I have grown quite accustomed to talking about the single life with other singles. Parish Leadership Day gave me a chance to view the single life through the eyes of pastors, parish council leaders, the faith formation committee, and directors of religious education. We specifically talked about how giving voice to the single life can add value to the vocations of marriage and religious life (more to come on that soon!).
In the meantime, I promised folks that I would share my favorite online articles about the single life, as it is hard to “link” them on a handout. Here it goes!
- The Busted Halo article “Celibate at 23” by Jeff Guhin was my first inspiration to start thinking more seriously about what it means to be intentionally single. I appreciate his realistic look at chastity, his description of healthy intimacy, and his suggestions for entering into authentic relationships with others. Furthermore, it led me to write my first published piece on the single life, “How I Stopped Dating and Started Living” parts of which are also featured in Party of One.
- This article from Francine Cardman, “Singleness and Spirituality” turns 30-years-old this year. But trust me, there is nothing old or outdated about the wisdom it contains. The statistics may have shifted, but the underlying spiritual questions remain the same. Cardman addresses the challenges of friendships, work, sexuality, and singles within the church – all of which are as applicable today as they were three decades ago!
- More recently, Heidi Schlumpf addresses the concerns of single parents in “Stand Alone Mom”. I’m always clear with audiences that my writing is intended for those who have never-been-married. This article gives a great summary of how churches are addressing (or in some cases, could do better at addressing) the needs of single parents who are divorced or widowed.
- The challenge of living an authentic single life is a question not only faced by Catholics. In some cases, I find that our Protestant brothers and sisters are better attuned to the needs of singles in their communities. I was grateful to stumble upon this sermon “Solid_Singles” by Rick McGinniss of North Heartland Community Church in Kansas City. The sermon itself is dated, but the message is as timely as ever.
- Likewise, this recent Valentine’s Day blog post “Reclaiming Singleness” by Corey Widmer at East End Fellowship in Richmond, VA has helped me think about how our views of marriage and single life correspond to one another. He explains how a healthy understanding of marriage contributes to an abundant single life, and how a favorable view of the single life add to the sanctity of marriage.
- Finally, here are two great articles from Franciscan Media. (Full disclosure, they are the publisher of both of my books, under the label St. Anthony Messenger Press.) “Single Catholics: Making Them Feel at Home” by Trudelle Thomas is great for anyone in a parish leadership role. I used a lot of this information for my most recent workshop. While “Unmarried and Unashamed: Grace and the Single Life” by Christopher Heffron is a must-read for singles of all ages and stages in life.
If there are other articles or blog posts that have inspired your own journey to live a full and abundant single life, feel free to include them in the comments section below.