Inquiring and Discerning Hearts

Vocation and Ministry with Young Adults on Campus

Inquiring and Discerning Hearts

Book Pages: 308 Illustrations: Published: January 2000

Religious Studies

Originally Published by Scholars Press
Now Available from Duke University Press

Inquiring and Discerning Hearts is the first major examination of Protestant campus ministries since the publication of Kenneth Underwood’s Danforth Study in 1969. The book consists of two parts. In part one, the authors trace the historical development of mainline Protestant campus ministries in their demonimational, institutional, and cultural settings since World War II. Utilizing denominational records of the Episcopal Church in the USA, the Presbyterian Church in the USA, and the United Methodist Church, as well as several private funding agencies, the authors offer a compelling description of how forces at work in American society, universities, churches, and in campus ministry itself interacted. In part two, the authors then build on their historical work by offering a prognosis for young adult ministries on campus and a prescription for how those ministries can be strengthened.


"Portaro and Peluso have produced a book which gives us useful information and updated resources to make the case that needs to be made for ministry in higher education. . . . One of the real strengths of this book is that it places the story of Protestant campus ministry within the context of American society since the 1950s. . . . Inquiring and Discerning Hearts is a very useful book. It articulates the need for a clear vision of mission on campus as supporting the vocational and faith development of young adults, and of students, faculty, and staff of the over 3,000 institutions of higher education across the country. It argues that the support of these missions must come from the local base, from the congregations and diocesan networks, from alumni, faculty, and friends of the ministry, rather than from any national or provincial fund. It pulls together the history of campus ministry since the 1940s and demonstrates that the lofty goals three large Protestant denominations set for themselves were never adequately structured or funded to make them realizable. . . . Take this book as food for our journey in campus ministry, as we tell the story of where we have been and build structures to support that ministry into the next century." — Jacqueline Schmitt, Anglican Theological Review


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Price: $104.95

Open Access

Author/Editor Bios Back to Top

Sam A. Portaro is the Episcopal Chaplain to the University of Chicago.

Gary Peluso Associate Professor of Practical Theology at Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary, Evanston, Illinois.

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Cloth ISBN: 978-1-55540-892-3