Why did this happen to me? I was a lifelong Southern Baptist at that point, and there were no Southern Baptist congregations in Gambier, Ohio. The nearest Baptist congregation was about 7 miles away, and I didn't have a car, and it wasn't Southern Baptist, either. We had Episcopal, United Methodist, and Roman Catholic services available-- but no Baptist. (I was actually the only Southern Baptist student on campus while I was there!). So I didn't attend a congregation at all for probably the first six or seven months I was there.
It does seem to be the case, based on the Pew Forum Report on Religion among the Millenials that about 2/3 of younger adults (ages 18-29) do NOT attend worship regularly (weekly or more). That's fairly close to 70%. This same generation is far more likely to be religiously unaffiliated entirely than any previous one tested (25% versus 16% overall, and 14% ages 30-39). But as we saw in the previous blog, that high rate of non-participation is far more driven by the fact of disaffiliation by their parents, and so actual relative non-affiliation by this generation, than by people in this age group actively leaving the church. Some have left permanently to be sure. But most of those who have left did so only for period of time and later returned to some level of participation in a congregation.