40+ And The Church/Practicing In Community

“I wonder what the average age is of the group in this room.”

Author and pastor Ian Morgan Cron scanned the group gathered in the chapel at Willow Creek last Sunday night for the experimental gathering dubbed The Practice. He was there to speak about, then lead us in communion. While there were a good number of twenty- and thirty-somethings representing, the crowd definitely skewed to older Gen X’ers and Boomers. Probably because there is no childcare or children’s programming available at that time, the demographic that seemed to be light in the room were the parents of kids under 18.

I’ve written a lot (click herehere, or here for starters) about the quiet exodus of the very crowd that has been quietly slipping out the back door of their local churches as they’ve hit their empty-nester years. One thing I discovered about as I’ve researched this topic is that many of us are have become burned out on “doing church” as we’d done it in our builder years. However, at this point in our lives, we know that the cure for burn out isn’t novelty or more things to add to our spiritual to-do list. We’re looking for meaning. [Read more]

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