Words Unspoken- why singles remain silent and how it hurts the Church

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First, a little analysis from across the pond. . .

According to The Tablet, a British Catholic newspaper, some of the Catholic Bishops of France have offered their own insights on the topic of single Catholics.  The Family and Society Council of the French bishops conference states that, “many adults live as singles, not always willingly, and the Church should address their problems in its discussion of the family. . .  Bishop Herve Giraud of Soissons said single Catholics felt  ‘forgotten, even devalued, by the Church.’  They are often overlooked because they rarely come forward to speak about their problems.” (http://www.thetablet.co.uk/news/1843/0/synod-asked-to-consider-situation-of-single-catholics-by-french-bishops)

This last sentence brings to light a significant reason why singles are generally ignored in the Catholic Church- failure to speak up and be heard.  Why would singles be reluctant to let Church leadership know that there’s a problem, especially when so many people take every other spiritual struggle and slide it into their pastor’s inbox?

Land of the Free and Home All Alone

One of the reasons that singles remain silent is the cultural notion of the rugged individual.  In our society it’s considered acceptable to want to be married but not permissable to be unhappy about the situation if marriage does not occur.  Many singles find their situation humiliating, and the thought of bringing up the subject can almost seem worse than being single itself.  A person is expected to be able to “go it alone”, not need help from others, not need the support of a community, and certainly not long to be part of a nuclear family.  This is of course is ridiculous and runs contrary to God’s design of the human person.  Unfortunately, this misguided thinking often leaves single Catholics unwilling to admit that they need help fulfilling their vocation to marriage these days.

Rose Colored Glasses

A single friend of mine once described a very uncomfortable and discouraging situation that had come up in regard to her single state.  I asked how she was able to handle such a difficult circumstance.  Her reply? “There’s a lot of denial.”  Pretending that everything was rosy and that singleness didn’t bother her allowed her to suppress any negative feelings she had on the subject and get through the day.  Unfortunately, denial, over the long haul, allows people the ease of putting a band-aid over a wound that is already infected and spreading disease to the rest of the body.  It covers up the pain, but doesn’t truly heal it.  What many singles don’t count on are the unexpected, inopportune moments in which something or someone inadvertently rubs up against that wound, and the powerful, negative emotions that come barreling to the surface.

Negative Reinforcement 

There are times in which a few singles have reached out to the Church community.  Unfortunately the responses are often less than positive and frequently reflect a lack of deeper understanding on the nature and scope of this problem.  Those who married relatively young will sometimes assume that their experience with being single mirrors that of those who remain alone for years or even decades.  After all, everyone is born into the single state.  Even those who married young were obviously single adults at some point, however brief a time that may have been. What married couples may fail to understand is that being a young single is vastly different than being a single person past the age of 35.  Everything from buying and managing a house on your own,  dating parameters, experiences within the Church, baggage from failed relationships or a failed marriage, etc. all present challenges that simply aren’t there when singles are younger.

Some have tried to offer consolation to singles by pointing out that the Catholic clergy in the Latin rite are themselves single.  Thus the clergy should be able to identify with single Catholics.  However, from a spiritual stand point this is really not accurate.  Priests do not marry in the natural sense of the word.  Instead, they commit themselves to a mystical union with the Church.  In addition, because priests aren’t attempting to find a spouse in a society that has become morally depraved, their life experience with being unmarried is not the same as those who are pursuing the vocation of marriage.  It is understandable, then, that the Catholic clergy are often at a loss as to how to how to help single Catholics and what to say on this topic.

Looking Beyond Ourselves

The family is foundational to society and the food source of future vocations in the Catholic Church.  For most people, singleness is an unhealthy way to live.  When the percentage of single persons reaches unprecedented numbers, the situation becomes unhealthy for all of society as well as for the Church. (See post #1 for data on number of singles and single Catholics.)  Singles themselves need to see the big picture, understand that there’s more than just their vocation at stake, and do their part to help.  The Church can’t pay attention to a group of people whose existence they’re not even aware of.  As long as the married and clerical members of the Church remain uninformed about the problems encountered by single Catholics, the lack of responsiveness from the Church will continue.

