11 February 2013

Parents and pastors: Why are kids leaving the church?

Why are kids leaving the church?    I am not sure why it struck me so soundly today but this, I think, is one of the most important blog posts I have read in some time.  Kids are leaving the church.  Perhaps we catastrophize a bit and fail to account for those who return to the church, but there is no doubt that kids are leaving.  The author of this article, Top 10 Reasons our Kids Leave Church, has asked why and come up with some good thoughts. I would strongly encourage all of you, if you are involved in the lives of kids--your own or someone else's--to slowly chew on this article and consider its implications.  I have included the list, but please click through for the descriptions.  a few brief snippets, but again, please read it! 

10. The church is relevant.
9. They never attended church to begin with. 
8. They get smart.
7. You sent them out unarmed.
6. You gave them hand-me-downs.
5. Community.
4. They found better feelings. 
3. They got tired of pretending.
2. They know the truth.
1. They don't need it.

The author writes, "Our kids leave because we have failed to deliver to them the faith 'delivered once for all' to the church.  I wish it wasn’t a given, but when I present law and gospel to these kids, the response is the same every time: 'I’ve never heard that.'  I’m not against entertaining our youth, or even jumbotrons, or pizza parties (though I probably am against middle aged guys trying to wear skinny jeans to be “relevant).. it’s just that the one thing, the MAIN thing we’ve been tasked with? We’re failing. We’ve failed God and we’ve failed our kids.  Don’t let another kid walk out the door without being confronted with the full weight of the law, and the full freedom in the gospel."

Zach Nielsen linked to this article on his blog

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