The authors of Church Refugees, Packard and Hope, are sociologist. Also, they are devout Christians and are concerned about the Church. Social scientist agree that their research gives insight into the future of the church.
Some facts from their findings:
*By the year 2050, 106 million people worldwide will leave Christianity.
*In the United States, Christians will drop from 75% to 66% of the population
*Even now, Church attendance and involvement rates are flat or declining across America
Most interesting, their research identifies a whole new population exiting the Church. They are refugees called the “Dones”. Dones are people done with church but not with God. They are not casual Christians or occasional attendees. They did not leave on a whim or after just one bad experience. They struggled over a prolonged period of time before deciding to leave. They are not angry, but they are not interested. They are mostly white, well educated, financially stable, and likely married. These individuals are the doers and financial supporters of the Christian religion. Their loss can not be easily replaced.
Years ago, I moved on to express my faith and to live a spiritual life of my own leanings. I think of myself as a spiritual but not religious person. And, most of all, I am happy with my relationship with the Divine.