The Crisis of Younger Clergy


Crisis of Younger Clergy book coverThe Crisis of Younger Clergy explores the reasons why having a proportionate number of young persons entering ordained ministry is so vital to the future of the church. Drawing on up-to-date statistical compilations and survey findings, the book profiles the young clergy population in the United Methodist Church. It exposes the many challenges younger clergy face while lifting up the unique gifts they have to offer.


“Weems and Michel sound the alarm for the crisis affecting every United Methodist church in the United States.… A must-read book for everyone who cares about the future of the UMC.”
— Bishop Janice Riggle Huie President, Council of Bishops

“The authors have offered focused conclusions and hopeful recommendations. To ignore either is to further jeopardize our future.”
— Bishop Gregory Vaughn Palmer, President-elect, Council of Bishops

“Weems and Michel offer reasons for hope, and boldly suggest that the care we take with our younger clergy and the renewal of the church generally go hand in hand.”
— Jason Byassee, Christian Century

“Weems and Michel’s book is crucial for understanding the problems and possibilities that the United Methodist Church faces in regards to its young clergy. From statistical analysis to anecdotes from young clergy blogs, their detailed picture of the current crisis provides a crucial diagnosis which the church can now use to take constructive action.”
— Andrew C. Thompson, “Gen X Rising” columnist for the United Methodist Reporter

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About Author

Ann A. Michel has served on the staff of the Lewis Center for Church Leadership since early 2005. She currently serves as a Senior Consultant and is co-editor of Leading Ideas e-newsletter. She also teaches at Wesley Theological Seminary in the areas of stewardship and leadership. She is the co-author with Lovett H. Weems Jr. of Generosity, Stewardship, and Abundance: A Transformational Guide to Church Finance (Rowman & Littlefield, 2021) available at Cokesbury and Amazon. She is also the author of Synergy: A Leadership Guide for Church Staff and Volunteers (Abingdon, 2017), available at Cokesbury and Amazon.

Dr. Lovett H. Weems, Jr.

Lovett H. Weems Jr. is senior consultant at the Lewis Center for Church Leadership, distinguished professor of church leadership emeritus at Wesley Theological Seminary, and author of several books on leadership.