Submitted by the Rev. Phil Hirsch
“We really need to go to where they are rather than having them come to us,” said Rich White, affirming what he read in “7 Ways to Draw Millennials to Your Church.” White, a member of St. Andrew Lutheran Church in Centreville, Virginia, sought insight in the post to the Facts & Trends blog by Aaron Earls because White works to strengthen men’s Christian faith, relationships, witness and service in their homes, congregation and communities as president of Lutheran Men in Mission (LMM).
“Millennials” informally describe persons born in the 1980s and 1990s, many of whom “simply drift away [from church attendance] because the church doesn’t seem as important to their lives as it once did. Many have looked at a church and decided it is no longer relevant,” according to the article which suggests ways churches can change the trend.
Themes expanded in the article are:
- Be online (“without an online presence your church can only have an influence on those who come to your building”);
- Invest outside your walls (“tangibly show the love of Christ to others”);
- Speak honestly (“this generation has a deep realization that everyone fails”);
- Reach outside your comfort zone (“strive to reflect the current diversity of [the church] neighborhood”);
- Be open to institutional change (a look at methodology, not message);
- Develop community (“relationships trump everything”); and
- Preach Christ (“’tell me what it means’”).
“I’ve seldom seen a more apt and succinct description of what we can/need to do,” said the Rev. Phil Hirsch, Director for Evangelical Mission and Assistant to the Bishop in the Metro D.C. Synod.
“These things are not easy to do,” observes White, but “it is something we are slowly learning with LMM.”
Read the full post: “7 Ways to Draw Millennials to Your Church” by Aaron Earls (5/20/14), Facts & Trends blog of Lifeway Christian Resources