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Is dating in the church a good idea?

Today we have a guest blogger, Stuart McDonald, who offers the male perspective on a topic I think some of us have experienced. Stuart is a newly found Twitter friend so I hope everyone welcomes him warmly!

Sermons, Sex, and Singles

Churches are a great place to meet people. They’re ready-made social environments with events, parties, and plenty of opportunities to hang out with others. There are tons of attractive men and women in church and for the majority, they’re well grounded and know what they want. Seems like a great idea right?

I believe it depends on your approach. Are you coming to church for the sole purpose of chasing some tail, looking for a fling? Are you so obsessed with finding “the one” you can’t think about anything else? Or are you coming to church to fellowship with other believers and deepen your faith?

The goal of the church shouldn’t be to find you a spouse. It should be to grow deeper in your relationship with Christ. If someone special comes along while doing so, great, but don’t lose focus of what’s important.

Don’t be the church “playa” who tries to holler at every attractive person who steps through the door. Take time to develop friendships; you don’t date every person at the church. It doesn’t always take a date to find out if there’s relationship potential.

If you feel like there is potential, be honest about it. Make sure your expectations are spoken, realistic, and agreed upon. The worst thing you can do is make assumptions about how they are viewing the relationship; it’s a set-up for a misunderstanding and an awkward situation. If you’re not on the same page, let it go. Don’t proph-a-lie, telling people, “God told me you were my spouse.”

When you date someone in the church, understand they have different goals. Most of the time, they’re not looking for sex; they’re trying to follow God’s design of remaining abstinent until marriage. They’re looking for a partnership: an authentic, genuine attraction to someone of quality and substance. Your character & integrity are more important than your game and, dare I say, your swagger.

I think Stuart brings up  a lot of great points! Do you agree with him?

For those of you who attend church and/or religious events, are you hesitant to make dating connections? Is it something that has worked for you in the past?

What are the pros and cons, in your opinion, of dating in the church?

Happy Thursday!

455 comments Add your comment

Raqi...29 Days to ML

May 21st, 2009
8:28 am

Good Morning.

I totally agree with Stuart. The church is the new Meet Market as some have made it to be. Going to church should be for the better and strengthening of your spirituality, not to find a mate.

If you just happen to meet someone then good, because if you both are there for right reasons then chances are you are on the same page.

People have really bad views of the church but that is because they have probably gone for the wrong reason. God never promised any man or woman that he would provide them with a spouse. However he does provide a guideline of how to deal in relationships if you are to find yourself in one.

A lot of people hate the church because they feel that they have been mislead. But if you search deeper you see that you only mislead yourself through wrongful interpretation of what the bible says. Again he never promised anyone an intimate relationship outside of the one with him.

If you are not going for the right reason do yourself and everyone else a favor and stay away. Let those that have the right view in sight fellowship in peace and harmony. Love connection or not.

ImAPeach404

May 21st, 2009
8:37 am

I’d be over the moon to date someone from my Church especially since right now my pastor is concluding a 4 week series on Staying in Love which is/was chock-full of nuggets! It would be great to date someone who was basked in this greatness.

However… my Church is very… ummmm… I’m trying to be politically correct here. My Church is very “other side of the hand” if yall catch my drift??? Brothas are scarce! This may be a blessing more than a curse. Because of this, I have NO PROBLEM paying attention to the sermon :)

I would like to disagree with something the blogger said. I don’t believe for one minute that people who go to Church are looking to remain abstinent until marriage. Now, if I met someone at Church who was – I wouldn’t be surprised. However, I know this isn’t a prerequisite for entrance into Sunday service therefore I don’t believe all people inside the building hold this value. I know I don’t…

Anyhoo – Happy Thursday all

MissQC

May 21st, 2009
8:41 am

Morning Bloggers! Dating in Church can be a good thing as long as you can seperate the two….are you going to Church for the word, enjoy the singing, to have a relationship with God…or are you going to Church in hopes to get a “HOLY HOOK-UP” the two must be seperated…Hope you all have a good day….HOLLA ;)

http://www.blackthen.com

East Point's Own

May 21st, 2009
9:04 am

The same people are everywhere, I know its an overused cliche but really some of the biggest baddest thugs & drug dealers I knew went to church on Sundays. The same chicks who get busy on the first night after meeting you in the club rush to get home and showered so they can make it to church on Sunday. So that part about people in church looking for something different out of life is not always the case. Alot of folks go to church simply because that’s what they have been trained to do growing up… they can’t tell you on Monday morning what the sermon was about.

