Showing posts from January, 2019

The Decline of Religiosity: A Brief History

The contemporary world presents an increasingly challenging environment for mission outreach.  Many outreach-oriented Christian faiths experienced dramatic worldwide growth from the post-World War II era until the early 1990s.  Faiths engaged in proselytism generally did well. However, the growth rates of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints as well as many other religious groups have fallen substantially since that time.

From a societal perspective, the decline in religiosity represents the culmination of both old and new trends. The practices and policies of various churches and religions have also impacted receptivity, but this entry will focus only on societal (demand-side) factors.

In the ancient and medieval world, most people were religious. However, religion had different meaning and purpose for many than is the case today.

Ancient Paganism
Ancient pagans relied on mythology to explain natural phenomenon, from the daily passage of the sun ("the sun-god driving h…

Introduction to Mission Studies

Welcome to my blog on mission studies.  This blog will cover data and research regarding faith outreach.  Although The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is the primary focus, other faiths will also receive coverage, both within Christianity as well as Islam and Judaism.  Societal trends, migrations, and humanitarian topics will also be cited.  Principles of scholarship will be applied to the extent possible. This blog will strive to set forth information and analysis in a respectful tone.

The field of Mission Studies, or Missiology, is the study of both formal and informal faith-based outreach in its local, national, and international context.  Both supply-side factors (pertaining to the specific faiths or churches, including but not limited to leadership, mission policies and paradigms, missionary practices and behaviors, and the conduct and participation of church members) and demand-side factors (those of the outreach audience, including religious interest, secularism, be…