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Foundational, experience driven and highly respected guide to faith-filled youth ministry by Doug Fields.
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For a foundational, experience driven and highly-respected guide to doing real youth work, read ‘Purpose Driven Youth Ministry’.
Ten years after its release this guide to creating, maintaining and growing youth work has become indispensible. Unlike other guides, this book doesn’t paint an unattainable picture feeding you a blueprint that has worked well in one context. Instead it presents foundational, biblical principles for youth work which you can easily apply today. These 9 transferable principles are:
1. Connecting with the POWER of God for Passionate, Committed Leadership
2. Defining the PURPOSE of your Ministry and Communicate it Effectively
3. Identifying a POTENTAIL Audience
4. Create PROGRAMS that Reach your Audience and Fulfill God’s Purposes
5. Implement PROCESSES that Move Students to Maturity
6. Enhance your Ministry with clearly PLANNED Values
7. Team Up with PARENTS to Involve the Whole Family
8. Find Volunteers and Develop Them into PARTICIPATING Leaders
9. PERSEVERE through Tough Times and Thrive in an Ever-Changing Environment
On his website, Doug Fields says “my goal for this book is to coach you through a plan to build a healthy youth ministry that isn’t dependent on one great youth leader and won’t be destroyed when the youth worker leaves the church. It’s not a book on how to grow your youth ministry with six easy steps; it’s about identifying, establishing, and building health into your church’s youth ministry.”
Doug Fields has been a leader in youth ministry for over 30 years. In addition to being a youth pastor at two churches for 11 and 20 years, Doug is the founder of Simply Youth Ministry, the co-founder of Downloadyouthministry.com, the author of more than 50 books, and is currently working with Youth Specialties and amp; Azusa Pacific University (HomeWord’s Center for Youth/Family).
Purpose Driven Youth Ministry by Doug Fields was published by Zondervan in February 2013 and is our 16165th best seller. The ISBN for Purpose Driven Youth Ministry is 9780310694854.
9 Essential Foundations for Youth Leaders
Posted: Sunday, February 10th
For the past decade, youth pastors around the world have used the bestselling Purpose Driven Youth Ministry to help guide them as they build a healthy youth ministry that is aimed at impacting the lives of teenagers. Written by renowned youth ministry expert Doug Fields, this book is one that both lay and professional youth workers cannot afford to miss.
Purpose Driven Youth Ministry doesn’t present a program to be copied into any context. Rather, it presents foundational principles of youth ministry that help you develop the ministry that best meets the needs of the students in your unique setting. This classic will help you build a student ministry with purpose as well as provide examples and testimonies from youth workers around the globe.
“I believe PDYM will be the standard by which all youth ministry programs are judged for years to come. It is solid enough for the college or seminary classroom and practical enough for the novice.” ---Chap Clark, Professor of Youth, Family, and Culture, Fuller Theological Seminary.
“Purpose Driven Youth Ministry celebrates over ten years of helping Youth Workers and Volunteers re-asses their hearts, minds and hopes for the young people they nurture.”
“If you’ve never read Purpose Driven Youth Ministry and you’re involved in youth work then here’s a snapshot of the book. Doug Fields explains through thirty years of experience as a Youth Worker that there are nine foundational principles that every youth worker can apply to their contexts. They’re not nine easy steps to grow you ministry, it’s about identifying, establishing and building health into your practice. It’s highly practical and 100% focused on helping you build your own groups for the young people around you.”
“This book is your extensive guide to home-grown youth work. It’s helped thousands and we’re convinced it can help you too.”
“Not just another book – it’s like a manual that puts the process and detail of building a youth ministry at your fingertips.” – Paul Fleischmann, Executive Director, National Network of Youth Ministries.
“Doug offers hands-on-practical insights for igniting young people!” – Max Lucado, author and pastor.
“It is solid enough for the college or seminary classroom and practical enough for the novice.” ---Chap Clark, Professor of Youth, Family, and Culture, Fuller Theological Seminary.
“It will assist the new youth worker as well as stratch the veteran leader to new levels. I highly recommend this resource.” – Dr. Dann Spader, Executive Director, Sonlife Minitries.
“PDYM is exciting, logical, jam-packed with creativity and fresh ideas – and complete! – Susie Shellenberger, Brio Magazine, Focus on the Family.
PRINCIPLE 1: THE POWER OF GOD – working through passionate leaders with pure hearts.
It all begins with you and your volunteers! When transformation begins at the top, it flows down trickling into every life below it.
Before this book many other resources focused on the how: ‘let’s create the best youth work ever’. Focusing on the how was a mistake, well at least the wrong how. Youth Work should begin with: ‘how can I be a person of God’.
Relationship is crucial – firstly your relationship with God, then your relationship with young people. This first principle focuses on these relationships and how they are directly connected:
“[there is] a direct connection exists between a leader’s spiritual vitality and a healthy youth ministry.” – PDYM.
