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Future Declin:e A new Barna survey discovered that adults who attended church as a child are twice as likely to read the Bible during a typical week as are those who avoided churches when young; twice as likely to attend a church worship service in a typical week; and nearly 50% more likely to pray to God during a typical week. However, adults under 35 who were unchurched children were less likely to engage in any of these activities than were their churched-as-children adult counterparts. George Barna states that he is not surprised by the generational divergence. “We have been tracking the religious behaviors and inclination of teenagers for two decades and have seen a pronounced growth in the notion among young people that involvement in organized religious activity is optional and, in many cases, of no personal value. Millions of teenagers are involved in church-related activities each week, but their motivation is relational rather than spiritual. Once their relational networks change upon graduation from high school and college, we expect a continued decline in church attendance among the emerging generation unless churches revamp their ministries to reflect the unique cultural customs and expectations of the new breed of young people.” (Barna Research Online 11/5/01)

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