300 East Wayne Street
Fort Wayne, IN 46802
(260) 422-4681
firstwaynestreet@fwsumc.org

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‘The Religious Nones’

“Millennials (born 1980 to 2000) comprise 23 percent of the United States population, but fewer than 10 percent of churches reflect this level of representation.  According to a study of more than 4,400 churches by FaithCommunitiesToday.org, 18 percent of churches report no young adult presence in their congregations.  According to Pew Research Center, 78 percent of  ‘religious nones’ were once active in church.  Another American church shutters its doors every 2.5 hours.  Churches thrive for a number of reasons but they close for one reason—a failure to reach the next generation.  We are currently perfectly aligned to the results we are getting.  If we want to get something different, we have to think something different.  (from “The New Copernicans” by David John Seel Jr.)

The label “New Copernican” was coined by cultural sociologist, John Seel, and it comes from the 15th century mathematician and astronomer, Copernicus, who came to see the world in a new way (sun-centered) rather than in the way everyone else saw it (earth-centered).  “New Copernicans” are those who are seeing the world and our culture in a new way, and the generation known as “millenials” (20s and 30s) are the best exemplars of our new culture and are best positioned to be our mentors as we navigate new times for the church.  We might even suggest that Jesus was a “New Copernican” for his time.  He certainly understood the journey of faith in a way that turned everything upside down!

I invite you to join me in a discussion about “New Copernicans” as we consider how First Wayne Street UMC can be relevant, faithful and fruitful for Christ in this current culture.

The ROCK and Seekers adult Sunday School classes will meet 8:45 to 9:30 a.m. January 13, 20 and 27 in the second-floor parlor. The three-part presentation of “The New Copernicans” will look at: Who are they?  How do they think?  How is that relevant for Christian ministry and FWS?

Our Wednesday night program, “Making the Connection”, will offer a book study from 4 to 6 p.m. beginning Jan. 16, and it will led by Pastor Cheryl.  

Or simply order the book and begin reading yourself:  “The New Copernicans: Millenials and the Survival of the Church.”

—Blessings, Pastor Cheryl

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