Churches, please know that we’re discouraged. We’re frustrated. At times, we face deep emotional pain.
We’re the singles within your congregations who earnestly desire to marry but can’t seem to find a marital match.
You might not be aware of the difficulties and pain we experience in persistent singleness. That’s because we don’t talk about these things openly on Sunday mornings. Expressing deep pain of persistent singleness is reserved only for the closest of confidants. And the worst moments, when tears flow, are often only witnessed by God.
Another reason you might not be aware of these things is because those who occupy positions of church leadership tend to be married. This isn’t anyone’s fault. It’s a natural effect. The passing of time increases both the likelihood that a person will enter church leadership and the likelihood that a person will marry. The natural effect is that church leaders—especially senior leaders—tend to be married.
While there’s nothing wrong with being a married church leader, there is an issue inasmuch as married church leaders might not understand the distress of persistent singleness, especially those that married young. This can result in married church leaders failing to address the needs of their single congregants—not because of neglect or malice—but because of the natural reality that insulates their awareness from the needs of single congregants.
However, there’s much attentive churches can do to serve their single congregants.
Why Christian Singles Don’t Meet
Many single Christian men and women wonder where all the good Christian bachelors and bachelorettes are. It might seem peculiar that these single groups have a hard time finding each other in spite of wanting to meet so greatly. There is, again, a natural reason.
The typical Christian adult spends most of his or her time in three places: home, work and church. Home offers no opportunity to meet a romantic partner. Work might offer opportunity, as office relationships are known to occur. But many vocations offer little or no opportunity to meet eligible Christian singles.
That leaves church. One might think church would be a place to recommend for a Christian to seek an eligible mate. However, churches, you need to understand two problems with this idea:
The first problem is that it’s easy to exhaust the pool of available singles at one’s home church. This is especially the case if one attends a small church. At one small church I attended years ago, there were no eligible bachelorettes my age at all. Another church I attended later had only one. After getting to know her through church functions, I knew we weren’t a good romantic match.
The second problem is that Sunday morning worship services are terrible places to try to meet other Christian singles.
This is because there’s precious little time for mingling. People tend to arrive minutes before the service starts. Once the service starts, everyone must turn their attention to worshipping, preventing further conversation. Once the service ends, it may again be only minutes before the congregants, including the singles, leave. This Sunday morning reality leaves only two minuscule windows of time for a bachelor or bachelorette to attempt to meet and start a conversation with someone who appears to be an eligible single.
So let’s imagine a person visits a new church in hopes of meeting eligible Christian singles. If he or she fails to connect with anyone new during those two narrow windows of time, he or she must wait an entire week to try again at a Sunday morning service. This is incredibly costly in terms of time. Moreover, every week a person spends visiting other churches in hopes of meeting singles is a week that person is absent from his or her home church.