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Interesting Data on Average Age of our Ministers
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Post Change Agent
The big churches in my area in the 60's & 70's are now in decline. The congregations are graying. The buildings are not updated with the times and show significant age. These churches had huge events in the 70's with big names coming through that everyone wanted to hear. Now in 2015 these churches are very quiet. They are not known in the community now for anything significant. There are no more big names coming to evangelize. The choirs have no big Easter or Christmas productions.

I can believe that in 15 more years that these once thriving churches will close their doors. The signs are that they will go the way of the dinosaur.

On the other hand those younger pastors who changed styles of ministry to meet the times are doing well. This does give the COG some hope for the future. However, some of the younger pastors, like Jerry Lawson are leaving the COG.

How does a church stay current in its way of doing ministry when its leader wants to stay comfortable?
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5/21/15 9:15 pm


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Post Cojak
shaunbwilson wrote:

Sadly, churches began failing the existing young adult generation starting in the 60s. Let me explain.

While the Baby Boomers (who fall into the Prophet Generation archetype) ................................... What you'll note about these awakenings is that the Consciousness Revolution was the first time that we had a spiritual awakening that focused on a more New Age spirituality than Christianity.

I'm not sure who was to blame for the lack of Christ in this Prophet Generation. ............................................................................

There is very little focus in churches today on cross-generational ministry. For the most part, Boomer and Xer pastors are keeping their cultures contained to their own generation.


I didn't want to waste too much paper (smile) so I deleted a lot of good stuff.
The original comment and this explanation is good stuff (I don't necessarily understand the 'generation names' ) But I do understand the gist of it and it is good thinking. That is coming from an old guy....
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5/21/15 9:17 pm


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Post Brandon Bohannon
shaunbwilson wrote:
Old Time Country Preacher wrote:
How so Shaun? How are churches today failing this generation of youth any more than the churches of the 40's, 50's, 60's, 70's, 80's, 90's, etc., failed their generation of youth?


Sadly, churches began failing the existing young adult generation starting in the 60s. Let me explain.

While the Baby Boomers (who fall into the Prophet Generation archetype) were young adults, America had a spiritual awakening. Throughout the history of Anglo-Americans since the 1400s, we can document the recurrence of spiritual awakenings. They happen cyclically and rhythmically. We call them the Protestant Reformation, the Puritan Awakening, the First, Second, and Third Great Awakenings, and finally The Consciousness Revolution that climaxed in 1974. What you'll note about these awakenings is that the Consciousness Revolution was the first time that we had a spiritual awakening that focused on a more New Age spirituality than Christianity.

I'm not sure who was to blame for the lack of Christ in this Prophet Generation. It may have been the overly permissive Dr. Spock-inspired parenting they were reared under or it may have been their own turning away. It doesn't matter, though—as a result of the absence of Christ, this Prophet Generation focused on themselves in their spiritual awakening with a focus on things like free love, drugs, and "finding themselves" at the expense of their spouse, their children, and their religious upbringing.

This Prophet Generation continues to focus on themselves, although they've softened quite a bit.

Any missionary will tell you that when you reach out to a foreign people, your outreach must fit the culture. You don't compromise your beliefs or the truths you present, but you do it within the context of the local culture.

This is true in home missions, also. There is a cultural shift that must take place within the church to include the next generation. It's not a matter of scrapping everything we used to do, but a matter of finding a balance that reaches multiple generations. This is something that the vast majority of churches—run by the generation of self focus (see percentage of pastors aged 51+ above)—have mostly decided to not consider or else have decided the cost of trying is too high.

There is a cultural shift that has taken place in the few churches that are successfully growing in the Millennial demographic. This cultural shift includes things like toning down the "rock show" style of praise and worship, shifting the focus of sermons from emotional to (theo-)logical, and emphasizing the sovereignty and authority of God in their churches over the relational and emotional side of God. Again, it's not the complete dismantling of our Boomer and Xer traditions, but finding those things that Millennial culture identifies with and incorporating the ones that are complimentary to our existing cultural identities.

There is very little focus in churches today on cross-generational ministry. For the most part, Boomer and Xer pastors are keeping their cultures contained to their own generation.


Some very good sociological observations here. Very true. I am a Xer pastor and it is very hard to break from my own comfort and niche. Consequentially, today the average age of a Vision Heights congregant is my age with school age children. We also appeal to about 10 years younger and 10 years older.
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5/21/15 9:20 pm


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