Millennials aren’t going to church as much as prior generations. In fact, it’s at an all-time low with only 2 in 10 Americans under the age of 30 thinking that attending church is worthwhile or even important.
The numbers actually speak for themselves — 59% of millennials who were raised in the church, have dropped out. If this statistic isn’t shocking enough for you (or maybe it isn’t), 35% of millennials even have an anti-church stance. When asked why they don’t attend church, 40% of these millennials state that they find God somewhere else, and 35% say that they don’t find church relevant.
Well then. I personally am not one of these statistics. And I know I’m not alone. There are millennials who still go to church, are devout in their faith, and pray every day. Two of us are here to show you that if you are a millennial that defies the church static, we’re right there with you.
We go to church.
Some of us try to go every Sunday, and some of us go whenever we can. We know it’s important to start the week refreshed, and attending church is a great way to do this. Plus, we want to spend part of our week thanking God for everything He has given us — we don’t want to take this for granted.
Life is hard. Adulting is hard. We pray to God to give us the strength we need, and the guidance we also need. We pray for those around us who are struggling. We pray for the things we want in life. And we pray to thank God for giving us another day, and of course for everything.
We believe God has a plan for us.
When things get tough, we trust in God’s path for us. There are many paths we can choose in life, but we know that God’s path is the right path, and the one meant for us. We know that He only puts obstacles in our life that He knows we can handle. We know that He gives us exactly what we need, even if we can’t see it at the time.
We want to recruit more millennials to the church.
We don’t want them leaving the church, especially those who grew up attending church. We want millennials to speak openly about their faith, and partake in faith based events such as World Youth Day or volunteer at faith based programs.
We partake in our faith traditions.
Whether that involves observing Lent or attending services on church holidays, we’re part of it — and we want to be part of it. No longer is this a matter of family members insisting we participate. We’re not forced to, we do it because we want to.
We’ve participated in church activities.
Of course, church is a place of prayer — but it is also a place to meet people of similar values and backgrounds and build community. And even have some fun at church events and socials! Many churches not only have youth groups but groups for young adults as well. Join them if you can.
We incorporate church teachings into our beliefs.
The church teaches us to give back and help others. For feeding the hungry, giving drink to the thirsty and clothing the naked. We already know that many millennials hold these ideals close to their hearts, and are actively out making an impact on the world whether it be through donating to charity, or simply by advocating on social media. Plus, many churches offer opportunities to help you give back to your community.
This post was a joint effort by Michelle Ioannou and Mary Grace Donaldson, two proud, religious millennials.