My Hope America Reaches Millions
http://neuegroup.com/partners/mac/newsletter/2013/my-hope.jpg" alt="Image" width="100" height="100" hspace="3" align="left">In November, millions of people across North America reached out to their neighbors, inviting them over to watch videos from My Hope America with Billy Graham. The videos were shown via broadcast television, DVD, streaming on the web, and on Netflix on the weekend of Billy Graham’s 95th birthday. My Hope America has received many testimonials from people who made commitments to Christ following the broadcasts. The videos are available on the website and on DVD for ongoing My Hope events. A 30-minute program titled "The Cross" features a salvation message from Billy Graham, who shares how his heart has been broken for America because he feels that the country is in need of a revival.
'Boxes of Love’ Brings Meals, Gospel Message to Urban Families
http://neuegroup.com/partners/mac/newsletter/2013/cru-boxes-love.jpg" alt="Image" width="100" height="100" hspace="3" align="left">In November, more than 25,000 families in 13 cities across the U.S. received a personally delivered box including a meal for a family of six, a Bible, and literature about knowing God personally. Since 1987 the Inner City Ministry of Cru has organized "Boxes of Love," each Thanksgiving, distributing holiday meals to needy families. Inner City Ministry works with local ministries and churches to raise funds, pack boxes, and train volunteers how to share the gospel as they care for people in their own communities.
Black Friday Becomes Bless Friday When Houston Residents Care for Neighbors
http://neuegroup.com/partners/mac/newsletter/2013/bless-friday.jpg" alt="Image" width="100" height="100" hspace="3" align="left">Four churches in Huston turned Black Friday into Bless Friday by providing alternatives to the typical shopping frenzy of the day. At one site, shoppers could stop at a booth in a public plaza to assemble bags with items to bless the homeless - and take a bag to give to a homeless person. At another site, a church offered food and clothing to those in need and hosted activities for people of all ages. Other service projects took place at shelters and centers around the city. Chuck Fox, founder of the event, said, "The great thing about Bless Friday is that you don't need to participate in these planned activities. Any individual, family, or group can identify a need and begin their Christmas season with service."
Churches and Families Reach Out with Christmas DVD
http://neuegroup.com/partners/mac/newsletter/2013/jesus-film-christmas-dvd.jpg" alt="Image" width="100" height="100" hspace="3" align="left">Individuals, families, and whole churches are reaching out to the lost this Christmas with The Story of Jesus for Children, a DVD available from the Jesus Film Project. According to Flip Amon of the Jesus Film Project, larger churches have ordered as many as 5,000 and 10,000 DVDs for members to "regift" to neighbors. A church in Connecticut put one in each of their Operation Christmas Child boxes and gave one to every family involved with an inner-city ministry. A ministry to immigrants from India in Washington state will give out 200 to the immigrants they minister to. In addition, one family of cousins went in together to purchase 200 DVDs to donate to an outreach in Appalachia, where their extended family lives, in memory of their grandmother. "My grandmother who loved the Lord and prayed for all of her 10 kids to know the Lord...would be so proud to be a part of helping people get 'saved’!" reported Yvonne, one of the four cousins. The DVD contains the one-hour special in 24 languages and shares the life of Jesus through the eyes of one family and one group of children.
Christian Fellowships Grow in International Armed Forces
http://neuegroup.com/partners/mac/newsletter/2013/accts.jpg" alt="Image" width="100" height="100" hspace="3" align="left">One group is working in 150 nations building Christian leaders and military Christian fellowships worldwide. ACCTS (The Association for Christian Conferences, Teaching, and Service) trains Christian military leaders how to form local Christian fellowships and also conducts conferences, distributes literature, and fosters cross-cultural relationships with international military students. Most of the outreach is to men and women from other countries who serve in their own national armed forces. ACCTS also collaborates with other military ministries and missions organizations, in the U.S and internationally.