Now this does not apply to everyone in church, probably just the last 4 or 5 rows of your regular church & the balcony section of your average megachurch…LoL

AmazonRed™

May 21st, 2009
9:06 am

The goal of the church shouldn’t be to find you a spouse. It should be to grow deeper in your relationship with Christ. If someone special comes along while doing so, great, but don’t lose focus of what’s important.

That sums it all up right there. I would never join a church hoping to find a mate.

All my life, I’ve belonged to very small congregations, like less than 100 people. When I moved here, I happened to join a large church. Even still, there are only a couple of eligible men to begin with.

One guy has been a member for 10 years and several woman have their eye on him. Over a convo he stated that he’d never date a woman from our church because if things went sour, he didn’t want to change churches. So I tried to set him up with a friend of mine who went to another church.

I soon realized why he is 40 and single…no social skills at all!

East Point's Own

May 21st, 2009
9:06 am

Church should have a test at the end of the sermon to see who was paying attention,if you fail you don’t get to claim to have gone to church that day…

You have to then go to bible study during the week to get your credit back.

AmazonRed™

May 21st, 2009
9:07 am

QC You never came back and gave us an update if your bro got married. Let us know!

Raqi...29 Days to ML

May 21st, 2009
9:09 am

I can feel right now that this is going to be a Church/Church Goers bashing session.

East Point's Own

May 21st, 2009
9:09 am

Finding a date in church is not really an option for me either.. I tend to migrate to the smaller churches which tend to be full of older people and couples these days.

I wonder if megachurches will eventually cause the extinction of regular churches if all the kids keep flocking toward the megachurches??? I have seen churches I have attended go from full pews every Sunday down to filling only the first 1/3 of the pews a year or so after a popular megachurch springs up within driving distance.

East Point's Own

May 21st, 2009
9:14 am

I am not hating on the church going crowd, just a statement about what I have seen/experienced. And my experience is that there are some church goers like what the dude is talking about, but the other 33% (and yes I made up this figure)of single folks in church are just there because that’s what they think they are supposed to do. I agree with all ya’ll who say that the primary reason for going to church should be to learn & strengthen your relationship with the higher being which you believe in.

Stuart was making it seem like church folks by default were all of a certain mindset.

Professor (living for the 3 day weekend)

May 21st, 2009
9:16 am

Morning,

Wow! I find this topic interesting due to my personal experience. I DO NOT DATE PREACHERS. I know that is not the topic, but I just had to get that one out (yep there is a story behind that line). As for dating someone at Church maybe if he had T.O.’s body I would.

Seriously I am going lurk and do some work and just wait for Vow Keeper’s response (good morning Vow). I guess you can tell that I am in a silly mood so I will comeback when I get serious.

Have a great day blog family.

NY2GA, Inc.

May 21st, 2009
9:25 am

Well, most churches have a Singles Ministry. So, anytime you bring elgible men and women together whether in church or not there will be some dating going on.

I laughed when I saw the “God told me you were my spouse quote.” I remember one time our Single’s Minstry President was dating one of the guys that was in the ministry. Alot of ladies liked him. But, she worked on him and he gradually fell into her. They were in church 3-4 times a week. They could both quote scriptures like nobody else I’ve ever known. They’d preach about how you should stay pure and prepare for the maritial bed. But, when they were not in church they partied and fornicated just like some of us.

She did hit him with that “God told her that he is her husband.” She believed it wholeheartedly and some of her sisters (Sis. Washington, Sis. Thomas, etc.) reinforced it by saying that it was indeed a prophecy. He was to be her husband. They did eventually get engaged, but later broke up. Personally, I thought she was a little different. But, I will tell you, you ain’t seen a woman fight for a man until you see a Bible toting, scripture reciting, church woman do it. It is better than a Tyson fight.