If the Church can find ways to reach out to the youth, the young adults, the married, the poor, the sick, the dying, the prisoners, the homeless, etc., then they can find a way to pay a bit of attention to the enormous number of single Catholics, but first they have to know that we’re here, and that we need their love and compassion just like everyone else.  Singles Catholic, the Church needs our help in order to grow in this important area.  We are the ones who need to initiate a dialogue.  Find your voice.

 

 

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39 thoughts on “Words Unspoken- why singles remain silent and how it hurts the Church

  1. Did you reject the comment I left here a couple days ago? I guess you misunderstood what I wrote. You don’t provide a way to contact you privately, and I’m not going to join the Catholic Match forums. (Having already done online dating once in my life and found it utterly pointless, futile and soul-crushing.)

    Anyway – I am on your side! I have been posting comments to the precious few articles about this topic. See, for example, the #1 article in your “mythology” post. From there you can bring up my other comments tracked by Disqus.

    I support this topic wholeheartedly. I would love to find a place where serious discussions could take place. But this blog is not (yet?) that place. It just doesn’t have enough content. So meanwhile, the articles are scattered and the discussions usually turn nasty.

    Best,
    L.B. in Arizona.

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    1. Hi Larry,

      In your first comment you sounded angry and bitter. Being single can do that to a family minded person. I had planned on replying to you privately. I’m glad I misunderstood your tone and your intent.

      I agree there isn’t a lot of information on the Internet on single Catholics. You may be surprised to learn that there is actually much more out there now than there was when I first started googling this topic. As far as this blog goes, this is as good as it gets at the moment. Lack of time and tech savviness won’t allow for anything more.

      I know the feeling about online dating. Although I do know couples who have met that way, I know far more people for whom the experience has been deflating. So I hear you on that. I’ve become convinced that single Catholics need a lot of prayers, encouragement, and sound pastoral advice these days.

      Thank you for taking the time to read my blog. God ‘s blessings to you!

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      1. I am sorry that you misunderstood my first comment.

        Most of the articles that I’ve posted comments to, are several years old. And already, I’ve run into most of the standard brush-offs: “you are too picky”, “you need to try online dating”, etc. I swear, if I read one more claim that parishes are loaded with single Catholic women who don’t know where the men are, I don’t know what I’ll do. It just isn’t true.

        Maybe I’ll write an article explaining how silly online dating is. When someone says that it’s the magic bullet now, I can tell that’s a person who never actually tried it. I used to write about it quite a bit, on the forums of the e-dating site that I had tried (whose forums no longer exist). This helped me figure out exactly why it can’t work for most people.

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    2. Larry, I hope you see this:)

      I’m almost 59, single all my adult life never close to being married.

      I guess in the last few years I’ve really been thinking about this a lot.

      You are right…I guess we are at the head of a movement…

      Too bad I’m almost a Senior Citizen though:)

      Best wishes,

      Ed Murray

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      1. Thanks for your reply, Ed.

        I think my interest in this was triggered by a paper recently written by my bishop (Olmsted of Phoenix, Ariz.) on men’s issues. Which, it turns out, is little more than the advice of a panel of female advisors, blaming men for the decline in mass attendance and in Catholic weddings. And advising men to live as the women think they ought to. It’s loaded with statements like

        “This is why fatherhood – living out one’s vocation to fatherhood, whether that fatherhood is bound up in physical marriage or spiritual marriage in the priesthood or religious life – is absolutely essential for a man to live out the fullness of his meaning in life.”

        Not addressing men like us in any way. Clearly the bishop and his panel doesn’t believe we exist.

        I’ve tried to raise awareness a little, and it’s been a big waste of time. I wrote to a well-known local Catholic blogger who was on the advisory panel; her reply was the usual lazy advice like trying online dating, and even nonsense bordering on the offensive, which I quote: “trust me, if you are a good Catholic man with good hygiene and social skills, and a job helps, you will find a woman! I cannot tell you how many middle aged women are desiring a Catholic husband!”

        I’ve also dropped into the articles where these allegedly sad women hold pity vigils for each other. The experience there matches my experience with online dating: these women don’t really want to date; they just talk as if they do.

