Academy of Parish Clergy 2020 Top Ten Book for Parish Ministry In Faith Formation in a Secular Age , the first book in his Ministry in a Secular Age trilogy, Andrew Root offered an alternative take on the issue of youth drifting away from the church and articulated how faith can be formed in our secular age. In The Pastor in a Secular Age , Root explores how this secular age has impacted the identity and practice of the pastor, obscuring his or her core vocation: to call and assist others into the experience of ministry. Using examples of pastors throughout history--from Augustine and Jonathan Edwards to Martin Luther King Jr. and Nadia Bolz-Weber--Root shows how pastors have both perpetuated and responded to our secular age. Root turns to Old Testament texts and to the theology of Robert Jenson to explain how pastors can regain the important role of attending to people's experiences of divine action, offering a new vision for pastoral ministry today.
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A timely and significant resource We are embedded in and pervaded by what Charles Taylor called a 'secular age.' The implications of Taylor's analysis of secularity are enormous, but few have taken up the challenge to look through Taylor at ministry in our world. Andrew Root has, and he has done so successfully and spectacularly. We need to take up the challenge with Root, listen to him, and extend his insights into our local churches. -- Scot McKnight , Northern Seminary This highly readable book is a must-read for anyone preparing for pastoral ministry or currently in ministry. Root encourages pastors to reclaim an identity based on their participation in God's acts of ministry. It is in these very acts of ministry that a window is opened to the transcendent and ministering God in a secular age. -- Annette Brownlee , Wycliffe College, University of Toronto Good books help you see what you couldn't see before--like why pastoring is so difficult. Better books help you see the work of God despite the millennia of obstacles we have thrown up against divine agency. Root thinks the living God can break through our pastoral malaise. Reading him, I found myself not only agreeing but learning and delighting and looking anew for the God who pastors us all. -- Jason Byassee , Vancouver School of Theology In a world longing for enchantment but too cynical to accept it, pastors can understandably feel irrelevant and confused. Root provides a helpful overview of how our world became so disenchanted and what it might look like to attend to God in a world that has forgotten how to do so. -- Danielle Shroyer , spiritual director and author Drawing from his in-depth understanding of Charles Taylor's philosophical insight, and utilizing case studies of pastors from history and the present, Root offers a compelling portrait of a fresh and invigorating way to approach the vocation of ministry. This is a timely and significant resource for churches, seminaries, and pastors, a vision for ministering in the immanent frame. -- Kyle Roberts , United Theological Seminary of the Twin Cities