Joel Mayward

Jesus Goes to the Movies

The Youth Ministry Film Guide

Includes 50 Film Discussion Guides for Your Youth Ministry


In stock

SKU: 9781942145134 Categories: , , Tags: ,


Movies can and do have tremendous influence in shaping young lives in the realm of entertainment towards the ideals and objectives of normal adulthood.

-Walt Disney

Today’s youth are growing up in a culture where films are no longer relegated to the big screen and the family television. Movies have spilled onto our computers, our tablets, and even our smartphones. Our young people are saturated in a movie-watching ethos, yet they often don’t know how to process the films they consume. How can we guide teens and young adults into viewing films through a Jesus-colored lens?

Drawing on engaging stories and thoughtful cultural critique, Jesus Goes to the Movies provides a framework for discipleship and faith formation. It offers youth workers a theology of movies that can be passed to the next generation, equipping them with critical-thinking skills, discernment, and the ability to engage the film culture surrounding them with wisdom, grace, and truth.

About Joel Mayward

Joel Mayward
Joel Mayward is a pastor, writer, youth worker, and aspiring film critic. The author of three books, he has written for numerous ministry publications, including Leadership JournalYouthWorker Journal, The Youth Cartel, and LeaderTreks. Joel has been serving in youth ministry since 2003 and lives with his wife and three children in the beautiful green and grey of the Pacific Northwest. You can read his musings on film, theology, culture, and leadership at his blog,


For anyone working in youth ministry, as well as parents and teachers of Christian young people, Jesus Goes to the Movies is a resource you will want to study and share. Joel Mayward presents a balanced, thorough, discerning, and eminently practical overview of how Christian young people can receive movies in a manner that grows them in their faith. Every church and youth group and Bible study should have a copy of this resource!

Brett McCracken | @brettmccracken
Author of Gray Matters and Hipster Christianity

Students love movies. A lot. This is good because movies can teach us a thing or two about our world. In Jesus Goes to the Movies, Joel Mayward helps youth workers understand how film can be a tool for teenagers to better love God. As a film critic, I love this book. As a youth pastor, I love it even more.

Wade Bearden | @wadehance
Student Pastor, Houston, TX
Staff Writer at Christ and Pop Culture
Cohost of Seeing and Believing (film and TV podcast)

Joel Mayward and I both love movies and, more importantly, love Star Wars with all of our hearts. Jesus Goes to the Movies will help you more deeply understand what you’re seeing on the silver screen and how to help connect your students to the teachings of Jesus in the media they consume.

Josh Griffin | @joshuagriffin
High School Pastor, Saddleback Church


Request a Sample

Fill out the form below and we’ll email you a sample chapter & sample discussion guide

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Additional information

Weight .7 lbs
Dimensions 8.5 × 5.5 × .65 in


Year Published

Page Count


There are no reviews yet.

Be the first to review “Jesus Goes to the Movies”

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *