Single Moms Ministry — The Tough Questions

With a growing number of churches within the body of Christ embracing the need to minister to single parents, many questions have arisen (along with a little confusion) regarding the topic. While I wouldn’t dare paint every church or situation with the same brush, I want to take some time today to answer the most frequently asked, straight-forward questions we receive as a ministry about single moms support groups, their existence within churches, and much, much more.

Doesn’t single moms ministry support single parenthood? No. As the body of Christ, we should continue to teach sexual purity and forever-marriage, but … the reality is that we all have fallen short of God’s glory. And while some single mothers exist through no fault of their own, some have also made mistakes. Regardless of their arrival to the journey, they are here. And we cannot ignore the need to minister and encourage them.

Why are you only promoting single moms ministry versus single dads ministries or single parents ministries? As someone who has a heart for single parents, I recognize that both single moms and dads exist, either as co-parents or sole custodians. And I have great compassion for those dads that are single parents, too. However, statistics continue to support more than more than 97% of single parents in our country are women. Additionally, if a church sees a number of single dads who need support, we are supportive of opening a separate group for dads. The reality is that men fellowship differently, which is why mens’ ministry looks different. What we want to avoid is having a co-ed environment that is no different than singles’ ministry in churches today (which by the way, we love singles’ ministries) in that many moms need to just be “women” without the added pressure that co-ed mingling sometimes brings. There is no right or wrong in this area. I am just sharing what I have seen works best.

Single moms’ ministries just create division and further separate single moms, doesn’t it? No more than Ladies Nights or Womens’ Ministries separate women! We want single moms to be part of various groups at the church — singles, women’s ministry, volunteer opportunities, etc. But whether a mom has been parenting alone for a few months or for years, the journey is different than dual parenting, and the journey can be lonely. Single moms support groups allow for deep fellowship, the sharing of ideas, and encouragement.

One of the things I have heard you promote is that single moms’ groups support church growth. That doesn’t seem like a very good reason to launch one! Our sole mission as the body of Christ is to populate Heaven and plunder Hell! Our goal is to see souls transformed by the blood of Jesus. There are more than 9 million single mothers that are unchurched in the United States, and many, many are unsaved. Yes, it grows the church, because these women now have a place where they feel they belong. This may very well be the way that the unreached, unchurched single mom in your community comes to Christ. More opportunities equals a greater chance to share the plan of salvation. If a church leader needs to hear that it will grow the church in order for him to get on board, then so be it. It is a bold and grand idea that we, the church, actually be excited about growing the church.

Jennifer Maggio is considered one of the nation’s leading authorities on single parent issues. She is an award-winning author and speaker who founded the global nonprofit, The Life of a Single Mom Ministries. She has been featured on countless radio and television programs and has a heart to see that no single mother walks alone.

9 Comments

  1. Chezney Cleaver October 28, 2012 at 8:15 pm - Reply

    My mom asked me to search for your book online and as I was doing so I became interested being that I am a single mother myself. I would like to know how to start a home group because I don’t have a church home right now. I have a few friends and family members who would greatly benefit from these books and resources. Thanks for sharing your vision.

    • Jennifer Maggio November 26, 2012 at 7:05 pm - Reply

      Chezney, you can get a home group started at any time. We recommend going thru a local church, as they can provide great support, prayer, and sometimes, even financial assistance and volunteer recruitment. You’ll find that having the “covering” of a local church will make it easier for you to grow, stay organized, and have strength to continue long-term with the group. The Church and the Single Mom book (available for purchase on our site) is a great place to start. In the meantime, visit some of your local churches and begin to get planted in a local church. It truly is the heart of the Father to have each of us connected and worshiping in a local church.

  2. Elenna March 22, 2013 at 6:48 pm - Reply

    I’m thinking of meeting more regularly/consistently with my single mom friends, and suggesting doing something more purposeful with our time together. We attend the same church and Bible studies, and our kids are older teens and/or in college. Three out of four of us have been raising our kids alone since they were very small due to widowhood or divorce. What resources would you recommend for us, since our kids are almost grown? We’re still guiding them into adulthood, and most of them are still living at home with us. We’re all nearing the days when we can successfully launch them into their own lives, and yet feeling some grief that our mother years will soon be over and we’ll really be alone! Thank you for any advice you can provide.

    • Jennifer Maggio March 23, 2013 at 12:49 pm - Reply

      Definitely take a look at both Overwhelmed: The Life of a Single Mom and Kids and the Single Mom. Overwhelmed is a comprehensive look at several of the issues that single parents deal with in all diff’t stages of their journey. Kids and the Single Mom is written for mothers with children of all different ages, but since I am currently parenting 2 teenagers (one who is almost 18), then it definitely has an angle that you would benefit from. I recommend ordering one copy of both. Then, if you like it, have the others get one! (All are available for purchase on our site). ~ Jennifer Maggio

  3. Elenna March 25, 2013 at 4:04 pm - Reply

    Thank you, Jennifer, I’ll check those two out. “Overwhelmed” is an apt title! Thank you for your ministry.

    Elenna

  4. Raquel Rose Kato May 29, 2013 at 10:51 pm - Reply

    Love this ministry…just discovered it from embrace grace! I think I may need to start a single mom group, I go to a mom’s group myself, but everyone there is married, and they just don’t have the same struggles as I do as a single mom…but I don’t even know where to start.

    • Jennifer Maggio May 30, 2013 at 6:11 pm - Reply

      Thanks so much Raquel! Glad you found us. Yes, definitely consider starting a ministry. So many are needed. Visit our “Starting a Single Moms Ministry” page at http://thelifeofasinglemom.com/?page_id=25 and be sure you also sign up for our monthly newsletter on our site.

  5. Agnes September 10, 2014 at 6:28 pm - Reply

    How can I find out additional information bout your ministry in my local area ? I live in San Antonio, TX and need help and guidance. Love your sister in Christ, Agnes.

Leave A Comment