Every Sunday churches open their doors for worship and Bible study, but most do not think about a special group of people who have needs that aren’t addressed by the kinds of Bible study groups that are typically offered. The often overlooked group of people who need a “single on Sunday” option are married women.
My mother was among these types of women. She was married, wanted my sister and I to be in church, but my father was not a church-going man. I can remember plenty of Sunday morning worship services in which I became acutely aware that we were one of the few families present without a father. For all practical purposes, mom was “single on Sunday.” A married adults class was awkward for her to attend, as was a singles class (technically, she wasn’t single!). She needed a third option.
As I look around the worship center of my church today, it appears that this trend has continued. Sometimes a woman is married to a man who does not attend church. At other times, a woman is “single on Sunday” simply because her husband’s job demands he work on Sunday mornings. In other cases, a woman’s spouse might serve in a church ministry (like security or the sound tech team) and that makes the woman “single on Sunday.” This unique group of women are not single, and are not in need of being placed in a singles group. Nor do they quite fit into a married couples class.
There are many positive benefits in offering a “single on Sunday” Bible study:
- Married women whose spouses do not attend church have a place to belong.
- The women can pray for their husbands regularly. This group of women has special needs and unique circumstances.
- A group for “single on Sunday” women keeps their children and teens connected to their respective groups.
- There’s probably an empty room not being used right now, so beginning a group is good stewardship of the church’s education space.
- The husbands of these women may ultimately be drawn into the life of the church (or into a relationship with Christ) through a consistent witness to them. As men watch their families belong to groups, it may pay big dividends in the long run.
To begin a single on Sunday Bible study group, consider the following:
- Take a visual survey of your worship service for a few weeks and see if you can identify this as a need.
- Talk with one or more of the women who might be candidates to belong to a single-on-Sunday group. Validate your assumptions.
- Pray about a leader for the group.
- Recruit the leader and provide her with Bible study materials. Train the person.
- Promote the new group to the congregation. Get the word out through your church’s women’s ministry, website, newsletter, and church bulletin.
- Set a launch date.
- Launch the group!