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How to Honor Singles in Your Church

Singles need space for grieving and celebration—and the church can offer both.

Paul says it’s better to be single than it is to be married. There’s so much that can be accomplished for the kingdom. Look at Paul and Jesus and Mother Teresa. There are things that I can do besides children’s church and the nursery that I don’t think get the credit that they should. There’s not only so many things that can be done for the kingdom but also in relationships. A friend of mine has two foster babies, and I can leave in the middle of the night and go be with her if I need to, when a mother of three cannot. I have opportunities that other people don’t have because I don’t have those responsibilities.

What do you wish people in ministry knew about single women in the church?

In singleness, the two things that we aren’t making space for in the church—and that we need to make space—are celebration and grieving. So here’s how that looks: We don’t get to have wedding showers or baby showers. Today I got a shower for putting out a book, and that’s amazing, but not everyone gets to put out a book—but their lives are still worth acknowledging and celebrating. This is especially true for people who don’t live near family and who don’t have people who are recognizing that, and I think that’s the church’s job. It’s not even just an option, it is the church’s job to come alongside single people and say, “I see you, and I recognize you, and I am choosing to celebrate your life.” This will require completely rethinking the church and the church programming and the church calendar. It’s unnatural to what we’re doing right now. It’s going to take looking at the calendar and noticing major holidays where singles might not have a place to go, like Valentine’s Day, Thanksgiving, Christmas. And that will take intentionality and it will take listening to the singles in your church and asking them what their needs and being willing to sacrifice some of these annual family events for the sake of the singles in your church—and I think we should be willing to do that.

February08, 2018 at 8:00 AM

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