Warm is the New Cool, Reprise

Hi! I'm off to Florida for a week so here is is a repeat of my most popular article ever. - Dr. Jeannie

Perplexed about how to reach and retain millennials? Worried that your church can’t compete with the megachurches in reaching this age group?

Well then, I may have some good news for you! Perhaps your church doesn’t have the newest building or perhaps the congregations is aging. Maybe you don’t follow a completely contemporary worship style.

Still, you may have the main ingredient you need for reaching millennials. Here’s why I say that.

I recently took a half-day off work to view Barna Group’s webcast, The State of Pastors: Leading in Complexity.

I found the report fascinating and you can view the archived footage here if you are interested.

Among the many fascinating findings: in regard to churches reaching millennials, “warm is the new cool.”

Barna’s researchers discovered that millennials who do attend church want two things:  relevancy and warmth.

One speaker related, for example, that when researchers conducted interviews with one particular church, the millennial members often referred to “Bill’. Eventually, they learned that Bill was an older guy who befriended young people in the church. He attended major events involving these younger members of the church such as sporting events, graduations, etc.  (He did this because he himself got no such support as a young man.)

The young members loved Bill for it. And that illustrates the point: warm is the new cool.

This should prove a welcome finding for those who fear they won’t be able to attract millennials due to worship style or older members. (In fact, according to Barna, worship styles greatly varied among churches actually reaching millennials).

 So, if you have been discouraged, take hope! God has given us a fantastic evangelism tool in the utter simplicity of loving people. Leverage human connection to reach millennials, and for that matter, anyone!

Here’s my challenge to you this week. Think about your personal efforts or the efforts of your church to reach out to the millennial generation. In what ways could you simply dial up the warmth? Think about that and reach out to everyone, including millennials. Warm is the new cool!

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