LIONESS-Going to get my Hair Done

May 21st, 2009
9:27 am

Good Morning All :)

I have nothing to add to this topic BUT I do agree with this statement
by EPO–>but the other 33% (and yes I made up this figure)of single folks in church are just there because that’s what they think they are supposed to do.

Have a wonderful day all!

M'

May 21st, 2009
9:41 am

@EPO

Your 9:04 has a lot of truth in it…IMHO, I have found that many pple believe that once they associate their intentions with a GOD prefaced sanction, then all is okay to say and do…because it is the WILL OF GOD…etc, and such…and ppl will use GOD to justify anything as they so choose.

Anywhere can be a potential place to encounter someone of interest…church, the parking lot at Kroger, some social fucntion…anywhere can provide the opportunity of mutual interest encounter…but when the sole purpose of attending church is with the intention and hopes of “snagging” a good catch…the Hades has its front door open for you.

I will never forget the story of a sister here in the ATL metro…she attended this particular church because of the high ratio of eligible men…well, she finally snagged her a very desired, upstanding church deacon…a man much pursued by the women in the church…she believed that she was blessed to have been chosen as his spousemate…until he was dying from AID’s…and she found out that she too was now HIV positive…so what is the moral of that story????

Leggs

May 21st, 2009
9:41 am

Good morning everyone!

The goal of the church shouldn’t be to find you a spouse. It should be to grow deeper in your relationship with Christ. If someone special comes along while doing so, great, but don’t lose focus of what’s important.

Nothing more to say! Children, children, children…I’m about to catch a case!

Raqi...29 Days to ML

May 21st, 2009
9:44 am

There is nothing wrong with dating in the church and it can be a good idea when two individual hold in high regard a partner of like faith. However finding a date should not be your reason for attending.

I also think it is a good thing for churches to have seminars and events centered around couples, singles, kids and whomever else. Everyone no matter where you are in life needs guidance and the bible is one place you can find something for everybody.

The bible teaches couples how to treat each other and deal within the relationship. The bible teach those that are not married how to find a fulfilling life in the path they choose to walk in Christ. And the bible also instruct children on how to behave and respect those that have authority over them. So there is something in there for everybody but if you are there for the wrong reasons then yeah what EastPoint stated is true, you will miss the message.

Tazzee - all moved in (sort of)

May 21st, 2009
9:46 am

Morning All!

My longest relationship was with someone from my church (at the time). It was good when it was good, but when we broke up it was very awkward because, by then, everyone from the Pastor to the parking lot guy thought we were getting married. I agree with what the others have said, going to church for the purpose of finding a mate is a problem but if you find a mate there – cool. However, it can be awkward if it doesn’t work out – similar to dating a co-worker if both of you are active in the church. But if its a larger church, you can work around that by going to different services or something like that.

Most of the men I’ve met at church are adamant about not dating a woman that attends the same church.

Raqi...29 Days to ML

May 21st, 2009
9:49 am

And one of the biggest misconceptions is that everyone faithfully attending church has a spotless past. So don’t go looking for Mr. or Ms. Clean sitting on the church pews. If any of us were perfect we wouldn’t need to attend a church.

Tazzee - all moved in (sort of)

May 21st, 2009
9:49 am

But, I will tell you, you ain’t seen a woman fight for a man until you see a Bible toting, scripture reciting, church woman do it. It is better than a Tyson fight. :lol:

NY2GA – that is the truth!!!

Tazzee - all moved in (sort of)

May 21st, 2009
9:53 am

Raqi – a lot of folks can’t look past someone’s past and focus on who they are today. Most of the people I know that attend church regularly are the ones with the most dirt in their past. The folks I know that have semi-spotless pasts don’t attend church – fancy that.

M'

May 21st, 2009
9:55 am

@Raqi

Amen…the churches are filled with, uh…human beings…mere mortal entities…the same as everywhere else…folx is folx no matter where you find them.

Oh, and as far as ppl using the phrase “God told me that you were going to be my spouse”…that seems to be a common line in almost any spiritual community…I have heard it from many brothers…Rastas, Muslims and jsut about every other cultural based religious dude…one even went as far as to tell me that he had been told that I would have his prince child…geesh, the man was crawling up at least 70…lol…yeah right…I just think it is a sham and a shame when ppl use GOD for personal motives and gains…just cloak it in the “DIVINE” and it is all good.