Prayer and Disaster Relief for the Philippines
The Lausanne Movement website offers important points for prayer for disaster relief and spiritual support in the Philippines following Super Typhoon Haiyan (called "Yolanda" locally). It also includes links for information about the current status of relief, as well as options for donating to relief efforts. In addition, Christianity Today published an insightful article "3 Ways to Help with Disaster Relief in the Philippines" which also includes links to donate through denominations and other ministries at work in the Philippines.
Lausanne Movement Convenes Global Consultation on Gospel and Media
http://neuegroup.com/partners/mac/newsletter/2013/lausanne-media-consult-group.jpg" alt="Image" width="100" height="100" hspace="3" align="left">More than 50 Christian media professionals from around the world gathered in Los Angeles in November for the Lausanne Global Consultation on the Gospel and Media. Participants came from radio, television, film, journalism, and social media backgrounds. The consultation resulted in a call to action for the global Church’s engagement in media and a plan to launch a network to collaborate on further action plans. The consultation was in response to The Cape Town Commitment’s call for renewed creative engagement with media and technology.
Host a Marriage Class in Your Community for National Marriage Week USA
February 7-14, Nationwide
http://neuegroup.com/partners/mac/newsletter/2013/nmwlogo-2011-project.jpg" alt="Image" width="100" height="100" hspace="3" align="left">National Marriage Week is a collaborative effort to strengthen marriages, reduce the divorce rate, and build a stronger marriage culture. In the week leading up to Valentine’s Day, organizations are invited to host marriage classes and counseling intensives. Testimonies online of couples who have visited the National Institute of Marriage illustrate the benefits of training. A schedule of classes and counseling seminars across the country is available online as well as information for hosting.
Seek God for the City 2013: 40 Days of Prayer
March 5 - April 13
http://neuegroup.com/partners/mac/newsletter/2013/seek-god-for-the-city.jpg" alt="Image" width="100" height="100" hspace="3" align="left">Seek God for the City is a 40-day prayer campaign leading up to Palm Sunday with a focus on seeking God’s desires and purposes for your city with relevant prayers of biblical hope. The 64-page Seek God for the City 2014 booklet produced by Waymakers is a tool to unite churches in persistent prayer for spiritual awakening throughout communities. A companion app is also available. Order now while supplies last for the Mar. 5 - Apr. 13 event. Pastors, mission leaders, and positioned prayer leaders may call (800) 264-5214 for a complimentary review copy.
New Research Seeks to Help Churches More Effectively Engage Young People
Mom’s Day of Prayer Targets Countries Worldwide
Church Grows to Reach 700 Families Weekly Because of Caring and Community Engagement
‘Duck Dynasty’ Family to Share Testimonies in ‘I Am Second’ Video
- Three Actions to Reach Your Community – Dr. Ronnie Floyd, author of Our Last Great Hope: Awakening the Great Commission, gives three actions to take in order to identify those who need Christ. Read more
- Reaching the Nations on Campus - "For God so loves the world, that He increasingly sends students from other nations to your campus," writes Leiton Chinn of MAC's Global Connections team in an article in Campus Ministry Journal. "Can you think of a more strategic way to be actively engaged in reaching all nations and all peoples than through a ministry among international students?" he asks and expounds with compelling rationale for international student ministry. Read more
- Non-Ministry Vocations Have Value in God’s Kingdom – "God has called us to engage the world through all of our work (including our vocations)," says Hugh Whelchel of the Institute for Faith, Work and Economics, who used to think differently about his lay leadership at church in contrast with his vocation. Read more
- Three Best Ways to Serve Families with a Disability – An article from Desiring God Ministries shows how the church can pay attention to small things that wear away at a family experiencing disability and reach out to them. Read more
- 12 Ways to Reach Postmoderns with the Gospel – In a world driven by emotion and experience, it is still possible to reach postmoderns. It takes a rhetoric that connects with their culture, rather than religious language, says Nicholas McDonald a Gordon-Conwell Theological seminary student. Read more
- Riot Evangelism Versus Relationship Evangelism – Many people accept Christians as long as they keep their faith private. That isn’t what the Apostles in Acts did, says Mark Driscoll. They offended many with their public testimony about Jesus, something Driscoll calls riot evangelism. Read more
These and many other events hosted by, or of interest to, MAC partners are listed in our online calendar.
