Churches all have their own set of unique problems as well as a set of problems that are common amongst a vast majority of churches. One that needs to be quickly addressed is a lack of young, single men attending church.
This is a problem that church leaders and churchgoers must work together to solve going forward. Churches are increasingly becoming a very unpopular place to meet a future wife or husband since the 1940s. The truth is, Christian Culture is dying. A culture cannot survive with great gender imbalances. Religious communities normally form semi-closed dating and marriage pools. However, new families cannot be formed when there is a barrier of severe gender imbalance. According to Lyman Stone’s study, a typical Sunday service has 71 eligible men to 100 eligible women. This is an enormous problem within the Body of Christ that isn’t getting any better or going to fix itself. New men aren’t just going to walk into churches. So how do churches fix this? Well, here are three steps to help solve the problem.
Step One: Have more Sunday sermons focused on careers, sex, and marriage. These topics are of great importance, yet are hardly covered from the pulpit. In today’s modern world, Youtubers like Mark Ballenger, Tiffany Dawn, Karolyne Roberts, and others are tremendously beneficial to young, single Christians in discussing topics like dating, sex, marriage, and singleness. I have viewed their content multiple times and found it very practical and beneficial in my own life, and the comment sections show that I am not alone. These same lessons simply have to be taught from the pulpit, not just on Youtube.
The truth is young men leave the church for a plethora of reasons, but one of the main reasons is moving away to school or going to a new place to start a career. Young people have a hard enough time in finding what to do with their lives, but men especially are judged in the sexual marketplace by their career. Young men can find some guidance in the church if they are taught on Sundays how to pick a career for themselves. Also, teach young men how to find a Christian woman that they can start a family with. Men need to learn how to balance their work lives with their home lives. Teach these lessons from the pulpit.
Step Two: Have Mother’s Day and Father’s Day celebrations be on equal footing. On Mother’s Day, pastors tend to preach sermons about the wonderful maternal examples in the Bible: Hannah, the mother of Samuel; Mary, the mother of Jesus; Jochebed, the mother of Moses. Mothers are praised and told how wonderful they are and how being a mom is one of the hardest jobs in the world. They are told how crucial they are in the upbringing and stability of a child’s life. They are given flowers, cards, brunches, and gifts. Mother’s Day can even turn into a fashion show at some churches. But Father’s Day takes a backseat. It’s actually quite forgettable. Fathers are told that they need to step up their game. Fathers are berated and left wondering if they do anything right at all. Maybe they get donuts and coffee and quite possibly a standing ovation. But the overall message to men is “Do Better,” while the message to women is “You’re Amazing”. If churches keep telling men they are not enough, churches will keep finding they don’t have enough men.
Step Three: Have events that interest men, not just events men attend. The truth is that men need other men, and men bond over activities, not conversation. Many churches get this wrong. Men’s groups may try to just have men get together and talk and open up to each other; while this is important to build men up, this does not draw men. Psychologist Leonard Sax puts it best in the second edition of his book, Why Gender Matters: “Girls friendships are about being together, spending time together, talking together, going places together. Friendships between boys, on the other hand, usually develop out of a shared interest in a game or activity”.
Men and boys aren’t just going to sit and talk like how women and girls do. Men need activities that will cause them to want to be together. Airsofting, golfing, gym outings, hikes, bike rides, fishing, or another activities that get testosterone pumping and create a pecking order is how men come together. The events where men sit down and talk do not draw new men into the fold. Men have to DO something; events with action, movement, and a goal are what interest and draw men, not sitting down and opening up to each other.
As Candace Owens shared on Twitter, no society will last long with an absence of strong men. A child turns out best when a mother and father are present. The church needs both men and women. The Body of Christ will not be as strong as it is supposed to be with this serious gender imbalance. The vast majority of young Christian ladies desire to get married, and once the men in the church are taken, the remaining women will either stay single, marry Christian men who don’t attend church, or marry non-Christian men. These three options are all deadly blows to the church. If the church seeks to stay strong, it must draw the men back in.
Solomon Green is a Contributor at Merion West and the host of the podcast "One More Thing With Solo Green". His writings and podcast mostly focus on Culture and Politics. To send in your questions, comments, podcast topic suggestions, or business inquiries, you can best reach him at: firstname.lastname@example.org.