With this army of retirees, churches will have opportunities to channel volunteers to serve our communities and our world in exciting ways.
Those in their seventies and eighties, the predecessors of the baby boomers, have made our country great. Medical advancements have enabled them to extend their life expectancy by decades.
This marvelous generation has built the infrastructure of our nation. We can thank them for most of our highways, schools, governmental agencies, and our churches.
I see the ingenuity and wisdom of this generation from a unique vantage point in my church. Our oldest generation’s shoes will be impossible to fill.
The boomers coming behind our senior adults have been able to build upon the legacy given to them and are equipped to bring much to the table of our churches and communities. Many boomers are well-educated. Boomers have been running the world as we know it for the last two decades.
Many of them are the pastors, leaders, and decision-makers in our churches. As baby boomers begin to retire, possibilities for dynamic volunteer service and ministry become more attractive to them. Boomers do not want to unplug from being major contributors to the world around them.
Several of my Boomer friends have already made the leap to second careers. Why?
Many feel that they have spent their lives focused on the wrong things. Now, they want to change their focus from success to significance.
Some have sensed a calling to vocational ministry and non-profit service. Others have devoted their time to doing mission work or taking short-term trips to impoverished nations for humanitarian efforts.
I believe the potential within the boomer generation is just beginning to be revealed.
Right now, according to my denomination’s statistical reports and many other sources, churches are continuing to suffer from the economic downturn. With declining offerings, some churches are laying off staff and trimming important ministries.
This is an unfortunate economic reality. However, I do see a silver lining to the financial cutbacks being experienced in churches today.
With fewer dollars for fixed costs like personnel, churches are beginning to depend upon volunteers to accomplish their goals. Thankfully, coming down the pike is the greatest potential volunteer workforce in the history of the world.
Baby boomers want to devote their lives to accomplish something of significance. What could be more significant than doing God’s work?
The challenge for churches will be providing quality ministries which will allow boomers to utilize their education, creativity, and leadership skills. Baby boomers want to be involved in making decisions and creating new ministries.
Boomers desire to have an invested interest in making a difference. Boomers would rather partner with the church to create their own unique opportunities to serve God rather than simply receive what is handed down from the past.
When the baby boomers in our churches find outlets for their gifts we will see an abundance of ministries touching our world within the next decade.
— Chris Crain, Pastor, North Valley Church, Margaret