CHURCH LEADERS OF CAMPUS-BASED NEIGHBOURHOOD BAPTIST CHURCHES AND THEIR PERCEPTION OF YOUTH CULTUREAdesola Adekunle Adeyemi Nigerian Baptist Convention
Youth and Student Ministries Department.
Youth are special in their approach to almost everything. Hence, the importance of understudying young people in order to help them sail through the youthful stage without ‘hitting icebergs that will capsize their boat’ cannot be overemphasized. Knowing fully well that church leaders relate with these teeming youth on regular basis, this study investigated the perception of church leaders on youth culture, with a particular interest in campus-based neighbourhood Baptist churches. A descriptive survey research design was used; the population of the study were leaders of churches that are near higher institution campuses within Ekiti Baptist Conference. One hundred (100) leaders were sampled from nine (9) churches close to educational institutions, but seventy (70) church leaders responded to the questionnaire. The instrument used for data gathering was a validated researcher-designed questionnaire with Cronbach’s Alpha correlation co-efficient value ‘r’ of 0.804. Analysis of the data was done using descriptive analysis of percentages and the percentages were ranked. Wearing of dreadlocks ranked highest as the predominant culture in the perception of church leaders, with a mean score of 1.25. On the other hand, the use of slang ranked lowest with a mean score of 0.78. Considering the importance of youth culture to young people, this study recommends that church leaders should be more deliberate to understand youth cultures that are peculiar to their environment. Youth discipleship should also be given priority in order to shape youth properly for effective imparts among their peers.
Keywords: Church leaders, Youth, Young people, Youth culture, campus-based, neighbourhood, Baptist churches, perception .