I recently read an article on Christian millennials. You can read it here if you would like. What drew me to the article was that it claimed 59% of millennials raised in a church have dropped out. It would be interesting to know what denomination this 59% is from? I have seen some churches growing their youth groups while others are in steep decline. My opinion is that the leadership of the Church has a lot to do with the growth or decline of its attendance.
Generally what I have witnessed is that all age groups tend to decline at the same time in an unhealthy Church. Christian millennials attendance may drop at a greater rate because when the parents leave, so do the kids.
I do agree with several parts of the article explaining why Christian millennials are leaving Church. One of the biggest things that see happening in Churches today is a lack of honesty.
There are a lot of people attending Church that want to hear happy, feel good messages all of the time. That is great if your life is perfect. But none of us are perfect, so we need to hear the truth. Getting rid of perfect doesn't mean that every sermon needs to be a downer with no hope. You can still preach the truth in an honest, straightforward way.
The Churches that I see failing are those that preach about charitable giving, to them. They talk about how we need to be nice to others. These same pastors never get real and engage their audience with real life situations. Most of the time their illustrations are bland and lack spice. The pastor will talk about non-controversial issues or things that do not expose themselves to judgment from the audience. Everyone loves to laugh, but sometimes we need to get serious.
How Churches have preached the word to Christian Millennials differently.
When I grew up, I went to Churches where you sat through sermons on heaven and hell. Most of the sermons I sat through talked about being right or wrong and how to get to heaven. I am glad that I found a Church that tells it the way it is like pastors did when I was a child. Having attended wishy-washy Churches, they did not do much to enhance my spiritual growth.
I grew more spiritually when the pastor showed me where I was wrong and how to make it right with God. We need this leadership at the head of our Churches. Spineless pastors that are afraid to go into the trenches are doing a severe injustice to the next generation of believers.
Christian Millennials need a strong Godly leader in their lives. The Church may be the only exposure they have to a solid male role model preaching the word of God.
We need to do more to help the younger generation. Just creating social programs is not enough. We need to mentor the next generation. It is our job as Christians to be leaders where there are no leaders. We need to walk a God-centered life and show a solid example to Christian Millennials. When we fail, it is important to show others how we overcame our failure in a Godly way.
Luke 6:31 “Treat others the same way you want them to treat you.” Pretty simple right? If we were struggling with our place in the world, would it benefit us to have more feel good programs at Church or a Christian mentor in our lives?