Target of Opportunity - Research on media reveals an avenue to reach Millennials

05/2015

What do young adults believe about religion? Are they open to learning about Christianity? Can they be evangelized?

 

And what’s the best way to communicate with Millennials? Should the Church put all its eggs in the social media basket on the assumption that young adults won’t engage with more than 140 characters at a time?

 
 
Current research on religious identity and media reveal important trends that dioceses should understand as they formulate new strategies for the New Evangelization.
 
If Millennials are a target audience, the Church must adapt its communication methods to reach a generation of current and potential Catholics with relevant, informative content delivered how and where this vital cohort can find it.
 

Religious identity wanes; spiritual seeking emerges

 
Those who work in the Church are well-versed in the issues at the heart of declining religiosity. The waning rates of adherence and increasing secularization of American culture as a whole have resulted in a new generation that has little connection to organized religion, and this trend — documented most recently in Pew Research Center’s longitudinal Religious Landscape Study — confirms that “Nones” are the fastest growing sector in religious identification.
 
Overall, Christians have declined as a share of U.S. population, while other faiths and the unaffiliated are growing:
  2007 2014 Change
Christian 78.4% 70.6% -7.8%
Non-Christian Faiths 4.7% 5.9% +1.2%
Unaffiliated 16.1% 22.8% +6.7%
Don't Know/Refused 0.8% 0.6% -0.2%
*Pew Research Center’s Forum on Religion and Public Life 2014 Religious Landscape Study