Yes, the decline of mainline Christianity is something which is difficult for many of us American Christians to accept. However, seeing our beloved congregations which have provided ministry for generations now in their final seasons as we've experienced them is something that will cause us to lament. Yet, while this will be a difficult process to experience, we shouldn't see this as the end of our church's ministry. Rather, we should see it as the beginning of a new season of our church's ministry.
By building connections with younger generations through the explorations of shared passions and learning about the specific needs of our communities, congregations will be able to use this time to define what their legacy will be while also equipping younger generations with ministerial leadership skills by mentoring them. Through this process, not only will older adults be a spiritual presence to younger adults eager to make a difference in the lives of others, but perhaps younger adults will be a spiritual presence to older adults—allowing them to see they made a difference in the lives of others, no matter what their age may be.