AmazonRed™

May 21st, 2009
10:00 am

one even went as far as to tell me that he had been told that I would have his prince child…geesh, the man was crawling up at least 70…lol

LMAO! :lol: :lol: :lol:

Raqi...29 Days to ML

May 21st, 2009
10:04 am

Tazzee yeah it is hard for some people to accept that people inside of the church building have faults. Why I don’t know.

Church is like the hospital. You don’t see many well people hanging out at the hospital.

kimmie

May 21st, 2009
10:09 am

Morning all

Funny this is the topic today. I say that because I went to get my hair done after work yesterday. My stylist got a phone call from a buddy. The buddy was upset because his wife left him for their pastor! Soap opera drama right there!

I think dating in the church is a lot like dating folk from work. Great if it works out, awkward if it does not.

I belong to a smaller (350+) member church that I have belonged to since a child. There were a few very eligible guys that grew up with me, but only one couple that dated ended up marrying. Everyone else found someone from another church, even another city and brought them back.

I visit other churches from time to time. About a year or two out of college I visited a large church in SWATS. I was truly not looking to meet anyone, especially since I was mending a broken heart from a recent relationship. Well, you would have thought I was in a nightclub. I had so many guys come up to me, and 2 were waiting at my car. It really turned me off. A shame because otherwise I had really enjoyed the service.

I think if you belong to a less-mainstream faith, like Muslim or Jehovah’s Witness, etc, it seems like church would be a logical place to meet a potential mate because you would have better odds of meeting like-minded individuals and you would understand the expectations and customs better.

I’m not an overly religious person. I was brought up in the church and I have a strong personal relationship with God, but I don’t walk around quoting scriptures and shaking my finger in folks face that I feel are not following the Word. It has been MY experience that those types of persons are some of the most judgemental and hypocritical people if you don’t interpret the Bible and live the way THEY do! It’s their way or the highway! Not even open to other ideas. And a lot of their exclusionary behavior is not very Christ-like!

Raqi...29 Days to ML

May 21st, 2009
10:13 am

M’ yeah we are all human. But you know what is ironic, a guy can meet a woman at Publix and she reveals in conversation that she was stripper 10 years ago and the average guy will be accepting of that. It was in the past. But a guy can meet a woman in the church with the same past within the same length of time and she gets frowned on.

The same stands true for the ex dope slinger that a woman meets.

Why is okay to meet a person past in one arena but not okay in another?

I guess the same way some people feel that once a cheat always a cheat, they also feel that once a sinner always a sinner.

If that’s the case then none of us stand a chance.

East Point's Own

May 21st, 2009
10:15 am

Well I would say that attending church while having dirt in your past is perfectly normal… what kills me are the folks in church who are actively still doing (major)dirt the other 164 hours in a week. You can’t get forgiveness on Sunday so that you can get back to work serving up dirt on Monday with a clean conscious. How you gonna be in church every sunday but still unmarried and popping out kids every 2 years on schedule like clockwork??? how does that work really? Gotta make changes aside from changing your schedule to go to church.

If you are in church to recover from your past and to make positive progress forward its all good but you gotta leave the past in the past.

Tmac

May 21st, 2009
10:16 am

I noticed some folks were hattinnnn on my 5′2″ 237lb phsyic. dont hate!!! and yea, I might need stool and yea, as one joker put it it might put me where I want to be, right up on the head, but THANK YOU BUT NOT THANK YOU, I dont eat junk food.

On topic,

didnt know people go to church for hook ups…what a hell

Willie Dynamite

May 21st, 2009
10:18 am

Morning All,

Oh man where do I begin. I’ll just say that it would be very very difficult for me to even think about dating or having a relationship with a fellow church member. Unfortunately my past (Lord you did forgive me remember) will not let me have enough trust to even entertain the thought.

I have seen it work a few times and it seems genuine. I also have seen more often than not where its just downright trife.

East Point's Own

May 21st, 2009
10:19 am

When will somebody do a Religious Intervention show??? That’s gotta be next imagine stepping out of the liquor store and a camera crew jumps from behind the bushes and they throw you in the back of a church van and speed off to an undisclosed location for your religious intervention… LoL

AmazonRed™

May 21st, 2009
10:20 am

Church is like the hospital. You don’t see many well people hanging out at the hospital.

