July 27th, 2013
08:33 AM ET

Why millennials are leaving the church

Opinion by Rachel Held Evans, Special to CNN

(CNN) - At 32, I barely qualify as a millennial.

I wrote my first essay with a pen and paper, but by the time I graduated from college, I owned a cell phone and used Google as a verb.

I still remember the home phone numbers of my old high school friends, but don’t ask me to recite my husband’s without checking my contacts first.

I own mix tapes that include selections from Nirvana and Pearl Jam, but I’ve never planned a trip without Travelocity.

Despite having one foot in Generation X, I tend to identify most strongly with the attitudes and the ethos of the millennial generation, and because of this, I’m often asked to speak to my fellow evangelical leaders about why millennials are leaving the church.

Armed with the latest surveys, along with personal testimonies from friends and readers, I explain how young adults perceive evangelical Christianity to be too political, too exclusive, old-fashioned, unconcerned with social justice and hostile to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people.

I point to research that shows young evangelicals often feel they have to choose between their intellectual integrity and their faith, between science and Christianity, between compassion and holiness.

I talk about how the evangelical obsession with sex can make Christian living seem like little more than sticking to a list of rules, and how millennials long for faith communities in which they are safe asking tough questions and wrestling with doubt.

Invariably, after I’ve finished my presentation and opened the floor to questions, a pastor raises his hand and says, “So what you’re saying is we need hipper worship bands. …”

And I proceed to bang my head against the podium.

Time and again, the assumption among Christian leaders, and evangelical leaders in particular, is that the key to drawing twenty-somethings back to church is simply to make a few style updates - edgier music, more casual services, a coffee shop in the fellowship hall, a pastor who wears skinny jeans, an updated Web site that includes online giving.

But here’s the thing: Having been advertised to our whole lives, we millennials have highly sensitive BS meters, and we’re not easily impressed with consumerism or performances.

In fact, I would argue that church-as-performance is just one more thing driving us away from the church, and evangelicalism in particular.

Many of us, myself included, are finding ourselves increasingly drawn to high church traditions - Catholicism, Eastern Orthodoxy, the Episcopal Church, etc. - precisely because the ancient forms of liturgy seem so unpretentious, so unconcerned with being “cool,” and we find that refreshingly authentic.

What millennials really want from the church is not a change in style but a change in substance.

We want an end to the culture wars. We want a truce between science and faith. We want to be known for what we stand for, not what we are against.

We want to ask questions that don’t have predetermined answers.

We want churches that emphasize an allegiance to the kingdom of God over an allegiance to a single political party or a single nation.

We want our LGBT friends to feel truly welcome in our faith communities.

We want to be challenged to live lives of holiness, not only when it comes to sex, but also when it comes to living simply, caring for the poor and oppressed, pursuing reconciliation, engaging in creation care and becoming peacemakers.

You can’t hand us a latte and then go about business as usual and expect us to stick around. We’re not leaving the church because we don’t find the cool factor there; we’re leaving the church because we don’t find Jesus there.

Like every generation before ours and every generation after, deep down, we long for Jesus.

Now these trends are obviously true not only for millennials but also for many folks from other generations. Whenever I write about this topic, I hear from forty-somethings and grandmothers, Generation Xers and retirees, who send me messages in all caps that read “ME TOO!” So I don’t want to portray the divide as wider than it is.

But I would encourage church leaders eager to win millennials back to sit down and really talk with them about what they’re looking for and what they would like to contribute to a faith community.

Their answers might surprise you.

Rachel Held Evans is the author of "Evolving in Monkey Town" and "A Year of Biblical Womanhood." She blogs at rachelheldevans.com. The views expressed in this column belong to Rachel Held Evans.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Belief • Christianity • Church • evangelicals • Opinion

soundoff (9,864 Responses)
  1. Debra

    Being prideful is a sin Austin, seek God's help for your sinful ways.

    July 30, 2013 at 9:40 am |
    • Austin

      Debra, can you explain why giving testimony to things that the Lord did supernaturally would be pride? and can we not have pride in God and give testimony?

      July 30, 2013 at 9:57 am |
  2. Kimberly Knight

    The doors of The United Church of Christ are wide open to the millennial mind, heart and spirit. I have found the UCC to be a place that genuinely welcome deep questions, complex conversations and faith that welcomes doubt as part of a holy journey.



    July 30, 2013 at 9:27 am |
    • UhOh

      Another xtian stealing free advertising. Stealing is a sin.

