Tackling Tough Topics with Faith and Fiction

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Author: Jenkins, Diana R.
Publisher: Pauline Books & Media Pages: 80
Binding: Paperback
Code: 819874957

Tackling Tough Topics with Faith and Fiction puts you and your 11-14 year olds on the same team. Doctrinally-sound, non-preachy, and engaging, this faith-based resource opens up the playing field to tackle tough topics together. Fictional stories about contemporary teens are used as a vehicle to show the value of faith in difficult times and sensitive situations. Each chapter - the content of which can be assessed based on students' levels of maturity and need - focuses on a real life challenge to the faith as experienced by a fictional character. The ten topics explored in this book are:

  • Pornography
  • Cyberbullying
  • Modesty
  • Family
  • Materialism/Consumerism
  • Dishonesty
  • Body Image
  • Substance Abuse
  • Stress to Overachieve
  • Depression


Along with the fictional component, each chapter includes statistical facts helpful for approaching the topic, discussion questions, links to Scripture and the Catechism of the Catholic Church, an activity, a prayer, and a concluding message offering practical advice for how students can deal with the respective issue.

Features & Benefits:

  • Offers helpful introductory "How to Use this Book" guide
  • Provides pointers for "Talking with Your Teen"
  • Includes a reproducible "Letter to Parents" explaining the program
  • Contains reproducible pages for classroom use
  • Flexible format for teachers/catechists to decide which topics to cover at their own discretion
  • Chapters can be covered independently and non-sequentially
  • Features an appendix full of ideas for supplemental activities


About the Author:


After over twenty years as a special education teacher, Diana R. Jenkins became a freelance writer. She has written dozens of books, as well as hundreds of magazine stories, articles, and comic strips for kids and teens. She lives in Montgomery, Ohio with her husband, a medical physicist. Visit her on the web at www.dianarjenkins.bravehost.com, read her blog at djsthoughts-dj.blogspot.com, and find her on Facebook at www.facebook.com/dianarjenkins.

What Are People Saying about this Title?


Tackling Tough Topics with Faith and Fiction is full of help and hope for our Catholic youth and the adults who minister among them! Confronted daily with pressures, stresses, temptations, and media influences of a secularized culture, young people today want to know how to live their faith. This practical book provides adult leaders a step-by-step guide to introduce sensitive subjects and helps youth learn to follow Christ in the midst of the tough situations of their everyday lives. The Church needs resources of just this sort.
- Archbishop Wilton D. Gregory, S.L.D., Archbishop of Atlanta

In a field rich with solid catechetical resources, I was never tempted to use the word "genius" - until now. Tackling Tough Topics with Faith and Fiction, by Diana Jenkins, is extraordinary in its power and simplicity. With exceptional insight and a remarkably creative approach to sensitive subjects (for a hyper-sensitive audience), Jenkins's short, fictional, first-person stories expose and illuminate tough, timely issues without offending or threatening the dignity of the teen or young adult reader. Accompanying discussion questions, facts, activities, scriptures, and other resources are unified, coherent, and profoundly satisfying. Give us more resources like this one. Bravo!

- Lisa Mladinich, author, Be an Amazing Catechist: Inspire the Faith of Children, founder, AmazingCatechists.com