Title: Lost and Found: The Younger Unchurched and the Churches that Reach Them
Author: Ed Stetzer, Richie Stanley, and Jason Hayes
The church will attract more young adults when it becomes more concerned with depth (in relationships between people, in reflection upon Scripture, authentic preaching, and in people’s faith). “[Depth is] about engaging people at every level—emotionally, intellectually, spiritually, and even physically.” (page 95) Part of this will happen when churches start to connect the average young adult’s experiences to Biblical truths. They believe that this is what Jesus did: “Jesus didn’t necessarily seek out a fig tree, a field, or a farmer. He was walking by those things, and He used those moments that naturally occurred to teach spiritual truth. But He had to be walking with people in order to have that opportunity.” (page 134) Also, the church will attract more young adults when it works more to build interpersonal relationships and communities of young adults. “The new generation wants to honestly share and be thoroughly heard. They desperately want to share burdens with one another.” (page 203) This book also delves into the trends of parishes that are successful in reaching young adults, such as volunteer opportunities and engagement with ancient traditions.
Martha Korienek is Associate Rector at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Burlingame, CA.