      July 30, 2013 at 9:32 am |
  3. Jastiner

    I accepted Jesus Christ as my personal Lord and Savior at an alter call at the First Assembly of God Church in Mesa, Arizona at the end of Vacation Bible School. Summer 1966. I think that our Evangelical Leaders really let us down by crawling in with the Republicans and with our other right winged friends. Problem is, the Christian faith (that is, the message of Jesus) has absolutely no relation to the right wing agenda. The lines are so blurred that today's young adults (whatever they are called) cannot even consider embracing the person of Jesus Christ without believing that it comes with the requirement of joining the Young Republicans.

    July 30, 2013 at 9:25 am |
    • hee hee

      Yes, this is a largely new phenomenon. I am not religious, but I don't see any logical reason that you need to have the values of modern republicans in order to be Christian.

      Strange bedfellows, in my opinion.

      July 30, 2013 at 5:35 pm |
  4. Peter

    Some of the comments here hint at the other part of the problem– many churches are determined to die. They see their mission as ministering to those who are all right with God, and if you profess the wrong beliefs, support the wrong party, express the wrong politics, make the wrong choices in life, they will let you know clearly that you are not welcome. Go away and get yourself right with God, is the message. Until then, we don't want you here.

    This is not just an evangelical issue. There was something sadly hilarious about the Catholic Church's program a while back encouraging people to "Come home" to the church, as if it were not the church that had told those people to go away in the first place.

    As churches create smaller and smaller tents and make it part of their mission to drive away people who are not True Believers, they cannot be surprised that their efforts to chase people out of the church have been successful.

    July 30, 2013 at 9:02 am |
    • Joe E.

      Wide is the path to hell and narrow is the path to Heaven, so if you can't adhere to some extremely basic Biblical standards of moral behavior then the Truth isn't with you and the Church isn't for you. It's really that simple. The Church isn't a country club or the Moose Lodge. We are not of this world and we will not be measured by its standards. We are the followers of Jesus Christ and we adhere to the standards of God's Word.

      July 30, 2013 at 9:45 am |
      • Peter

        So, "Go ye into all the world..." is just sort of a selective instruction, with Jesus giving His church the freedom to decide which parts of the world they consider worthy of attention?

        July 30, 2013 at 12:29 pm |
  5. skytag

    "If you honestly want to know God:" — AE

    It's said you can't reason with people whose views are not the product of reason, and nowhere is this more true than when trying to reason with Christians. I hear stuff like the above all the time from Christians. To any thinking person these admonitions raise some very obvious, crucial questions I've posed many times, yet no Christian has ever attempted to answer.

    Let me preface these questions with a critical observation: There is no objective evidence whatsoever that any entity one could call a god actually exists. Absolutely none. (Christians: Don't waste your time explaining the reasons you believe there is no evidence as they won't change the fact that there is none. If you believe you have evidence, it doesn't count if no one else can see or verify it.) That established, here are the questions:

    Question 1: Seeking God requires an investment of time and energy. Prayer, reading sacred works, reading other writings, talking to other believers, and so on. What's my incentive to divert time and energy from activities involving things I know to be real and enjoy to seek something I have no reason to believe is real? Seeking god makes no more sense to me than seeking buried treasure in my yard or seeking leprechauns.

    If you respond with a bunch of platitudes, more admonitions to seek or instructions on how to seek you are dodging the question because none of these give me an incentive to do any seeking.

    "You will find like I did that the more you seek, the more you find Him the more you realize He loves you and fall in love with Him also." — Whitney

    This is the basic strategy people use to convince themselves of something they really want to belief from the outset. When you set out to investigate something with a desire to find it that bias makes it almost certain you'll eventually convince yourself you've found it. You'll be quick to interpret phenomena as evidence it's true and equally quick to reject evidence contradicting it. You'll reject sound arguments against it out of hand while accepting seriously flawed arguments for it. The "pros" column will eventually overwhelm the "cons" column and you'll conclude it must be true.

    My answer to my first question is the no one seeks God unless and until at some level he wants to find God. His incentive to invest time and energy is to confirm something he already wants to believe. That makes him biased and that bias his conclusions unreliable. In short, people find ways to justify believing what they want to believe.

