Joel Osteen Cites 'Distractions' as Reason Why Millennials' Are Becoming Less Religious

Lakewood Church pastor Joel Osteen has offered that the many distractions Millennials face in life is one of the main reasons why the younger generation seems to be growing less and less religious.

Osteen said in a Fox News interview on Thursday that it was “disappointing” to read the latest State of the Bible survey from the American Bible Society which shows a decline of faith in young adults.


Pot, meet kettle.

Offer people a diluted, pantomine-pop, “life coach” version of Christianity, and then blame your audience for seeing it as the farce that it is? That’s smart. :smiley:


Which must be affecting their overall gross income-right? Shoot! Victoria must be all over him for $$$ in decline. :stuck_out_tongue:

Maybe it’s because when they pray for riches they don’t get it like Pastor Joel teaches.

Maybe the feel good power of positive thinking is missing something theologically.

No…it’s because false teachings like his prosperity" gospel" and arena and strobe lights are attracting all the kids.


For some no doubt distractions are a factor, but what underlines the loss of faith is mankind believing he can throw God and Church out the window and rely on “just being a good person, whatever that means to you.” There’s no foundation in that meme which is why people run after science and other things to try to satisfy their longing for meaning in life. Even Christians have largely bought into indifferentism, and so there’s been an inevitable decline in belief and church attendance.

These churches attract people in mass numbers. It’s great for a few years. Then they fall away, disappear, drift off and in general walk away from faith. There is no long term nutrition for the soul just a flash in the pan happy meal.

They have to constantly bring in lots of new people to maintain numbers. Eventually when the pastor and core founders age. The church disintegrates. Case in point Robert Schuller and Chrystal Cathedral in California. (At least the diocese was able to pick the property out of bankruptcy for pennies on the dollar for our cathedral!!)

Why are you attacking the messenger? I notice that RC parishes are closing up all the time and I live in the North East where there are a lot of Catholics. They aren’t closing because the churches are packed every Sunday. The close because not enoughCatholics attend Mass each week. What he says is true. Millennials are less interested in religion because of distractions. That includes the young Catholics.
BTW-His church is jam packed on Sundays in a stadium, so what you call “his watered down message” is very popular. Many priests would love to have collections for a whole year in what Pastor Osteen takes in for one weekend.

I don’t think he is telling everyone what they don’t already know- that we live in a world which is filled with distractions.

Trying to fit faith into that world has always been a major problem for many.

:thumbsup: Completely agree. There is a bigger underlying problem other than distractions.

Prosperity preachers are a distraction too, IMO. They say that if you wish enough and pray enough you will have your dreams :rolleyes: How distracting is that? I think the underlying problem is what Della wrote.

I think you hit it.

Yes, Lakewood Church has large weekly attendance. There are also a lot of people who go just to see the spectacle of it but are not regulars. Lakewood Church is one of the top tourist attractions in Houston.

On a side note, the Catholic Church is growing in the Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston. There are about 2,200 elect and candidates coming into the Church at Easter Vigil. At my parish, there were plans many years ago to split it but due to the shortage of priests, they had to build a new, bigger church.

Some Catholic parishes have been consolidated but this is mainly due to suburb flight from inner cities rather than loss of membership, at least in our area. :slight_smile:

And I used to be a member of the kind of church that preaches the easy religion that so many do these days. It only satisfies as long as everything is going well, but when real adversity hits, not so much. There’s no staying power there. People flow in and out of those stadium church services the same way they do for the games played there, and there’s not much difference between the kinds of excitement they get from either one.

Faith is meant to be practiced not just emotionally experienced. When the same young people start to marry and have families that’s when a good many of them realize that they need something more solid than feel good religion and quickie spirituality. That’s when they come back to mainline churches that preach what they need to hear not just what they want to hear.

Distractions are certainly a major reason why millenials are becoming a less religious generation. I’m in my 20s, and the mindsets I see among people in my own age range is startling to me. It seems the thirst for pleasure or entertainment is the ultimate goal in life for many. And this generation, more than any other has the most available to it that can prove to be distractions from seeking God. In my experience, most young people today don’t really reflect on life, or reflect on issues of morality and truth, these things are what are considered distractions to many millenials. These worthwhile pursuits are seen as distractions to having fun, and fun is of course the summit of life for many people today. “Have as much fun as you can, then die”, regrettably this is the unspoken motto of many millenials.

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