What’s Up With Millennials? Ask UUs.

Written by Carey McDonald // April 10th 2014 // Future of Faith, young adults // no comments

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Looking for Answers The Pew Forum’s March 7 report on the Millennial Generation (age 18-33) was yet another poll that highlighted the rising number of young people who are nonreligious. However, Pew’s report also made an important new connection, which is that the decline of religion among Millennials is rooted in the generation’s overall detachment from institutions. As the Director of the Office of Youth and Young Adult Ministries for the Unitarian Universalist Association, and a Millennial myself, I see these generational changes play out every day.  In fact, looking at what’s going on in the United States’ 1000 Unitarian Universalist congregations is a great window into the Pew report’s conclusions about generations and institutions….

Millennial Mourning

Written by T. Resnikoff // April 3rd 2014 // Issues and Trends // no comments

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Evolving an ageless life event into the modern age The frequent focus of this blog and others on the Millennial generation rather than others might seem lopsided – after all, in terms of age and experience many argue this is when “Generation X” is in its prime and most influential. But it is also true that as an age cohort Millennials are discovering and defining themselves in the midst of major social, economic and technological change. And what they are discovering is creating the future we will all share. Learn about free Resources available from Beacon Press and the UUA for processing grief Now it turns out Millennials are redefining how to mourn, as well…

Faith Architects: Let’s Build Spiritual Homes!

Written by Annie Gonzalez // April 1st 2014 // Featured Young Adults, Future of Faith, young adults // no comments

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This blogpost was written by Julie Brock, the Project Coordinator for Faith Architects to explain the purpose and direction of this exciting new endeavor!–Ed. Shape the Future of Faith Faith Architects is a program designed to empower Unitarian Universalist young adults to use their gifts and talents to build a spiritual home within their own religion.  Maybe this sounds crazy to you.  Why would someone have to build a home in their own religion?  Isn’t it THEIR religion? After growing up in the faith and being in leadership for several years, the best answer I can give is… sort of.  I mean, the values and principles and basis of theology are all the same both as a child…

Who Knows How Many Campus Groups We Have?

Written by Annie Gonzalez // March 31st 2014 // Events and Opportunities, Guides and Tools, On Campus, young adults // no comments

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How many campus ministry groups DO we have? You hold the answer! Are campus groups growing? Shrinking? Doing interfaith work? Who supports them? Are they reaching new UUs? Are they helping our recently bridged youth stay connected? These are just a few of the questions I hear frequently as the Young Adult and Campus Ministry Associate of the  Unitarian Universalist Association. The truth of the matter is that I simply don’t know the answers. I do have a spreadsheet with contact information that is somewhat outdated, I have lots of anecdotes and stories and I have interactions with folks doing this work all over the country. But as for cold hard updated data?… Um… well… Well,…

Spotlight: UU young adults of Brooklyn, NY

Written by Annie Gonzalez // March 28th 2014 // Spotlight, Stories and Voices // no comments

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Welcome to the Spotlight Series!  Each month we feature a different Unitarian Universalist congregation or community that is doing effective, innovative or otherwise interesting ministry with young adults–Ed.  “A gateway to being involved in the larger congregation,” “a bridge to multigenerational community” – These are just two of the phrases used to describe the ministry of welcome provided by the Twenties and Thirties group at First Unitarian Congregational Society Brooklyn (or First UU Brooklyn). Calling themselves the “TnT group” these young adults create a low-pressure environment free of judgment for those looking to add spirituality to their life in the often secular world of New York City.     Karen Plemons, who grew up Unitarian…

A Broader Basis for Faith

Written by T. Resnikoff // March 28th 2014 // Future of Faith, UUA // one comment

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Same Beliefs – Many Practices The expanding breadth and diversity of Unitarian Universalist congregation and practice is developing a solid base for the growth of Unitarian Universalism in the future. Does it also show a way to the growth of spiritual fulfillment or faith for people living in an era when organized religion is on the wane?–Ed.   Emerging, alternative groups at UUA’s growing edge Total membership falls 1.2 percent; UUA counts 51 emerging groups, handful of experimental communities. By Donald E. Skinner | 3.24.14 It’s not a secret that the Unitarian Universalist Association is not growing. In the past decade membership numbers have fluctuated from barely perceptible growth to slight decline. But UUA leaders…

The Confused Millennial (?)

Written by T. Resnikoff // March 26th 2014 // Future of Faith // no comments

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Faithful of the Future Favor Rational Religion The Atlantic Monthly analyzed poll results of the recent PEW Research Study, “New Findings on Millennials”, then published, “Study: Millennials Deeply Confused About Their Politics, Finances, and Culture“, focusing on apparent contradictory beliefs of Millennials as indicated by their survey responses as compared to those of other generations. Subheadings like, “This generation is getting totally screwed by the economy … but we’re the most optimistic generation in the country“, and, “This generation has record numbers of single parents … but it also has the most negative attitudes toward single parents”, leave the impression that Millennials are different from previous generations and more than a little confused. Much has…

Faithful to Love

Written by T. Resnikoff // February 26th 2014 // Future of Faith // no comments

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Millennial Impact Findings from the recently released Public Religion Research Institute (PRRI) survey on the change in attitude toward same-sex marriage and LGBTQ issues amongst people of faith since 2003 show that fully one-third of Millennials who left their church over the past 10 years did so because of anti-gay policies or attitudes. And while a majority of the people polled stated that judgmental positions or policies of religious groups on gay and lesbian issues is alienating to young adults, a much larger majority of Millennials (70%) agreed.   In addition to this being good news for progressive, non-dogmatic faiths such as Unitarian Universalism, a welcoming faith that has been in the forefront of the…

Renewed Urgency for Spiritual Substance

Written by T. Resnikoff // January 23rd 2014 // Future of Faith, Issues and Trends // no comments

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Faith institutions are in trouble, unless they are spiritually nurturing – and informative .  We re-post an excerpt of this article by the Barna Group, focusing on the trend they see in Faith in during the coming year.– Ed.   Three Major Faith and Culture Trends for 2014 January 21, 2014 – In the not-so distant past, institutions were trusted and valued as important parts of a functioning society—from government, corporations and schools to marriage and even organized religion. Yet trust in institutions is quickly giving way to a nation of cynics. New Barna research reports that Americans are ranking their confidence in institutions at abysmal levels. And this institutional skepticism comprises a significant backdrop for…

Vital Young Adults Vital to Congregational Growth

Written by T. Resnikoff // November 17th 2013 // Featured Young Adults, Future of Faith // no comments

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Determined Young Adults are frequently an underused, ore even unused resource to spark growth. We re-post this article from Duke University‘s Faith and Leadership blog by Michael O’Loughlin. –Ed.   Investing young adults with leadership would be a “win-win,” says a 20-something Catholic writer. It would evangelize and strengthen the faith of young leaders and increase the vitality, creativity and energy of the church. by Michael O’Loughlin       Like any committed churchgoer these days, I’ve long known that the church is graying fast. But even so, I was taken aback recently when a friend said to me, “You and my grandmother are the only people I know who still go to church.” I’m…