Three Challenges in a Post-Christian Culture: A… | UMC YoungPeople
Connecting young people and their adult leaders to God, the church, and the world
July 2017

Three Challenges in a Post-Christian Culture: A View from the West

By Kelly Peterson-Cruse

By Kelly Peterson-Cruse and Chris Wilterdink

Kelly writes from her well of experience in the Western half of the United States. In many ways, that part of the US is operates in a “post-Christian” landscape. Check the map in this article, and you’ll notice that a majority of adults in the west are not “highly religious.” Also notice some telling stats from Pew Forum (for example, 28% of adults seldom or never pray, and only 32% attend religious services weekly).

Challenges exist for leaders who want to See All the People, especially when the Christian Church may not be a majority of a given community. Yet remember, the seeds of modern Christian churches were planted by very small groups of Christians operating in a far greater minority than basically any church currently in the USA!

Check out three posts from Kelly in the sidebar to the right that address several challenges that churches in post-Christian landscapes can encounter.

After reading, sit down with some other leaders from your church to digest the posts using some of these questions:

  • As a leader, how often do you feel unattached unable to spiritually benefit from the activities under your charge?
  • How might you be able to better immerse yourself in experiences, and share leadership, so that you, yourself are not “too busy” for your own church experience?
  • Have you heard young people in your community say that they are “too busy for church”? How have you answered that comment?
  • Does being too busy for church affect how spiritual or religious your youth are?
  • How does being too busy for church affect the relationships between the elders and young people of your congregation?
  • Do the young people of your congregation see God and the church as things to serve their own individual wants and needs? How do you know?
  • Has your congregation and community engaged in any dialogue about “religiousness” and any connotations that come with that label?
  • What stories of transformation, that are rooted in your congregation, are you able to share with the community at large?
  • How might intergenerational relationships aid your efforts to see all the people?