Cultivating God's Brainforest: Neurodiversity and Youth Ministry

What can neurodiversity teach us about youth ministry? Alongside neurodivergent young people, parents, and youth workers, the Institute for Youth Ministry developed this digital course to help leaders better understand and engage the gifts of neurodiversity within the context of Christian congregations. The course aims to equip leaders to shape congregations in which young people of all neurotypes flourish.

This course was made possible by a generous grant from Fuller Youth Institute's “Character-Forming Youth Discipleship” project, funded by The John Templeton Foundation. If the price poses a financial hardship, please contact the Office of Continuing Education at iym@ptsem.edu.

Discounts are offered to groups of 3 or more. Please contact iym@ptsem.edu for more information.

Available On Demand. Click below to register now!

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How it Works

When: Available On Demand

Duration: 5 Weeks

Difficulty: Introductory

Credit: 1 C.E.U.

Price: $79

What You'll Learn

  • Recognize the diverse ways young people connect with God.
  • Support various strengths and gifts in ministry with young people.
  • Create ministry environments in which young people of all neurotypes can flourish.

Who Should Enroll

Youth Ministry Leaders, Pastors, Christian Educators, and Lay People


Image of Michael Cartledge, a white man with dark hair and a beard in a blazer, smiling in front of brick background.

Michael Paul Cartledge

Michael Paul Cartledge II is a PhD candidate in practical theology at Princeton Theological Seminary and an adjunct instructor at New Brunswick Theological Seminary. He holds an MDiv and MA from Princeton Seminary and a BA in communication and media studies from Stetson University. His doctoral research uses qualitative methods to explore faith formation amid the challenge of depression. He established The Theology and Neurodiversity Project, an online resource that grew out of a graduate course he taught at Princeton Seminary.

Image of Erin Raffety, a white woman is brown hair wearing a beige coat and patterned scarf, smiling while outside on a sidewalk.

Erin Raffety

Rev. Dr. Erin Raffety is a Practical Theologian who uses ethnographic methods to study congregations. Raffety is currently the Research Fellow in Machine Intelligence & Pastoral Care with the Center of Theological Inquiry, where she studies how artificial intelligence and video game technology can support spiritual connection for people with disabilities and congregations. At Princeton Theological Seminary, Raffety serves as the Empirical Research Consultant on the Imagining Church Project (a nationwide study of thriving congregations) and the Associate Research Scholar for the Institute for Youth Ministry. She is the author of two forthcoming books, one on foster care in China and the other on disability ministry in the United States. She is ordained as a Teaching Elder in the PC(USA), holds a Ph.D. in Cultural Anthropology from Princeton University, and is a proud parent of a daughter with multiple disabilities.

Price: $79.00