So you may be wondering why we're going to New England in the first place. Read on to find out!
At first glance, Massachusetts seems like a very Christian state, with almost 70% of the population identifying themselves as Christian. This is a case where appearances are deceiving.
New England was once the home of puritanism and Reformed Christianity in America where (despite their flaws) the Gospel was loudly proclaimed. Over the centuries, however, their influence has been all but lost and the vast majority of churches that remain have completely embraced theological liberalism. Now New England is one of the most secular regions of the country in spite of being by far the most Roman Catholic region of the country.
In Massachusetts 50% of the population is Catholic (this is 2nd only to Rhode Island, which is about 15 minutes from where we'll be living) but the vast majority are nominal, with less than 1/3rd attending Mass regularly. This means that the majority of Catholics in New England have left behind the faith they learned as a child in favor of no faith at all. And those who stay are part of some of the most theologically liberal Dioceses in the country. The bottom line is that the vast majority of churches in New England, both Protestant and Catholic, have ceased to preach and teach anything resembling the Gospel.
While the churches of New England may be in sad shape, the reality is that close to 70% of New Englanders never set foot in a church anyway. Over 35% are self-proclaimed atheists or agnostics. When you add it all up you get a pretty shocking conclusion: only 2% of New Englanders even claim to believe the Gospel. *(This, by the way, qualifies New England as an unreached people group according to many mission organizations and is only slightly higher than the percentage of Christians in North Korea.)
In addition, the NorthEast is home to many of the largest and most influential cities in the country and is a center of elite education for the whole world. It's also the wealthiest region of the country but still has pockets of staggering poverty.
In spite of all of this almost nobody seems interested in going to Minister in New England. The vast majority of graduates from various Reformed and Evangelical Seminaries in the US are hoping to minister in the SouthEast or the West and even many who are from the NorthEast are leaving for greener pastures (and mild winters). Long story short, the NorthEast desperately needs people to come and preach the Gospel and we believe God is calling us to be some of those people.
Our Goal: We're trying to move to and minister in the NorthEast with the ultimate hope of planting or revitalizing a church in one of the cities in the region.