Survey shows trend of young people leaving Christianity, church
A new survey by LifeWay Christian Resources indicates that most Millenials are not religious and are leaving churches, although many consider themselves to be spiritual.
Millenials are defined as those born from 1980 to 1991. They are aged between 18-29 years old.
Of the total surveyed, 65 percent said they are Christian; 14 percent atheist or agnostic; 14 percent do not favor any religion; and 8 percent mentioned affiliations with other religions. Seventy-two percent said they are more spiritual than religious, the Christian Post reported.
Among those who said they were Christian were the following findings, the Christian Post reported:
Of those who claimed to have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ
- 15 percent have deeply committed personal relationships with Jesus Christ.
- 81 percent of those who trust Christ as Savior agreed strongly that Jesus is the way to Heaven.
- Most of those who trust Christ as Savior described themselves as more spiritual than religious.
- Half of those who trust Christ as Savior do not go to church every week.
Of those who identified themselves as Christians
- 56 percent rarely or never read the Bible.
- 38 percent rarely or never pray by themselves.
- 44 percent agreed strongly that Jesus is the only way to Heaven.
- 26 percent agreed strongly that salvation is through God’s grace alone.
- 25 percent agreed strongly that the Bible is the written word of God and is totally accurate in all that it teaches.
- Most agree that churches are relevant.
- 28 percent strongly agree that churches are relevant today.
- 67 percent do not go to church every week.
Of the total respondents
- One-third said they made a personal relationship with Jesus Christ that is still important to them today.
- One-fourth agreed somewhat that their personal relationship with Jesus Christ is important in their life today.
- 30 percent strongly believe Jesus Christ was sinless.
- Most believe that no one really knows about life after death.
- 74 percent say they are more spiritual than religious.
The USA Today quoted Thom Rainer, president of LifeWay as saying that should this trend continue, “The millennial generation will see churches closing as quickly as GM dealerships.”
The findings correlated with a 2007 LifeWay survey of teenagers who drop out of church, as well as with a February survey by the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life which also indicated that Millenials are dropping out of church.
The survey, which was conducted mainly by phone in August 2009, involved 1,200 participants and has a margin of error of +/-2.8, myFOXla.com reported.