A Candle's Always Burning: A Welcoming Back of Young Adults to the Catholic Church

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Mullen, Mary Beth
Master of Arts in Pastoral Theology
The Catholic Church faces a crisis in the inactivity of its young adults (late teens, twenties and thirties). There are fourteen to sixteen million inactive Catholics in America today (Inactive Catholics: Why They Leave and How You Can Help). This equals approximately one out of every four Catholics and the majority of them are young adults. Less than thirty-five percent of young adults attend Church on a regular basis (at least twice a month). Even fewer of these young adults are active in Church activities. This is a very complex problem, the depth of which is only now being understood. Therefore, statistics are not readily available and a solution has not been found. One of the few approaches proven to work is that of direct invitation back into the Church. However, the young adults often leave the Church again after only a short period because there is rarely any follow-up.