At the same time, the tension between science and religion is playing a larger role in their worldview. Nearly half of teens, on par with Millennials, say “I need factual evidence to support my beliefs” (46 percent)—which helps to explain their uneasiness with the relationship between science and the Bible. Significantly fewer teens and young adults (28 percent and 25 percent respectively) than Gen X and Boomers (36 percent and 45 percent respectively) see the two as complementary.
Perhaps the best news from the study for church leaders contemplating how to deal with a generation that is growing more skeptical of God, faith and absolute truth is that Gen Z’s perception of the church tends to be more positive than negative. Strong majorities of churched teens say that church “is a place to find answers to live a meaningful life” (82 percent) and “is relevant to my life” (82 percent).
Those findings suggest the church still has Generation Z’s attention and might yet influence them.