CNN article

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CNN article

Postby Wowboy on Tue Dec 20, 2011 12:38 pm

Saw this on CNN...

http://edition.cnn.com/2011/12/16/opinion/stepp-millennials-church/index.html?iref=obinsite

While the writer is clearly biased and a bit ignorant, she is bringing to light a trend we've probably all seen in our own churches.

I think the bottom line is that Evangelical churches are unaccomodating and sometimes even a bit hostile towards unmarried young adults.

What does everyone think?
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Re: CNN article

Postby Matthew on Tue Dec 20, 2011 2:37 pm

I know the least active I was in church was between 18-24, the college years. Not that I didn't want to go, but I was on my own and could sleep in and had no accountability.

My pastor told me that many churches don't like college kids because, get this, they don't have any money. Adults have jobs and have money. Children's programs can bring in families who have jobs and have money. What can the young people bring to the table? And unfortunately, this is the group that needs God the most.
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Re: CNN article

Postby Wowboy on Tue Dec 20, 2011 2:55 pm

Matthew wrote:My pastor told me that many churches don't like college kids because, get this, they don't have any money. Adults have jobs and have money. Children's programs can bring in families who have jobs and have money. What can the young people bring to the table? And unfortunately, this is the group that needs God the most.


I have long suspected this to be a cause... it nearly makes me want to stop tithing.

However, this bias has kept me from being active in church since I was in college, and now that I'm married, I still have no great desire to participate, given that I would feel that I was only being used for contributions.
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Re: CNN article

Postby destros_elite on Tue Dec 20, 2011 8:31 pm

PROCEED WITH CAUTION. I believe that Satan would love for us to grasp hold of this and make it a reason not to attend. After all, Peters says in 1 Peter 5:8 "Be of sober spirit, be on the alert. Your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour." I'm no zoologist but I do know that lions don't just dive into a pack of animals and start tearing them to shreds. They seek the weak. The ones that have wandered away from the pack or heard. Satan loves to separate us from the pack. We are more vulnerable that way.

Go to church and join yourself with like-minded, Bible believing people to serve and worship Jesus Christ. PERIOD. Satan loves hearing you say "I was only being used for contributions." You know what? So what? Even if that would be the case that you were being used for "contributions" TITHE ANYWAY AS OUR MASTER HAS SAID TO. Be used for more than just your financial contribution, be used of God for your time contribution toward furthering His kingdom.

So, Wowboy, you and your wife start checking out some churches in your area. :D
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Re: CNN article

Postby Wowboy on Wed Dec 21, 2011 12:05 pm

destros_elite wrote:PROCEED WITH CAUTION. I believe that Satan would love for us to grasp hold of this and make it a reason not to attend. After all, Peters says in 1 Peter 5:8 "Be of sober spirit, be on the alert. Your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour." I'm no zoologist but I do know that lions don't just dive into a pack of animals and start tearing them to shreds. They seek the weak. The ones that have wandered away from the pack or heard. Satan loves to separate us from the pack. We are more vulnerable that way.

Go to church and join yourself with like-minded, Bible believing people to serve and worship Jesus Christ. PERIOD. Satan loves hearing you say "I was only being used for contributions." You know what? So what? Even if that would be the case that you were being used for "contributions" TITHE ANYWAY AS OUR MASTER HAS SAID TO. Be used for more than just your financial contribution, be used of God for your time contribution toward furthering His kingdom.

So, Wowboy, you and your wife start checking out some churches in your area. :D


I don't think so... I love my pastor and think that he is a brilliant speaker and presents the gospel in all it's beauty and truth each and every Sunday. The Wednesday night bible studies are also great. And for the record, I have never wavered in tithing. I don't think a person should cease to be obedient because the fellowship in a local body isn't fulfilling.

On the more generalized topic, you're placing the impetus on the individual to basically "suck it up and be obedient to God." While I do understand it and agree with it, it doesn't change the fact that many churches today are NOT properly ministering to a particular demographic.

I don't really know what the answer is, but I see and identify with the problem.
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Re: CNN article

Postby chad_ghost on Wed Dec 21, 2011 9:10 pm

I belief that the church is not reaching its members correctly. Youth groups often have fun events to go to, then (at least my church) young adults that grew up in the church continue to be treated like youth, even after they are well into their twenties.

I know at my church, I was not being fed spiritually (though I wasn't seeking it either). I never felt like I was mentored after becoming a Christian, and when I left, nothing seemed to change.

I needed to here truth. I didn't need a religion; I needed Jesus.

I saw a book the other day, Pagan Christianity, and though I only read the back cover, it seems like an interesting read.

Church, going against the article provided, should tell us WHY the Bible speaks for sex in marriage and not what the church stands against. The Bible is not a rule book but a map, but how often do you hear the church say that?

And Sunday morning church is virtually the same message, evangelism, every week. Why? Because that is the best chance to catch the largest amount on unbelievers. I feel like the younger generations don't cling to the traditions like the previous ones, and there definitely seems to be a major difference between the teaching of the Bible and the preaching in the church.

I heard more clapping when the preacher spoke against gay marriage than when he speaks about Jesus dying to save us. Something is definitely wrong with that picture...
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Re: CNN article

Postby destros_elite on Wed Dec 21, 2011 10:33 pm

Wowboy wrote:
I don't think so... I love my pastor and think that he is a brilliant speaker and presents the gospel in all it's beauty and truth each and every Sunday. The Wednesday night bible studies are also great. And for the record, I have never wavered in tithing. I don't think a person should cease to be obedient because the fellowship in a local body isn't fulfilling.

