Archive

Church Dropouts Have Risen to 64%—But What About Those Who Stay?

In Faith for Exiles, Kinnaman and his coauthor, Mark Matlock, touch on the increase of young-adult church dropouts from 59% in 2011 to 64% in 2019. But what about the young adults who stay? We invite you to meet the one in 10 young Christians for whom we’ve coined the term “resilient disciples.” These young adults have made a commitment to Jesus and are a small, yet significant group of Christians who are running counter to the current dropout trend.

What Will It Take to Disciple the Next Generation?

Over the last decade and a half, one of Barna’s primary missions has been to understand emerging generations—specifically Gen Z and Millennials in the United States—and discover how to best equip them to grow and share their faith. In the process, Barna has interviewed nearly 100,000 teens and young adults to learn more about their worldview, especially surrounding Christianity, religion and culture. As Barna deepens our understanding of the next generation and what they’re bringing with them into adulthood, we are also reflecting on some of the many conversations we’ve had with faith leaders about the bigger questions surrounding the next generation.

Communication Is Key in Periods of Pastoral Transition

It’s clear that communication is a strong factor in the experience during and success of a transition. Unfortunately, communication with and to congregants is often neglected during transitions. A new Barna report produced in partnership with Brotherhood Mutual, Leadership Transitions, examines how churches navigate pastoral change and stay healthy amidst the shift while offering insight on what and how to communicate during a transition.

Planned Pastoral Transitions Lead to Better Outcomes

Every church inevitably goes through a time of leadership transition. Whether because of retirement, scandal, health complications, a change in calling or some other shift in a pastor’s life or career, churches are bound to walk through a pastoral succession of some kind eventually. A new Barna report produced in partnership with Brotherhood Mutual, Leadership Transitions, addresses this universal reality and examines how churches navigate pastoral change and stay healthy amidst the shift.

What Is the Church’s Role in Racial Reconciliation?

This August, historians note, marks 400 years since slavery began in the United States. As our country nears this anniversary, many are taking time to reflect on the history of racial injustice in America and their responsibility in healing the wounds of inequality that have been inflicted on black Americans over the last four centuries. A new report, Where Do We Go from Here?, represents the first of several new Barna efforts to study race and the Church and assesses what practicing Christians feel should be done to repair the damage.

A Snapshot of Faith Practice Across Age Groups

How often do Christians attend church? What do they believe about God? Do they regularly open their Bibles? Drawing from FaithView, Barna’s new online database for city, state and national spiritual profiles, let’s take a fresh look at one of the questions we often hear as religion researchers: How do core metrics of faith look by generation, as Christians progress through age and stage of life?

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