Reaching the Next Generation

I read and follow a lot of blogs on a daily basis. I am always looking for the next great idea or something that will help in ministry. We never stop learning and we can learn how to do things from lots of sources. One of the blogs I follow is called Swerve. Great blog about ministry and the practice of ministry or should I say the Art of the practice of ministry. That is what it is after all an art and we practice ministry. As a lawyer practices law or a doctor practices medicine, clergy practice ministry. I digress.

Last week there were three posts on reaching the next generation and they deserve some reading and discussion. I was going to just re post them here but I will pit the links below but please comment here with your thoughts. Let’s get some conversation going here on how to reach the next generation.

Reaching the Next Generation

Missional Ministry

Generational Ministry

Again please leave comments here


  1. To reach the next generation, adults first need to hear what the young people have to say. After hearing their viewpoints on religion and other subjects, we can provide them with some sincere feedback on what they have said. I have noticed from my own personal experiences that “lecturing” young people does not work. A more effective methodology is to have an “open forum” with these young people, so that there is an exchange of ideas. This method of communication also provides young people with a sense of importance — a feeling that their ideas do indeed matter — so that they do not believe that adults are just “going through the motions” of listening to them.

  2. I think the author is spot on: youth won’t put up with being talked down to, judged, or ignored. They desire love, respect, and community. They can also spot a fake a mile away, and they have to many potential “connections” to waste time with a fake.

    I agree with George P. that we need to make sure that our activities are built around guided discussions/forums. A couple of additional thoughts:

    – the young adults and youth of our time are noted for their community-mindedness. If we can’t baptize that, then we should close our doors.

    – one challenge is working within a post-modern (or post-post modern) culture where feeling and experience matter more than tradition/orthodoxy. This can also be baptized (ours is an experiential faith), but approaching youth with the mindset most of us were wired with will be counterproductive (all of us know of examples of disastrous encounters between energetic youth and “old-school” clergy and lay-leaders). This requires intentional, prayerful effort on our part.

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