On the more generalized topic, you're placing the impetus on the individual to basically "suck it up and be obedient to God." While I do understand it and agree with it, it doesn't change the fact that many churches today are NOT properly ministering to a particular demographic.

I don't really know what the answer is, but I see and identify with the problem.


I must have misunderstood. I thought you weren't going to church. If you still are, I apologize for misunderstanding. I totally agree with your point that many churches today are NOT properly ministering to a particular demographic. But like I said, we still need to keep serving and maybe even start up a ministry within our churches that reaches this demographic.
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Re: CNN article

Postby destros_elite on Wed Dec 21, 2011 10:46 pm

A friend of mine just finished an Evangelism class and told me something that stuck. He said, think about music. You don't listen to 8-tracks or records anymore. You listen to mp3's and CDs. It is still music, but the delivery has changed. The message should NEVER change, but the method of getting that message out MUST change.

To your all's point about the hole in most churches; when I graduated high school, I bet i visited fifteen churches trying to find a church that would minister to my age group. You know what I found? Nothing. I settled on a church an hour away that had a large youth group that included many people my age (which is exactly what you were saying, Chad, how they are treated like youth). As a matter of fact, I have a few 18-20 year old kids who still come to my youth group a couple of times per month because they don't fit into the next Sunday School class (which is the 30-somethings married with kids).
We had a Young Adult class for a while at our church and it was the fastest growing class, but the teacher left and the members were allowed to fall by the wayside.

On a side note, MAN it's great to have some good discussion on here again! Great thought provoking topic post, Wowboy! :D
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Re: CNN article

Postby Wowboy on Thu Dec 22, 2011 5:31 pm

destros_elite wrote:We had a Young Adult class for a while at our church and it was the fastest growing class, but the teacher left and the members were allowed to fall by the wayside.


I've thought about this and talked it over with a couple of people... here's some ideas on why this hole exists.

With many youth groups, just like any social group from any walk of life, you have people who tend to be leaders. These leaders often are the source of energy in the group as they get everyone around them excited about pretty much every activity, no matter how mundane. These people make everyone around them happier and more energetic themselves.

Generally speaking, these are also the type of people who seem to more easily form relationships with the opposite gender. With Christians, when we form these type of long term relationships, we don't stay in them 4-5 years, then cohabitate, then get married. We just get married.

So, these social leaders in Christian groups get married when they are in their early twenties and are then segregated by the church into their young married adults classes where they talk about raising a Christian family and various other issues that pertain to them.

This leaves the previous social circle leaderless and energy-less, which dooms it to fail and crumble.

I know from my own personal experience, like so many people on here, I was heavily involved in youth group as a teen. Our group stayed very close and connected throughout college as well had the good fortune of all attending college nearby. However, once we graduated, about half of us started getting married. Obviously, as is natural, the married ones began having different priorities in life and began drifting away from their single friends. The result was that where we had one distinct close knit group, we now had two groups.

I freely admit that I was not one of those leader types. Neither were any of the other people who hadn't gotten married at this phase of their life. I don't think any of us understood what was going on, and that we needed to step up, we all just perceived that things weren't as fun as they used to be. Slowly, over the course of a couple of years, everyone that hadn't gotten married either started attending another church where they could still get away with participating in teen oriented activities or just stopped attending church altogether. I myself continued to attend, as it had been my church for my entire life, but after a couple of weeks of me being the only person to show up for Sunday School, they ultimately combined the single young adults with the married young adults, but because I was the only single in a group of about 10-12 married couples, the ministry was all about raising a family, being a godly husband/wife, etc.

Since that time, I have myself moved away due to career, and have been going to the same church now for about 3 years. I was single up to last August, and I can tell you that entering a new church in my early 30s as a single wasn't easy. I did indeed just give up on the fellowship aspect of it altogether and just stuck with listening to the sermon, attending a couple of bible studies, and tithing. I stayed away from Sunday School altogether.
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Re: CNN article

Postby Matthew on Tue Dec 27, 2011 3:22 pm

I think that is a great observation. I look at the church I'm currently attending, and I see a lot with what I'd consider my age group

• Single Adults – These are the ones who are out of college, but not married. Therefore they really don't fit where they used to, but aren't married, so they are kinda in a doughnut hole. Seems like they still hang out with the college kids. That's until they hit 30s, then there is a really interesting group for my church. 30-35+ and unmarried.

I've seen one problem at my church with the college/singles group. Last year they decided to sponsor a Compassion child. Each of them would sponsor 1 month a year, $35 a month. Only 1 person was able to fulfill the obligation. Because many are still living at home, they still haven't been saddled with responsibility, and most aren't very willing to volunteer or serve. Not saying the won't, but it is tricky. It still is a great group of people, but they lack the responsibility and leadership.

• Married without kids - When I started at our church, most didn't have kids. Now most of us do. We now have another doughnut hole group, newlyweds without kids. They don't want to join our class because they are not ready for kids, but they don't fit in the aformentioned groups. I wish one of these married without kids couples would start a class to fill this void.

Anyway, that is where my church is right now.
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Re: CNN article

Postby RevSears on Thu May 17, 2012 6:14 pm

Mutiple small groups and Sunday schools classes with a plurality of leadership is a key here. The church needs to train called men and women to fill needed roles, and the pastor is the big organizer, but there are likely always singles who want to be involved are God is calling to lead. Although some dislike "mega-churches" they all start out small and use this "tactic" Each teacher or leader, should always be guided by the pastor, and taught to always be training their replacement to cover those events (like marriage) that will alter who they can relate too.

I also think College is a natural age of freedom and exploration that many simply go "experience" the world during regardless of prayers or services of the church.
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