    Question 2: Since there is no evidence of his existence, and hundreds or thousands of religions have existed, how do I decide which god (or gods) to seek? The evidence is pretty clear that the vast majority of people who "find God" find the God of their parents, culture and/or people they encounter in life. This is why 97% of Saudi Arabia's population is Muslim, but only 1-2% of our population is Muslim. It's why Shintoism is the dominate religion in Japan, but not America or Saudi Arabia. It's why some "Christian countries" are predominately Catholic and others aren't. It's why there are large numbers of Baptists in the South but large numbers of Mormons in Utah and Idaho.

    People pick the god they'll seek based on the people around them and subjective factors such as how much they trust others who already believe in that god or how well someone can manipulate their emotions. There is no evidence whatsoever that people pick a god to seek based on any reason one would expect to lead them to the most correct understanding of God and his nature. Seriously, it's a crap shoot, a game of luck exclusively based where you were born and the people you've known.

    The answer to "which god should I seek?" largely determines how I should seek him. Should I seek the Jewish god by reading the Torah and attending Jewish services, or the Muslim god by reading the Koran and praying five times a day? Should I read the Bible and Book of Mormon and talk to the Mormon missionaries to know the Mormon version of the Christian God? Should I study Buddhism, Shintoism, or any of hundreds of other religions that exist in the world today?

    If I should seek the Christian God, should I seek him through Catholicism, evangelical churches, the Mormons, the Amish, or the teachings of a church that believes in handling snakes and speaking in tongues?

    Do not try to dismiss these as glib or irrelevant questions. These are absolutely critical questions. The god you find is determined by where you choose to look for him. Generally speaking, whichever God you set out to find is the one you'll find. Without an objective, reliable way to know which path to travel from the outset in your search, why should anyone believe picking one essentially at random will lead you to the "real" god rather than a false one?

    July 30, 2013 at 6:03 am |
    • Reality

      And now for the truth:

      Saving Christians from the Infamous Resurrection Con/

      From that famous passage: In 1 Corinthians 15: 14, Paul reasoned, "If Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless and so is your faith."

      Even now Catholic/Christian professors (e.g.Notre Dame, Catholic U, Georgetown) of theology are questioning the bodily resurrection of the simple, preacher man aka Jesus.

      To wit;

      From a major Catholic university's theology professor’s grad school white-board notes:

      "Heaven is a Spirit state or spiritual reality of union with God in love, without earthly – earth bound distractions.
      Jesus and Mary's bodies are therefore not in Heaven.

      Most believe that it to mean that the personal spiritual self that survives death is in continuity with the self we were while living on earth as an embodied person.

      Again, the physical Resurrection (meaning a resuscitated corpse returning to life), Ascension (of Jesus' crucified corpse), and Assumption (Mary's corpse) into heaven did not take place.

      The Ascension symbolizes the end of Jesus' earthly ministry and the beginning of the Church.

      Only Luke records it. (Luke mentions it in his gospel and Acts, i.e. a single attestation and therefore historically untenable). The Ascension ties Jesus' mission to Pentecost and missionary activity of Jesus' followers.

      The Assumption has multiple layers of symbolism, some are related to Mary's special role as "Christ bearer" (theotokos). It does not seem fitting that Mary, the body of Jesus' Virgin-Mother (another biblically based symbol found in Luke 1) would be derived by worms upon her death. Mary's assumption also shows God's positive regard, not only for Christ's male body, but also for female bodies." "

      "In three controversial Wednesday Audiences, Pope John Paul II pointed out that the essential characteristic of heaven, hell or purgatory is that they are states of being of a spirit (angel/demon) or human soul, rather than places, as commonly perceived and represented in human language. This language of place is, according to the Pope, inadequate to describe the realities involved, since it is tied to the temporal order in which this world and we exist. In this he is applying the philosophical categories used by the Church in her theology and saying what St. Thomas Aquinas said long before him."

      The Vatican quickly embellished this story with a lot CYAP.

      With respect to rising from the dead, we also have this account:

      An added note: As per R.B. Stewart in his introduction to the recent book, The Resurrection of Jesus, Crossan and Wright in Dialogue,


      "Reimarus (1774-1778) posits that Jesus became sidetracked by embracing a political position, sought to force God's hand and that he died alone deserted by his disciples. What began as a call for repentance ended up as a misguided attempt to usher in the earthly political kingdom of God. After Jesus' failure and death, his disciples stole his body and declared his resurrection in order to maintain their financial security and ensure themselves some standing."

      p.168. by Ted Peters:

      Even so, asking historical questions is our responsibility. Did Jesus really rise from the tomb? Is it necessary to have been raised from the tomb and to appear to his disciples in order to explain the rise of early church and the transcription of the bible? Crossan answers no, Wright answers, yes. "

      So where are the bones"? As per Professor Crossan's analyses in his many books, the body of Jesus would have ended up in the mass graves of the crucified, eaten by wild dogs, covered with lime in a shallow grave, or under a pile of stones.

