SINGLE ADULT NUMBERS ARE SOARING. WHAT DOES THAT MEAN FOR CONGREGATIONS?

By Jeff Brumley
Baptist News Global

Research shows that the number of single Americans is increasing, while marriages remain flat. Experts say churches should respond with more ministries geared to young singles. (Photo/Tammy McGary/Creative Commons)

Research shows that the number of single Americans is increasing, while marriages remain flat. Experts say churches should respond with more ministries geared to young singles. (Photo/Tammy McGary/Creative Commons)

Churches may want to take a hard look at what they’re offering young, single adults — and then boost it.

“Many churches are built around a family model,” Roxanne Stone, editor and chief of the Barna Group, said in remarks published with a survey about romance and relationships.

“They are most comfortable ministering to families and have developed an infrastructure to support couples and children,” she said. [Read more…]

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TRADITIONAL FAMILIES CONTINUE TO DWINDLE

Door wide open for churches to minister as non-traditional families increase

By Lonnie Wilkey
Editor, Baptist and Reflector

The fictional Cleaver family of the 1950s-60s television show “Leave It To Beaver” has often been considered the model for the “traditional” family – a working dad, a stay-at-home mom, and children. But research released by the Pew Research Center reveals that the Cleaver model was not really present in their era and it has continued to spiral downward ever since. — Public domain photo

The fictional Cleaver family of the 1950s-60s television show “Leave It To Beaver” has often been considered the model for the “traditional” family – a working dad, a stay-at-home mom, and children. But research released by the Pew Research Center reveals that the Cleaver model was not really present in their era and it has continued to spiral downward ever since. — Public domain photo

BRENTWOOD — Wally and Theodore “Beaver” Cleaver were blessed six decades ago and they didn’t even know it. Of course, the Cleavers were a fictional television family (“Leave It To Beaver”) first popular in the late 1950s and early 1960s but for a long time they have been a “poster family” for the traditional family unit — a mother and father in their first marriage with children. The dad worked outside the home and the mother stayed home, taking care of the house and children.

Most people assume the make-up of the Cleaver family was typical of the families of their era, but recent research published by the Pew Research Center disputes those assumptions. [Read more…]

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THREAT OF DIVORCE HARD TO SPOT AMONG CHURCHGOING COUPLES

By Lisa Cannon Green
LifeWay News

church divorce survey 3NASHVILLE – Before a divorce, churchgoers in troubled marriages look a lot like their happily married counterparts at church—participating, serving, and leading at similar rates.

After a divorce, the differences can be stark. Twenty percent have dropped out of church entirely. In many cases, their children have stopped attending too. A third give less to the church than they did before. Their churches report leadership voids and fractured relationships.

Yet pastors may have difficulty helping couples save their marriages, because churchgoers on the brink of separation often keep quiet at church about their marital woes.

Those are among the findings of new research by Nashville-based LifeWay Research. The study, sponsored by Focus on the Family, surveyed Protestant pastors, churchgoing Americans in healthy marriages, and churchgoing Americans who divorced in the past five years. [Read more…]

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