This is a topic that’s discussed in consistories/councils, by congregations, Synods, and pretty much anywhere there are church-going folks or church leaders hanging out. I don’t expect to solve the challenge in a short blog, but I think youth leaders might have a different perspective than many in the church.
First of all, is it a challenge? I think it is, though I also believe many college-age young people find other churches to attend. So they aren’t in our churches, but they are in church. I have a son in college and when he’s home, he now attends a church plant that reaches a far younger audience. I’d love to see these twenty-somethings stay in our church, but if they are actively involved in other churches, that’s pretty cool too.
But there are many who walk away from active church involvement as well. I wonder if youth leaders want to speculate on why this is. I hear some talk about looking for ways to keep this group involved in church. I would suggest that if you haven’t figured out how to get them and keep them involved when they were younger, it’s a little late to start once they graduate from high school.
Involving members of all ages in the work of the church is critical to keeping member s of all ages.
So if readers believe we are losing too many youth in our congregations, what do we do about it? How does middle school and high school discipleship fit in to this equation…or doesn’t it? Is involvement a key?