PRINCIPLE 2: PURPOSE – discover why your youth group exists.
This section is refreshing – instead of encouraging you to jump into the work, it encourages you to slow down.
Based on five New Testament purpose that built the early church, Doug spells out that real youth work comes from careful planning and communication. You will be sent to drawing board to make a blueprint of your work: to write down the purpose of what you do.
Then comes communicating it, making the plan is only half the battle. Now you’ve got to spread the word, tell the leaders of your church and the congregation and put into place the leadership fire-power behind your blueprint to get everyone excited about this new adventure.
PRINCIPLE 3: POTENTIAL AUDIENCE – identify your target.
Often youth works charge in like a Rhino without any consideration for where the young people / potential young people are at: spiritually, emotionally, and … well generally.
This section stresses the importance of studying your young people, what makes them, them. How can I communicate the gospel so they understand it? How can I get them to invite their friends? Understanding your young people is the key to fulfilling the blueprint based on the New Testament purposes you will have made in the second section.
PRINCIPLE 4: PROGRAMS – decide on your teaching
So you’ve made your blueprint (section 2: Purpose) and you’ve studied your potential/existing young people (section 3: Potential Audience). Now comes the math’s:
Purpose + Potential Audience = Your Program!
You might find you have two different groups, one that need intense discipleship and one that need a football coach. You might find that you have a bunch of kids desperate to be in the worship band, a group who don’t fit into ‘church’ but are dragged kicking and screaming and a gang of lads who have nothing to do so end up getting into trouble.
Now you know what you’re working with you can plan your groups to reach, teach and disciple them. In this section Doug also teaches the five health characteristics you should always try to plan into your groups for balanced and healthy spiritual growth:
PRINCIPLE 5: PROCESS – visually displaying your plan
Have you ever thought to yourself: ‘do my young people actually get what we’re doing’.
You’re not alone, and this section is proof. You should be spelling it out for them so they could grab hold of the vision and
Doug will encourage you to display your groups visions in a visual format – as a baseball diamond, a pyramid, a football team – however you want. Now you’ll have a benchmark pointing in the direction you want your ministry to be heading, and now everyone will be able to see it too.
PRINCIPLE 6: PLANNED VALUES – define the values that will strengthen your groups
Now it’s time to identify your groups key values – much like setting your ‘code of conduct’ – using this to strengthen your ministry. Nail down the values you want to instill in your young people, and discover the ways you can communicate them.
PRINCIPLE 7: PARENTS – get the parents in your church on your side
Now the book takes an important turn. It’s all very good to plan stuff, but youth work comes down to relationship. Now the focus shifts from planning to people.
The worst thing you can do is isolate your young people, disconnecting them from the church family. Doug knows this, and so this whole section is about the valuable role parents play in the church family and how you can maximize their role.
Admittedly everything up to know has been a walk in the park compared to winning over the parents support, it’s going to be tough and it’s going to take time. But in this section you’ll find practical advice on how to implement and persist on this important venture in parent and child relations.
PRINCIPLE 8: PARTICIPATING LEADERS – hunting for new volunteers and nurturing their potential
You can’t do it alone. We all need help from like-minded and enthusiastic people. And this section aims to help you surround yourself with adult leaders that go beyond ‘an extra adult who just reads a book at the back and is there for child protection purposes’.
Everyone is busy, especially youth workers! So you need passionate people who will help lighten the yoke. Doug emphasizes in this chapter that the focus should be on encouraging your leaders to develop relationships with the young people.
It’s when the helpers you nurture move from baby-sitting to leading that spiritual growth will flourish in your groups.
PRINCIPLE 9: PERSEVERANCE
Protecting yourself is the last and arguably most important section of the lot.
Learn how to handle the pressures of leading the church youth work, juggling several projects effectively, disciplining your youth with positive energy rather than negative energy and managing your time for maximum impact to the young people’s lives.
WHAT REAL YOUTH WORKERS SAY:
Here’s what some real-life youth worker/volunteers have said about ‘Purpose Driven Youth Minstry’.
“This is the best book on youth ministry that I've read. Fields leaves no bases uncovered, from working with parents to handling discipline. I wish I had read this book before my first youth pastorate. It would have saved me many mistakes.” – Andrew McHenry, Amazom.com Review.
“It transcends culture, which was a concern of mine in the beginning; however, after reading it, I can tell that it was truly God inspired. It exceeded my expectations.” – LaTrisha, Christianbook.com Review.
“Great book both practical & inspirational” – Thea Pitcher, GoodReads.com Review.
|Author / Artist||Doug Fields|
|Publisher||Zondervan (February 2013)|
|Number of Pages||400|
|Page last updated||9th June 2018|