Leading the Boomer Generation

YouTube Preview Image

One out of every three people in America is a “Boomer”; a part of the age group currently between 49-66 years of age. This generation has been known for its excesses and indulgence, characterized in the Tom Wolfe’s popular novel, The Bonfire of the Vanities. New research in the Associated Press-LifeGoesStrong.com poll reveals that the Boomers are the most obese generation in American history. Some believe that America is now reaping the “rewards” of these excesses, perhaps financially (amidst a recession) and even spiritually.

The infamous Boomers got their name because they were the children of the “Baby Boom”, that great increase in the childbirth rate that came when the soldiers (i.e., their fathers) got back from World War 2. The Boomers did not face a world war themselves, as did their parents, but they did face tremendous social change.

The Beatles and Elvis sang the fun songs of the Boomers; Bob Dylan sang the reflective ones. Rock and roll found an eager audience in this group. In their adolescence many of them were a part of the Hippies of the 60s, “free love”, “make love not war”, and the women’s movements. The heralded a “sexual revolution” and pushed the moral boundaries to the limit. They failed, however, to receive and pass on the high-value for marriage of many of their elders. They experimented with drugs.

The hipsters tie-die t-shirts, pony-tails and bandanas, however, were soon traded for power ties and high-powered positions in the free market. Boomers faced technological, educational and financial changes, as the economy grew rapidly.

John F. Kennedy’s death was a moment and a loss imprinted on this generation, as they saw a much-loved icon of their age brutally killed in the light of day. Also, the deaths of Martin Luther King Jr. and Bobby Kennedy tore an even deeper wound into the Boomer soul and culture.

Overall, the Boomers have been a very individualistic generation. While very much concerned with issues of identity, personal growth and meaning, they were not good on long-term commitments. Many of their children would concur. The Boomers have been referred to as “The Divorce Culture.”

The greatest technological influence on this culture was, no doubt, the television. Front porch visits with neighbors and family devolved quickly to sitting around the tube and being entertained in an individual (rather than communitarian) manner.

So, how does today’s leader respond to this Boomer generation? After all, they make up a large percentage of our congregations and communities. What does it take to best serve and engage their needs? How can their characteristics be utilized to serve the purposes of God today?

Leading and honoring the Boomer Gen – a few ideas:

  • The individual-oriented assertiveness of the Boomers needs to be understood, taught and tempered into authentic community experiences. Although Boomers, for the most part, lived out their careers with a self-help mindset, remember their adolescent years were saturated with images and ideas of community (even “communes” were in vogue at that time). So, teach them the value of sharing in Biblical community and encourage them to serve and work as a team in the church and community.
  • So many of the Boomers spent their prime working years focused on simply making money and lots of it, that they are in great need of finding way to do something more “significant” and “meaningful.” Bob Buford’s book, HalfTime, continues to be a great tool to help Boomers rethink and reconsider how they will invest their post-career years. Many today are volunteering at shelters and even doing short-term Christian missions work.
  • Don’t underestimate their capacities and the contributions they can make to your church or organization. Just because Boomers are getting older doesn’t mean that they don’t have substantial insights, leadership, vision and administrative skills to bring to the table. Get to know them and help them find their niche

The Teaming Church: Ministry in the Age of Collaboration
C.S. Lewis’ “Secret Society”
Would Jesus Attend Church?
Guns or Sons? David Brooks Frames the Debate on Meet The Press
  • Pingback: Robert Crosby()

  • Pingback: Robert Crosby()

  • http://www.articuloburro.com/2011/06/false-favourites-betfair-strategy-that-gets-the-job-done Kurtis Bursley

    Undeniably believe that which you said. Your favorite justification seemed to be on the web the easiest thing to be aware of. I say to you, I certainly get annoyed while people think about worries that they plainly do not know about. You managed to hit the nail upon the top and also defined out the whole thing without having side effect , people could take a signal. Will likely be back to get more. Thanks

  • http://googles Nancy Dalrymple

    Well I guess it’s allot of talk, if there were not sinners in this world what would the preachers and teachers do? What would everyone do if we were all very intelligent and brought up perfect for each other? How would this world be run and what would we be doing for each other since we would all be perfect? What would we need or why? How would we spend our time?How would we be teaching? Thank God for misfits and the poor without them the Universe would be smaller then the world, and God would not matter to much because his knowledge would be to obsolete for the very elite to handle. If only the very intelligent would come down from their high horses and walk in a poor mans shoes just once to see what it really feels like or to lay in a plastic bag over night in an alley to feel the cold and shiver until you fall asleep and to hunger and thirst, and walk in shoes that have holes and the snow comes in and your feet are freezing. Not to have a razor to shave the next week as you scrummage around before anyone gets up and find some left over food in the garbage bins and some fresh water somewhere.The past will only teach the ones that came from it and no one else will really know what he or she went through because they were not there really, they were only the one who read the book and cried they did not feel the absolute pain of the one in throws of sacrifice or crucifiction for that matter. OH! Lord have mercy on the blind man.Chaplain Nancy Dalrymple