:???:

Melo

May 21st, 2009
10:22 am

Nothing wrong with hooking up in church(in fact cld be the best thing after sliced bread,making the whole gang proud) but u sure do know upfront,if the relationship sours,one of u will be skipping to attend church on the other side of town!
And pliz church goers,no wig throwing,stalking,tyre slashing and panty pulling/shenanigans if choir boy is 2 timing with another church flasher/dime piece.Thats reserved for infidels. :lol:

kimmie

May 21st, 2009
10:23 am

About 2 years ago, before I met SO, a freind set me up with a guy friend of hers. We talked on the phone quite a bit before we went out for the first time. In getting to know him over the phone, I realized he was super-relgious. I understand him turning to God because he was getting over a nasty divorce. But that judgementalness started creeping up. He is also super conservative and I am a liberal/independant. We got into a debate about abortion in cases of rape and the discussion got kinda heated. He scolded me for not attending church every Sunday. I had sort of a laidback attitude about it all and took it in stride, because nothing he said was going to shake my beliefs. Would you believe he showed up on our first & only date with a beautifully wrapped gift – a book on VIRTUOUS women in the Bible! I thanked him, we had a decent enough date and that was that. We talked on the phone a few times after that and every time he called he asked me had I read the book, like “did I do my homework?”!! Each time I said no, and finally read one chapter. He did not call anymore though. I was so happy he stopped calling! I don’t need anyone trying to shove their beliefs off on me & trying to tell me how to live my life! I’m a decent person and if you can’t deal with that, tough! And I got religion long before something tragic had to happen!

M'

May 21st, 2009
10:23 am

Why is okay to meet a person past in one arena but not okay in another?

I think that it is the perception that ppl have about what they will find in church…ppl seem to believe that all ppl in this venue have “pure” intentions and a “pristine” past…or at least the guise of one…and face, some church-going folx are the MOST judgemental when it comes to others and their associated behaviors…you know the scripture about the “beam” and the “mote”…lol…so overused because it is so true.

AmazonRed™

May 21st, 2009
10:25 am

I think if you belong to a less-mainstream faith, like Muslim or Jehovah’s Witness, etc, it seems like church would be a logical place to meet a potential mate because you would have better odds of meeting like-minded individuals and you would understand the expectations and customs better.

kimmie – It’s funny you mention that because this is so true. I recently dated a 7th Day Adventist and a Muslim. Great chemistry with each, and we could definitely see a future. The 7th Day Adventist pretty much told me straight up that he only looks for women in his Church and that it was really funny how we found each other because we weren’t looking. But I was not willing to give up my alcohol, pork and shellfish cold turkey so we had to part ways.

The Muslim guy and I have discussed the religious differences, but neither of us want to pull the plug. But neither of us are trying to convert either.

Raqi...29 Days to ML

May 21st, 2009
10:26 am

what kills me are the folks in church who are actively still doing (major)dirt the other 164 hours in a week

EastPoint that is not my or your place to judge. That person has to answer for their wrong doings to God and no one else. When I attend church I do so for me not worrying about what the person sitting next to me is doing or has done. That is none of my business neither does it hinder my purpose of being there.

I got me to worry about.

Beautiful

May 21st, 2009
10:28 am

lol @ the topic! where’s pooh bear? he ain’t gonna like this one.

@MELO & other married men on the blog
i want to apologize to you about what i posted yesterday. i wasn’t referring to happily married men. i was discussing the issue with married men dating and stating that they’re going thru a divorce. every word that comes outta a mmgtad mouth is a lie. if you would have read my posts prior to the one in question, you would have known i wasn’t talkin’ about you.

gm btw.

LIONESS-Going to get my Hair Done

May 21st, 2009
10:28 am

Raqi...29 Days to ML

May 21st, 2009
10:32 am

There are a lot of judgmental people in the church and every where else. We as people to tend to make judgments wrongfully based on what we ourselves will or will not, have or have not done. It’s in our nature. In church or out.

