Spiritual Formation in Emerging Adulthood

SpiritualFormationTwo of the stated goals for this website are to provide information on emerging adulthood and resources for developing lasting faith. If the church is going to help young people develop a lasting faith, we need to have a good understanding of the cultural conditions in which they live (emerging adulthood).

Both of these goals come together very nicely in a new book by two college professors. David P. Setran (Wheaton College) and Chris A. Kiesling (Asbury Theological Seminary) have recently published Spiritual Formation in Emerging Adulthood: A Practical Theology for College and Young Adult Ministry (Baker Academic).

From their extensive background in college and young adult ministry, the authors were motivated by two questions:

(1) What does the gospel have to offer emerging adults as they are formed through the adult transition?

(2) What do emerging adults shaped by the gospel have to offer to the church and the world?

Their stated desire for writing the book is “to provide a ‘practical theology’ for college and young adult ministry, one that combines important scholarship, a Christian theological vision, and attentiveness to concrete ministry applications.” Baker Publishing Group invited me to read the book ahead of time and offer an endorsement. Here it is:

“Young adults need guidance and so do those who desire to help them mature into healthy adulthood. This book provides a lucid overview of the current research regarding emerging adulthood as well as accessible guidelines for reaching this generation with the Gospel. The authors make a strong case for why the church should take emerging adulthood research and emerging adults more seriously. Most refreshing, the central motivation behind Spiritual Formation in Emerging Adulthood is not the desire to grow a church or young adult program, but to see young people grow up in Christ.”

I highly recommend this book for church leaders, college ministers and parents who desire to see young people embrace and live-out faith during the formative, young adult years.