The Fuller Youth Institute is excited to announce our newest team member: Dr. Steve Argue, a thought leader and researcher with decades of on-the-ground ministry experience, most recently with Mars Hill Bible Church in Grand Rapids, Michigan.
Steve will serve a hybrid role with FYI and Fuller Theological Seminary, teaching masters and doctoral-level students as an assistant professor in the Youth, Family, and Culture program in the School of Theology. With the FYI team, Steve will serve as an Applied Research Strategist, pioneering innovative theology and theory channeled into practical ministry resources. Steve’s role poises Fuller to exponentially impact leaders worldwide, in particular through this unique partnership between academic programs and FYI.
No stranger to FYI, Steve has been part of our Advisory Council, Sticky Faith speaking and coaching team, and is the Coaching Director for our Sticky Faith Cohorts. We sat down with Steve to ask him about his new role on Fuller’s campus.
Q: What can you tell us about the pathway that led you to this role at Fuller?
I have always believed in the intersection of academic discipline and real-life ministry experience. I think the best ministry and the most effective teaching/training happens where these two worlds meet. Over the years, I have developed as a ministry leader while maturing as an academic researcher. My research reflects my commitment to young people and my desire to better understand their spiritual journeys.
One of the practical ways this intersection played out for me has been through introducing FYI to the church where I pastored—Mars Hill Bible Church in Grand Rapids. Over the past five years, I have been invited by FYI to train and coach churches, speak into research projects, and serve on the Advisory Council. My involvement with FYI also allowed me to meet some of the tremendous Fuller faculty, like Dr. Pam King, Dr. Scott Cormode, Dr. Chap Clark, and Dr. Tommy Givens. All these experiences and relationships only grew my deep respect and love for Fuller. When this position was posted, it just seemed like a great fit. The whole candidating process has only confirmed this. I couldn’t be more excited!
Q: So you’ve been doing some pretty intriguing research lately; can you tell us a little about that?
Yes, my doctoral research focused on how undergraduate students who attend public universities perceive and work through spiritual struggle. My work has helped me better understand their experiences of spiritual struggle and the resources students need as they work through their struggles. More broadly, I think this work can contribute to us better understanding emerging adults and faith, as we give voice to their journeys. I hope it can provide more meaningful ways for faith communities to support emerging adults in one of the most important periods in their lives. They also tend to be the most misunderstood people in our churches today. I hope my research can contribute to shifting people’s attitudes and relationships with emerging adults.
Q: From your research and experience, what are you hoping to bring to Fuller as a professor?
I’m really excited to contribute the ongoing reputation of Fuller’s of commitment to youth, family, and culture. Dr. Chap Clark and Dr. Kara Powell have done an amazing job, and I think together we’re going to train and inspire emerging ministry leaders who feel a deep calling to advocate for young people.
I am inspired by the value and support Fuller places on interdisciplinary scholarship. I’m excited to learn from and work with some amazing colleagues who can deepen our understanding of young people and the ways they work out their spirituality.
I believe the classroom can be sacred space. Students spill into these spaces with incredible stories, experiences, hopes, passions, and ideas. Meaning can be made here and dialogue can happen that has the potential to evoke game-changing ideas. I also believe that seminary students are forming themselves, and I hope to get to know them and to be a support to them as they invest themselves at Fuller. Current and future Fuller students: I can’t wait to meet you.
Q: What are you hoping to bring to FYI and the youth and emerging adult ministry world through your role as Applied Research Strategist?
Over the years I have been drawn to FYI’s commitment of “research into resources.” FYI has led the way in thoughtful, responsive ministry in the youth, family, and culture conversation. I’m excited about the research we can do to understand the formational trajectory from youth through emerging adulthood, along with finding ways to communicate findings in helpful ways to ministry leaders. I particularly believe that we can reimagine new avenues for supporting and inspiring ministry leaders toward better, more responsive approaches for youth and emerging adult formation and advocacy. Let’s go!
Learn more about studying at Fuller Theological Seminary in a Youth, Family, and Culture program.
Read some of Steve’s articles for FYI:
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