I'm back and digging out from under the pile of stuff I need to catch up with. I'll write a bit about Seattle later.
Meanwhile, this morning I received the monthly "Minister's Letter" from the Assemblies of God headquarters (USA). It included an article which contained some quite alarming information about the numbers of young people who not only leave our churches but leave their faith when they are in their 20s. It is well over half of them. I know this problem is not unique to the Assemblies of God.
And when I arrived at church I read an email with a link to a Leadership article by Mark Breaux (a teaching pastor at Willow Creek) which begins with this paragraph:
Fannie Hamilton sat among teenagers during the Sunday service. She used her left hand to hold up her stroke-affected right hand in praise, belting out the words to "My Glorious" by Delirious. A few minutes later, she stood next to a 16-year-old, who joined her in belting out the words to "Great Is Thy Faithfulness." She was a small group leader in our youth ministry—at the age of 82.
Here is the rest of the article. There are some thought-provoking questions and suggestions.
I began thinking about how we connect the generations at our church. I often include them in references in my sermons or prayers. I am aware of their presence. I love them, and I think they know it. Youth are included on our worship team, in our ministry teams--several are ushers/greeters--so what more do we need to do to bridge the gap? Anyone have ideas or strategies that have worked? I'd love to hear them.