View calendar now!
MAC Cityreaching Conference Call
December 19, 10:00 a.m. CDT
A Cityreaching conference call is held the third Thursday of every month. The next call is Dec. 19. To join the call, dial (712)432-0075, and enter code 9310472# when prompted. If you missed the November call, the recording of Charles Daugherty and the CityReaching team of Cedar Rapids is online.
Bimonthly CityReaching Diaspora Initiative Call
Jan. 15, 10 a.m. CDT
The next Cityreaching Diaspora Initiative will feature Jeff Sundell, founder of the 50-5-50 Network and Mike Jorgensen, VP of e3 Partners who are initiating e3 USA. Jeff also serves as the National Trainer for e3 USA. The next call will take place March 5 at 10a.m. CDT. For more info visit the Cityreaching Diaspora Initiative Facebook page or email Brian.
Call is scheduled for January 15th, 10am Central. Information concerning the call:
Join the Momentum of Loving America to Christ
Feb. 17-19, Charlotte
http://neuegroup.com/partners/mac/newsletter/2013/momentum-love2020.jpg" alt="Image" width="100" height="100" hspace="3" align="left">LOVE2020 is rapidly gaining momentum! More than three dozen Affinity Spheres have come together already to strategize how to motivate Christians in their sphere of influence toward a prayer-care-share lifestyle to fulfill this vision. At the MAC Leadership Consultation in Charlotte in February, this will be our focus. Hear from these leaders, and join the discussion in one or more of these Affinity Spheres to help chart the course toward 2020 and beyond. Your voice is needed at the table. Join us and Join the Momentum! Go to www.missionamerica.org and click on the Loving America to Christ banner on the right.
'Sharing the Outreach Workload’ Webinar from Meet the Need
January 7, 12:00 p.m. CDT
Exploring and Experiencing the Spectacular Supremacy of God's Son
January 7-8, 2014 -- Edmond, Washington
Pastors Invited to Desiring God Annual Conference
February 3-5, Minneapolis
Tools for Accelerating Evangelism
Free eBook for Advent
A free eBook download from Desiring God, Good News of Great Joy: Daily Readings for Advent, aims to put Jesus at the center of your holiday season. These short meditations for the month of December are excerpted from the ministry of John Piper and correspond to the daily readings in Desiring God's free devotional app, Solid Joys.
Study the Bible with Seekers
Opening the Door: Tools for Leading an Evangelistic Bible Study contains 21 reproducible single-page Discovery Guides, each with a Scripture passage from the gospel of Luke and eight relevant discussion questions. Each can be completed in less than an hour over lunch or coffee. It includes leader tips for preparation and how to make connections with seekers.
New Ethnic Embrace USA 40-Day Prayer Guide Available
"Ethnic Embrace USA - Blessing the Nations Among Us" is a 40-day prayer resource to ignite our hearts with the passion God has for the "nations." A new print version is now available featuring 40 of the largest diaspora people groups in the USA, along with 40 devotions that unfold the story of God's mission from Genesis to Revelation, Ethnic Embrace USA is designed to both inform and inspire the reader to bless the nations God has brought to our cities and communities. A new website, www.40-Days.us also features learning resources, interactive maps, an online Bible, and more. Use Ethnic Embrace USA with your church, prayer group, life group or Bible study.
101 Ideas for Celebrating Marriage Week in Your Community
Looking for ways you or your church can get involved in National Marriage Week USA? This guide has ideas for community outreach campaigns, family projects, individual projects, radio contests, and more.
Outcome-Based Assessment for Evangelism
Five primary outcomes characterize a strong evangelistic movement. This free assessment tool from Cru Press Green helps a ministry evaluate outcomes and identify two or three priorities on which to focus.
'Not Today" Available for Church Exhibition
The DVD of Not Today, a feature-length film highlighting the epidemic of human trafficking in India, is available for church movie events. Produced by Friends Media, it was released in theaters nationwide earlier this year. A church-based curriculum and companion book are also available.