      July 30, 2013 at 6:07 am |
    • laststonecarver

      I kind of like the concept of Pachamama –
      – Subliminal message alert –

      July 30, 2013 at 7:15 am |
    • skytag

      As always, no answers.

      July 30, 2013 at 9:28 am |
    • Reality

      To continue on this train:

      And From Exclusivism to Convergence: How We Relate to the Religions of Others; Part 1: Diversity, Exclusivism, and Inclusivism by Somerville, retired Catholic philosophy professor (Xavier U, Cincinnati) at http://www.theosophical.org/theosophy/questmagazine/mayjune2000/exclusivism/ and http://www.theosophical.org/theosophy/questmagazine/julyaugust2000/somerville/

      “John Hick, a noted British philosopher of religion, estimates that 95 percent of the people of the world owe their religious affiliation to an accident (the randomness) of birth. The faith of the vast majority of believers depends upon where they were born and when. Those born in Saudi Arabia will almost certainly be Moslems, and those born and raised in India will for the most part be Hindus. Nevertheless, the religion of millions of people can sometimes change abruptly in the face of major political and social upheavals. In the middle of the sixth century CE, virtually all the people of the Near East and Northern Africa, including Turkey, Syria, Iraq, and Egypt were Christian. By the end of the following century, the people in these lands were largely Moslem, as a result of the militant spread of Islam.

      The Situation Today
      Barring military conquest, conversion to a faith other than that of one’s birth is rare. Some Jews, Moslems, and Hindus do convert to Christianity, but not often. Similarly, it is not common for Christians to become Moslems or Jews. Most people are satisfied that their own faith is the true one or at least good enough to satisfy their religious and emotional needs. Had St. Augustine or St. Thomas Aquinas been born in Mecca at the start of the present century, the chances are that they would not have been Christians but loyal followers of the prophet Mohammed. “ J. Somerville, It is very disturbing that religious narrow- mindedness, intolerance, violence and hatred continues unabated due to randomness of birth. Maybe, just maybe if this fact would be published on the first page of every newspaper every day, that we would finally realize the significant stupidity of all religions.

      July 30, 2013 at 11:05 am |
  6. Stacey

    My friends & I get together and have discussions, prayer & fellowship within study circles, firesides, race unity talks all based on spirituality...just google Bahai faith and read!

    July 30, 2013 at 4:57 am |
    • Reality

      The "real" Bahaists?- from Google

      10. No no–oky!! No way, no how!

      9: No booze! No, you might be having fun and you wouldn't
      want that.

      8: No politics. No, you wouldn't want to involve yourself
      in a good, healthy way that might actually improve the lives
      of the people in your community.

      7: Suffering. Yes, suffering. No Baha'i gathering is complete without the friends recounting how they have suffered for their faith.

      6: Silly Christians go to church. There, through outmoded
      'rituals' usually led by a 'clergymen' which Baha'is don't
      have, they often find themselves enriched and revitalized.
      Some even think they have communed with their God. If only
      they knew that if they were Baha'is they could go to a 19 day
      Feasts, a dreary, boring business meeting usually punctuated
      by some personal arguments. Some go on all night.

      5: Ridvan meetings: YES THEY DO GO ON ALL NIGHT. WE WILL

      4: You get to do all sorts of things you don't want to do,
      like be the treasurer and spend the next year haranging the
      friends for money.

      3: LSA Meetings. They are held at least once a week, they
      last for several hours.

      2: You get hit up for money, you get hit up for money. The
      new world order needs money, your money, it's an honor to
      bankrupt yourself for the Faith.

      1: You'll never have to bother your silly little brain by
      thinking again! All that hard brainwork had been done for you by the great "Babs".

      July 30, 2013 at 6:14 am |
    • lol??

      Sounds Racey, Stacey.

      July 30, 2013 at 7:51 am |
  7. skytag

    @Harry Cline: "Every belief among mankind falls under a circular argument."


    "That university professor has no more credibility then a bible does. Unless you equate that over priced education with fact."

