By Guest Contributor October 12, 2021

Guest Contributor: Jordan Biere, Alpha USA’s national youth director.

Gen Z doesn’t care about polish and pizazz. When it comes to faith—or life in general—they’re looking for authenticity. This couldn’t be more true for evangelism as well. While church leaders have noted this for some time, Barna’s most recent research on U.S. Gen Z, conducted in partnership with Alpha, once again highlights this trend. 

So what characteristics do Gen Z believe make an authentic evangelist?

What kind of evangelism is Gen Z looking for? 

Judgment-free listening

Non-Christian Gen Z are most likely to say that they would be interested in learning about Christianity for their life if Christians were less judgmental of things like their personal beliefs (42%) or lifestyle (37%). Time and time again, we see this generation valuing listening as an important part of evangelism. 

Mutual understanding

The majority of teens feel that the best outcome of faith conversations is gaining a better understanding of each other’s point of view (60%). Amicable understanding and care is a crucial step. 

Calm and natural conversation

Half of Gen Z say they feel calm when they talk about their faith identity with someone who doesn’t share their point of view (50%). Christians and non-Christians alike hope for peaceful, unforced exchanges. 

Words matched by action

Fifty percent of Christian teens believe that letting your actions speak as a way to explain your faith is an act of evangelism. Furthermore, 55 percent of non-Christians find “allowing a Christian’s actions to speak to explain their faith” to be appealing. Authenticity in deed is very important to this generation. 

Healthy disagreement

Exploring disagreement is often a step on the path to understanding and connection. For this generation, disagreement does not equal relational conflict. The vast majority of teens (80%) disagree that “if someone disagrees with you, it means they’re judging you.” 

Safe relationship

Most teens agree that conversations about faith perspectives are most effective when a significant relationship has already been established (82%). Trust comes first. 

About the Author

Guest Contributor

The LeaderTreks Blog is proud to share the hard-earned wisdom of student ministry leaders from many different backgrounds and professions. From time to time, we will feature guest blog posts from writers other than our regular contributors. We include these posts to provide additional perspectives and insight that we’re sure will help develop you and your ministry…  Read More