Carey Nieuwhof is a pastor in Barrie, Ontario. His recent blog post on same-sex marriage has been shared over 100,000 times and counting.
Canadian pastors are ten years ahead of our US colleagues in dealing with legalized same-sex marriage. Nieuwhof says, “If you believe sex is a gift given by God to be experienced between a man and a woman within marriage, why would you expect people who don’t follow Christ to embrace that? Why do Christians expect non-Christians to act like Christians?
The purpose of this post is not to take a position or define matters theologically (for there is so much debate around that). Rather, the purpose of this post is to think through how to respond as a church when the law of the land changes as fundamentally as it’s changing on same-sex marriage and many other issues.
Here are 5 perspectives I hope are helpful as church leaders of various positions on the subject think and pray through a way forward.”
2. Canadian Youth Leaving the Church
He says, “Canada is a much more secular society than America. In fact, a friend who has spent time as a missionary in Kenya tells me that, in their opinion, Canada is a darker place spiritually than Kenya. But it doesn’t feel the same as Britain.
But . . . that may be changing. The statistics for youth leaving the church are scary–see here–it’s an open secret that 60%-80% of kids regularly involved in church won’t be attending once they set out on their own). And Canadian Christian institutions are feeling it.”
James Penner has written a book entitled, “Hemorrhaging Faith” detailing the decline in church attendance by Christians over 18.
- Only one in three Canadian young adults who attended church weekly as a child still do so today.
- Of the young adults who no longer attend church, half have also stopped identifying themselves with the Christian tradition in which they were raised.
APPLICATION: Please leave a comment below.
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