Why Men are Leaving Church
Church leaders everywhere are scrambling to understand why the men are leaving Church and not coming back.
Historically men have led the church, fed the church and filled the church. As Church attendance across the nation declines and some churches are having to shutter their doors. One trend has become true, the men that once attended are not returning, new men are not coming back. Men are leaving the Church and the Church seems surprised.
The real question every church needs to ask is why?
Men by nature seek a different level of fulfillment at church. Gone are the days of going to church because you grew up in the church. We need more than the readings on Sunday and maybe Wednesday nights. Our spiritual cup is empty and the Church no longer runneth over to refill it.
What is it that men need from the Church?
1.) Brotherhood – Men are better when they have other men to keep them honest. Iron sharpens iron was not just words in Proverbs. It is the truth and the light that men need other men to rely on. Dating back centuries as cave men, as bothers in monasteries, as soldiers, as teammates, men need other men.
2.) Spiritual – As men we are attacked by satan everyday of our lives. We are tempted as in the garden of Eden with fresh fruits. We rely on the spiritual guidance and armor to protect our hearts. Alone we are weak, but with the armor of the Word to protect and guide us we are made strong. We rely on the Church to build us up spiritually. Lately the attacks on marriage and the Church has stripped away the spiritual armor we depend upon.
3.) Leadership – We as men are natural-born leaders. We learn at a young age to take charge, make decisions and lead. Lately the Church has been under attack as leaders fall to temptation and sin. With the Church leadership in question, the men will stray. We look to others to set the examples we are to follow.
4.) Community – Some Churches still offer the comforts of community. In fact I personally witnessed it at a wedding for my cousin where his church family were as close if not closer than his own family. They opened their arms and hearts to strangers and welcomed them with the love of Christ. Meanwhile you can go into almost any church in America and never feel at home. The focus has become more on filled seats and full Offertories than healing hearts and welcoming you home. Men need to feel comfortable where they can unload the weight of the world that they carry.
5.) Action – Men like to be involved, they like a good challenge. When they walk into Church they are looking for something to do. It is difficult for a man to walk in, sit down and be quiet. Many Churches today are trying to survive rather than going out into their communities. With mission work and ministries that appeal to the masculine side, men will feel needed. When a man feels needed, then his self-image improves and he becomes involved.
Each man is different in their needs and how the Church may fulfill them. When the Church can keep the men interested in the scripture as a football game. When they become on fire for Christ as they are dedicated to their Job. Then the new Church will once again fill its pews with men.
Men need a purpose, a reason for attending bigger than themselves. They may go to Church to make their spouse happy. Unless their heart is on fire with the Holy Spirit they only occupy space. Give them direction and allow them to lead. Church leaders welcome the men back to the Church and let them thrive.
I hope some of these insights from my own experiences serve you well. If the Church can find ways to adjust to the men’s needs of today then maybe we might stop the trend where men are leaving church.
Now its your turn: Are you or do you know a man who has left the Church? What would bring you or them back? Comment below and join the conversation on why Men are Leaving Church.
About Charles Johnston
Charles is a Christian, husband and father of fur-kids who shares his walk with others in hopes to help other's along the way.