Young people avoiding church

July 05, 2017
Kristinna Bryan (left) and her mother Ann-Marie Bryan (second left) engage children at the Gospel Lighthouse Deliverance Centre Church on Spanish Town Road, St Andrew, recently.

A number of churches in Jamaica have agreed with a research conducted in the United States which found that younger persons think Sunday, as a day of worship, is religiously insignificant.

The church leaders told THE STAR that they have noticed that the numbers of children attending Sunday schools have dwindled. The reduction in attendance has caused the leaders of these churches to devise strategies to increase attendance.

"This is why a number of churches have been challenged to change our approach to minister to these children. So, the traditional Sunday school approach is being re examined," Lenworth Anglin, pastor of the Rock Hall Church God, said.

It is customary for many churches to have Sunday school before morning service, but the dwindling numbers have caused church leaders to change it's timing to accommodate the lifestyle of millennials.


Growing trend


Anglin said he is currently thinking of merging Sunday School with his regular morning worship. He also said he has noticed a growing trend of children who are preparing for GSAT and CSEC to have extra lessons scheduled on a Sunday.

"Technology is now competing for the attention of the children. When we were growing we never had these alternatives," Anglin said.

According to the research, only 22 per cent of millennial in the US attend church while 59 per cent believe that it is inconsequential.

Pastor at the Tower Hill Missionary Church in Olympic Garden, Rennard White, believes young parents are contributing to the problem.

"When you are in a inner-city area and they go to a dance in the night, they don't have time to get the children ready to go to church the next morning," White said. "These young parents don't have the interest that our parents had. Even instances when our parents didn't go to church we had to go because they saw the importance."

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