“One of the biggest problems I have seen, and which I believe must be addressed, is that a large percentage of children who have been brought up in Sunday Schools and churches – and in Christian homes – do not continue on into adult church.”
David Goodwin, Lost in Transition (Aus)
Students didn’t begin doubting in college, they simply departed by college. If you look around in your church today, two-thirds of those who are sitting among us have already left in their hearts.
Ken Ham & Britt Beamer, Already Gone (Aus & USA)
If the church is haemorrhaging young people, we have to ask our selves if it’s because we address the issue of discipleship too late. Is the spiritual education we provide for our young people neither consistent enough or rigorous enough to provide them with the means to have a strong and stable faith in a time when there are many challenges to the authenticity and relevance of our beliefs?
Jason Gardner, Mend the Gap (UK)
“Faith trajectories are often set in early adolescence. Sadly, most youth ministries are long on fun and fluff and short on listening and thoughtful engagement. The former produces a million paper boats; the latter produces a handful of seaworthy ships.”
Kara Powell & Chap Clark, Sticky Faith (USA)
The Here2Stay initiative is the result of a collaborative approach by some of the major denominations and organisations serving families and children in Australia. Our journey towards a solution begins with an acknowledgement that a large part of our discipling strategy has revolved around the imparting of INFORMATION. While the content of our curricula and programs is important, this strategy alone is not producing mature disciples. To this equation we need to intentionally add experiences that focus on FORMATION so that faith goes deeper. The result will be TRANSFORMATION. The result will be followers of Jesus who are Here2Stay.
What are the formational ‘experiences’ that, if integrated into a long term journey with our children from their birth, will cause their faith to grow deeper, be more strongly rooted and grounded, and provide a foundation and stability for the turbulent years ahead? Our website explores further 10 foundational formational experiences that have largely been overlooked in our ministry programs with children, young people and young adults. Use the portals to discover practical strategies to complement your existing programs. At the same time, you are invited to contribute to the journey by adding your suggestions to the growing database of ideas.
The beginning of the solution to see a reversal of this trend is at our fingertips – if we are prepared to take the journey?