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Unlocking Mission and Eschatology in Youth Ministry (A Theological Journey Through Youth Ministry) Hardcover – January 5, 2013

4.8 out of 5 stars 5 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Andrew Root (PhD, Princeton Theological Seminary) is the Olson Baalson associate professor of youth and family ministry at Luther Seminary (St. Paul, Minnesota). He is the author of several books, including Relationships Unfiltered and coauthor of The Theological Turn in Youth Ministry with Kenda Creasy Dean. Andy has worked in congregations, parachurch ministries, and social service programs. He lives in St. Paul with his wife, Kara, two children, Owen and Maisy, and their two dogs, Kirby and Kimmel. When not reading, writing, or teaching, Andy spends far too much time watching TV and movies.

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Product Details

  • Series: A Theological Journey Through Youth Ministry
  • Hardcover: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Zondervan/Youth Specialties (January 5, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0310670810
  • ISBN-13: 978-0310670810
  • Product Dimensions: 5.8 x 0.6 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #154,131 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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By Joseph T. Cochran on January 23, 2013
Format: Hardcover
Andrew Root has undertaken the arduous task of writing a four-volume theology for youth ministry. Youth workers everywhere will benefit from Root's meticulous study by reading these four works and journeying with Root and his fictional narrative of a young female youth worker, Nadia.

After recently finishing the journey, I can attest to the towering value of this series. Because of the structure and style of this series, the reader receives more than just a canned collection of doctrine. Andrew Root's interchange between Nadia's wrestling with thinking and then applying theology to youth ministry and Root's own commentary on youth ministry sharpens the mind and forces youth workers to wrestle with the tensions and paradigms Root introduces.

Root undergoes the process of distilling theology by first walking youth workers through the concept of thinking theologically in volume one, Taking Theology to Youth Ministry. He proceeds to write on the significance of the cross in volume two, Taking the Cross to Youth Ministry. His third volume tackles the difficult discussion of how to approach the scriptures in Unpacking Scripture in Youth Ministry. The fourth volume then explores missions and eschatology in Unlocking Mission and Eschatology in Youth Ministry.

For the purpose of this review, a brief examination of the series strengths and weaknesses will be addressed, interlaced with observations and examples from each of volumes two through four. An in depth review of volume one has already been written here. Overall, I found this series to be a very rewarding read. Though I do not agree with everything the author says about theology and his philosophy of youth ministry, this work has been a primer for me to sort out my view of applying theology to youth ministry.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Does Eschatology Matter in Mission? Yes, I think it does. I recently downloaded Unlocking Mission and Eschatology in Youth Ministry by Andrew Root. Don't let the title scare you - this is an easy and quick read!

Nadia (fictional character) takes her youth group on a missions trip to Mexico for the umpteenth time and no longer feels comfortable with it all being about either personal development for the team or an unrealistic "save the world in ten days" mentality. The challenging question, "Does this make any difference?" is answered by wrestling with the question and developing an eschatology that sees our actions of hope pointing to the coming Kingdom that is in-breaking now. My favourite quote is:

So we feed the poor, clothe the naked, and speak out for justice, not because our actions can bring it, but because in witnessing to the coming of God, we stand in the promise that justice is coming. And even our small acts become a sacrament of this coming future. Our actions of justice are not insignificant. They are not insignificant to the person in need nor are they insignificant in the eyes of God. But they are prophetic; they are events that point to God’s coming. (Location 1286-1290)

If you are interested in mission that makes a difference or ministry with youth - get the book!
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This book really challenged my thinking. As a Youth Minister I've wrestled with wondering how effective our mission trips are sometimes. I'm excited to apply what I've learned from this book for the mission trips in the future.

This book is worth your time!
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By Phil on December 17, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
My favorite of the 4 books written about Nadia's story (thus far...), Andrew Root continues to connect with youthworkers on a practical level while inserting strong theology behind it all.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
A good read.
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