        Whether anyone dates or marries or not, is not really my concern. It’s the dishonesty that runs rampant on all sides. The Church says it wants weddings and families but does nothing to help singles. The Church sets clear rules regarding dating behavior and marriage, hardly anyone follows them, and the church looks the other way. Single women say “boo hoo, there are no good men” but that’s just not true. Can’t we all simply start telling the truth?

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      2. Telling the truth as you put it Larry..

        Maybe it’s that no one (except maybe us) has really thought about it much?

        I mean, I always thought I would be married by my age…59 next month…

        I guess it really hit me hard because I just moved last year and I’m in the midst of getting my life back together..after being unemployed and then being the family member that could take care of my ailing Mother…and still dealing with the sale of the house!

        I mean, other folks I think have more family..mine..well..my Dad’s job …retailing made us travel around the country quite a bit..So I’m away from most of my extended family.

        I thought Cardinal Dolan’s remarks have been helpful though.

        I think this is the next “BIG” idea in Catholicism..or should be?

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    1. Hi Steve,

      You mentioned several issues in your comment pertaining to the Church and world at large. I’d like to keep the discussion centered on single Catholics. I do understand you’re saying that the Church is busy with many things. I believe, however, that helping singles who are called to marriage will actually help address some of the moral issues that the Church is dealing with.

      Ultimately, I’d like to see Mother Church spend the same amount of time on single Catholics as she does on married Catholics.

      I’ve seen the Church put great effort into helping married couples stay married, something which I totally support. These days, however, it is just as hard to get married as it is to stay married. A very orthodox priest once told a friend of mine that she needed “to find her husband at the altar” meaning she needed to find a man who lived his faith fully. While I think this is sensible spiritual advice, it’s hard to accomplish this when so few singles practice their faith in the first place.

      I think singles ministry is a very practical idea for drawing the unmarried back to the Church and (for many people) catechizing them in the faith. For those diocese which feel that is not feasible in the near future, prayers, encouragement, and spiritual advice could still be given for those of us who do practice our faith. Cardinal Dolan’s suggestion (blog post #2) on prayers for more marriage vocations is an easy way to help singles who are called to marriage.

      Because there is much moral demise within our society, we need all of the lay members of the Church to witness to the sanctity of marriage with their lives. We need men and women who get married, stay married, and remain open to life. It’s hard to do this when people remain single on into their 40’s, 50’s and beyond. Sometimes it seems as if many of the people marrying young in the Church are the folks who are living together, using contraception, etc., while those who follow the Church’s teachings are unable to establish a family. Secular society looks at this phenomenon and sees further “evidence” that the Church’s teachings are outdated. I obviously don’t believe that myself, but I know it must look that way to many outside observers.

      So the way I see it, helping singles who are called to marriage is an important aspect of counteracting the culture of death and showing the world that marriage and family, when lived out in accord with the Gospel, are essential to the future of society.

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      1. In my diocese, “ministry” groups are isolated groups facilitated by parish employees who were hired to run them. Leading to bloated parish payrolls.

        What do you imagine a singles ministry looking like? I envision a room full (or partly full… or mostly empty?) of desperate singles full of Catholic guilt over being unmarried. That’s a dark and sad place that I would probably not want to go to.

        I found an article somewhere that explains the difficulty of making such a ministry work. You could have attendees from their 20’s to their 60’s or older. Men and women. Some might want to gab about issues in theology, but that would make others leave and never come back. Latin vs. guitar music. Etc.

        Personally I do not believe in special interest groups in a parish. I think the young and the old and the singles and the marrieds should all interact as a parish family. That just does not happen very often any more.

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      2. I imagine it looking much like the young adult ministry that I used to belong to- back when I met the age requirement for that. We had a combination of faith formation/enrichment events along with social gatherings. We also had some service projects for people to participate in. Some people may not feel particularly religious, but with that type of arrangement, people can choose what events to come to.

        I have heard the issue of age range being brought up in regard to singles ministry. Frankly, we had the same issue in the “young” adult group. The age range was 18-40. It was a great group of people, but there was a definite difference between those of us in our thirties, the working professionals, versus the members who were just starting college. I have also heard that in larger cities, like Los Angeles for instance, some parishes will actually divide their singles ministry into age groups. So there’s the 20’s group, 30’s group, 40’s group, etc.

