First Steps

Articles on Rooted

How to Survive and Thrive in Your First Youth Ministry Job by Dave Wright

6 Books for Your First Year in Youth Ministry by Davis Lacey

Working In Youth Ministry is Not Just a Stepping Stone by Clark Fobes

The Unimportance of Being Cool by Rebecca Lankford

Book Review: Growing Young by Seth Stewart

A Goodbye to Youth Ministry (HTH) by Mike Leake

6 Real Life Scenarios for Youth Workers (HTH) by Brian Cosby

Teaching Teenagers by Scott Douglas

To My Younger Cockier Self: Part 1: When I Knocked It Out of the Park by John Pond

To My Younger and Cockier Self: Part 2: When I Bombed It by Scott Douglas

To My Younger, Cockier Self: Part 3: When I Was Accidentally Inappropriate by Seth Stewart


Gospel-Centered Youth Ministry: A Practical Guide (Edited by Cameron Cole and Jon Nielson). With individual chapters written by a unique mixture of youth ministry practitioners, Gospel-Centered Youth Ministry is a helpful primer for a variety of student ministry-related topics. These include topics such as the role of musical worship in student ministry, advice on partnering with parents for the work of youth ministry, the best practices for student ministry service projects and mission trips, and much more. Gospel-Centered Youth Ministry is immensely practical and common-sense as well as theologically rich.

Gospel: Recovering the Power that Made Christianity Revolutionary by J.D.Greear. A seminal work on the bottomless riches of the Gospel, with emphasis on what this means for practical, everyday living.

Youth Culture 101 by Walt Mueller. Originally titled “Understanding Today’s Youth Culture,” this book looks at contemporary youth culture with all of its complex and challenging issues, but addresses these issues through a Christian lens. A valuable resource from a wise and experienced youth pastor and parent.

Center Church: Doing Balanced, Gospel- Centered Ministry in Your City by Tim Keller. This resource is basically a textbook on church, ministry, and mission, and all forms of church. A great handbook on the church from both a theological and a practical standpoint.

The End of Youth Ministry? Why Parents Don’t Really Care about Youth Groups and What Youth Workers Should Do about It by Andrew Root. Root’s book will go a long way towards helping youth ministers understand the choices parents face, and how they are making decisions for their families.


Youth Culture Matters by CPYU

The Center for Parent/Youth Understanding podcast addresses cultural issues in a Christian context. Podcasts address almost every issue that youth face today. A wealth of information and Christian thinking on contemporary culture.

Culture Matters by the Village Church

While this podcast is not focused specifically on teen culture, it does examine contemporary culture at large, and is a great source for solid Biblical thinking about how to address the issues of our day.


CPYU Their tagline says it all: ‘Helping parents, youth workers, educators, pastors and others understand and reach today’s youth culture.” The Center for Parent/Youth Understanding helps all leaders of teens respond to the culture of today’s teenages in a Christian context.


And a word of encouragement: Don’t forget one of your best resources is other people! Find a mentor, ask five-seven people to pray for you and your ministry regularly, and of course, come to the Rooted preconference!

Join our mailing list to stay informed!