The Ultimate Life Movie Comes to DVD
The Ultimate Life movie, a sequel to The Ultimate Gift and the story of billionaire Howard "Red" Stevens, has released on DVD. The movie, and corresponding sermon and small group study, will provide your church the opportunity to talk about what the Bible says about thankfulness, generosity, contentment, relationships, life purpose, and leaving a legacy.
Why I Joined the Mission America Coalition
"I am currently organizing an evangelical Christian group in my community to come together to pray, encourage, and support one another as we reach out to our community."
- New Member from Syracuse, New York
Editor’s Note: MAC members, we’d love to hear from you! Tell us why you are part of the Mission America Coalition or why you’d encourage others to consider involvement. Send your responses to firstname.lastname@example.org.
|http://neuegroup.com/partners/mac/newsletter/2013/metro-world-child-sunday-school.jpg" alt="Image" width="250" height="140" hspace="3" align="left">
Mobile ministry: New York City ministry workers from Metro World Child conduct Sidewalk Sunday School with children seated on tarps and parents listening in on the lesson.
FROM THE CHAIRMAN
Dear Brothers and Sisters,
You are invited to Join the Momentum! of LOVE2020 by joining us at the 2014 MAC Leadership Consultation at the Billy Graham Library in Charlotte, NC. Our sessions will begin with a reception and evening session on Monday, February 17, and will conclude with an early evening session on Wednesday, February 19.
This will be one of the most important meetings we have ever had!
LOVE2020 has moved ahead so significantly this year with 31 of our affinity spheres off to a great start. We would like you to prayerfully consider being involved in one of the spheres. This meeting will offer you a number of opportunities to explore that possibility.
The momentum is building and you can join and contribute to that momentum by participating in this strategic consultation. Please save the dates of February 17 to 19.
For more information, go to www.missionamerica.org and click on the Loving America to Christ - Join the Momentum! banner on the right. Start checking flights now, before the busyness of the holiday season, and watch for an e-mail when our registration site opens. Please join the momentum of Loving America to Christ!
I look forward to sharing with you in Charlotte!
Prayerfully wishing your family and your ministry a blessed Christmas season,
http://data.memberclicks.com/site/miac/template-paul-signature.gif" alt="Paul" border="0">
RESEARCH AND TRENDS
people are the third-largest "religious" group worldwide, behind Christians and Muslims. Roughly one in six people around the globe, 16.3%, are religious "nones." (Huffington Post 10/22/13)
Five Facts about Atheists
In 2012, 2.4% of American adults identified as atheists, up from 1.6% in 2007. 67% are men, and 38% are 18–29 (vs. 22% of all U.S. adults). 43% have a college degree vs. 29% of the general public. 14% of those who call themselves atheists also say they believe in God or a universal spirit. 26% think of themselves as spiritual people and 3% consider themselves religious. 41% say they often think about the meaning and purpose of life. 82% say they either often (52%) or sometimes (30%) feel a deep connection with nature and the earth. Among all American adults, 85% either often (58%) or sometimes (26%) feel such a connection. (Pew Research 10/23/13)
Young Adults Who Leave the Faith
A new study found only 18% of young adults raised in homes with any measure of religious influence are now unaffiliated with a specific faith. 60% of Millennials, meanwhile, categorize themselves as "keeping faith." Of those who are unaffiliated, only 11% had a strong faith as a child and lived in a home where a vibrant faith was practiced and taught. In other words, the vast majority of young adults leaving Christianity never had a strong faith to start with. The Focus on the Family study, Millennial Faith Participation and Retention, noted, "Parents who provide a home where faith is vibrantly practiced are remarkably likely to create young adults who remain serious Christians. (Baptist Press 10/28/13)
Moving away from a biblical worldview,
only one in three young American believers affirm that Jesus Christ is the only way to Heaven, according to Probe Ministries’ Steve Cable. Emerging adults (18–29s) are morally adrift. Their morals are personal and subjective; they are captive to consumerism; they have little civic and political engagement; they believe physical intimacy is not a moral issue, and they engage in intoxication or fake feelings of happiness. Various surveys show only 9% of Americans hold a biblical view, and among emerging adults, it is even lower. Stats show in 1990, 11% of 18–30 year olds said they have no religion. In 2012 that number was up to 31%. Also born-agains have decreased by 22% since 1976. (Cultural Captives: The Beliefs and Behavior of American Young Adults, Probe Books 2013)
