The First Church of Boomers and Millennials


I first proposed this idea in a Catch three years ago to the day. It came out of a lunch I had with a pastor, an attorney who is an influential church leader, and a Christian college professor with a PhD from Oxford. They all love Jesus, but none of them are having a satisfactory church experience. The professor is on disability, the church leader can no longer stomach his church, and the pastor is tired of Christians and can’t wait to retire in three months. None of them are very hopeful about where the church in America is going. What’s wrong with this picture? You could say I just had an unfortunate group of people who are all having individual struggles for some reason, but Barna’s research would say I had lunch with a typical cross-section of Christians in America. All of them agree on one thing: The boomers have it; the millennials are looking for it; and most everybody in between too busy with life to bother.

I couldn’t help but wonder what is going to happen here. The millennials don’t go to church, the boomers are becoming disillusioned with church, most of those in-between are too busy with their marriages and young families to care. I can’t help but think that if we could somehow get the boomers and the millennials together, we would have something. They are the ones who care the most. But how do you start the First Church of Boomers and Millennials?

You start it right here.

I walked away from that meeting both frustrated and excited — frustrated, because it seems impossible to do, but excited to realize that we may be sitting on one of the answers right here at the Catch. Where else can we get these two distant groups together except for the internet? In fact — wake up — this is who we are right now. These two groups are our primary audience. Welcome to the First Church of Boomers and Millennials.

The more we can focus on Jesus and the unifying truth of the gospel, the more we can come together. The less time we spend on social issues and the Christian subculture, the better. Forget trying to save America (whatever that means), forget trying to create a Christian subculture in society (that only separates and divides), forget trying to infuse Christian values into the structures of our social fabric (our job is not to create a Christian society but to make disciples), forget the culture wars (that only makes enemies of the people we are trying to save), put out a white flag and seek the Kingdom of God in the marketplace. Get out there and love people. Love God, and love our neighbors. What else is there?

Everyone’s talking about the new Jesus Revolution movie. I don’t know anything about that because I haven’t seen it, but the fact that Jesus is suddenly one of the main topics in popular culture is a good thing. The more focus we can put on Jesus and the less on Christians the better.

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6 Responses to The First Church of Boomers and Millennials

  1. Jim Miller says:

    John–you are right in track! And definitely make time to see the movie…. Bless you, brother

  2. Toni Petrella says:

    I agree with the first statement. Glad Boomers and millennials are together on this one. Nothing like a Jesus Movement that has diversity among age groups and we are all together. Sorry I took time today but, our power was down for over seven hours to get new wiring and a new power box so later we can have solar. Kind of like the Jesus Movement needs to be redone and better with all of us. Take care, God Bless, and have a great day.

  3. Toni Petrella says:

    Try Again

  4. In today’s speed-obsessed world we’re probably going to have to tighten up the church name so that it’ll be more expedient to text or tweet.
    Here are some potential acronyms for the First Church of Boomers and Millennials:

    The FCoBaM?
    The FCBM?

    As an alternative, here are some potential acronyms for the First Church of Millennials and Boomers:

    The FCoMiB?
    The FCMB?

    I suppose anyone can call us whatever they want – the name of the group isn’t really that important (or even relevant), only the Name of Jesus is paramount – but the real test to our identity and impact is: will we be known by our love?

    Shalom, Peace…

  5. jwfisch says:

    I love it! But you’ll have to. explain #1+>*&1k to me.

    • Not as graceful as the simple fish symbol used by early Christians but todays tech-savvy crowd might see some sort of correlation in my bizarre cryptography.

      #1 = First
      + = Church
      > = of
      * = (Boom!) Boomers
      & = &
      1k = (One thousand = Millennium) Millennials

      There, clear as mud now?!


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