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This Ministry Focus Paper attempts to take a deeper look at abandonment in the Latino mid-adolescent community in the United States, the Midwest, and, specifically, Indianapolis, contrasting and comparing history, ethos, and systemic abandonment with the dominant culture mid-adolescent in the United States. Chap Clark, in his groundbreaking research entitled Hurt, uses the phrase “systemic abandonment” to describe the present state of the adolescent.1 Clark realizes that abandonment has been a slow, historical process initiated with the rise of the middle class and accentuated by postmodern values, such as: individualism, consumerism, and the perception of competence and sophistication of the young—as described by David Elkind—without social capital.2

Clark, in Hurt 2.0, shares about a group affected by systemic abandonment and not fitting within the “sociological mainstream.”3 Clark groups them into two clusters: the vulnerable and the privileged. The Latino oppressed culture is included in the vulnerable group. Although its value orientation is familism, collectivism, and social harmony, it is also affected by systemic abandonment.

It is the final goal of this Ministry Focus Paper to create a structure that allows churches to adopt schools. The goal is to provide social capital in a multicultural setting, and therefore help reduce abandonment. It describes the DDMC model (Development, Discipleship, Mission, and Community) developed in a less ethnically minority populated urban community of the Midwest.

Content reader: Chap Clark, PhD


1 Chap Clark, Hurt: Inside the World of Today's Teenagers (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Academic, 2004), 43-44.

2 David Elkind, All Grown Up and No Place to Go: Teenagers in Crisis (Reading, MA: Addison-Wesley, 1998), 5.

3 Chap Clark, Hurt 2.0: Inside the World of Today’s Teenagers (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Academic, 2011), 165-186.

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April 2018

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