The Non-Attending Faithful

by Alaina Kleinbeck. Faith & Leadership. Accessed November 30, 2017.
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Young people, unaffiliated with any congregation or particular religious tradition, may be living their faith in a new way: “attending to what matters” without attending church. Alaina Kleinbeck, Director of the Duke Youth Academy, describes a practice of discipleship and community quite apart from congregational life and worship, and points to the life-giving nature of such practices. Without suggesting that regular attendance in worship is unimportant, Kleinbeck sympathetically outlines some of the difficulties of attending church and offers a window on the alternatives, for those young (and not-so-young) people who may be “one Sunday brunch away from never returning.” In contrast to some other accounts of millennial “nones,” Kleinbeck’s article affirms and validates the life of faith apart from institutions, while also expressing hope for the future. This article, with many links to other sources and stories, would be an excellent resource for congregations trying to make sense of the absence of some faithful people from traditional community life in the church.