Several great new resources for youth ministry are out. These are all great for parents of teens, youth ministers (lay and ordained), and teens themselves.
Helping Teens with Stress, Anxiety, and Depression by Roy Petitfils. An excellent book for parents of teens, youth ministers, and teachers. The author is both a seasoned youth minister in the Catholic Church and a therapist. His expertise shines through and offers a brutally honest but loving view of life with teens. He covers all the stress points a parent or youth worker needs to know about: teenage depression and anxiety, self-harm, thoughts of suicide, drug use, and the many challenges teens face in school and on social media. Highly recommended, especially for parents with children going into this difficult stage of life. Just published on March 8, 2019; available in paperback for about $14 and on Kindle for $9.99 as of this writing.
Roam, a novel by C. H. Armstrong. This eye-opening Young Adult novel shows what it’s like to be a homeless teen girl. Cinderella of the 21st century is a homeless teen, new in town, and living with her family in the parking lot of Walmart. The novel beautifully contrasted the differences between teens growing up in poverty and those growing up in suburban abundance. The wealthy kids in the novel blithely take their new cars, multiple prom dresses, and their phones for granted. Less than $5 on Kindle; about $10 in paperback. Strongly recommended for understanding the challenges of poverty.
How to Connect With Your Troubled Adult Children by Allison Bottke. If parenting has gone seriously amiss and your child has gone completely off the rails, this book is for you. The author lets you know you aren’t alone, gives you sound advice on how to deal with your child’s manipulations, financial demands, and repeated bouts with the law.
The Adopted Teen Workbook by Barbara Neiman. This is a workbook designed specifically for teenagers who were adopted, spent time in foster care, or are being raised by grandparents or someone other than birthparents. The book includes many exercises allowing teens to get in touch with their feelings by circling one of many emotions listed in response to questions concerning self-identity, self-worth, and other adoption-related issues. These exercises were quite good and would probably work with non-adopted teens as well. Many of these exercises are yoga-based and offer ways to calm the mind and body. Recommended as a resource for youth ministers.
Blessings on your work with teens! Cindy
Cynthia Coe is the author of several Christian formation curricula for children and teens. Visit her Author Page on Amazon for more information and a complete list of her books.