        My diocese has recently created an office of young adult ministry. The ministry is run by lay person who works in this position as a paid employee. I would just like to see them create a ministry for single adults as well. Incidentally, I remember reading a while back that although young adult groups in the Church are open to both married and singles alike, the vast majority of the members are actually single. This had led some people to speculate that the young adult groups are, in fact, singles groups. If this is so, the problem is that they cap off around the age of 40, and more and more Catholics are not married by then.

        Ideally, it would be great if the parish functioned like a family. In my diocese, it seems that there is a lot of emphasis on the nuclear family. While there are activities/groups that are open to singles (Bible studies for example), often times single Catholics don’t show up for these things. In fact, more often than not singles don’t attend church regularly in the first place. If there isn’t some kind of ministry to single adults (past the young adult age) then there needs to be some other type of outreach to draw these people back in.

        So that’s my take on things. I actually think things are, slowly, beginning to change for single Catholics. Based on everything I’ve read, there is a growing awareness within the Church that singles need more attention, and that the low marriage rate among Catholics is a problem that needs attending to.

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    2. A real ministry…in every diocese …to bring Single Catholics together would be a start! After all, Engaged Couples get married …What about Singles…well we CAN marry ..but it seems like no one want s to think about it?

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      1. I couldn’t agree more Ed. Whether marriages come from such a minsitry or not (and I think many would), singles need to feel a greater sense of community and belonging within the Church. I also agree that not a lot of thinking has occurred on this subject- at least not yet. I too am encouraged by Cardinal Dolan’s comments. Hopefully other singles will begin to speak up more as well.

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      2. I’ll say it again. “Singles ministry” is an idea doomed to failure. If for no other reason than I don’t trust dioceses or parishes to do anything truly useful. I don’t think you’d ever get much agreement on some very simple points:

        What’s the objective? Education, social, matchmaking, … ?
        What’s the age range? 20’s? 60’s? Anyone?
        How “churchy” should it be? Some people might be daily mass-goers and bible-studiers, others only occasionals that couldn’t name a saint if they had to.

        As I said, the kinds of people who would show up for such a segregated group, are probably not the kind of people I’d even want to associate with. I imagine a handful of people in a meeting room, all full of Catholic guilt over being single.

        Just do things that make singles feel like a welcomed and useful member of the parish life. That’s a simple first step, and no one will do even that.

        Here are a couple articles that explain further:
        http://www.catholicmatch.com/institute/2012/06/the-trouble-with-singles-groups/
        http://www.catholicmatch.com/institute/2009/01/where-do-catholic-singles-groups-get-it-wrong/

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      3. Hi Larry,
        Regarding the article you mentioned in your other comment to me: My membership with CM actually expires soon, and I don’t have sufficient time to look into your question about the article. However, I know from experience that you can contact CM administration even if you are not a member. I did this myself when I was not a member, and they did respond to my email. Also you can contact the author via her Facebook page. You could also try googling her name. I believe she has one or more websites, including one called Real Love, where you could contact her as well.

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  2. Here is the article that I mentioned above, about the general confusion over what singles ministry ought to be. It’s a very old article but I left a comment anyway.

    https://www.osv.com/OSVNewsweekly/ByIssue/Article/TabId/735/ArtMID/13636/ArticleID/1353/Being-single-in-the-universal-Church.aspx

    I’ve always a little “too old” for the young adult groups, even as the upper age limit was inched higher and higher. I simply don’t believe in the concept of isolating based on age or on anything else. And you’d isolate further by decades? At 50, I’m not allowed to associate with the 40-somethings?

    My diocese’s website shows departments for Black Catholics, Ethnic Ministry, Family Catechesis and Parish Leadership Support, Hispanic Ministry, Marriage, Respect Life, Native American Ministry, and Young Adults. (among many others) Parishes duplicate many parts of this structure. I see no proof that these ministry departments cause anything useful to happen at all.

    I am quite sure that in the 30 years since I graduated college and moved to this diocese, that single women my own age, never existed. I think they all left the Church. Or they’ve always been very good about hiding from me. And that’s really no exaggeration.

