Cool Church is NOT Cool

cool-churchChurch attendance has plummeted among young adults. In the U.S. 59% of people 18 to 29 with a Christian background have, at some point, dropped out. According to the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life, among those who came of age around the year 2000, a solid quarter claim no religious affiliation, making them significantly more disconnected from faith than Gen-Xers were at a comparable point in their lives and twice as detached as Boomers were as young adults.

In response, many churches have sought to lure Millennials back by focusing on style points: cooler bands, hipper worship, edgier programming and impressive technology.

Recent Barna Group research found 67% of Millennials prefer a “classic” church over a “trendy” one, and 77% would choose a “sanctuary” over an “auditorium.” They also exhibit an increasing aversion to exclusive, closed-minded religious communities masquerading as hip places.

Barna’s David Kinnaman said “Millennials are not disillusioned with tradition; they are frustrated with slick or shallow expressions of religion.”

Least and Most Religious Countries Worldwide

A global survey by WIN/Gallup International has ranked the U.K. as among the least religious countries in the world along with Czech Republic, Sweden, Japan and China. Only 30% of Britons describe themselves as religious; 53% are not religious, and 13% say they’re atheists. In the U.S., only 56% said they are religious; 33% are not, and 6% identify as atheists.

Worldwide, 63% claim to be religious, 22% were not, 11% as atheists, and 4% did not give an answer. Morocco, Georgia, Bangladesh, Armenia and Thailand made up the list of countries where people most often described themselves as religious. The total number of religiously unaffiliated people in the world is 16% and is projected to drop to 15% by 2050.

Click the picture below to see the breakdown of the world’s religions.

religion

Random Thought Thursday: May 7, 2015

A MERE SHADOW OF A FIGHT
Leonard
The Mayweather – Pacquiao fight was a joke.  This should have been their 3rd and final fight, not their first.  I remember the  Sugar Ray Leonard – Roberto Duran trilogy of fights in the 1980s.  Those were awesome! They fought twice in 1980 (both winning once) and one last time in 1989 – an epic fight between old foes who were beyond their prime.  If you want to see boxing in its prime, check out their fights on You Tube.

GREEN CHILE STEW…I LOVE YOU
SONY DSC

I’m not sure where I would be in life or what kind of man I would be if not for green chile stew.  It’s like eating New Mexico, and it’s wonderful.  Those of you who don’t live in the Land of Enchantment won’t understand, but for those of you who do, can I get an “Amen?!”

CHEATER CHEATER PUMPKIN EATER
Deflate-Gate-0120-jpg

I admit I don’t like the New England Patriots because my favorite team, the Pittsburgh Steelers, have a hard time beating them these days. However, the findings from the “Deflate-gate” investigation are in, and it has been discovered that indeed the Patriots cheated…again. A few years back, they secretly taped a teams practice so that they could steal their signals. I’m not saying they’re not a good – perhaps great – team. I’m just saying that their cheating diminishes their accomplishments over the past 10 years in my eyes.

A SUPERB READ
BOOK
I just finished this book recently, and it’s one I recommend you read too. It’s the story of the 1936 USA Olympic rowing team that brought home gold from the Berlin Olympics – back when rowing was a big deal in the U.S. As the story is told, the reader is given a bird’s eye view of the horrible impact the Great Depression had on our country and the resilience of the American people to survive and ultimately overcome it. Simultaneously, a detailed look into the preparation of Hitler’s Germany for the Olympics is given which includes a peak into the Nazi propaganda machine that used the Olympics to convince the world that Nazi Germany was not horrible like the rumors were saying. It worked, and the world was lulled to sleep by the grandeur of the Olympics and the Nazi façade that allowed Hitler to get away with murder – literally – for years after. The story follows the account of the last survivor of the 1936 rowing team, and his family story alone would make for a fascinating read. Add to it the Olympic struggle and the maddening deceit of Nazi Germany, and it makes for a superb read.