You’re not imagining it: there’s a severe shortage of young, single men in the church. Not just here in the U.S., but also around the world.
Ironic, isn’t it? As many as 11 of the 12 apostles were young, single men. And yet the young single man is practically an endangered species in the church today.
When I was writing my first book, I spoke to a Christian woman from France. “Once a woman receives Jesus here, she is unmarriagable,” the woman said. “There are almost no men in my country who are following Christ. And French men will not marry a woman whose faith in Jesus is so strong. She is a leper in their eyes.”
Christian colleges are becoming convents. I recently visited a Christian college in the Pacific Northwest, whose student body is 66% female. Camerin Courtney writes, “I often joke with a single male friend of mine that because of his gender, he’s got a buffet of dating/mate choices stretched out before him. I, on the other hand…am starving in the desert.”
Christian writers like Joshua Harris (I Kissed Dating Goodbye) have have given men permission ignore the opposite sex — and appear godlier for it. So even the guys who go to church seem afraid to date. They may feel pressure since there are so many women to choose from. One man said that going to a singles meeting feels like “walking into a room full of bees with honey smeared on your face.”
There’s even a joke about the gender imbalance. It goes like this: Men in the church are like parking spaces. All the good ones are either already taken, or they’re handicapped.”
So where are all the single Christian men? How can you meet one?
Research shows that single men are more likely to attend churches that fit the following profile:
- Large (thousands of attendees on a weekend)
- Headed by a male pastor who’s bold and outspoken
- Contemporary worship style
- Conservative theology
- Risk-taking culture
- Offers intentional male discipleship
- Worship service done in under 90 minutes (or shorter)
I’m not suggesting you switch churches over this issue. You need to grow where God has planted you. But it probably wouldn’t hurt to visit such a church – especially if your church offers nothing for singles.
A columnist for Crosswalk writes, “I have great single female friends who want godly husbands—as do I. We want to build strong Christian marriages and raise good godly children. And we simply have no idea where to find these great men, if they even exist.”
Yes, they exist, but they’re hard to find because demand is outstripping supply.