Fortress Press

Journeying in the Wilderness: Forming Faith in the 21st Century

Journeying in the Wilderness

Forming Faith in the 21st Century

Terri Martinson Elton (Author)


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In Journeying in the Wilderness, author Terri Martinson Elton observes that faith formation in the church setting is contextual, and multiple forces are coming together today to create seismic contextual changes at record speed. These changes are disrupting aspects of our lives, challenging assumptions, and dislodging personal and communal practices. For the church to take seriously its call to form faith in each generation, it must be attentive to current contextual realities. Elton places confessional understanding of faith in dialogue with five contextually altering forces in order to provide a pathway for congregations to reimagine faith formation in the midst of twenty-first-century realities.

The use of stories, nontechnical language, and biblical perspectives make this work accessible for congregational leaders and others who seek to explore new directions in forming faith. Processes and practices are offered to help both leaders and congregations contextualize their approach to their particular settings. Each chapter includes leadership competencies, shared practices, and group discussion questions.

  • Publisher Fortress Press
  • Format Paperback
  • ISBN 9781506455600
  • eBook ISBN 9781506455617
  • Dimensions 5.5 x 8.5
  • Pages 176
  • Publication Date February 4, 2020


Spiritual GPS for such a time as this.

“Confused. Disoriented. Overwhelmed. Such is the experience today of many disciples, congregations, and pastors struggling to find our bearings as we live through times of massive cultural and religious change. Elton’s book helps us all to find the way forward when the old maps are outdated or don’t cover the territory we now find ourselves in. We discover here a spiritual process for moving forward in faith through deep engagement with the love of God attested to in Scripture and through participation in a set of faith-orienting practices. We need Elton’s spiritual GPS for such a time as this.” 

Gordon Miskoski | Princeton Theological Seminary

Keeps your feet planted and propels you forward all in the same moment!

“A thought-provoking read for individuals and a true gift for communities. In these pages, Terri Martinson Elton takes you on a journey toward abundant life—God’s vision for God’s people. Drawing on Scripture, Lutheran tradition, current leadership theory, and personal experience, Journeying in the Wilderness keeps your feet planted and propels you forward all in the same moment!”

Kristine Stache | Wartburg Theological Seminary

A vision of faith formation for our time.

“Elton’s book opened my imagination and inspired me with a vision of faith formation for our time. Elton diagnoses challenges and proposes fruitful changes for our faith formation practices. Our culture generates significant headwinds for God’s church. Elton encourages us to become explorers and adventurers flourishing in the wilderness of our context.”

Jon Anderson | Bishop of the Southwestern Minnesota Synod, ELCA