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Generation Ex-Christian: Why Young Adults Are Leaving the Faith. . . and How to Bring Them Back Paperback – October 1, 2010

4.6 out of 5 stars 53 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

FRONT MATTER BLURBS (see below for FRONT COVER and BACK COVER BLURBS)

“Simply the best guide on the varieties of unbelief in the postmodern era. Not only does Generation Ex-Christian compassionately diagnose the ways people flee and fight God, but Drew Dyck wisely counsels his readers on how to best communicate and model the beauty, truth, and compassion of the Gospel to each variety of unbelief. The book captivated me from beginning to end.”

—Jim Belcher, author of Deep Church

“Drew guides us through the blur of the forest's edge, and crouches down to point out the various root causes of why young people are deserting the Christian faith. By exposing our overgeneralizations, this book helps us to respond with love, truth, and grace—one person at a time.”

—James Choung, author of True Story

“Many of us have had the heart-wrenching experience of watching someone we love abandon their walk with God. In fact, young people are leaving the Christian faith at an alarming and unprecedented rate. In this insightful and important book, which I nearly finished in a single sitting, Drew Dyck delves into the reasons for this phenomenon, giving us six different categories of leavers and practical ways to re-engage them. A compelling read for anyone involved with today’s youth.”

—Felicity Dale, House2House Ministries and co-author of The Rabbit and the Elephant

"As a 20-something I struggle with watching my peers leave the church one-by-one. Generation Ex-Christian is a great tool to better understand the needs of young adults. Don't wait for another young person to leave the church. Pick up your copy today!"

—Renee Johnson, author of Faithbook of Jesus and creator of Throw Mountains.

“Every person that leaves the church has a story—it’s often complicated and interwoven with a myriad of life experiences. Dyck unwindsthese multifaceted stories and carefully explains why young adults drift from God. You will recognize many of Dyck’s portraits. They are people in your life—your neighbors, family, and friends. He reveals the emotional backdrop of why people wander from faith. This book will help you find ways to journey with people and help guide them back to the one, true story that matters most.”

—Sam Rainer, president of Rainer Research and author of Essential Church?: Reclaiming a Generation of Dropouts

"What Drew does here is take something that people of faith are often scared to think about, something that people of faith need to think about, and make us face the problem. Then he provides real insight into why young people leave and gives guidance on how to engage them."

—Josh Riebock, author of mY Generation

“Drew Dyck wants to help people who once were found, but now are lost. He paints detailed portraits of those who've left the church and the Christian faith in all their complexity. But he doesn't write as a disinterested documentarian merely cataloguing the reasons for their departures. Generation Ex-Christian is ultimately about bringing 'leavers' back to faith. He offers unlikely but welcome counsel in this age of non-judgmental 'conversations' and 'journeys.' If you're longing to rescue friends, relatives, and others who've left their Christian faith, Generation Ex-Christian is for you.”

—Candice Watters, founding editor of Boundless.org


FRONT COVER BLURB

“Simply the best guide on the varieties of unbelief in the postmodern era."
—Jim Belcher, author of Deep Church


BACK MATTER BLURBS

“Drew guides us through the blur of the forest's edge, and crouches down to point out the various root causes of why young people are deserting the Christian faith. By exposing our overgeneralizations, this book helps us to respond with love, truth, and grace—one person at a time.”

—James Choung, author of True Story

“Young people are leaving the Christian faith at an alarming and unprecedented rate. Drew Dyck delves into the reasons for this phenomenon, giving us six different categories of leavers and practical ways to re-engage them. A compelling read for anyone involved with today’s youth."

—Felicity Dale, House2House Ministries and co-author of The Rabbit and the Elephant

“Every person that leaves the church has a story—it’s often complicated and interwoven with a myriad of life experiences. You will recognize many of Dyck’s portraits. They are people in your life—your neighbors, family, and friends. This book will help you find ways to journey with them and guide them back to the one, true story that matters most.”