  • http://www.doudounemoncleru.com Doudoune moncler

    Hi, merely attempting around some info internet sites, appears a pretty beneficial platform that you are employing. I am at present making use of WordPress blogs for a couple regarding my internet web sites however wanting to change 1 of these to the podium a lot like your own as a test operate. Some thing primarily youd probably suggest more than it?

  • http://www.piuminimonclerufficiale.com Moncler Outlet

    Brand-new attempted twitterfeed on your website, i think it could be great.

  • http://www.drebeatsmonsters.com dre monster beats

    Hi Today on the net together with enjoyed reading it greatly. I have bookmarked your site and you is going to be back once more.

  • http://staffingandrecruiting.com Shannon

    hello from Utah ;)

  • http://peternorth.org Peter North

    cool topic, very relevant now!

  • http://www.doudounemoncleru.com moncler femme

    My buddy 1st observed your blog post on the search engines and he or she referenced your blog post in my experience.

  • http://www.ravens-fans.com/ Womens Ravens Jerseys

    The majority anything you mention is actually astonishingly precise and it also makes me wonder the reasons I hadnt viewed this through this light before. This piece really did switch the lighting on personally as far as the following subject theme goes. Growing to be a one position Objective, i’m not necessarily too comfy with whilst I strive to reconcile utilizing the chief thought of the situation, allow me see what the rest of one’s readers need to say.Adequately done.

  • http://eminem.com/ Creola Swinford

    eminem is the best rap singer ever

  • http://www.add-point.net/ Mirek Z.

    Why so many post here?

  • http://www.49ersfansedge.com/ Custom 49ers Jerseys

    I can see this post. I’ve been scouting around for the! Thank God I stumbled upon it on bing. You get my day! Thanks again

  • http://telewizja-radio-online.pl/ Mirek Z.

    Hello, happy to exchange a link with this site, please contact administrator, email and website in this commentary.

  • http://xn--pxabfadibpulegn5acbp7fn.blogspot.com/ Istoselidon Proothisi

    Thanks a ton for taking a few minutes to line this all out for people. This write-up ended up being quite helpful if you ask me.

  • http://brianholmes961.over-blog.com/pages/snazzy-decor-trends-with-peacock-feathers-6867156.html feather earrings trend

    Thank you an incredible put up, can read one’s others posts. thank you your notions with this, I soon became a lttle bit thump by this post. Many thanks again! You make a great moment. Portrays natures best by the excellent report here. I think if more people consideration for it like this, they’d have got a better moment in time receive the hold ofing the difficulty.

  • http://techgeek.pblogs.gr/ check this

    I think other site proprietors should take this website as an model – very clean and fantastic style and design, as well as the content. You’re an expert in this area!

  • http://noahmiller877.blogspace.fr/3583647/Snazzy-Decor-Trends-With-Peacock-Feathers/ onyx earrings

    Thanks for a tremendous submit, will study your personal others content. thank you your thoughts on this, I soon became somewhat struck by this short article. Thanks again! You commit a terrific moment. Has excellent data here. I feel if a greater number of people thought about it like this, they’d have a very better time frame have the suspend ofing the issue.

  • http://www.cheapbeatsbydresolo.net/ beats by dre cheap

    Hello there! I simply just wish to give an enormous thumbs up to the fantastic data you have gotten here on this post. I’ll likely be coming all over again to your weblog for extra quickly.

  • http://www.truereligionjeansmens.net True Religion Jeans Men Sale

    I’m really joyful to browse this. This can be the type of manual that needs being given and not the accidental misinformation that’s at the other weblogs. Value your sharing this greatest submit.

  • http://www.mndfgkzfjals.com/vzvxrte/oyjgdgs.html Paula

    I want to show some appreciation to this writer just for bailing me out of this matter. As a result of researching throughout the the web and finding views which were not pleasant, I believed my entire life was well over. Being alive without the approaches to the issues you’ve sorted out by means of your main site is a crucial case, and the kind which might have negatively damaged my career if I had not noticed your web blog. Your good knowledge and kindness in taking care of every part was tremendous. I am not sure what I would have done if I hadn’t come across such a point like this. I can also at this time look ahead to my future. Thank you very much for your reliable and sensible help. I won’t think twice to propose your blog post to anyone who requires assistance on this topic.