Culture is Changing

And We Are Responding | 2019 Annual Report
by Jeff Haanen

The Problem

In the last 50 years, culture has drastically changed. As culture secularizes and young people increasingly claim no religion at all, the church is searching for a way forward. Today there are nearly 30 million more people who are “religiously unaffiliated” than just 10 years ago.

Source: Pew Research Center, “In U.S. Decline of Christianity Continues at Rapid Pace,”
16 Oct 2019.

The Christian Response

The Christian response has largely revolved around the politicization of faith, the privatization of belief, or accommodation to the broader culture.

The Culture Wars: Faith is politicized in a battle for power and control between “us” and “them.

The Retreat From Culture: Faith is privatized from culture as “just my personal beliefs.”

Accommodation to Culture: Faith adopts the beliefs and practices of a secular culture.

But we believe there’s a better way. We believe our daily work is a way to love God, serve our neighbors, and demonstrate the gospel.

We’re convinced that a new way forward is needed for Christian public engagement in a pluralistic, secular culture. What would it mean for Christians to be known by our love?

Rather than choosing right or left, retreat or the culture wars, we believe vocation is the way each of us can respond to God’s voice, serve our neighbors, and re-engage culture as people rooted in Christ’s love.

Through our events, resources, and emerging leader fellowship, we are charting a new path.

Will you join us?


Editor’s note: “Culture is Changing” is a series of posts from the 2019 Annual Report. Download the full report.

Denver Institute is grateful for support from individuals, foundations, and corporations that invest in our mission to form men and women to serve God, neighbor, and society through their daily work.

Share this article

Jeff Haanen

Jeff Haanen is the Founder of Denver Institute for Faith & Work and the 5280 Fellowship. He contributes to various magazines and publications, including Christianity Today. Jeff attends Littleton Christian Church with his wife and four daughters.