In a recent conversation about church trends I was challenged by a friend’s comments. “Are we reaching the non-young ones?” My words; his thought.
Although emergent and postmodern church leaders have had measurable success in attracting unchurched twenty and thirty somethings they have largely marginalized themselves by age. He commented that having attended Mars Hill there were a limited number of middle aged or elderly. We both agreed that a visual poll conducted on a one time visit is hardly scientific but, I think there might be something to this. Have modern church leaders appealed only to younger minds and limited their scope of ministry?
Last month the influentially famous Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church made a change. (My grandmother used to attend when Dr. Kennedy was there) Rather than separating its members by worship preferences (traditional and contemporary) they blended their service to facilitate community. The styles of both the old and the young were compromised for the sake of coming together.
Pastor Tullian Tchividjian said in a recent blog article, “Following the lead of the advertising world, many churches and worship services target specific age groups to the exclusion of others. They forget that, according to the Bible, the church is an all-age community, and instead they organize themselves around distinctives dividing the generations…”
Amidst my questions of the modern swings of postmodernism I ask myself, why not the old ones? Have we left them behind? I further wonder if there is a difference between saying, “I have a passion to reach this generation” and “I have a passion to reach this particular race.” Though the later would be offensive the former is applauded. The boundary crossing church has become a thing of popularity but is the boundary of age too unfashionable to cross?
Would nooma be as cool with grandma?
Your thoughts and comments are much appreciated…