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Profiles in Vocation: A Study in the Conceptual Resources of Youth

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Popular youth ministry in recent history has focused primarily on short-term aims of Christian formation and has largely neglected forming youth for a lifetime partnership with God in vocation. Vocation emerged as a Christian doctrine in the Protestant Reformation, but contained a naïve view of status quo social roles inappropriate for today. James Fowler is among a group of contemporary theologians articulating an upadated vision for Christian vocation. This paper highlights results of a study at Emory University in which researchers identify four key profiles or distinctive ways in which youth negotiate their futures in response to Christian faith. These profiles hold significance when compared to Fowler's vision for Christian vocation, especially as they illuminate possibilities for congregations in forming youth.


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