According to the New York Times, “there is widespread consensus among evangelical leaders that they risk losing their teenagers.”
The article unfortunately goes on to point out that this fear is, like so many aspects of Evangelical culture, largely an article of faith, built around an obscure pronouncement with no particular basis either in science or in Scripture.
Still, I have long held out hope that many of the children of Evangelicals would find their parents’ intolerant, narrow vision of Christianity intolerably narrow. The growth of Evangelical churches in recent decades will not necessarily continue indefinitely.
And please keep in mind that this post is not a paean to the shallow MTV lifestyle the article depicts these kids rejecting. I’m all for a youth culture that has more to offer than hooking up and listening to Chingy. I just hope it is something that also has room for positive approaches to sexuality and homosexuality, respect for science, openness to other cultures and less social pressure to embrace one strain of religious faith unquestioningly.
Like, maybe the government could even start funding schools of some kind that would be open to the public — you know, with art and music and humanities and science programs. It’s so crazy, it just might work!