Are Millennials Really Leaving the Church? Yes — but Mostly White Millennials

Almost everyday, it seems, there’s a new story about how “Millennials are leaving the church.” But there’s a problem with these trend pieces: They aren’t true. American Christianity still has plenty of Millennials — they’re just not necessarily in white churches.

Here is the complete article.

Photo courtesy of Aaron Robert Photography. Copyright 2015.

A few points about the article.   The subtitle of the article says that “All the hand-wringing stories about young adults leaving religion overlooks the vibrancy and growth of multiethnic churches.”

Here is what the author missed.

The article’s title makes it sound as if there really is no decline, but merely a change in diversity.  While the “color” of Christianity in the West is become more diverse, it is still in decline (and has been for some time).  It is an older article (May, 2014), and so the author might want to rewrite (or remove) his article – especially in view of new research published by the Pew Research Group.  Here is a chart that shows the decline of Christianity among various branches by generations.  This new research shows decline in all branches of Christianity.

Generational Replacement Helping Drive Growth of Unaffiliated, Decline of Mainline Protestantism and Catholicism

Here are some good thoughts from the article.

1.  Diversity – is important to Millennials due to their postmodern perspective of life.  “The future, says Gray, will belong to churches that are multiethnic, because that’s what God wants.”

2.  Diversity leads to authenticity.  Quote from Efrem Smith – Now, as America has become more diverse, it’s a necessity. “That’s good news,” he says. “It’s going to push us to a more authentic presentation of the gospel and a more authentic faith.”

3.  “People don’t like to give up power…”  This is true for Baby boomers who are currently in control of most churches.  Will they make room at the table for diversity in age, race, and gender?

profil pictureDr. G. David Boyd is the Founder and Managing Director of EA Resources.



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *