At the end of August, I posted about an article in The Economist looking at the increase of single adults internationally entitled “Singletons: the attraction of solitude.” There was a lot of great dialogue around that post which, if you missed it, was really enlightening about church ministry to singles.
Just yesterday, I came across another article from Leadership on this topic entitled “What Happened to Singles Ministry?” The author, a staff member of a church in San Diego, writes about the changing face of ministry to single adults in church settings.
Here are some major premises shared in the article:
- Singles don’t actually want to be part of a singles ministry.
- “Singles’ needs are best addressed in a segregated setting” is a faulty premise.
- Singles ministries that focus primarily on the needs of singles emotionally destabilize the group.
- Segregated singles ministries are more susceptible to becoming emotionally toxic
The author’s final words are these:
To start, we as church leaders need to renew our commitment to singles. We need to create ministries that grow with them, ministries that respect them as equal citizens, ministries they don’t graduate from once finding a spouse, ministries that enfold them into the entire body of believers instead of relegating them to a stigmatic group destined to fail.
What we have done at 30:40 is just one way to reach and bless singles. The key is not so much the specific model, but the desire by church leaders to be intentional about blending singles into the whole of church life rather than segregating them.
What do you think? Is the traditional singles ministry a thing of the past? How do churches truly minister to single adults today?