There’s yet another survey out showing that young people stop going to church after high school as they go off to college or start a job away from home.
A 2017 LifeWay Research Survey shows 66 percent of Americans stopped attending church on a regular basis for at least a year after turning 18. This is down slightly from 2007 when 70 percent reported they dropped out of church at that age.
Most young people who cease regular attendance are not doing so because they no longer believe in God. The LifeWay survey, which is based on responses from more than 2000 young Americans who attended Protestant churches, shows that the top reason for young people leaving church was that they “moved into college.” “It’s not that most rejected the church,” stated Ed Stetzer, former Executive Director of LifeWay Research. Dr. Stetzer, now head of the Billy Graham Center at Wheaton College, looked at the data and concluded, “they simply lose track of the church and stop seeing it as important to their lives.” Many, hopefully, will return.
Another semi-encouraging survey has surfaced: A recent New York Times headline reads: “Support of LGBT Rights Drops among Republicans under 30.” A large survey conducted by the Washington D.C.- based Public Religion Research Institute, shows a majority of this group thinks LGBT Americans should receive special privileges and accommodations, but the percentage is dropping, down 9 percent since 2015.
“It was one of the largest and most significant drops that we saw,” Robert P. Jones, chief executive of the institute told the Times.
Family Research Council suggests that “young conservatives may have some buyers’ remorse about this agenda that wasn’t supposed to affect them.”
In the three years since the Obergefell Supreme Court decision that brought us same-sex marriage nationwide, we’ve seen it used as a weapon against free speech, religious liberty, and privacy.
These surveys show something else: We shouldn’t give up on Gen Z.