A Deeper look at Engaged Singles
At Table for One Ministries we are passionate about reaching singles of all ages and backgrounds. In this series of blogs we are looking at the “profile” of each type of single adult. While these are not all encompassing, they are meant to help singles and those who lead singles understand each type of single adult better or in a different light. We WELCOME feedback and additions to these profiles as we grow our ministry!
Characteristics of this Group
Engaged singles are single. Many times once a couple gets engaged, singles are quick to move on and let the married adult world deal with their needs. Statistics show most couples on their wedding day have known each other for more than three years and were engaged on average for 15 months. Eighty-eight percent of engaged couples end up married with an average attendance at their wedding of 155 people. For those who are engaged, it’s sometimes hard to find a place to fit in. Married adults are in their future, but some may live alone or separately leading up to the wedding, while other couples may live together through their engagement.
Ministry Needs in this Group
Often engaged singles feel as if they do not fit in anywhere. They are in this state of limbo until they are married. Single friends may have parted ways with them, but married adults are still waiting for it to be official to have the engaged couple participate in class events. Engaged singles need counselors available to do premarital sessions in preparation for their marriage. More importantly, a support network is needed for those who decide to break off an engagement and return back to the singles group. This event is always hard on both engaged persons, so the church needs to be ready to respond.
Communication Strategies for this Group
Engaged singles want to know where to find support. It could be support through counseling or support through social interaction. The challenge for Christian organizations is when couples are living together prior to marriage. Often the church will turn away people due to their sinful actions, but the church should not turn away couples in need of direction. Turning them away will only communicate to them that the State should fix their problem instead of the church. Communicating to this group that the Gospel will provide a foundation hopefully moves them to take action to draw closer to God.
Strategy for Reaching this Group
Each engaged couple is different, but they can decide together if moving to a newlywed class is right for them before the wedding day. Our ministry simply encourages them to not be so eager to start a new life together that they forget the people currently in their lives. Engaged singles should stay involved with their current peer groups through their engagement and after their marriage. Singles are very supportive of their engaged friends because most of them desire the same for themselves. To reach this group an organization must have a plan in place for singles to move into married adult groups. This could be a newly married class or a premarital counseling group that meets during the week. The focus is on connecting people to the church and realizing that they are single and some of them may not end up married. Singles ministry needs to be there for single adults through all their life stages, including being engaged.
What do you think?
Do you agree with this profile of single adults who have never been married? What resources or information would you add?