The Great Christmas Exchange

The days leading up to the holiday season were incredibly difficult for me, as I kept imagining what should have been.

After Thanksgiving, I even told my husband, “Maybe we shouldn't put up a Christmas tree this year.” He quickly nixed that idea,...

2013 In Review

2013 was a hard year for me; So much so that a large part of me just wanted it to be over. 

In contrast with years past, I didn't want to linger there any longer, or to reflect upon it. 

That said, after more than a decade in youth...

My Favorite Books of 2013

Skiier With Bag My husband and I spent the week between Christmas and New Year's skiing in the Canadian Rockies. At one point, as we prepared to ski out of Sunshine Village, my husband joked that my backpack made me look like a skier about to head off into the...

13 in 13

13 In 2013My husband and I were fortunate to have time off during the holidays this year. In addition to connecting with family and friends, traveling, skiing, and relaxing, I enjoyed using some of that time to reflect upon 2013. To that end, today, I'm...

Death as Discipleship

Our American culture does not handle death well. We don’t know how to grieve or how to be with people in their despair. Uncomfortable with silence, we attempt to fill it. When we do, we often say something dumb that only heightens everyone’s...

Four Reasons Why Support Letters Are Important

I've made several trips to the post office in the past few days, mailing support letters from members of our mission trip team to their family and friends, asking them to support their trip prayerfully and/or financially.

While standard in many...

Review: Disunity in Christ by Christena Cleveland

I spent five years working at a multi-ethnic, multi-site congregation.

There was much I loved about this church and my role there. During my time there, I discovered who I was as a youth worker. More importantly, though, serving in a context...

Shhh! You're in worship!

Yesterday, worship was more crowded than usual. As a result, by the time I finished getting ready for Sunday school and then snuck into our sanctuary, my usual seat was taken, leaving me with no choice but to sit somewhere new.

Doing so meant...

Review: Help, Thanks, Wow by Anne Lamott

I do not generally enjoy books on prayer.

Oh believe me, I've read my fair share – for small groups, class, and work.

But there tends to be something about these books that rub me the wrong way. Perhaps that's why even though I received Anne...

Jen Bradbury on Youth Ministry

Jen serves as the Minister of Youth and Family at Atonement Lutheran Church in Barrington, Illinois. A veteran youth worker, Jen holds an MA in Youth Ministry Leadership from Huntington University. Jen is the author of The Jesus Gap: What Teens Actually Believe about Jesus (The Youth Cartel), The Real Jesus (The Youth Cartel), Unleashing the Hidden Potential of Your Student Leaders (Abingdon), and A Mission That Matters (Abingdon). Her writing has also appeared in YouthWorker Journal, Immerse, and The Christian Century. Jen is also the Assistant Director of Arbor Research Group where she has led many national studies. When not doing ministry or research, she and her husband, Doug, and daughter, Hope, can be found traveling and enjoying life together.

More about Jen

Jen's Books

Now Available!

A Mission That Matters: How To Do Short-Term Missions Without Long-Term Harm

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Now Available!

Unleashing the Hidden Potential of your Student Leaders

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The Real Jesus

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The Jesus Gap

What Teens Actually Believe About Jesus

Based on National Research

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