In order to give the youth a reason to attend church, you have to cater to their tastes. That may seem like a tall order to fill, but it’s not. You have to become intimately acquainted with your target audience in order to know what is going to grab their attention long enough to walk away with at least a seed.
Many preachers deliver their spiritual message in the same manner regardless of their audience. This approach often keeps the younger adults at arms length. The aggressive approach full of limitations and condemnations, also scares them away. Children are taught to enjoy their youth because they will not get these years back. The church challenges what they perceive as fun.
Pastor Ed Young of the Fellowship Church in Texas often has the younger people in mind when planning his sermons and events. This is probably due to the fact that he himself is a teenager at heart. Pastor Young has incorporated laser lights, gas mask images, toxic barrels used as drums and biohazard suits for dancers in delivering an apocalyptic message.
While most pastors keep a hushed tone in regards to sex, Pastor Young enthusiastically discusses the topic. The First Lady of the Fellowship Church, Lisa Young, joined her husband in bed on the roof of their church to deliver a message regarding the importance of intimacy between husband and wife. The message was delivered online via a live stream. Although his message may have seem to be specifically for marriages, his message also benefit the youth as they prepare to enter adulthood. A seed planted that prosperous marriages will flourish from.
Pastor Young knows that young adults spend a good portion of their time online and frequently come across viral trends. His eclectic, creative approach has made many headlines and has stirred up a lot of conversation. He has accomplished his goal of reaching millions in a way that does not exclude the youth.
Technology, social media, freedom, fun and success are what currently hold the attention of the youth. You must deliver your messages through these avenues in order to reach them. The average church goer is 54 years old. While our elders are the foundation of the church, our youth are our tomorrow. Pastor Ed Young is not only attracting youth, he’s setting a prime example of “If you can’t beat them, join them!”.