Here's the #1 reason millennials struggle with faith. I know what you're thinking: But there's so many reasons! There's no young people in church. All of the rules scare them away. They weren't trained up properly as children. Etc, etc, etc.
But I believe I have unearthed the number 1 reason, and I can say this as a millennial myself: We are used to, and feel entitled to, know everything.
Allow me to explain. For millennials, we've lived most of our lives with the internet. Sure, some of us may have been young when it first really gained popularity, and still fewer might remember the days when you couldn't be on the internet and the phone at the same time, but for most, the internet has been our staple for as long as we can remember.
As such, anything we want to know, we can know, and quickly. What is the circumference of the Earth? Who invented cheese? How is the speed between different colors at a stoplight determined? Anything we want to know, all we have to do is turn to almighty Google, and our curiosity is quickly, almost instantly, gratified.
Before the internet, I believe society was used to ambiguity. There were lots of things that were unknowns, and that was okay. There was no shame in not knowing things or understanding things, or at least there was less, because you pretty much only knew the things that were in your realm of understanding.
Now, however, as millennials, we can't stand not knowing something. In fact, if we can't know something, then it must not be true.
Which brings us to faith.
Faith, at its core, revolves around not necessarily knowing everything. How exactly does the Eucharist physically become Christ's Body and Blood? What does the Holy Spirit look like? What was Jesus' childhood like?
These questions are, for the most part, unanswerable except through blind, childlike faith. I may never fully grasp how Transubstantiation occurs or why it does. It's something Google can never really answer for me.
And as a millennial, that's a really hard concept to grasp.
In essence, it comes down to the unknown. As a millennial, I have a fear of the unknown. Ambiguity is the stuff of nightmares. So personally, I believe that is one of the (probably many) reasons that millennials struggle with faith.
So how can you help us millennials begin to accept faith? By being as open about answers as you can be. If something doesn't need to remain hidden, then don't let it be! Write a blog post on it, record a video, or point out in the Bible or even, gasp, the internet where answers can be found.
Then, for the things that cannot be answered, acknowledge that it is hard to have faith and explain to us how you've gotten to the point in your life where you do have it.
Some things in faith do have to be simply believed and trusted in with childlike faith. But there is one very important thing that never has to be shrouded in mystery: God's love for us. That is the ultimate way to reach millennials searching for faith.