Last night I was driving home from dinner with Marti and we got on the topic of singles ministry... SHOCKER, I know. :) We were talking about how churches could do a better job reaching singles. Sometimes the focus is so much on families, but it seems like the stastics are changing. People are getting married older and more marriages are ending in divcore. With the singles community and single parent community growing and hurting, why is that more churches are not jumping in and giving singles a place to land. A place that focuses on bringing them to health, first in their relationship with God, so that they can be in healthy community. We wondered if there was anything more we could do to help.
In the course of the conversation I started remembering back to a church I went to as a child. At the end of Sunday School row there was this one room. It was in the far corner of the building. I would have to pass it to get over to the other building where my youth group met. This room was always dark and the people were not smiling. I couldn't see why anyone would want to go to that Sunday School class. I remember asking once and was told "that is where people go if they are divorced". I remember a couple of other ladies being a part of my life as a child who were in their 20s or 30s and not married, but they were always teaching a youth or children's Sunday School. They would not go to that class. They seemed to always be giving, but never got and have since left the church.
Those were my observations as a child, but I wonder how true they would still be today in so many churches. I have a feeling many places are still that same way, but I don't know for sure. I hope to continue encouraging churches to reach out to the singles community in their area.
Just fyi... I totally agree that we should teach and build healthy families in churches. I do not think it is an either/or situation... instead it is a both/and situation. Singles are a family unit... they are just a family of one. With that comes different needs and it must not be ignored or looked over.