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4.0 out of 5 stars Good book, but now outdated, 5 Dec 2010
J. Cooper (Sheffield, England) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Key Christian Beliefs: Faith for Living (Paperback)
This is an exceptionally well-rounded and balanced book which aims to introduce Christianities' key concepts and beliefs to a young teenage target audience. When discussing profound topics with young teenagers, numerous deep, often difficult questions are asked which can be decidedly tricky to even attempt to answer! As a result, as a voluntary youth leader I particularly enjoyed this book because it asks a lot of open questions which will encourage a young reader to pause, reflect and formulate an opinion which can then be discussed together as part of a larger group. Additionally, `Key Christian Beliefs' does not seek to preach, convert, patronise or humiliate; it is a book which informs, questions and encourages healthy debate.

This book is the teenager's edition, I believe the teacher's/leader's companion can be purchased separately. However, I bought this book because I wanted to read it from the teenager's perspective. I came to the conclusion that if the teenager's book was sub-standard, then it wouldn't matter how much I enjoyed the teacher's/leader's companion, because I wouldn't be using it! `Key Christian Beliefs' is aesthetically, quite a dated book. Originally published in 1995, new young readers will immediately notice the photographs which show outdated clothing/fashion styles and seriously outdated hairstyles! Some of the activities are quite old fashioned as well and place a heavy emphasis on writing and drawing; which not all children will enjoy. The book was published before the use of personal computers was widespread and as a result, none of the activities involve the use of a computer or the internet. This may be an advantage if your group does not have access to a computer but will be seriously problematic for those groups which consist of very technologically able and computer literate teenagers.

I'm going to use this book for my group of young teenagers when studying Christianity as a subject. I won't be using it as a cover to cover activity book as I feel that it is now past its prime. What I will be doing however, is using it as a reference book and will select those sections and activities which are still relevant, which will spark healthy debate and most importantly, which I believe young teenagers will still enjoy completing. For its price, `Key Christian Beliefs' is a useful book to have at your disposal when venturing into a potential minefield of a subject.

So to conclude, this would have been an excellent book in its day; it's now outdated, but still good enough to have in your library as a reference book, useful as a source of inspiration when studying Christianity as a complete subject.
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Key Christian Beliefs: Faith for Living
Key Christian Beliefs: Faith for Living by Chris Wright (Paperback - 24 Feb 1995)
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