Millennials and Church
More than half of Millennials have not attended church in the last six months. Six out of 10 Christians in their 20s have dropped out of church at some point. Only one in 10 attends church because they feel a need to be a part of a community. (Barna Frames Trend #3, 10/25/13)
The Bible as Source of Meaning
An American Bible Society study found 66% of Americans agreed the Bible contains everything a person needs to know to live a meaningful life, while 58% don’t want wisdom and advice from it, and 57% read it fewer than five times per year. 21% believe the Bible is the Word of God and read it at least four times per week, while an increasing number (10% in 2011, 17% this year), believe the Bible is just another book of teachings written by men and rarely or never read it. (Christian Post 9/6/13)
More Meaningful Life
More than three-quarters of all U.S. adults say they are looking for ways to live a meaningful life. 90% of Millennials are on the lookout for resources to help them live more meaningfully. Similarly, adults who have never married (85%) and parents with kids under 18 living at home (80%) are more likely than the norm to say the same thing. 79% of practicing Christians want to know how their faith speaks to the current issues they face. Surprisingly 56% of all U.S. adults say the same. (Barna Group 10/22/13)
Traditional Christian Virtues Essential
Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia stated in a recent address at the Lanier Theological Library in Houston, "While I would not argue that capitalism as an economic system is inherently more Christian than socialism ... it does seem to me that capitalism is more dependent on Christianity than socialism is...in order for capitalism to work, in order for it to produce a good and a stable society, the traditional Christian virtues are essential." Scalia went on to suggest that expanding government involvement in charity came at the expense of the power of Christian churches. (Huffington Post 9/9/13)
Blending Faith and Technology
70% of practicing Christian Millennials read Scripture on a screen vs. 34% of all Millennials. 54% of practicing Christian Millennials and 31% of all Millennials use online videos pertaining to faith. 56% of Christian Millennials use online search to scope out a church, temple or synagogue online vs. 34% of all Millennials. 59% of Millennial Christians search for spiritual content online vs. 30% of all Millennials. (Barna: Millennials 10/15/13)
62% of Jewish Americans say Jewishness is largely about culture or ancestry, and just 15% said it’s about religious belief. The Pew survey also found 34% of Jews say it’s OK to see Jesus as the Messiah and still call themselves Jewish. They are not saying Judaism can allow belief in Jesus. They are saying if you are born a Jew, reared as Jewish and convert to Christianity, I still consider you a Jew. (RNS 10/1/13)
77% of Catholics are proud to be Catholic but only 55% say they are practicing their faith, finds a Georgetown Univ. study. Yet, only half of Millennial Catholics share this pride. 68% say they can be good Catholics without going to weekly mass. Just 43% look to the pope and bishops when they make moral choices. (RNS 10/1/13)
There are 157 Christian-majority countries. Four out of six regions of the world have Christians in the majority (Latin America and the Caribbean, North America, Europe and sub-Saharan Africa). Christians are in the minority only in the Asia-Pacific region and the Middle East-North Africa region. (Huffington Post 10/22/13)
Nigerian Christians Killed
More Christians were killed in Northern Nigeria last year than in the rest of the world combined, according to the human rights organization Jubilee Campaign. (Christian Post 11/15/13)
Characteristics of Growing Churches
LifeWay Research president Ed Stetzer reported that in the Transformational Discipleship Assessment, we learned growing disciples share a number of common characteristics. Chief among them: "obeying God and denying self," "serving God and others" and "exercising faith." It’s important to note that churches are made up of disciples. When these disciples are growing to be more like Jesus, the churches they are a part of reflect these same characteristics. (The Exchange, a blog by Ed Stetzer 9/27/13)
