Greg Arnold urges churches to reach out to Gen Xers and Millennials
In a video report, Greg Arnold, a Mississippi-based staff member of the commission, said everywhere he has gone in his 10-years of service as a Mississippi-based staff member of the commission, he receives the same question: “How can we reach younger men?”
Greg always asks, “What do you mean by younger men?”
Frequently they want to target Millennials, men 20-35 years of age.
Greg urges commission members not to forget Gen Xers, men between of 35 to 50. “These are men who are grinding at the critical point of their lives. They are going to have the most influence they will ever have.”
Get outside the church
In our efforts to reach this age group, Greg warned commission members not to fall into a trap similar to the one set by Shemaiah when he urged Nehemiah to leave his work on building a wall around Jerusalem. Shemaiah suggested Nehemiah should go into the safety of the temple where he could talk about the progress on the wall building.
Nehemiah refused and said, “Why would I stay in the temple when my work is out on the wall.”
Two phases of life
“There are two phases in a man’s life,” said Greg. “There is the trophy phase where young men are out getting, gaining, and attaining, and there is the busy phasewhen a man realizes trophies are not as important as time.”
Greg urged commission members to provide for the needs of both groups. He suggested UM Men organizations should give young men something to go get and then give him confidence by saying, “Well done.”
An app that reaches 32,000 men
Greg has launched a Live Bold, a full-featured app and mobile community designed for Christian men of all ages and stages of faith. At present he has 32,000 participants from 170 countries. The app helps men build stronger faith as they deal with feelings of guilt, isolation, anxiety, and lack of self-worth.
“We need to help men find ways to forgive themselves so they don’t feel ‘less than’,” said Greg. The app provides opportunities for study, worship, accountability, prayer, and service.
Several UM Men organizations are using an Adventure Men app which provides a four week study, one week of action, and one week of rest.