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    1. “If only parishes would simply admit that singles exist, that would go a long way.” (See comments section in
      https://www.osv.com/OSVNewsweekly/ByIssue/Article/TabId/735/ArtMID/13636/ArticleID/1353/Being-single-in-the-universal-Church.aspx)

      Exactly. Well said Larry. Even if the Church doesn’t think singles ministry is a good idea or can’t afford to pay another employee to run it, at least acknowledge our existence. That in itself would be appreciated by many singles I know.

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  3. “Based on everything I’ve read, there is a growing awareness within the Church that singles need more attention”

    Well there are a handful of articles on the various web sites. Some are up to ten years old. Outside of those articles, I see absolutely nothing in real life. Things are no different than they ever were. It’s the same group of authors, chattering about the same few talking points, to almost no effect.

    I fear that someone will see this as an opportunity to create some “programs” and make some money. Many parishes in this area have jumped on the bandwagon of buying video-based programs like the “Catholicism” series or “This Man Is You”. No adult supervision required – just appoint someone to unlock the meeting room and hit Play. It’s the lazy way out- spend a little money and when no one shows up, you can say “oh well, we tried”. I can watch videos at home, why should I go to church for that? These initiatives have been failures for the most part. Something akin to that would have no chance of succeeding with singles who are already too busy to make an extra trip to church during the week, without a real incentive to.

    I hate to sound so pessimistic.

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    1. FYI to anyone following this blog – you may be interested in this article and the comments that I posted there. I pointed the author of that blog to the “misconceptions” articles over here. It’s becoming incredibly frustrating to me that “marrieds” can’t even comprehend that it’s possible to be an unmarried Catholic adult… surely, anyone with a job and a rosary can find a spouse!

      http://littlehouseinchicago.blogspot.com/2013/07/a-letter-to-single-catholic-guys.html

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      1. Yeah Larry I hear you loud and clear.

        I’ve decided that for now, at least, I’m going to quit looking for Catholic girls period…

        Fact is that I’ve been an online friend with a girl for a while…she is a fellow amateur astronomer and she also shares my past interest in politics..I’m a former elected officeholder and she has run for public office herself. Talking with my Therapist ( I’ve got A.D.D….which probably always made me even more vulnerable to not understanding cues etc) I’ve kind of taken a new look at our friendship…He asked me what dating was…just getting to know someone…which is probably the course I was on except that I didn’t really know it. So I think that I’m going to start to see more of her than I have. I’m still going to go to the Single events in the various Meetup Groups up here..IF you haven’t done that … they seem to be a good way of meeting folks and just having a good time.

        Who the heck knows?

        In any event..it’s all about companionship I think and that’s what I need really at the moment.

        A very Merry Christmas to you & Catherine and everyone that follows!

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  4. P Edward, I paraphrased. The littlehouseinchicago blogger wrote
    “Honestly, from what you are saying, the problem is your location. … Have you considered moving to a big city”.
    My reply back to her referenced another blogger in my area, who wrote the equally silly
    “trust me, if you are a good Catholic man with good hygiene and social skills, and a job helps, you will find a woman! I cannot tell you how many middle aged women are desiring a Catholic husband!”.

    Both are women that married very young. The Chicago woman is a young mother, and the local woman is a mother of eight and a grandmother. Neither knew what it was like to be single. When they wrote their “advice”, you can see that both assumed that I was “damaged goods” in the dating world. They didn’t know that I already live in a large city, I’m well educated and successful in my career, bathe frequently, and don’t have any other sad circumstance like (for example) a handicap, or needing to care for sick relatives. They Just. Don’t. Get it.

    From these exchanges, I have refined my opinion about “why” people can remain single. The Chicago blog post makes an obvious point – that most people used to meet their Catholic spouses through family members or friends. Parishes used to provide the social environment for this to happen. But now, for those of us that move away from our families, and spend our twenties and thirties on our educations and careers, and do not put extra serious effort into spouse-hunting, our fate is determined. We need support from our new parishes more than ever, but they no longer provide it.

    Sure, it’s possible to find a spouse without the old model – but it’s much more difficult, much more uncertain. You’re counting on dumb luck, chance meetings, hitting the jackpot in online dating.

