A College Kid’s View On Why Church is getting Less Popular

It seems that a lot of adult ministers are facing a dilemma in the world.  Christianity and church are running becoming increasingly unpopular in my generation.  I can attest to being one of the many who doesn’t go to church very often.  I believe God, however, but the God I see being represented in the media is not the God me and my peers believe in.  In addition, the cult like atmosphere of church makes us uncomfortable.  We are a generation of freedom, not restriction. 

Generally, we are Generation Proof or Generation Why, because we demand proof for all of the hard, skeptical questions we have.  Rarely has any church been able to answer our questions.  The reason for this is that our questions are interpreted as judgemental and we seem to have already judged the answer.  But the truth is, we have the gene to question authority.  We want all sides of the story.  We want to hear about your doubts in religion, we want to hear that you don’t know all these answers and we want you to answer our questions.  Preaching only that “Jesus saves” to people who aren’t like the kids in “Jesus Camp” produces horrible results on the whole.

I doubt my generation will be a very strong “church going” generation aside from the evangelical children being taught as in “Jesus Camp.”  We will be a generation of faith though, just not restricted in a church.  If you practice youth ministry, my advice would be to ask genuinely without expectations what they want out of religion and how they see God in their lives.

In addition, atheism is growing among my generations for the same reasons above going to church for believes has diminished.  I can guarantee, especially being on a college campus, that there is astounding number of believers in God who just don’t want part in any church.  In essence, church isn’t appealing.  Ask people my age why.

One last comment, my generation has a lot invested in the idea that personal responsibility in necessary.  We face a lot of expectations from parents, school and society, so church is just another place for expectations we don’t want to deal with.  The new ministry that a lot of seek is one the “preaches” personal ability and trusting in yourself.  After all (Imago Dei), if everyone has a piece of God, truly taking the time to make decisions based on what you heart tells you will lead to the will of God, right?

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3 Responses to A College Kid’s View On Why Church is getting Less Popular

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  3. Mark says:

    Hi,

    I can relate to what you are saying. I grew up going to church twice a week, and learning about religion, but not so much about Christianity. When I went off to college, and found a whole new world out there, I realized that the “faith” I thought I had was simply the faith of my parents, the church leaders and members. I had never actually taken the time to grow my own faith. I struggled with what the church and religion were telling me to the point of basically walking away from it.

    I won’t go into much detail here, but at some point Jesus brought me back to him. Back to him — not the church, not religion ( I really don’t like religion — it is Satan’s most effective tool). Jesus was the original and ultimate Renegade! He never sinned, and lived his life to teach. He called the keeper’s of the law out for what they truly were. If you can, get a copy of a book by David Foster — I think it is called “A Renegade for God” — it is awesome.

    I had some of the same feelings you do at that time of my life. I saw people who went to church all of the time, and they seemed to do the same things I did — why should I go to church. The problem is, people think that going to church , keeping the 10 commandments, and being all around good guys is what gets you to heaven. That is sooo wrong. What get’s you to heaven is a personal relationship with Jesus – period. Receive him into your heart and he will miraculously change your life! You will naturally want to do the right things, not to get into heaven but to let Jesus live through you. Look around you — there are good things in the world and bad things in the world, but isn’t the world an incredible place — Someone made this place, it didn’t just happen by accident — If you can accept that, then wouldn’t you want to know the person that made this place — I mean really get to know them? Something to think about.

    Just a little note to end this — I do know Jesus personally — he lives in me, and through me. I used to not attend church at all, and without even realizing it at the time, I now attend all the time — but my church nurtures the personal relationship with Christ, not the relationship with church or religion. We are out there — Renegades for God!! God bless and be with you.

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