I am convinced the worship wars and entertainment mindset so rampant in our American Christian culture can be link to the development of youth groups 1970 forward.
In many Baptist churches, the church hired a young person and then set them loose to do pretty much whatever they wanted. Many of these youth groups became more entertainment oriented than anything else. Wednesday night fun thrived but Sunday morning attendance for education did not.
Those young Christians who have now become adults, but there desire to be entertained and live according to a consumer mindset has not. Thus, we have arguments about music styles, meeting personal “needs”, and very little loyalty to a specific local congregation.
In the church I serve we are about to try something new. We are going to replace the tradition Sunday School class with a mentorship program. We are going to train adult leaders to work with two or three young people at a time, with emphasis on life experience, Christian values, and relationship building.
We are hoping this will give young people (we will start this program with the teenage boys whose parents are members of the church) a new understanding about what the Christian life and the church are about. We are hoping this program will make our outreach and discipleship efforts to young people more effective. We will let you know how it goes.