This is the question pastors across the world are asking. How do we attract the younger generation? What do they want? And if you can answer those questions and make an actionable plan, your church could see major growth.
I am a millennial, or at least I consider myself to be. But either way, I think I can speak on what younger people want from church because I am a younger person and I’ve talked to many others about church. I’ve also attended many churches that have huge proportions of younger people.
So I’m going to lay this out in 5 simple things that millennials want from church.
This is a no-brainer. Even though people nowadays seem so disconnected, community is a big draw for a lot of us. And a church that offers good community is going to do well with younger people.
A good community is one that loves each other well, shows interest in people, and eagerly invests in new people.
Like it or not, you’re going to need a good worship team. This is not something you can skimp on if you want millennials. We know good music when we hear it (except millennials that listen to EDM, they don’t know what they’re talking about).
But all joking aside, worship is a huge part of church for many people. Just look at the success of Hillsong, Elevation, Bethel, Upper Room. Each of those organizations have placed a huge emphasis on worship and their numbers are astronomical.
3. No judging
There are ways to teach and instruct people what the Bible says without making people feel super uncomfortable. For millennials, the old saying “they don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care” is really true.
At the end of the day, most young people don’t want to just be preached at. They want to know that they have a pastor that loves and cares about them and want’s them to succeed. If you can convey that, you’ll do well.
4. Relaxed atmosphere
If people get looks for pulling out their phone during service, you’re doing it wrong. Stop it. If you tell people not to get up to go to the bathroom during service, you’re doing it wrong. Oh and it people can’t wear a t-shirt to your church without being looked down on, quit that right now. That’s ridiculous.
Relax. Millennials want a relaxed environment, not a stiff one.
5. Spiritual growth
Church is not a place where we should just learn more about the stories of the Bible. While they are incredibly important, so is relationship with God. Encouraging and helping develop people in their relationships is very important.
Don’t go easy on this one! This may be the most difficult part of this list, but it’s also the single most important one. If someone grows spiritually while attending your church, you’ve won an invaluable reward.