As researchers, Barna Group often gets a big picture look at data. Yet, while the biggest picture allows researchers and leaders a chance to know what’s going on in the world, their communities and their churches, it takes people who are daily serving within local churches to help pastors connect the dots from the larger overview to practical application. That’s why Barna is delighted to partner with Benjamin Windle (pastor, speaker and author) as part of our efforts to explore new models, methods and mindsets for the future of the Church.
What does it look like to be comfortable in the act of talking about one’s Christian faith in an era where skepticism is high and evangelism is unpopular? Today’s article specifically takes a look at recent findings from the Reviving Evangelism in the Next Generation study, paying special attention to how Gen Z defines a comfortable evangelist and how non-Christians in this generation prefer to be approached when Christians are witnessing to them.
Pastors and churchgoers alike believe an individual's unique gifts and talents point to God and draw people to him. So are churches adequately helping to identify, support and celebrate congregants' gifts? For a recent report titled Gifted for More, Barna explored how U.S. adults, practicing Christians and pastors view giftedness—and suggests the U.S. Church is due for a fresh framework for gifts.
New Barna data—now published in You on Purpose, a book by Dr. Stephanie Shackelford and Bill Denzel—sheds light on how U.S. adults, practicing Christians and professional career coaches think about the process of discovering one's calling.
How are U.S. Christians currently thinking about "making disciples of all nations?" Much of international missions work adapted or was even put on hold last year due to the pandemic. Yet, even well before then, the overall perception of how to practice missions and global evangelism has been shifting, especially among younger generations. There are plenty of reasons for leaders to be curious about how Christians’ thoughts on the topic of missions are evolving.
When it comes to getting ahead in life, do practicing Christians think of their race as something that has helped or hindered them? Today's article features recent data from Beyond Diversity, exploring whether or not practicing Christians from various racial backgrounds think their race offers them an advantage in life, as well as how they feel when the term "white privilege" is mentioned.
Data from Barna's Trends in the Black Church study show that the pandemic pushed Black Church pastors to innovate and challenged their ability to disciple people digitally during the pandemic. Even now, as churches emerge from COVID-era regulations, pastors and their people wonder if or how these shifts will continue to shape the trajectory of their ministry strategy.
Data collected in 2019 showed that Christians are far more likely than all American adults to view the U.S. as historically blessed and chosen by God, a Christian nation and a leader to the rest of the world. But that was before the events of 2020, including the COVID-19 pandemic, a racial justice uprising and an extremely divisive election season. In January of 2021, Barna once again polled U.S. adults to see if their perceptions of the nation had shifted or stayed put since 2019. Today’s article offers a breakdown of what has and hasn’t changed.
Periodically, Barna zooms in from nationally representative data on the Church to focus specifically on U.S. cities, equipping pastors to lead better in their context with reporting on topics like habits of generosity, post-Christian environments, relationship status trends and more. With other measures of church attendance and affiliation in flux, especially as leaders and congregants emerge from COVID-era church life, the infographics in this article focus on two key measures of personal faith practice—Bible reading and prayer.