Monday, August 17, 2009
Resource Review - The Journal of Student Ministries
OVERALL - The Journal of Student Ministries offers this about themselves - "Our primary purpose is to support adults in student ministry by providing insight into youth culture, fostering in-depth dialogue around important themes, and strengthening the student ministry community. We honor a variety of theological, political, and cultural traditions and promote healthy dialogue and honest critique; and we strive to elevate and learn from the role of distinctive cultures, ethnicities, denominations, and ministries within the Body of Christ." There is a website companion to the magazine itself
WHAT'S IT ABOUT? I have to be honest and say I'm undecided on the subject of youth ministry magazines. Some are very good and some start sounding the same after about a year's worth of issues. My experience with Journal of Student Ministries is that it falls in the excellent end of the spectrum. Lots of great topics done by great writers (the week I write this the topics on the web page include Leveraging Social Media to Multiply Missional Teams, What Should Youth Ministry Look Like? (by Grahame Knox who I really enjoy), Dealing with Teen Pregnancy, One Youth Worker’s Journey into Special-Needs Youth Ministry, and Book Review - The Youth Worker Book of Hope). There are links to blogs of folks associated with the magazine and video podcasts as well. So you've got lots of resources.
RESERVATIONS This is less the hands on kind of stuff and more the deep thinking end of the range. I know not everyone loves that as much as I do. You'll also find a very heavy emphasis on Youth Specialties stuff here because they are one of the primary partners in putting this together. So if you're desperately trying to escape the YS gravity well you may want to skip this.
RECOMMENDATION When the time comes when you want some deep think on the subjects around in youth ministry this is a great resource. Lots of challenging, well written material available.