    The context of both articles, if you care (my comments posted as “Uncle Fester” in both)
    http://littlehouseinchicago.blogspot.com/2013/07/a-letter-to-single-catholic-guys.html
    http://littlecatholicbubble.blogspot.com/2015/10/exhortation-to-catholic-men-women.html

    All the best to you.

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    1. Both women who married young? I mean , why on Earth would they believe they could say anything to anyone? Grrrr…I know how I feel when I hear this stuff!

      Perhaps it is time for us all to get a bit more active..Maybe we need to actively talk to young Priests?

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      1. Well Ed, I’ll tell ya… I think my interest in this noble cause has exhausted itself. I’ve spent the last two months scouring the web for articles, after my bishop published his “exhortation to men” (written about in the littlecatholicbubble article) which is over 40 pages long, and did not consider the existence of never-married adults at all. That annoyed and saddened me.

        I now think I’ve found every article available about the “singles problem”. I’ve dropped comments into any articles still accepting them, and there’s been almost no discussion. Even the noted author and speaker Mary Beth Bonacci, who evolved her message from teenage chastity in the 1980’s to more of a coping-with-singlehood theme lately, no longer writes anything original. (Her recent articles on the Catholic Match blog are all re-runs of stuff originally written up to ten years ago!)

        Catherine, you wrote that you created this blog after several years of “research”. What did this research consist of? Because again, it only took me a few weeks to find “everything” that exists online. I hope you will write some more posts if you have evidence of any real progress. I see absolutely none, and I’m ready to give up.

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      2. Larry, the research consisted of google searches using various search terms along with the words “single” and “Catholic”. These searches resulted in articles, blogs, and sometimes forums on catholic websites such as Catholic Answers. You have to bear in mind that a person can be searching but find little or nothing in terms of results. That was the case when I first began looking into this topic. I would search, and search, and occasionally come across something worthwhile on this topic. I too would give up after a while, but in the end I would keep coming back to my computer a few days, sometimes a few weeks later, and try again. One time I thought to change the word “Catholic” to the word “Christian”. That resulted in significantly more hits on the topic. I found that in itself very enlightening. You’ve mentioned coming across articles that are old. A few years back, in one of my searches, the best I could come up with was an article going all the way back to the 1990’s.

        Then in the spring of 2011, I noticed an increase in the number of articles on single Catholics- not a large amount by any means, but an increase at least.

        It sounds like at this point, from the comments you have made, you have probably read all of the articles I have read on this subject. I guess the difference is that I continued to search, for a very long time, even when there was nothing. I’m not suggesting that you necessarily continue to do the same. I’m simply relaying what I did. It was a little like a person panning for gold. I was so happy to find even a tiny little “nugget”.

        There is something I’ve been pondering that I’d like to run by you. I’ve notice that most of the articles on single Catholics and almost all of the blogs on this topic seem to be written by women. Maybe it’s time for a single Catholic man’s perspective. Would you consider starting your own blog on this topic? You seem to have enough of a knowledge base at this point, both in terms of research and personal experience. You seem intelligent and articulate as well. If you are not able or interested in such a venture at this time, I hope some other men out there will consider the possibility. I do believe there is definitely a need.

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      3. Catherine, I appreciate your compliments… but I really think I’ve said everything that I can say for now. Until I see signs that the Church is paying attention to singles… and as we have both said, mere acknowledgment that we exist would be a fine starting point… I don’t think more writing will accomplish anything. As I wrote earlier today, even the people who used to write regularly on the topic, no longer do. The Church is focused on married couples and families… always has been, and perhaps always will be.

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      4. Hi Ed,

        I wanted to reply to a comment you posted on Dec. 5. I’m not sure if you’ll even see this reply since that was a few weeks ago now, but I want to encourage you in your suggestion. Your idea about talking to young priests is not a bad one at all. I had the opportunity to have a seminarian in my diocese read my blog last May. He was kind enough to look through the articles I had posted at the time. Afterwards he told me, “I feel I’m being enlightened on this issue,” which is exactly the kind of effect I was hoping for. I didn’t ask him this, but I would bet that understanding the needs of single Catholics is not something that’s discussed in the seminary. I would also bet that ministering to families is something that’s part of a priest’s training today. No wonder the clergy are so uninformed about the current state of single Catholics. If you have the opportunity to talk to a young priest/seminarian, I would say it’s worth a try.

