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Lifeway Research: Most Pastors Know of Deconstruction, Fewer See It in Their Pews

Although much of the conversation surrounding deconstruction centers on experiences within evangelical churches, evangelical pastors who are familiar with the term are not likely to be familiar with it in their pews. Evangelical pastors who have heard of deconstruction are more likely than their mainline counterparts to say they haven’t had churchgoers deconstruct their faith in the past two years (72% vs. 62%). Denominationally, Baptist pastors (75%) are also more likely than those who are Presbyterian/Reformed (64%), Methodist (63%) or Restorationist Movement (55%) to say they haven’t seen deconstruction among attendees at their churches.

The deconstructionist trend is also less likely to be happening at smaller churches, at least according to their pastors who have heard of the term. Those at churches with worship service attendance of fewer than 50 are the least likely (16%) to say this has happened to one of their churchgoers in the past two years.

“In Matthew 11, Jesus tells the parable of the sower who sowed seeds to illustrate that people who hear the word about his kingdom react in different ways,” said McConnell. “Some go on to produce fruit, others abandon it immediately and others embrace it for a time before the seed is scorched or choked out. While the number who react in each way may change over time, each response to the message of Jesus’ kingdom persists today.”

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