Reaching out to the nones
The Rev. Renee Ruchotzke has a three-part essay titled “Could the Nones Become Unitarian Universalists?” on the UUA blog Growing Vital Leaders. She notes, “Young adult ministry has been a challenge for congregations of all liberal protestant denominations for decades but the game is changing in ways we couldn’t have imagined back in the post WWII church-building boom.”
Many young adults find conservative churches too restrictive, she says in Part 1. And liberal ones have not articulated a compelling theology. In Part 2 she ticks off reasons why young adults leave churches. The reasons include not developing a close friendship with anyone, and not getting help with discovering their own mission in the world.
In Part 3 she highlights congregations like First Unitarian Church of Rochester, NY which have created small group programs that lead to deeper engagement and spiritual development.
Growing Vital Leaders is a good blog for congregational leaders to bookmark. Other recent topics have been on cohesive leadership and making members and the larger community aware of your congregation’s outreach ministries.
Ruchotzke is Leadership Development Consultant for the Central East Regional Group (CERG), of the UUA.