Today’s relentless, consumer culture—dominated by popular media’s emphasis on bigger, better, and more, and catering to teenagers’ every want and desire—is leaving our youth adrift in a sea of conflicting messages. Messages that youth workers and faith communities need to decode and redirect from consumption as the primary purpose of youth. Consuming Youth explores the shifts needed to move from the fragmented, isolated and consumer driven story for youth and towards a more compelling story of meaning, purpose and a life lived differently than the one served up by consumer culture. If you’re involved in the lives of teenagers, whether as a youth pastor, youth worker, volunteer, church leader, parent, or students of youth ministry, you’ll want to read this book to discover how a culturally invented and socially accepted version of adolescence, sustained by consumer culture, has shaped youth work and through the suggestions offered work together to discover ways in which you can re-imagine youth ministry and what it means to be a teenager.
About the AuthorsJohn Berard has more than twenty-five years of experience in youth ministry as a practitioner, professor and consultant with churches and organizations on issues of youth ministry, education and leadership development. He is an MA graduate of Providence Theological Seminary and currently works as the National Training Director for YFC Canada and is on staff at st. benedict’s table. James is a veteran of more than twenty five years of youth and young adult ministry. He is a 1995 MA graduate of the University of Lethbridge in sociology where he continues to teach in the department as an adjunct professor.
Rick has worked with youth for over 25 years. He is 1992 MDiv Graduate of Fresno Pacific Biblical Seminary and a 2006 graduate of George Fox University where he earned a DMin. Currently he serves as Director of Theological Education for Tabor College in Wichita.