Should the Church offer ministries for the single?


#1

This is an issue I’ve been pondering lately. Dioceses have ministries for those discerning religious and priestly vocations and rightfully so: these are complicated decisions and getting help from the Church is literally a God-send. But as far as I know I don’t think there are many (or any) ministries for the single trying to find spouses.

And maybe it’s just a problem for those on CAF but it seems to be that many Catholic singles are struggling big time to find a spouse, let alone even a single coffee date (I know I am).

So as I was thinking about this issue recently I began to ask myself if dioceses should start ministries catering to both single Catholics trying to find spouses, married couples needing any type of spiritual assistance, annulled Catholics in need of support, and widowed Catholics wanting help (perhaps starting off at first as a ministry only for the single and then expanding as resources allow).

So what does everyone think: Should the Church offer ministries for the single?

[EDIT] If you choose “no”, please specify why.


#2

I voted ‘yes’. But I know it’s never going to happen.

The idea might sound all right if a Catholic single is looking for a potential spouse. But there are Catholic singles out there-like myself-who will either NEVER find a spouse or maybe are just NOT INTERESTED IN GETTING MARRIED! Again, like myself.

If a diocese thinks about an apostolate * for singles, it should be something that lets them know that they are not ‘second- or third-class’ members of the Mystical Body of Christ; that they are accepted for WHO they are, and not just WHAT they might be able to do for the Church.

It’s bad enough out in ‘the world’ when you’re by yourself instead of being ‘paired up’ or in ‘a community’ [or, as I like to call it ‘the herd mentality’]; you shouldn’t feel you’re an oddball in the Church just because you happen to remain single. And the older you get, the harder it gets! :frowning: :mad:*


#3

I don’t know what the problem is that you are seeing. At our parish they have several ministries for non-married people.

Now a match making ministry? Doesn’t sound consistent with the mission of the church.

I’ve heard lots of good things about CatholicMatch.com. But being married already, I’ve never explored it.

At our parish we have the following:
Young adults (single and married)
Family Life (engaged couple counseling, marriage encounter, 10 great dates, NFP, and many more)
Single Catholics (kinda redundant with Young Adults)
Singles over 60 (widows/widowers)
Bible Study

Then there are Newman centers, youth ministry, and many more. EACH is an opportunity to get closer to God. If you and a woman are trying to do that, I’m sure God will be pleased enough to get you two introduced.


#4

There are already abundant ministries for singles at my parish, in fact without single people I don't know how a parish could function!!

Do you mean should the Church/parish offer opportunities for singles to socialize/meet people?


#5

I just know at my parish, it’s all about the FAMILY (and everyone worships the ground they walk on). And singles are ignored. That’s why I am leaving my current suburban parish to a more urban one (with plenty of young adults). And the family oriented one is always nagging people for money, so that turned me off BIG TIME. I’m more than an ATM, just because I’m single.


#6

I would just like to see some things geared towards single/young people (20s-30s). Stuff that will get people out and socializing together at fun events. I don’t think I would want a truly singles night or singles lunch, etc. While it would be great to meet other singles, I think I would feel a little awkward attending something like that…as if there would be pressure on me to meet someone. Or if I was talking to someone they would automatically assume I have some ‘interest’ in them or vice versa.

Whether or not the church has ministries for singles or not, it still comes down to being social, getting out and meeting new people. Leverage friends, hobbies, clubs, volunteer work, etc to meet new people. Eventually someone will be the one, but until then, enjoy life and have fun. If you fret too much over being single and let it get to you, you won’t have fun, you’ll get upset and depressed and your negative attitude will be apparent to others and turn people away.


#7

I don’t know if your diocese offers the program Theology on Tap, that is geared towards young people, married and single. And there’s also the Catholic Alumni Club, that has several chapters nationwide that is geared just for single people.


#8

No one who is single wants to hear my answer, (even though I’m single) so take it with a grain of salt and a smile-(my polite of way saying don’t hate me or chuck shoes at me)

Stop complaining about being single, and go out and remedy the situation.

Take responsibility into your own hands.

Go out and find people.

I guess it’s just my sparkling wit and personality, but I just don’t see the problem of not finding dates… I know many Catholic single woman and men who are are availible and don’t have the problem…


#9

I know in my area, there just aren’t (good) Catholic men available, so I cast my net to all men. I’ve had dates, but they usually end with the guy covered in my drink. But at least I’m out there I guess. Or else it’s fodder for a future novel or TV series. :eek:

You haven’t lived until you’ve had a date where the man leaves in handcuffs. :smiley:


#10

[quote="PatriceA, post:7, topic:195764"]
I don't know if your diocese offers the program Theology on Tap, that is geared towards young people, married and single. And there's also the Catholic Alumni Club, that has several chapters nationwide that is geared just for single people.

[/quote]

Yes, but those are geared to 'younger' Catholics. I'm in my mid-50s, so I would feel very out of place in a room full of 'youngsters' ...and besides that, I don't drink beer or anything like that. I'm a teetotaller.


#11

[quote="CountrySinger, post:9, topic:195764"]
I know in my area, there just aren't (good) Catholic men available, so I cast my net to all men. I've had dates, but they usually end with the guy covered in my drink. But at least I'm out there I guess. Or else it's fodder for a future novel or TV series. :eek:

You haven't lived until you've had a date where the man leaves in handcuffs. :D

[/quote]

Ha, that last line is funny, CountrySinger! I'm sure you were being sarcastic!

