Youth Ministry The Books All Book Report

Excerpt from Book Report :

They talk about the value of social ministries, both to the church and to the people they service, and how effective these ministries can be. They ask the question "does faith work?" And answer that in their study of 158 church programs, it does indeed work, and often it works very well. They also offer profiles of the churches they studied to write the book, so the reader gets a feel for the cross section of religious sects the authors studied, and how successful the churches are in their own communities.

Many of the ideas and methods the authors provide aren't new, but they illustrate how these ministries work and who they serve, which is an important aspect of the book. They write, "In a two-step invitational strategy, the social ministry brings beneficiaries into the physical or relational space of the congregation, where they can be encouraged to attend other church services at which a gospel message is presented" (Unruh, and Sider 140). Clearly, one of the aspects of social ministries is to affect change in the community and serve those in need, but it is also a way to build up the congregation and save souls, which is the ultimate mission of every church. The authors make no bones about this, and offer ways to encourage attendance during social ministry events. I liked that they addressed this issue openly and gave ideas for building attendance, and I liked the aspect of the book that looked at people who had attended events and later joined the church, ultimately changing their lives for the better.

Another example from the authors showed how compassionate many pastors are, and how they are there to lend a hand when least expected. They write, "When Bethel Temple's pastor went to visit a girl who had recently become a Christian through Bethel's youth ministry, he discovered that the family had just been evicted from their home and had nowhere to go. He invited them to stay in a building owned by the church that was unused at the time" (Unruh, and Sider 228). This shows that the youth ministry was effective in the community, and involved in the lives of others, and that youth ministries can help people when they need it the most. The young girl brought help to her family, although that was certainly not her motivation in becoming a Christian, and it was an uplifting story that had a happy ending.

I would recommend this book to anyone thinking about joining a youth ministry or building a social ministry, because it is a hands on approach to social services provided by the church, but it is also motivational because of the stories it shares of others who have found success through social ministries. I think it would inspire people and give them motivation to get involved in their own youth or social ministries.

Paragraph 5: Your overall recommendation of the book and its most appropriate use

References

Miller, Michael R., ed. Doing More with Life: Connecting Christian Higher Education to a Call to Service. Waco, TX: Baylor University Press, 2007.

Smith, Christian, and Melinda Lundquist Denton. Soul Searching: The Religious and Spiritual Lives of American Teenagers. New York: Oxford University Press, 2005.

Unruh, Heidi Rolland, and Ronald J. Sider. Saving Souls, Serving…

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