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  5. Catherine, perhaps you can create a new blog post for the sole purpose of allowing us to post references to other articles that we wish to bring to everyone’s attention. Here are two more recent articles that I have posted into:

    http://www.ncregister.com/daily-news/cardinal-wuerl-church-must-continue-to-speak-the-truth-and-minister-with-lo/

    http://mattfradd.com/there-isnt-someone-out-there-for-everyone-and-yes-you-might-die-alone/comment-page-1/#comment-95402

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    1. Good comments on that article. Unfortunately, and correct me if I’m wrong, this article will draw no more comments after it disappears from the NCR’s front page. There is no other way to find it, since the author is not listed in the “Blogs” pull-down menu. I have tried to ask NCR why this is, but have gotten no answer.

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  6. It’s been fairly quiet lately. I just found a couple new articles that have gone unnoticed so far in 2016. It seems like all I can do is to write “it’s wonderful that group XYZ is being tended to, now what about the singles?” With a steadily more angry and frustrated tone, unfortunately.

    http://www.ncregister.com/site/article/witness-to-love-answer-to-synods-prayer-for-marriage-formation

    http://www.ncregister.com/site/article/reaching-out-to-the-brokenhearted

    These have been open to comments for almost 2 weeks now, so I don’t know if NCR has changed its stated policy of leaving article open for only a few days, or if they were left open because no one commented at all.

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    1. Hi Larry,
      I haven’t had a chance to look at the article you mentioned. I did however send an email off to NCR asking whatever happened to that monthly singles column that they promised a few years back. We’ll see if I get a reply.

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  7. Larry,

    Thanks, I have just left a comment on the bottom one and will look at the first one to comment possibly. You know I think that you are probably tired of all this but it may just be that The Holy Spirit is working with us…If we don’t speak up others won’t ! Hope you had a nice holiday season and best wishes to you and Catherine and everyone who reads our comments for the coming year!:)

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    1. Hi Ed,
      I do believe the Holy Spirit is at work on behalf of singles. He may seem to be moving slowly from the perspective of those who have been waiting a long time for a spouse, but I do think He is working on the Church in this area.

      Like

  8. Catherine, I REALLY wish you’d set up a new article for the purpose of collecting links to other articles. You could move most of the comments from this article, into the new one.

    In the mean time… NCR published a new article by Emily Stimpson today. I dropped a comment on it with a link to her 2012 article which was supposed to be the start of a regular column about singles, but no more articles were ever published and in fact that article was either never commented on, which seems fishy to me. Let’s see if Stimpson or NCR responds.

    I also searched NCR for “Stimpson” and found some old articles that I hadn’t seen before. Here’s one from 2012 with several commenters that I recognize… for example, John Thomas thinks exactly like I do. I was just going to let it sit dormant but one commenter opined that men are simply lazy, and I just had to write a reply to that. Even if it feels like a tree falling in the forest where no one will hear it.

    http://www.ncregister.com/daily-news/single-for-a-season

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    1. Hey Larry,
      That’s one of several ideas I’ve got going on at the moment. I’m hoping to be able to accomplish that sometime in 2016.

      I have also written in to NCR, twice now, asking about the singles column they promised. I also wrote to Simcha Fisher, since she had an article on single Catholics that was very well responded to back in February of 2012. She was nice enough to write back, saying she thought the idea of a singles column was still a good one, and that she would forward my email to the editor at NCR. I still have not heard from NCR. I’ve thought about writing to EWTN, since they presently own NCR, and see what response I get there. We’ll see.

      Like

    2. Hi Larry,
      I got the comment you sent yesterday, approved, and responded to it. I just wanted to double check: did you send another comment after I replied? I saw a notice on my tablet that looked like you had sent in another comment but when I checked my administration page on WordPress there were no new comments. If you sent in another comment, go ahead and resend it. If you didn’t, then no worries. Thanks.

      Like

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