:) :D :p


#12

a Filipino founded Couples for Christ

couplesforchristglobal.org/

its recognized and approved by the Vatican :thumbsup:

within it, there are ministries for Kids for Christ, Youth for Christ, and Singles for Christ


#13

[quote="barb_finnegan, post:10, topic:195764"]
Yes, but those are geared to 'younger' Catholics. I'm in my mid-50s, so I would feel very out of place in a room full of 'youngsters' ...and besides that, I don't drink beer or anything like that. I'm a teetotaller.

[/quote]

Start your own group! Ask your priest for support.


#14

Oh, come now-who needs something approved by the Vatican? What do they know? :wink:

(by the way, I’m kidding)


#15

For me I was thinking specifically a ministry for helping alleviate the issue of Catholic singles being unable to find spouses. Not specifically matchmaking in retrospect but something that is marriage’s equivalent to those diocesan offices responsible for handling priestly and religious vocations. It would include things like singles events with Catholic speakers, etc.


#16

We have a “young adults” group. My wife started it back when she was single at our parish. We got together monthly. Sometimes we’d have home mass with the younger priest at the parish. We created volleyball teams that played at the YMCA, softball, hikes, happy hours and service projects.

Now the group comes to Mass together, sits together, and does a lot of great things together. Don’t pine and whine, get up and go! Meet with your priest or the person that sponsors ministries at your parish and see if there might be a “budget” for something like this. Get an announcement at Mass, spot in the bulletin, some fliers. You could get speakers, do book reviews, find social outreach activities. Go, do the Lord’s work and meet others with similar interests! If your parish does not have or does not want to do this, go to another. It’s OK.


#17

That sounds like a great time. When I stated what I would like to see, I wasn’t alluding to the fact that I want the church to find someone for me or hold my hand through the dating/social process. I just think providing more avenues for people to meet and have fun is a good thing.

I do everything you listed and more, it just isn’t through my church. The groups of people involved in the various activities I’m a part of are of varying religions, but for the most part they all have really good values. I enjoy spending time with them. I run sports teams, day and over night trips, volunteer work, dinner parties, outings, etc.

I agree with you. I’m proactive and I’m always doing tons of different things and meeting new people. I don’t see the problem of not finding dates or getting attention from women. Eventually I know I will meet the right girl. But in the meantime I’ve met some amazing people and had some amazing experiences. I wouldn’t trade any of that.


#18

yes

now to next question

should single parishioners actually attend the many events, meetings, programs and other offerings made by the parish and diocese on their behalf?


#19

Dioceses are having enough trouble performing their core functions as it is. The diocese is responsible for ensuring that heresy is not being taught within their borders, ensuring that Masses are reverent, regulating the activity of certain religious congregations, and ensuring that the laity is well catechized.

Considering the sorry state of catechesis in most dioceses, I think the bishops have more to worry about than setting up singles ministries. Also, setting up a singles group is something that the laity could do, and the resulting group is likely to be far more interesting than something that a diocesan bureaucrat thought up.


#20

[quote="LotusCarsLtd, post:15, topic:195764"]
For me I was thinking specifically a ministry for helping alleviate the issue of Catholic singles being unable to find spouses. Not specifically matchmaking in retrospect but something that is marriage's equivalent to those diocesan offices responsible for handling priestly and religious vocations. It would include things like singles events with Catholic speakers, etc.

[/quote]

I will tell you my opinion sinced you asked. I am almost 29 and have been very very active in the young adults down here in the dicoese of Galveston-Houston. Having a single's group doesn't work because of one main problem. YOUNG ADULTS! They are one of the hardest groups to reach out too. They don't like to committ to anything (just try planning a retreat and you will see what i mean.). So the diocese only has a few events for them through out the year like Cafe Catholica (which is a great month long event where over 300 YA meet and listen to talks on mondays night. Thankfully we have a wonderful bishop Daniel Caridnal DiNardo who comes and talks and supports us.)

My suggest is that the young adults in your area have to start things. You have to get out and make a group. The diocese or your parish will help you but not if there isn't a a group of people dedicate to seeing the end result. Here in houston we had young adults who did just that. They made a group (PACCO) that is away for all the YA groups to stay in touch and do stuff together. We have a softball league, a volleyball league and the church groups due spiritual activities together and a few happy hours. ITs a way for people to meet and stay in contact with each other even though you don't get to see each other each week at church. Its not run by the dicoese but we have their blessing.

The church can only do so much. It can't mandate that all the singles in your parish get together so that you know each other. In the end you can have activities planned but you need to have bodies come.

Having a good group of likeminded catholics who you know will help you in your serach for a spouse. It did for me. I met my fiance out a few of the YA events. We saw each other a few times and got comfortable with each other. Over the years we become friends and then last year we started dating and come October i will be marrying him. The church didn't have to do anything other than ground us in our faith and guide us on our spititual journeys. In the end we both had to make a decision that we were at the point in our lives were we could persue dating and then there had to be love.

You have to take some things in to your own hands and finding a spouse is a personal thing that no one can choose for you.


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