People judge others based one skin color, gender, morals, finances, education and often wrongfully.

Tmac

May 21st, 2009
10:34 am

I dont mean to distract the topic(well I guess I am). Meet X and Y at the same time, was attracted to Y but X came strong and got hoooked up with her. It didnt last longer than almost a year and it didnt work out. Now, would it be Ok to go back to Y? if so how do you go by it ?

Elijah

May 21st, 2009
10:34 am

On Topic: Church dating is can be good as long as you do not have preconcieve notions that a person will not sin! :wink: if you know what I mean!

@Kimmie did you finish reading the book yet? :smile:

Hello my2cents :laugh:

kimmie

May 21st, 2009
10:35 am

Amred – A good friend of mine is a Methodist preacher’s daughter and she married a Muslim. Neither converted and they are allowing the 3 children they had together to choose when they grow up. They have Christmas, but if the kids & extended family are opening presents or partaking in other Christian celebrations, he does not participate. He does give his wife & kids Christmas gifts. She does indulge in alcohol occasionally but he does not drink. She occasionally goes to the mosque with him.

Seems to have worked out. They’ve been married about 12 years now.

kimmie

May 21st, 2009
10:37 am

Elijah – NO! LOL!! Ever since I finished school, I hate “assigned reading”!!!LOL!!

Beautiful

May 21st, 2009
10:38 am

**The goal of the church shouldn’t be to find you a spouse. It should be to grow deeper in your relationship with Christ. If someone special comes along while doing so, great, but don’t lose focus of what’s important.**

^5.

lol @ Holy Hook-up!

@WISE
how come your guest never stick around and reply to our comments?

AmazonRed™

May 21st, 2009
10:39 am

kimmie – Thanks for that. It’s been weighing on me. He suggested to let the kids choose as well when they grow up. But yeah, I was thinking on how holidays and such would work.

I googled it and found nothing but “Not Without My Daughter” (movie) type stories :shock: . Nice to see one that works!

Elijah

May 21st, 2009
10:40 am

@Raqi….There are a lot of judgmental people in the church and every where else. We as people to tend to make judgments wrongfully based on what we ourselves will or will not, have or have not done. It’s in our nature. In church or out.

Tru that Raqi…. We have too many judgmental people running around making observations about others with-out looking in their own closet for correction!

Tmac get these ladies straight for making fun of your height and weight, I am sure you can pull some fine women in the ATL!

kimmie

May 21st, 2009
10:42 am

Amred – You’re welcome!:)

Beautiful

May 21st, 2009
10:42 am

**There are a lot of judgmental people**

ya think!!!

KP (http://chatkafe.blogspot.com)

May 21st, 2009
10:44 am

Good morning blog fam! I’ll hang out in lurk mode until a little bit later. Quick nugget…

Anytime you bring together a group of ‘potentially’ like-minded individuals, the opportunity to date will surface. The question of ‘Is it okay to date in church?’ can be answered with an overwhelming YES! However, don’t blame the church when ‘worldly’ dating practices are exercised and heartbreak occurs. The hospital analogy is right on point. Just because someone sits in the pew behind you, wears a nice outfit and speaks spiritually doesn’t mean they are! You still have to do your homework on the person in the same manner as you would do in any other setting. People tend to hide behind the church as a way of camouflaging their foolishness. However, you have fools outside of the church and fools inside of the church too!

AmazonRed™

May 21st, 2009
10:44 am

kimmie – I’m going to talk to my family about it, especially my Grandfather who is a retired pastor. If they say “hellz no” then that’s that. :lol:

M'

May 21st, 2009
10:45 am

@Raqi

It is human nature to have opinions about things…and that includes others…and it is not always a judgement against another person…but when a person would allow him or herself to accentuate the issues of another person whilst not addressing their own…then that is what I consider to be wrong.

I have smoe very strong opinions, views and biases about certain things and the ppl who convey these behaviors…but I am not going to focus myself on them and their issues, nor would I TREAT them with any type of negative attitude because of it…I think that one of the highest callings of our spiritual consciousness is to know to zip the lip, diss the tude and let each person be as he or she is if that individual is not stopping my program…more often than not, ppl tend to use their perception and opinions of others to expel the inner-self unto someone else.