—Sam Rainer, president of Rainer Research and author of Essential Church?: Reclaiming a Generation of Dropouts

About the Author

DREW DYCK is the managing editor of Leadership Journal at Christianity Today International. Drew holds an M.A. in Theology from Fuller Theological Seminary. Before coming to Christianity Today he was the editor of New Man magazine. He and his wife, Grace, live in Carol Stream, Illinois and attend Jericho Road Church.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Moody Publishers; New Edition edition (October 1, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0802443559
  • ISBN-13: 978-0802443557
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.6 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (53 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #759,250 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Chris Redford on September 7, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Because I am an Evidentialist, atheist, and Secular Humanist, I only thoroughly read the chapters of Dyck's book that applied to me (Introduction, Modern Leavers, and Come Home!). This seemed appropriate because obviously I'm not Wicca, a Post-Modern thinker, or a Rebel who would deny God's existence even when given clear evidence for it. Since those positions don't apply to me, arguments against them also don't apply to me.

From what I read: Dyck, refreshingly, has the right approach. He pushes for open dialogue between Christians and non-Christians. Not preaching, but discussion. Each side presents their positions. They attempt to find common ground. And they work together to try to determine the truth.

Because of his focus on open dialogue and listening, Dyck understands Evidentialists in a way that most Christians I have encountered do not. I was particularly impressed when he pointed out that quoting Bible verses to an atheist ex-Christian is meaningless to them. They no longer believe the Bible was divinely inspired. Dyck understands very clearly that many Christians are making a mistake when they assume atheists still share their worldview of heaven, hell, and a divinely inspired Bible. They don't. And because of this, the correct approach is to address their actual worldview and probe it for weaknesses.

As an Evidentialist (and atheist), I can tell you: that is exactly what I want you to do. It is the only method by which you would ever reach someone like me. If I am wrong, the only way you will ever convince me I am wrong is by actively engaging MY beliefs. Not just repeating yours. Active dialogue is the only type of interaction that wouldn't be a considerable waste of both our time. Discussion. Finding common ground and working up from there.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I wanted to read this book in hopes that the author might have some answers for me. Like many of the people the author chose as case studies, I left the church. Unlike many, and what might be seen as a sign of hope for Christians, I actually feel sometimes like God is whispering to me to come back, and I was hoping this book would have the magic key to make me get over my concerns. Unfortunately it did not, but there were some positive points within the book. It was especially nice that the author took the time to investigate why people really leave the church, instead of just making assumptions.

I would probably categorize myself as both a Postmodern and a Recoiler. I have spent more than my fair share of time in churches, having grown up in an extreme fundamentalist brand of religion, and I was so disgusted by most of what I saw that I couldn't wait to get away from it. As I grew up, I've tried attending churches again, at times even very seriously for a prolonged period of time, and it ended in the same way.

The best part of this book is that the author seems to really get why people leave the church, at least most of the time. However, I took great exception to one section early in the book that seems to imply that people leave church because it doesn't fit within their sinful lifestyle, so they change their religious views and philosophies to allow them to continue their partying without guilt. I really don't think this is as much of a factor as the author thinks it was. It may apply to the "Rebels" but I don't believe they are a majority of the ex-Christians because most of them will eventually return.

But a big problem with the book is that it was really light on realistic solutions. I didn't find anything in the book at all that convinced me to go back.
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Format: Paperback
Some say it's an epidemic. Young people, raised in church, professing Christians are leaving the faith as young adults. I spent six years in full-time youth ministry. I can look back on the young people I encountered and see the reality of the problem. They are not statistics, they are real people. These are kids I taught, counseled, and guided. These are kids that were active in church and enthusiastic about their faith. Now, they are gone. In some cases, long gone.

This is not news. People have been sounding the alarm for years now. Youth ministers have been arguing as to what method or model will cement these kids in before they leave. Others wonder how to get them back. Some say, wait, they'll be back...but they won't.

There are many questions to be asked: Why are they leaving? How can we get them back? How do I share my faith with someone that already knows the answers? In his upcoming book, Generation Ex Christian, Drew Dyck explores these very questions. He has interviewed many of those who have left and shares practical answers for reaching them again.

Dyck outlines seven types of leavers. This is important, because not all leavers are the same. No one method will reach everyone. For example: apologetics will not impress someone who has adopted a postmodern worldview. Expecting the "Rebel" to come back makes assumptions with drastic consequences. There are nuances to each case and Dyck does a great job exploring those differences.

The careful reader will apply the knowledge Dyck shares to the situations they see all around them. They will begin to see the heart of the leaver and reasons they left. Then, the gospel can be shared at that point.
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