Publication Date

Spring 4-2012


School of Religion


Religion: Youth Ministries; Religion: Pastoral Ministries; Religion: Biblical Studies


Christianity, postmodern, postmodernism, emergent, church, youth, ministry


Biblical Studies | Christian Denominations and Sects | Christianity | Missions and World Christianity | New Religious Movements | Religious Thought, Theology and Philosophy of Religion


Within the past twenty years, the Church (especially in America) has experienced dwindling membership and attendance, along with a host of other problems. Many of these problems are symptomatic of a massive cultural shift toward postmodernism, leading to discontentment with the Church. In attempting to respond to these challenges, the emergent Church has arisen as a major element of American religious culture. Their methodology and doctrine is heavily influenced by postmodernism, which presents a further challenge for Christian leaders and ministers. This paper will survey the challenges facing the Church, will describe the emergent Church’s origin and response to these challenges, and will suggest a Church ministry paradigm that answers the challenges of postmodernism while preserving the integrity of the Gospel message.