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Millennials are showing significant preferences that avoid organized religion. Although spirituality rates remain consistent, the traditional family cycles of attending specific faiths or denominations are quickly changing.

This issue is especially apparent within the LDS church. Many millennials are leaving because they feel that their religious leaders are not offering guidance that fits with what God suggests in His word.

Many former young Mormons are primarily concerned with LGBTQIA+ issues, which doesn’t even register as a Top 10 reason to leave the church for older practitioners. There is also an element of control that impacts the way people feel about their faith.

The Internet Changed Everything for the LDS Church

Before the Internet became available to Mormons, the church could control the narrative of their faith. Information methodologies allowed leaders to shift perspectives on some of the most controversial aspects of the gospel, including polygamy. Now all of that has gone away because everyone can access data on numerous devices.

Women are also leaving the church rapidly because of this issue. Many find themselves feeling dissatisfied by the assigned roles given to them by the church. Instead of getting an opportunity to be leaders, many feel like they’re constrained to the background. Some even receive the blame for the actions of their spouses.

The sanitized version of the LDS church can no longer exist. There are no places for excuses, exclusion, or hypocrisy. When millennials see those attributes on full unrepentant display, then they feel like they have no choice but to leave.

It’s Not Just Happening to the Mormon Church

Evangelical Christians are experiencing a similar departure from the church with millennials. Both faiths used to thrive in environments where family values from a traditional standpoint were a top priority.

Now the landscapes are shifting to the younger generations, but the resistance to hold on to the way things used to be is on full display from parents and grandparents.

The divide between the old and youth in a church is a tale that’s as old as time. Instead of seeking compromise or conversation, those in leadership positions demand compliance – or at least the perception of it.
That judgmental approach is a trigger for many millennials. It causes them to seek something more harmonious with what their faith should be. For most young people, that means finding spirituality outside of the boundaries of traditional religion.

Scott Larson