Why Christian Students Walk Away From Faith | Aaron Buer

17 Jun

Why Christian Students Walk Away From Faith | Aaron Buer.

For the last 3 years, I have obsessively focused on this question.  As a pastor to students, this is the sort of thing that keeps me up at night.

One of our former students and current volunteers shared this article with me and I think it is worth the read.  The article is written by Larry Alex Taunton who is the executive director of the Fixed Point Foundation.  Honestly, I know nothing about him or his organization but the study intrigued me because it offered “members of Secular Student Alliances (SSA) or Freethought Societies (FS)s” an opportunity to share “your journey to unbelief“.  Here were some of Larry Alex Taunton’s observations:

1. “They had attended church”

2. “The mission and message of their churches was vague”

3.  “They felt their churches offered superficial answers to life’s difficult questions

4.  “They expressed their respect for those ministers who took the Bible seriously

5.  “Ages 14-17 were decisive

6.  “The decision to embrace unbelief was often an emotional one

7.  “The internet factored heavily into their conversion to atheism

Personally, I believe we are losing students to irrelevant faith and atheism because they don’t find Christianity compelling which is ridiculous because the mission of the Gospel is insanely compelling.  But, this is on us–not them.  Students want to be part of a mission bigger than themselves and if we aren’t connecting them to it they will go elsewhere for meaning.

Also, research shows that many students are walking away because they didn’t have a safe place to wrestle with doubts.  We MUST become churches where it is not only OK but also encouraged to openly wrestle with doubts.

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