Book offers insights on ‘church dropouts’

Why do so many young adults (18 to 22) leave the church, and what will it take to bring them back? Thom S. Rainer answers the question and gives solutions in his new book, “Essential Church?,” co-written by his son, research expert Sam Rainer.

“The book is based on a study of 1,000 so-called `church dropouts’ who were interviewed about why they left,” the LifeWay Web site says.

“Their answers are quite surprising, having less to do with `losing their religion’ and more about the desire for a community that isn’t made stale by simply maintaining the status quo.”

The Rainers offer four solutions for bringing young people back to the church:

  • Simplify: develop a clear structure and process for making disciples.
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  • Deepen: provide strong biblical teaching and preaching.
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  • Expect: let members know the need for commitment to the congregation.
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  • Multiply: emphasize evangelism, outward focus, and starting new churches


Download a sample chapter (PDF)