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By Josh Shepherd, The Stream, February 12, 2020

Josh M. Shepherd covers culture, faith, and public policy issues as a Contributor to The Stream. He has served on staff at Focus on the Family, The Heritage Foundation, Bound4LIFE International, and two Congressional offices. His articles have appeared in media outlets including Christianity Today ….

Josh Shepherd“There are no easy answers,” said David Kinnaman, president of The Barna Group. “Everyone in church ministry is really struggling to know how to practice faith leadership in a divided culture.”

Last week, The Barna Group released results of an extensive national survey of Protestant pastors. Fully 72 percent of pastors ranked “watered-down gospel teachings” as their greatest concern.

“It’s interesting how two of the top three issues are about the church’s own faithful witness,” said Kinnaman in a phone interview. “Then the other big concern is about the cultural shift to secularism.”

For the study, the Ventura-based research firm polled 547 Protestant senior pastors late last year. They represent a statistically significant national cross-section of ages and diverse ethnicities.

Declines in volunteering and attendance also ranked as concerns, along with congregants abandoning evangelism. One other theme is impossible to miss. Namely, the failure of churches to reach millennial and Generation Z seekers who are open to faith.  ….

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