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Paperback Soul Shaper: Exploring Spirituality and Contemplative Practices in Youth Ministry Book

ISBN: 031025101X

ISBN13: 9780310251019

Soul Shaper: Exploring Spirituality and Contemplative Practices in Youth Ministry

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Format: Paperback

Condition: Very Good

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Book Overview

If you're unprepared for a book that makes faith come alive in practice, that makes past come alive in the present--and offers these gifts only if you're willing to spend significant time learning about the church's powerful, active spiritual heritage (and your place in it), then put this book down now.Still with us? Good! Because we really don't want you to miss this book.Soul Shaper is hands-down the most comprehensive primer on the study and use...

Customer Reviews

5 ratings

Good little introduction to Christian spirituality

A powerful little book on spiritual formation through devotional practices like Centering Prayer, the Sign of the Cross, the Ignatian Examen, Lectio Divina, the Jesus Prayer,Labyrinths and more. It was originally written for youth group use, but the exercises described can be used by believers of any age. One of the reasons that we struggle with our faith is that we do not spend enough time connected to the source of all faith. Jones recognizes that faith is not an intellectual exercise, but rather a relationship forged in existential encounter with God. For thousands of years the devoted have done just that using the methods outlined here.

An important book for all Christians

I am a good friend of Tony Jones', having growing up under his tutelage at the Church he formally worked at in Minnesota. As a result, he let me look through a pre-edited version of this book.I always enjoy discussing theological, philosophical and historical topics with Tony. For those of you who are interested in the mystical and spiritual practices that were instrumental in the formation of the Church, then I highly recomend reading this book.I can personally attest to how well some of these excercises/experiances work with a youth group. Tony's advice at the beginning of the book is very important, however. If you are going to use some of these in a youth group setting, you have to be comefortable with it. I would strongly recommend trying some of these with your leaders a few times, so that your whole leadership team is comfortable with what you guys will be doing. Many of these are also only going to impact you kids when they have been used several times throughout the year. I think that you will be amazed at the power and depth these practices will bring to your youth group. But I must reiterate that this is not a program guide that you can pull an activity out of an hour before your group meets.The best thing about this book is how, while it is written for youth leaders to use with their groups, it is also powerful for other groups, or even individuals.I love the format that Tony uses because he not only explains the experiance, but also discusses the history and theology of each experiance and gives references to reference material.This book is great for both youth pastors/leaders and individuals interested in the spiritual practices of the ancient Church.

An Interesting Resource Book

Soul Shaper is an excellent resource book for anyone (youth worker or otherwise) who would like to know more about certain Christian practices such as "making the sign of the cross" or saying the "Jesus prayer". The book is interesting and reveals the history, meanings, and variations of practice of the various customs it covers. I enjoyed the book and would gladly purchase it again.However, the buyer should be aware that so many of our traditions are sectarian that the portions of the book most likely to be used are already being used. This could limit the usefulness of the book, unless the church is very open to new ideas.For instance, the typical Baptist Church will not look favorably upon a youth minister who teaches the youth to make the sign of the cross each morning. I am NOT trying to suggest these signs are all Catholic. They come from various backgrounds, but most churches are hesitant to borrow from other traditions. Still, I liked the book.

A practical guide to 16 soul enriching spiritual exercises

This book, though it's geared toward youth pastors, is a must for anyone looking to deepen thier relationship with God. If you're a youth pastor looking for the next big fad in youth ministry please don't buy this book. But if you're someone (youth pastor or not) with a genuine intrest in deepening your walk with Christ there's not another book I can think of that would be more beneficial.Somehow over the course of the last few hundred years the western church has lost touch with the spirituality inherent in Christianity. Soul Shaper is a step in the right direction down the path that leads us back toward deep and authentic spiritual communion with our creator. The 16 exercises presented in this book, like Jones says, "are not gimmicks" to use to draw more kids to your youth group, they are exercises to be taken seriously and practiced, not with the intent of growing a large youth group, but with the intent of growing closer to God.

Slowing the pace to find God's divine work

I really enjoyed this book. It is a concise resource and guide for many who long to experience the density of historic Christianity. Tony is offering Youth Pastor's (specificallly - but the book is accesible to anyone) a diffferent path to lead young people to richness instead of over simplified and dumbed down cultural theology.
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