The latest Barna research shows 39% of practicing Christian Millennials donate to their church or faith organization online at least once a month. 11% of all Millennials do the same. Also, 20% of Christian Millennials donate to non-profit organizations online at least monthly vs. 8% of all Millennials. (Barna: Millennials 10/15/13)
2013 ECFA State of Giving Report
reflects an overall giving increase of 4.2% compared to an increase of 1.7% for 2011 compared to 2010. Giving to ECFA members with annual revenue of $5 million and above increased 4.6% vs. 0.4% for those under $1 million and a 1.3% decrease for those under $1 million. (ECFA Church Tax, Legal & Finance Update 11/5/13)
Protestant Pastors Weigh In
on what they feel are the most important issues facing us today. Poverty 25%, Abortion 24%, Same-Gender Marriage 20%, Healthcare 19%, Environment 3%, None/Not Sure 9%. (Survey of Mainline & Evangelical Protestant pastors from 2008 to 2012 by LifeWay Research)
Classroom Needs Change for Churches
As Sunday morning adult Bible studies move to weeknight small groups, new church facilities are being built without adult classrooms. (Facts & Trends, Fall 2103)
In 2012, 36% (21.6 million) of U.S. Millennials were living in their parents’ home, finds new Pew Research. This is the highest share in at least four decades and represents a slow but steady increase over the 32% of their same-aged counterparts prior to the Recession in 2007 and the 34% doing so when it officially ended in 2009. Of these, at least a third and perhaps as many as half are college students. Millennial men are more likely than the women to be living with their parents; 40% vs. 32%. Reasons behind the trend are declining employment, rising college enrollment and declining marriage. (Pew Research 8/1/13)
Millennial faith is interactive
whether their churches are ready for it or not. It’s an ongoing conversation, and it’s all happening on their computers, tablets and smart phones. Many bring their devices to church, and 38% of Christian Millennials and 14% of all Millennials search to verify something a faith leader has said. More than four in 10 practicing Christian Millennials participate in online conversations about faith and the same number blog or post comments on blogs about spiritual matters. (Barna: Millennials 10/15/13)
More Unpaid Ministers
Most mainline churches in the U.S. pay their ministers, but 30% have a part-time pastor. Denominations are expecting to depend more and more on bivocational ministers to serve congregations without the means for a salary plus benefits for their senior pastor. (Church Leaders 9/20/13)
Shorter Attention Span
The Huffington Post reports the average attention span has dropped from 12 minutes to five minutes. (SermonCentral.com)
Adoption Facts Just 2% of all U.S. adults have adopted children while 5% of practicing Christians have done so. Yet American adoptions comprise nearly half of all adoptions worldwide. (Barna Group 11/5/13)
Marriage Boosts Economy A new Gallup survey shows married couples spend far more than any other relationship demographic in America, and it benefits the economy. Married Americans spend an average of $102 daily. $98 among domestic partnerships, $74 by divorced Americans, $67 by singles and never marrieds, and $62 by those widowed. (LifeSite News 10/29/13)
Positive Entertainment The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) has formally recognized what parents have known for years: Positive entertainment is healthier for children. The AAP is advising its 60,000 pediatric members to "challenge the entertainment industry to create positive content for children and teens and advocate for strong rules about how products are marketed to children. (CBA Retailers+Resources Weekly 11/13/13)
Serious Risks of Unrestricted Media Use
"The evidence is now clear that media can contribute substantially to many different risks and health problems and that children and teenagers learn from, and may be negatively influenced by," reports the American Academy of Pediatrics. Risks and problems associated with media consumption by children and teens are linked to violence, promiscuity, drug use, music videos and obesity. (LifeSite News 10/30/13)
Married Parents Help Graduation Rates
Children in Canada living with married opposite-gender parents are more likely to graduate from high school than peers living with cohabiting, single or same-gender parents, according to a new study in the Review of the Economics of Households. (LifeSite News 11/7/13)
PKs Aren't Prodigals
