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He validated their frustration with what one woman said was a "lack of options." Janzen said the regional church leadership was focusing on "reactivating single men" to balance the gender ratio of faithful, church-attending singles.
Though you'll rarely hear about it from a pulpit, Mormon leaders are concerned with the continuity of their religion.
There was one girl he had been “seeing” on the other side of town, and he was talking to me because I lived in his area.
Benjamin Brown is a glasses-wearing lawyer who flavors his language with words like "heck" and "gosh." He has also been punched in the face in an altercation over dating, one of the few subjects that can rile Mormon men.
In the pulpit, leaders announce upcoming social events planned to help teetotaling Mormons get to know each other.
The latest in Brown's ward: "Pictionary with Pudding." Now, however, singles wards could be considered a secondary social venue -- the place you may run into the match you chatted with the night before on Mutual, a dating app created exclusively for Mormons and monitored by members who ensure only faithful users participate.
"In (church) we would do this thing where we would write down all the things we wanted in our future husband," she said.
When she enrolled in Brigham Young University, Mormonism's flagship school, Sewell expected to get married right away.
In his meeting with single women this summer, he said leadership became especially concerned by unmarried Mormons about a decade ago.In a church that requires chastity but a world in which random hookups are the norm, what about the plight of single adults who are well past the average Mormon dating age?Or even more difficult, what about those divorced members who are committed to the law of chastity, but also facing the dating scene again? Prairie skirts and fluffy bangs look horrible on me (I know–I am dating myself).Their solution was to continue investing in singles wards, creating stronger nuclei for Mormon singles to congregate outside of Utah.
They even created a church building in Arlington, Virginia exclusively for singles, a first for the faith.
Some weekends, I would go to three, four, or if I was really ambitious, five wards in one Sunday," Brown said. So much of church revolves around dating."Inside these chapels, marital concerns and sexual frustration (Mormon doctrine prohibits premarital sex, regarding it as "second only to murder in its seriousness") figure prominently into the service.