A first-of-its-kind study of Protestant youth ministers reveals the hopes, frustrations, and effectiveness of todays youth workers. Of the 7,000 youth workers assembled in 1996 under Atlantas Georgia Dome, a sample of 2,130 full-time youth ministers from dozens of Protestant denominations and parachurch organizations answered a battery of exhaustive, deliberate questions covering: What they liked best about youth ministry What particularly pleased them in their work with youth What they found most encouraging or discouraging Their biggest obstacle to an effective youth ministry Their biggest concern in youth ministry Their answers revealed a dedicated group of professionals, concerned a out the students in their ministries, but troubled with a variety of perplexing issues. And their answers form the backbone of Youth Ministry That Transforms, a comprehensive analysis of this groundbreaking study (funded by the Lilly Endowment) focusing on the hopes, frustrations, and effectiveness of todays youth workers. Spearheaded by Merton Strommen--one of Americas most exemplary and influential thinkers and authors in youth and family ministry--the research-writing team is joined by Karen E. Jones and Dave Rahn of Huntington (Indiana) Colleges Link Institute for Faithful and Effective Youth Ministry, and acknowledged leader in the task of undergirding youth ministry with a research base. These three deliver thorough analysis and sound interpretation regarding the state of youth ministry at the dawn of the 21st century. Youth Ministry That Transforms belongs on the desks and in the classrooms of all who are concerned with this developing profession, including denominational and parachurch leadership, professors, youth ministry students, and thoughtful youth workers themselves. It is also an insightful resource for any who want to understand youth ministers and their profession: senior pastors, executive pastors, and other individuals and committees charged with hiring and supervising youth workers.
Merton Strommen (PhD, University of Minnesota) is the founder and former president of Search Institute. His publishing credits as author or coauthor include Five Cries of Youth, Five Cries of Parents, Five Cries of Grief, The Innovative Church, and Passing on the Faith: A Radical New Model for Youth and Family Ministry.
Karen E. Jones (PhD, Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary) is professor of education ministries at Huntington College.
Dave Rahn is the vice president and chief ministry officer for Youth for Christ/USA and continues to direct the MA in youth ministry leadership (www.youthministryleadership.com) for Huntington University. A youth ministry researcher, author, and leadership strategist, Dave now guides a team whose focus is to coach, train, resource, and serve Youth for Christ men and women from all over the country who lead nearly 2,100 community-based relational outreach ministries among teenagers. He and his wife, Susie, are empty nesting and cheering on the youth ministry careers of both recently graduated children, Jason and Alison.