What if the kids don’t want our church?
In the Huffington Post, Derek Penwell writes that many young adults don’t want the “treasures” that their parents/grandparents have been accumulating for them. The trend applies to the church as well, he says. He writes that “churches with massive overhead invested in things like church buildings, denominational infrastructures, functional church organizational models…are awakening to the fact that the generations that are supposed to be taking the institutional baton are showing very little interest in grabbing for it.”
After describing how young people are no more likely to just accept their parents’ preferences than their elders were likely to accept their parents’ encouragement to like Frank Sinatra or Nat King Cole instead of the upstart Beatles, Penwell urges the church to take notice. An excerpt:
Why is this in the Religion section? Because churches with massive overhead invested in things like church buildings, denominational infrastructures, functional church organizational models (think: a baptized version of General Motors’ organizational structure, complete with a board of directors, departments, departmental committees, etc.) are awakening to the fact that the generations that are supposed to be taking the institutional baton are showing very little interest in grabbing for it.
In fact, in many ways, these generations increasingly think the church has been running toward the wrong finish line for years –concerned as it seems to have been not with figuring out how more faithfully to live like the Jesus of the Gospels, but in acquiring bigger and better stuff to hand down to a generation that doesn’t particularly want to inherit it.
You could try to convince the emerging generations that they ought to value the tools you’ve always used, that they should want to take care of them, that they’re going to need them someday, that they should want to pass them down to their children.
Or, you could complain about the fact that these kids just don’t appreciate what you’ve done for them.
Or, you could suck it up and bless them on their next wild adventure.
Read the entire article at http://www.huffingtonpost.com/derek-penwell/what-if-the-kids-dont-want-our-church_b_2902781.html