When the church of Jesus shuts its outer door, lest the roar of traffic drown the voice of prayer, may our prayers, Lord, make us ten times more aware that the world we banish is our Christian care. - Fred Pratt Green
There has been a lot of discussion recently about why young people are leaving the church.
I haven’t ever left the church. and it’s not because I’m a fantastic example of piety. I’ll freely admit that there have been times when the only thing keeping me in church was the fact I’m paid to be there (I’ve served a number of churches as a paid musician and music minister). I’ll get into my other reasons for staying at some point in the future.
I’ve never left, but my relationship has been strained as long as I can remember, so today I begin a series called “Why the Church Makes Me Grieve.” Some of the things I will explore will be very difficult emotionally to go into, but I hope by doing it I can connect with some of you who feel the same way.
I don’t want to start a big gripe session. This isn’t some Andy Rooney-esq whine-fest. It’s a conversation about an entity that is meant to be a bastion of hope, a haven of rest, and an impetus for growth, but hasn’t lived up to this for many, many people.
But seeing as how people from my generation are leaving the church in record numbers, I think it’s a conversation that needs to take place. If we want change, we have to start somewhere.
It’s probably going to be obvious that I’m coming from a white, primarily southern evangelical perspective, but hopefully this discussion can continue across these dividing lines.