American churches want to bring millennials, who have stepped away from religion in recent years, back to the pews. But in some ways, they’re trying too hard to be cool and trendy.
“Many churches have sought to lure millennials back by focusing on style points: cooler bands, hipper worship, edgier programming, impressive technology,” according to Rachel Held Evans of The Washington Post. “Yet while these aren’t inherently bad ideas and might in some cases be effective, they are not the key to drawing millennials back to God in a lasting and meaningful way. Young people don’t simply want a better show. And trying to be cool might be making things worse.”
Research from Barna Group suggests that millennials actually want traditional churches rather than trendy ones. In fact, 44 percent of millennials said they preferred traditional looking sanctuaries for their churches, more than any other style of altar. It was a similar story for which kind of altar, window and nature churches used.
Here’s a look at some of the most traditionally beautiful churches across the world, some of which may help bring millennials back to the pews:
Herb Scribner is a writer for Deseret News National. Send him an email at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter @herbscribner.