    This is nothing more than an attempt to justify ignoring rational thinking. Sorry, but I've never met a professor whose claimed factual knowledge in a field of study based on pure speculation unsupported by any evidence whatsoever, unless he was a professor of religion.

    "What a good many fail to understand is that everything mankind seeks to prove through science those validations are all 'created' by man. Theories are just that."

    The difference is that in science theories are proposed consistent with known facts and are acknowledged as being only theories until they are confirmed by solid evidence. In religion theories are immediately elevated to the status of fact and Truth™ without any validation at all. It's intellectually dishonest of you to ignore this reality in an attempt to put religious theories on par with scientific theories.

    "And fraud in the scientific community is as rampant as in the religious community."

    Non sequitur.

    "You can't comprehend the argument because your validation work of of touch, see and feel. A God argument works by faith. That's the key."

    An argument based on faith isn't a valid argument, because it's based on one or more premises that cannot be shown to be true and there is no reason to believe is true. If you allow me the option of postulating anything I want without having to justify it I can conclude anything I want to conclude.

    "The non believer today is liken to the religious Pharisees of old. No other group seeks to validate their life style choices but a non-believer."

    I'm getting sick of your lies and nonsense, these ridiculous claims that have no connection to reality presented as facts. Christianity isn't a religion, it's a religious smorgasbord, ideal for the church-shopping crowd, people who want all the benefits of the core narrative but want to be able to pick and choose how and to what extent they have to incorporate it into their daily lives. This ability to pick and choose is a major reason Christianity is so popular, this and the fact that it offers so much while asking so little.

    There are hundreds of variants from which you are free to choose to ensure you get one tailored to your personality and lifestyle. There are denominations that condemn homosexuality and denominations that marry gays and admit them into their ministry. Some require significant sacrifice in the way you live your life, such as the Amish and others that require virtually no sacrifices at all. Some are heavy on ritual, such as Catholics and some are much less structures. Some have rock bands in their services, some limit music to more traditional types, and some believe music is of the devil. Some preach strict Sabbath day observance and those that are happy if you'll just show up for services on Sunday morning. There are some in which people handle snakes and speak in tongues. There are some that prohibit the consumption of alcohol and tobacco and others that don't. All of them are believers, but few things are more common among Christians than justifying their lifestyles.

    "Consequence ? I think not."

    I agree with the second part. There is little evidence in your comments that you think.

    "And finally the notion that somehow a God is religion or theology. And that people is what has turned people away, pimping a God for a political agenda or hiding behind a God to justify certain actions or promote agenda."

    I disagree. What bothers people is that if this God is real, why do so many who seek him in earnest seem to get it wrong? Do not be so foolishly arrogant as to believe anyone who doesn't share your understanding hasn't tried to find him or understand God's will.

    "But don't pretend you are any wiser then the ignorant believer is."

    "Anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that 'my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge.'" — Isaac Asimov

    July 30, 2013 at 4:54 am |
    • sam stone

      "No other group seeks to validate their life style choices but a non-believer."

      Nonsense. Believers attempt to justify their beliefs (which is "lifestyle choice", no?) all the time. It is called Evangelism

      July 30, 2013 at 4:59 am |
      • skytag

        Harry has clearly decided to believe a lot of nonsense that has no connection to reality because it justifies his world view.

        July 30, 2013 at 5:21 am |
  8. William of Wyoming

    The bottom line is people are leaving the church because they are Selfish. I hear people talking about wanting Jesus but we worship him in spirit and truth. Our relationship comes with us meeting Jesus on His level. And then we go to church and give to the people that need help, not to go to get what we can and if it does not meet our wants we pout and run off and say this church in not meeting MY needs so I am going to take my bible and go home. (if they even have a bible.) If My people Who are Called By My Name Will Humble Themselves and Pray Then Will I Hear From Heaven And Heal Their Land.

    July 30, 2013 at 4:34 am |
    • skytag

      "The bottom line is people are leaving the church because they are Selfish."

      Some people don't handle rejection very well.

      July 30, 2013 at 10:54 am |
  9. Joe E.

    With views like this, the church should be shunning them.

    July 30, 2013 at 3:42 am |
    • sam stone

      shunning them?

      i bet that would really sting with the folks who have left the church

      July 30, 2013 at 4:55 am |
    • skytag

      Obviously, because the Bible teaches that you should shun anyone who doesn't share your views about God.

