Loving the San Francisco Bay Area... Community development, urban ministry, trying to defeat poverty, faith, religion, politics, good music, the quest for the perfect pizza, the Yankees, motorcycles... All in a 'day's life'

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

NYT Article, "A Church's Challenge: Holding On to It's Young

VERY interesting article about storefront Pentecostal churches and youth ministry. The article is neither supportive or critical, but speaks to the traditional methods that small churches use to reach urban kids, namely good efforts like teaching values and encouraging kids and negative ones like focusing on emotionalism and legalism. Much here seems very familiar.

As Pentecostalism advances across the world, winning converts faster than any other Christian denomination and siphoning believers from more established faiths, it is also suffering its own slow leak: young people who are falling away from the faith.

Mainline Christian churches have grappled with the problem for years. And recently, evangelical leaders in the United States sounded an alarm over “an epidemic of young people leaving.”

But the loss is doubly distressing for Pentecostals, evangelical Christians who can be especially zealous in seeking new members and rejecting the secular culture they feel is luring adolescents away from religion.
Read the article here.

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