Kenda Creasy Dean is an elder in the United Methodist Church and a professor of youth, church and culture at Princeton Theological Seminary. She also works with the Institute for Youth Ministry. Her books include Almost Christian: What the Faith of Our Teenagers Is Telling the American Church (Oxford University Press).
The most hopeful message in Greenhouses of Hope is
implicit: your church doesn't have to be large, suburban, white or
wealthy--or even to have an established youth program--in order for
ministry with young people to flourish.
In 1984, Marvel Comics created a new nemesis for Spider-Man. The character would be a symbiote, inspired by what parasitologists call the weaker of two organisms inhabiting the same space. The weaker organism can draw life from the stronger, and in the most dramatic cases it siphons off its host’s nutrients before the host realizes what’s happening.
My friend David Burke, veteran youth pastor and church consultant, met recently with leaders of a midsized congregation to help assess their youth ministry. When lunchtime rolled around, a lanky 20-something pizza delivery guy wandered into the church’s youth room with several pizzas.
Lord have mercy
Apr 09, 2015
A. M. Stroud III, a former prosecutor in Louisiana, expresses regret for the role he played in sending Glenn Ford to death row in 1984. “I was 33 years old. I was arrogant, judgmental, narcissistic and very full of myself. I was not as interested in justice as I was in winning.” Stroud says he presented dubious evidence from a forensic pathologist, precluded black jurors from the trial (Ford, since exonerated, is black), and ignored the fact that the appointed defense attorney had never before tried a criminal or capital case. “I . . . hope that providence will have more mercy for me than I showed Glenn Ford,” Stroud said in a letter to the editor of the Times of Shreveport. “But, I’m also sobered by the realization that I certainly am not deserving of it” (ABA Journal, March 25).