40% of U.S. pastors say their child, 15 or older, went through a period where they significantly doubted their faith. This compares to 38% of all Millennials with a Christian background In other words, pastors’ kids are pretty normal. (Barna Group 11/12/13)
Parental Education vs. Childcare
While a recent Institute of Marriage and Family Canada poll shows 76% of Canadians believe it is best for children under six to be cared for at home by a parent, a new analysis found support for parental care dips to an average of 68% for those with a university degree, and only 62% of those with a post-graduate degree choose parental care. The effect is more pronounced among women. When asked what is best for children under six-a parent or a competent caregiver-the highest percentage to say they don’t know are women with a university degree at 12%. (LifeSite News 10/8/13)
Schools in Crisis
The U.S. high school graduation rate for kids growing up in poverty is just 50%, and only one in 14 of these kids will go on to college. 81% of adults with high school-age children are sending their kids to public high schools, but just 26% said this was their first choice for their child. 46% of al U.S. adults believe America’s schools have gotten worse in the last five years. (Schools in Crises by Nicole Baker Fulgham, Zondervan 2013)
Why People Lose Jobs
LifeWay Research has identified these 10 most frequent reasons workers are let go. 1) Failure to keep current in their field, 2) Poor relational skills, 3) Moral failure, 4) Failure to carry out assignments, 5) Failure to take initiative, 6) Negative talk, 7) Laziness, 8) Attitude of entitlement, 9) Failure to demonstrate productivity, 10) Self-centered attitudes. (Church Central, 9/26/13)
U.S. Millennial Males
Often mischaracterized as affluent slackers, collectively they carry $1 trillion in student loans. Only 62% have jobs, and only half of those work full-time. They’re thrifty to the core. Median net worth among people under 35 has decreased by more than a third since 2005. Barely one in four have bachelor’s degrees, despite all that college debt (many didn’t finish). More than a third live at home with their parents (double the previous generation). Many pride themselves on being outliers-on having really nerdy, quirky interests they know everything about but don’t really have that much in common with the general population. (AdWeek 10/6/13)
By 2017 there will be 5.1 billion mobile phone users around the globe (almost 1 billion more than the 4.3 billion people now). (Statistica 10/4/13)
Declining U.S. Worker Skill Levels
The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development’s report on adult skills, based on 166,000 interviews in 24 economically advanced countries in 2011 and 2012 found the U.S. "weak in literacy, very poor in numeracy, but only slightly below average in problem-solving in technology-rich environments." On literacy, just 12% of U.S. adults score at the top 2 levels vs. 22% in Japan and Finland. American average scores are below those in Australia, Canada, England and Northern Ireland. 16% of Americans score at the bottom two levels, compared to 5% in Japan and Finland. With numeracy it’s even worse; 8% score at the top levels and 33% in the lowest. With problem solving in tech-rich environments, 33% of U.S. adults score at the top two levels, while 33% score at the bottom or lack such skills altogether, behind Finland, the Netherlands, Australia and Canada. Also disturbing is that younger age cohorts in the U.S. do not seem to have skills as high as those in the cohort just below age 65. (Rasmussen Reports 10/15/13)
Young People Face Challenges
Almost six million young people are neither in school nor working, finds an Opportunity Nation Coalition report. Idle young adults are missing out on a window to build skills they’ll need later in life or use the knowledge they acquired in college. Without those experiences, they are less likely to command higher salaries and more likely to be an economic drain on their communities. 49 states have seen an increase in the number of families living in poverty, and 45 have seen household median incomes fall in the last year. (AP 10/21/13)
- 56% of U.S. adults want to know how faith and spirituality apply to current issues they face.
- 72% of young U.S. adults under 30 call themselves "more spiritual than religious."
- 28% of young U.S. adults under 30 say God is "just a concept." 40% say the devil is merely a symbol.
- 79% of U.S. megachurches (2000+) are growing vs. just 20% of all U.S. Protestant churches.
- 25% of Americans have searched the Bible within the last month to help deal with pressure.
