Friday, July 19, 2013

TREND: Young evangelicals becoming Catholics or joining other "High Church" traditions

Everywhere I go these days I'm running into young converts to Catholicism.

Just last month my wife and I had the awesome honor of being godparents at the baptism of a former evangelical, a young woman in her mid-twenties whose love for the Lord has inspired us both.

A week later we went to the wedding of another young man we know who came into the Catholic Church a few years back.

Back when my wife and I were at Fuller we knew others who were on a similar track. One of the major highlights was when my wife had the great privilege of sponsoring a classmate into the Church.

Now there's an interesting piece on "The Christian Pundit".
A friend of mine attended a Christian college where almost all of the students, including her, grew up in non-denominational, evangelical Protestant churches. A few years after graduation, she is the only person in her graduating class who is not Roman Catholic, high Anglican or Lutheran...
... 
Young Christians are going over to Catholicism and high Anglicanism/Lutheranism in droves, despite growing up in low Protestant churches that told them about Jesus. It’s a trend that is growing, and it looks like it might go that way for a while...
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The kids who leave evangelical Protestantism are looking for something the world can’t give them. The world can give them hotter jeans, better coffee, bands, speakers, and book clubs than a congregation can. What it can’t give them is theology; membership in a group that transcends time, place and race; a historic rootedness; something greater than themselves; ordained men who will be spiritual leaders and not merely listeners and buddies and story-tellers. What the kids leaving generic evangelicalism seem to want is something the world can never give them–a holy Father who demands reverence, a Saviour who requires careful worship, and a Spirit who must be obeyed. They are looking for true, deep, intellectually robust spirituality in their parents’ churches and not finding it. 
But not all kids who grew up in American evangelicalism are jumping off into high church rite and sacrament: congregations that carefully teach robust, historic Protestant theology to their children are notably not losing them to the Vatican, or even Lambeth...
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“He cannot have God as his Father who does not have the church for his Mother,” said Cyprian, nearly two millennia ago. Perhaps if Protestant churches began acting more like dutiful mothers instead of fun babysitters, there would be fewer youth leaving their ecclesiastical homes as soon as they are out of the house.
Read the whole thing here.

6 comments:

Gary Somers said...

Interesting, saw this article posted by a Wheaton College classmate of mine. Two observations- First, this has been happening for a while, it is not just a recent phenomenon. Second, I strongly disagree with this blogger's statement "congregations that carefully teach robust, historic Protestant theology to their children are notably not losing them to the Vatican, or even Lambeth...". Which robust historic Protestant theology should they teach? This papers over the much larger issue of authority, with the protestant denominations lack, and which Christ gave to Peter and his successors.

Michael Lofton said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Michael Lofton said...

There is definitely a movement going on with young Evangelicals converting to Catholicism and other high Church communions. I think that many Protestants are fed up with the low Church services they encounter so often. Perhaps they realize it doesn't have much substance to it. At least this was the case for me as a former Protestant and now Catholic. Another reason why many Protestants are coming to Catholicism is probably because they recognize Protestantism's lack of historical credibility.

Anonymous said...

My most liked/shared post on facebook and retweeted tweet is this:

I am a Christian but I'm not Ned Flanders.

I think that reflects a rejection of sweater-vest, okely-dokely evangelical Christianity.

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