I recently received a copy of Generation Rising: A Future with Hope for the United Methodist Church from Abingdon Press to review. I finished reading it yesterday on my day off after Easter Sunday. The book consists of 12 chapters written by different authors, who are all members of Generation X and The United Methodist Church. According to the Introduction,
“There is one thing that is lacking in recent books on Wesleyan renewal in the church, though: the voice of a younger generation. The book in your hands wants to fill that gap by casting a vision for the church’s future by United Methodists who fall into the Generation X category” (xii).
The chapters about preaching, small groups and internet ministry were outstanding chapters of the book that were well written and provided helpful reflections on the history of The United Methodist Church that are relevant to life in ministry today. Unfortunately, much of the rest of the content in this book was musings and reflection on what “might” or “could” be in the future of the denomination. This was frustrating. While the purpose of the book was to add the voice of a younger generation to recent books on Wesleyan renewal, I would have much preferred a book about Wesleyan renewal that focused on fruit born in the life of a local church. As a mashup of Toby Keith and Elvis Presley lyrics suggests, it is time for a little less conversation and a lot more action.
I recommend this book if you want to hear the voice of Generation X in the United Methodist Church.