Millennials & Mega-Churches

The Leadership Network and Hartford Seminary posted a fantastic research summary about the trend of Millennials attending Mega-churches.  For the past decade, a myth has circulated around church culture that mega-churches are on the decline and that millennials do not want to attend mega-churches.  Well, that myth has been disproven definitively with this latest research. Here is my perspective as an under 45 pastor making some church growth headway – although I clearly don’t speak for all under 45 pastors – as to why so many millennials attend mega-churches: 1) Mega-Churches Have Large Marketing and Outreach Budgets – don’t ever discount this fact. Advertising works! 2) The vast majority of millennials want to go to a place clearly vetted by other millennials. Part of it is community, part of it is peer influence, and part of it is a trust and safety factor. 3) Mega-Churches have high quality programs just for millennials. We live in a market-segmented culture. We are use to having products made just for us. Mega-churches are able to do this whereas small churches usually lack the budgets and attendance justification to designate significant resources to millennials. 4) Immersive Experiences – there is a reason why Starbucks and Apple are pervasive. They are immersive experiences. Mega-churches create immersive worship, immersive community, and immersive service projects. Smaller churches usually lack the budget, talent, and time to create such immersive experiences. 5) Process, Structure, and Being Put Together – mega-churches often have clear processes and structure. They usually communicate clearly, have good signage, great web presence, good publications and materials, good coffee and other drinks. We like good experiences with clear processes and plans. Mega-churches often provide these in clear, concise ways.

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