What’s a Parent to Do?


For their new book “Abandoned Faith,” authors Dr. Alex McFarland ( and Jason Jimenez cite a disturbing study from LifeWay Research and Fuller Youth Institute that estimated more than half of high school graduates will leave the church and become disengaged in their faith.

“This is alarming because many emerging adults are making big decisions that affect more than just their own lives—and they are making those decisions without faith in God,” they write in their new book, Abandoned Faith: Why Millennials Are Walking Away and How You Can Lead Them Home.”

Scripture makes it clear that all parents should teach and train their children in the timeless truths of the Bible (Deuteronomy 6; Psalm 78). But sometimes, parents painfully watch their kids fall away from faith anyway.

“When parents strive to model a pattern of Christianity to their millennial children, those children are far more likely to follow in their parents’ footsteps,” according to “Abandoned Faith.” “There is no one more powerful and uniquely qualified to do this than mom and dad. There is nothing more compelling and persuasive than a parent living out his or her faith with great boldness and conviction.

“However,” the authors continue, “parents must be willing to step up and step out to assume their spiritual roles in the lives of their millennial children. The family is central to the spiritual formation of any child (regardless of the age); but if parents lack the passion and drive to live it and teach it, then the world will ultimately shape our children.”

“Abandoned Faith” also reminds Christian parents that they need to be armed and ready to wage war for the hearts and souls of their adult children. And even though most parents try to raise their children in the fear of the Lord, many of them—now adults—still turn away from Christianity.

“The shift in faith on the part of the millennial generation has captured the minds of experts and produced a ton of research,” McFarland and Jimenez write. “From the psychologists to student pastors, many have sought answers to explain the decline of Christianity among millennials. What happened to them? Why are millennials leaving the church? Where did we go wrong? Will they ever come back?”

These, and many other questions, have plagued the hearts and minds of many parents, they say.

Dr. Alex McFarland, who has spoken to tens of thousands of young people over his career, can lend insight on some of the questions these parents are asking.

“Abandoned Faith” sheds new light on what Christian parents must do to reach their young adult children when it comes to matters of faith, and also offers a strong voice of hope for church leaders, employers and others who serve and love the millennial generation.

To book Dr. Alex McFarland for interviews, contact Beth Harrison at 610-584-1096, ext. 104,, or Deborah Hamilton at 215-815-7716 or 610-584-1096, ext. 102.

Alex McFarland

Alex has preached in over 2,200 churches throughout North America and numerous more internationally. He also speaks at Christian events, conferences, debates, and other venues to teach biblical truths and preach the gospel.

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