Singles ministry has been a vital part of our church for 20 years: singles classes, singles socials, singles retreats, singles small groups, singles service projects. All beneficial. But the range of needs for our never-married and newly-single adults has become broader and more urgent, which has led us to a different approach.
I was struck me three years ago while teaching a class on "Ministering to Aging Parents" when I suddenly noted that half of those attending were single! I realized that many of the hardships singles face are common to everyone.
Since then, our church has sought to offer both single-specific learning opportunities, and to eliminate some of the long-standing ministry silos, encouraging married and single adults to learn and serve together.
Three words characterize our approach with single adults. A starting point is helping the newly single stabilize, through divorce groups and grief groups, single parenting help, and practical care. Next, we help singles learn as they ...1