hardcover)
In Dean's close proximity to extensive research involving youth and religion (NSYR), a study outlined in the book Soul Searching by Smith and Denton, her approach is two-fold: refreshingly poignant, especially her argument she lays out that teenage faith is a reflection of the church's hold on faith (i.e. Moralistic Therapeutic Deism), which she outlines with great energy and articulation; her approach also remains very theoretical - although this book has been touted as a practical theology (that is what I've read, and was an appealing aspect for me) on the religious state of youth ministry and church, she remains very prescriptive - she outlines what is wrong, things which virtually all youth ministers and many pastors can relate to when it comes to jaded faith of youth and adults - she also outlines places that are filled with hope, namely the church is still the vehicle for spiritual guidance and formation - but that is where she leaves it - she leaves out a descriptive nature of how this has played out, or will play out, with the exception of a riveting example from a teen's journal from a missions trip and its ripple effects on her choices after her return.
Almost Christian is a must read for youth pastors, and I believe pastors would benefit from the truths that Dean brings to light regarding the church's and family's role in a teenager's faith development. Be prepared that when you finish the book, the real work is still to be done - figuring out how to translate all that data into something tangible and transformative.
*I received this book for free by Oxford University Press in exchange for my honest and unbiased review and opinion. Thanks to Oxford Press for the opportunity to review this title.
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Initial post: Mar 9, 2011 10:43:06 AM PST
Big Daddy says:
I'm curious as to what book/resource you would recommend for, "...figuring out how to translate all that data into something tangible and transformative." Any suggestions?
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