Smaller Church Youth Ministry: an Essential Youth Ministry Book

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Smaller Church Youth Ministry by Brad Fiscus with Stephanie Caro is a must-read for every youth worker.  When a close friend first recommended I read this book I had two thoughts simultaneously:

  1. I am so glad that someone wrote this book.  Small churches are a specific context, and we needed this addressed specifically.
  2. I’ll read it later because I don’t work at a small church.

When I got around to reading it I immediately regretted that second thought.  This book is one of those rare pieces of writing where a veteran in a field distills all their best discoveries into a single, brilliant volume full of things that work in the real world.

Though it is specifically designed to help people in a small(er) church (you’ll find out that the -er is important), the big ideas are things that apply everywhere regardless of the membership numbers reported on your year end report.

So, what do you get in the 160 pages? You get a simple structure for youth leadership teams, how to deal with your senior pastor, how to develop leaders, dealing with abuse and safe sanctuaries, designing for discipleship, and tons more!  And, its only 160 pages.  It’s not filled with fluff.  It’s just what works!

For those of you who haven’t stopped reading and ordered it yet, you’re probably asking what’s the negative?  My only negative is that its title makes friends of mine feel like they shouldn’t read it, but they should.  So what are you waiting for?  Go order it now.

When he's not with his four children and wonderful wife, Jeremy Steele is a teaching pastor at Christ United Methodist Church in Mobile, Alabama. He is passionate about engaging people with the movement of God and speaks across the US. He's also the author of Reclaiming the Lost Soul of Youth Ministry. For more about his other books, articles, and resources, see

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