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There's a heap of thorny issues related to Christian singleness: What is the most appropriate model for dating and courtship? Is chastity realistic for adult singles? Why have congregations fallen short in successfully integrating singles into the life of the church? We can't deal with them all here. But there is one practical issue that, for our money, rises to the top: Where are all the men? Both anecdotally and statistically, the disparity in the ratio of single women to men in the church is alarming. In this excerpt from their new book, The UnGuide to Dating, authors Camerin Courtney and Todd Hertz examine this troubling trend.
Camerin: Something's broken. I don't know exactly what it is or how to fix it, which maddens me to no end. I just know that something's unmistakably Not Right.
You see, recently I was at a conference for people who run Christian magazines for women in Eastern Europe. I, ever the lover of people from other cultures, was in heaven. At every meal or coffee break or evening playtime I was able to ask one of my favorite questions: "What is life like in your corner of the world?"
Now, I swear I didn't tell any of these women I'm a singles columnist. Some of them didn't even know I'm single, that I'm a never-married 30-something with countless female friends in the same boat (or even slightly older boats).
The first such conversation at the conference, with a lovely 40-something woman from Russia, went something like this:
Me: "So what are the …