- 75% of Americans think it would be positive for American society if more Americans were religious.
- 50% of U.S. of churchgoers attend a megachurch, yet they account for only 10% of American congregations.
- 98% of megachurch attendees describe their church as vital and spiritually alive.
- 95% of megachurch attendees say their church’s mission is clear.
- 93% of megachurch attendees say their church is willing to change to meet new challenges.
- Among the growing share of religiously unaffiliated U.S. adults, the vast majority are not looking for a religion.
- 22% of American Jews now say they have no religion.
- 87% of U.S. Mormons oppose the idea of female membership in the priesthood.
- 72% of U.S. women say they have too much stress in their life.
- More than half of U.S. moms say they are overcommitted.
- Only 26% of U.S. women say they are extremely satisfied with their life.
- Just 10% of American adults believe those around them are becoming kinder and gentler.
- 77% U.S. adults think Americans are becoming ruder and less civilized.
- U.S. Millennials 25–34 have an unemployment rate of 7.8% compared with all U.S. adults at 7.3%.
- 40.28% of all U.S. workers make less than $20,000. according to the Social Security Administration, .
- 28% of Millennials have moved back in with their parents (Gen-X 11%, Boomers 5%).
- Baby Boomers are most likely to want to change their boss (9% vs. 6% of Gen-Y or 7% of Gen-X).
- Gen-Yers are most likely to be "unsatisfied" at work and are most likely to work at smaller companies.
- Children raised by married parents earn, on average, $4,000 more per year than children raised by divorced, unwed or single parents.
- 62% of U.S. adults feel that life is getting more complicated.
- A recent Pew Research Center study determined about 21.6 million Millennials still live at home.
- 43% of Americans rank "Stand up for yourself" as the number one method they use to resolve conflict.
- A record 15% or 46.2 million Americans are classified as poor.
- Almost 60% of Americans donate to relief agencies in the wake of natural disasters.
- 35% of recently married American couples met online, according to a Harris Interactive poll. 65% met offline.
- 55% of Americans 45–54 now have a profile on a social networking site.
- 8% of the U.S. population (19 million) is grappling with cancer.
- 26 million Americans have diabetes.
- 15 million Americans (6.7%) are dealing with some form of severe depression.
- 45% of U.S. adults believe America’s public schools have gotten worse in the last five years.
- 62% of U.S. women say they do not have balance between their work life and home life.
News and Trends information compiled and edited by Gary Foster, President of Gary D Foster Consulting, a firm that assists Christian ministries and product companies in solving management, marketing, donor/customer service and product development problems. Contact Gary at: 419.238.4082,GFosterCns@rmi.net or go towww.GaryDFoster.com.
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Conference Calls & Webinars
MAC - Prayer Evangelism - Intercession for the Harvest
Wednesdays at 12:00 pm CDT
(641)715-3300 / passcode 416432#
MAC Cityreaching Conference Call
Dec. 19, 10:00 a.m. CDT
(712) 432-0075 / passcode 9310472#
'Meet the Need’ Webinar
Jan. 7, 12:00 p.m. CDT
Bimonthly Cityreaching Diaspora Initiative Call
Jan. 15, 10:00 a.m. CDT
[Facebook or email Brian Considine (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Mom's Day of Prayer
Jan. 18, Worldwide
Desiring God 2014 Conference for Pastors
National Marriage Week USA
MAC 2014 Leadership Consultation
Feb.17-19, Charlotte, N.C.
Collegiate Day of Prayer
Feb. 27, Nationwide
Global 4/14 Day of Prayer
Apr. 14, Worldwide
iSpectra Global Conference
Apr. 24-26, 2014, San Francisco Bay Area
Exponential 2014 Church Planters Conference East
Apr. 28-May 1, Orlando, Fla.
National Day of Prayer
May 1, Nationwide
Internet Evangelism Day
June 1, Worldwide
Global Outreach Day
June 14, Worldwide
Exponential 2014 Church Planters Conference West
Oct. 6-9 Los Angeles