      July 30, 2013 at 5:29 am |
  10. Hurting Badly

    I am at the end of the baby boomer generation. I am seriously considering leaving the church I go to. I am punished for life from participating in certain things, been told exactly what some of the staff think of me, and not being forgiven for some things that happened. I used to feel welcome there. I don't dare voice my thoughts anymore because more punishment and the silent treatment will follow again. I no longer feel like I have a true church home. I have been yelled by clergy in public. No, I can't say anything. I crave a genuine relationship with my church and a place to contribute my gifts without being isolated from the rest of the congregation. Sometimes I still get suicidal from all the memories of being told exactly how awful I am by the church. It is all superficial now. No meaningful conversations, invitations, etc. I was told no one was going to ask be to be a part of anything anymore. Basically this person was saying I would have to beg to have a chance of being included in anything. Turns out this is true. To top it off, I was actually told I was no longer needed in front of church staff. What a fool I have been for sticking around. Thank you for opening my eyes a bit more.

    July 30, 2013 at 2:59 am |
    • Observer

      Why are you "considering leaving" your church? Why haven't you left? The world is full of churches in all denominations so you have all kinds of chances to find some place with people you like and like you. If you aren't happy with your denomination, why not try another one or an independent community church? Why wait?

      July 30, 2013 at 3:09 am |
      • skytag

        "Why haven't you left?"

        Leaving cults is notoriously difficult unless you're kidnapped and deprogrammed against your will.

        July 30, 2013 at 5:42 am |
    • Harlemite

      I recommend you visit the nearest Eastern Orthodoxy Church. If you're not familiar with it, it will be quite foreign to you. However, I recommend you ask the priest questions after the service.

      May God bless continue to bless your searching.

      July 30, 2013 at 5:11 am |
    • One one

      I recommend you give up religion. It's all BS and promotes emotional and mental instability, and delusional thoughts.

      July 30, 2013 at 7:02 am |
  11. x77dude

    Most churches are about "religion." What people are actually looking for is =relationship.= Those churches that are talking about finding a relationship with a God who loves them (as opposed to a list of "thou shalt nots" that sum up a "religion") are growing. In every age group.

    July 30, 2013 at 1:31 am |
    • Headless Wonder

      What about the: "thou shalt not have any other gods before me?"

      July 30, 2013 at 2:36 am |
    • baby boomer

      Until we quit giving lip service to reality that God is ALL about relationship.... ours with Him AND with one another, and actually start to live it out in groups that are actual communities that see everyone through the eyes of our loving god who has created each and every human being on the face of the earth in His own image, we will keep seeing people of all ages leaving "the church",

      July 30, 2013 at 4:49 am |
    • sam stone

      which church ISN'T about religion?

      July 30, 2013 at 5:05 am |
      • end2endsellingsystem

        By definition within the Bible, no Christian church is about religion – which is defined by man's attempts to reach God – but about a relationship with a living, loving God. Through His son, who was Jesus, he provided the final sacrifice and a completely new "agreement" with man that was focused on a loving relationship through faith. From the fall of man, which was NEVER about taking the ten things you want to do the most and sacrificing them to the ten things you HATE to do the most (or want to do the least) but rather about having a loving relationship with God, to God sending his son to die and taking on our sin, God was foretelling that son and that sacrifice. (BTW, Jesus' physical pain was so we could catch a small glimpse of the real pain he experienced, which was taking on ALL the sin of every single person, past, present and future).

        There are all manner of various thoughts, precepts, theories – whatever we want to call them – that address how the world was formed, but if you keep thinking of both time and distance out into the universe, you have to wrestle with the question, "when and how did it all start and how in the hell did it come about that we have what we have – man, with a conscience to pause and reflect between stimulus and response, in charge of a planet on which he and other animal and plant species can survive because of air and water and nourishment.

        There IS a God/Bible story that makes sense. Sure there are some "holes," but back to the whole time/space expanse thing, there's a lot we simply cannot know until we meet up with this so-called creator. At the end of the day, you can believe it or not. (LIsten all the way through to all the alternatives and tell me there isn't some wacky theories going on) People have been claiming God is dead and the church is dying with it for quite some time. In my church, where we are INTENTIONALLY reconciling across race and ethnicity, generations, socio-economic classes and considering various viewpoints while focusing on the love doctrine of God's intended "new agreement" (covenant, testament, etc), we're seeing young people spearheading church growth, not contributing to church shrinking.

        July 30, 2013 at 5:25 pm |
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