Younger generation finds religion

At Trinity Cathedral in Phoenix the ushers have noticed a pleasant trend–more and more twentysomethings are coming to the Cathedral. Is this a sign of a more faithful generation? According to USA Today, many younger adults are turning to faith despite less religious parents:

Pamela Moss worships every Sunday at Messiah Baptist Church in Grand Rapids, Mich., where they preach the Bible straight up, sing the old hymns “and then let me get on with my day.”

But her son, George, 24, is a fervent Evangelical, witnessing to strangers and praying “in a church that looks like a gym. To me, he’s just out the gate,” his mystified mom says.

Stephen Rochester, 32, grew up “Jewish lite” in St. Louis, says his father, Marty. “So I was stunned when Stephen went religious with a capital R,” switching to his Hebrew name, Shaya, and adopting the black hat of Hasidic Jews.

Mari Beth Nolan, 22, grew up a “Christmas and Easter” Catholic. Now she plans to go to work at a missionary clinic in Ecuador, leaving her parents proud — but confused.

Small wonder parents are befuddled. Though Gallup polls dating to the ’50s say young adults are less likely to attend services or say religion is very important in their lives, clergy of all stripes say they are seeing a small wave of young adults who are more pious than their parents. And they’re getting an earful from boomer moms and dads who range from shocked to delighted.

The USA Today article profiles the stories of several young adults–Protestant, Catholic, Jew and Muslim–who have surprised their parents with their faith. Read the entire article here. Listen to their stories on NPR here.

The average age of the typical Episcopal congregation is well above the national average. What are we doing to attract what may be a new faithful generation? What should we be doing?

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