Sustainable Youth Ministry: Why Most Youth Ministry Doesn’t Last and What You Can Do About It is the in-the-weeds, how-to resource on youth ministry architecture that many youth pastors, youth workers and church youth committees have been hoping would be written for some time.  And clearly the most qualified youth ministry veteran to pen a blueprint for sustainable youth ministry is Devries –  who has spent the last 25 years as youth pastor at the same church (very rare) and is the founder of Youth Ministry Architects, an organization devoted to helping churches structure their youth ministries for long-term health and sustainability.  There is a lot in this book on youth ministry that you won’t find in other books on the topic: practical information on structure, leadership development, how to deal with church politics, and the youth leader’s emotional health.  The book concludes with very helpful appendices and discussion questions for youth ministry teams studying the book together.  Any serious student of youth ministry or youth pastor should own it for sure.  All the typical youth ministry stakeholders would also find it helpful: parents, volunteer youth workers, senior pastors, executive pastors, church youth committee members, church youth pastor search committees (Devries devotes an entire chapter to the youth pastor search process), and elders who have youth ministry as one of their responsibilities.  I think any youth pastor interested in longevity in their position would do well to give a copy of Sustainable Youth Ministry to whatever staff member or lay leader supervises them. Every church that has a youth ministry, or hopes to have a youth ministry, should have at least one copy of this book.

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