Launching and Sustaining a Single Adult Ministry by Dick Dunn. This is a three-ring workbook which is designed by an experienced singles minister to show a person how to develop and sustain a single adult ministry. The workbook also contains ten pages of ice-breakers, ten pages of discussion questions to be used with a group of singles and ten pages of calendar forms to be used when planning the monthly activities. The workbook kit also includes a cassette tape of the author sharing his ideas with the Planning Team. Price $35.00.
In addition, Dunn has also produced a one-hour video tape of him talking with a group of pastors about the need for singles ministry and how to develop such a program. Cost: $29.50.
For ordering information, write Dunn at Singles Ministry Resources, Box 1472, Roswell, GA 30077. Telephone: (770) 587-1691.
Let Go by John Westfall and Bobbie Reed. This book is aptly entitled, "A Fresh Look at Effective Leadership in Ministry." The key concept of the book is to help leaders rediscover a leadership style that will enable their people to be ministers themselves. The authors say that we do that by "responding to their needs, drawing out their dreams, equipping and empowering them." "Sometimes that means letting go and staying out of the way so God can work in a fresh way to further His ministry."
The book deals with a wide range of leadership issues including style, control, power, keeping score, staying cool, and "the bottom line." Some of the book's 17 chapters are: Purpose, Perspective, Process, Product, Management, Myths, Motivation, Manipulation, Determination, Domination, Dignity, Distress, Climate, Challenge, and Success. The book opens with eight pages of questions to help readers determine their leadership quotient, to see if they are a leader, manager, worker, or a reactor.
Published 1990 by Single Adult Ministry Associates (7484 Carrie Ridge Way, San Diego, CA 92139), this 163-page book sold for $8.95 (trade).
The Lonely Pew: Creating Community in the Local Church by Douglas L. Fagerstrom and James W. Carlson. This book is a challenge to all church workers to consider the vast numbers of lonely people who live in our communities and attend our churches. Many live alone and yearn for companionship, to be connected to a group that will allow them to share special moments and special days. This book offers many practical guidelines and suggestions on how churches can develop community groups, loving and caring groups of believers that can make a difference, spiritually, emotionally, and socially, in the lives of these lonely people.
Some of the 11 chapter titles are: Community Sustains Us, Identifying Community Groups, Equipping Community Leaders, Designing a Start for Your Communities, Developing the Community, and Reproducing a network of communities. Each chapter concludes with additional insights and practical suggestions.
Published in 1993 by Baker Book House, this 143 page book sold for $8.99 (trade cover).
Ministering to Single Adults by Gene Van Note. In this book Van Note identifies the various categories of singles then debunks some myths about them. In a warm and straight-forward way he discusses their needs, the topic of human sexuality, and offers a challenge to the church to be fully redemptive in their dealings with singles.
The book is concise, resourceful, and well-organized as it moves from point to point dealing with many of the key issues facing the traditional church with respect to singles. Published in 1978 by Beacon Hill Press, this book sold for $2.95 (trade).
Ministry to the Divorced by Sue Poorman Richards and Stanley Hagemeyer. This is a handbook for church leaders who want the church to respond well to the needs of divorced people in their midst. In the five chapters in part one, the authors help develop a sensitivity to the issues. And in the five chapters in part two, they give detailed information on how to structure and organize an effective divorce recovery program at the local church level.
From Zondervan, this 106 page book was published in 1986 and sold for $6.96 (trade).
Ministry to the Single Person by Merrill Morse. This little pocket-sized booklet of 56 pages contains a lot of helpful information about ministering to singles. Written by a Lutheran pastor, this book identifies some common myths about singles and offers practical tips for organizing a singles ministry.
Some of the chapter titles are: Facts and Figures; The Church, Families, Scripture and Singles; Myths, Hurts, and Hints; Organizing a Singles Ministry; and Troubleshooting.
Published in 1988 by The Liturgical Press (Collegeville, MN), it sold for $1.95 (trade).
Ministry with the Divorced by Peter R. Monkres. This book is one of a number of items included in a packet offered by the United Church Board for Homeland Ministries. This book examines the churches ministry to the divorced as well as its theology about marriage and divorce. This examination points out that, historically, the church has not had a consistent interpretation of vowed relationships between men and women. As a result, the church's ministry with the divorced has been one of contradiction, demonstrating both judgment and forgiveness. The author calls for a more decisive, flexible, and wholistic ministry. The book was published in 1985 by Pilgrim Press (NY) and sold for $7.95 (trade).
Also included in the divorce ministry packet are the following items: 1. "Order for Recognition of the End of a Marriage," a divorce ceremony intended for those occasions when a man and woman who have experienced a divorce wish to acknowledge responsibility for their separation, affirm the good that continues from the previous relationship, and promise in the presence of God, family, and supportive friends, to begin a new relationship; 2. An issue of Families, a quarterly newsletter published by the UCBHM dealing with ministry with divorced persons and their families; 3. A copy of "Divorce Law: A Guide for Clergy and Laity," a concise 31-page booklet which offers up-to-date information on federal and state divorce laws ($1.95 if ordered separately); 4. Other reprints, articles, etc.
For information on these packets contact Faith Johnson, UCBHM, 132 West 31st Street, NY, NY 10001.
National Single Adult Ministries Resource Directory, 1991-92 by Jerry Jones (editor). This resource directory is a fairly comprehensive "Yellow Pages" of valuable information to help build a more effective singles ministry. The 8 1/2 x 11 directory contains articles about singles, guidelines for singles ministry, a listing of speakers and singers, a listing of singles groups by state, denominational leaders in charge of singles ministry, singles organizations, and other helpful information.
Published in 1991 by Single Adult Ministries Journal, this 270-page directory sold for $12.95 (trade). (Singles Ministry Resources, Box 62056, Colorado Springs, CO 80962.)
New Beginnings by Gordon E. Ellis. The subtitle provides the focus for this book: Preparing Families for Remarriage in the Church. This book is for pastors and counselors who prepare families for remarriage. It offers straightforward and practical advice, for both adults and children, to the problems of remarriage after divorce. It provides the basis for a four-session process that deals with feelings about divorce and living in a stepfamily relationship. The last counseling session culminates with the family working together to create a unique marriage ceremony in which all may participate.
Some of the nine chapter titles include: Remarriage in the Church Following Divorce, Is it Faithful to the Gospel?, The Counseling Process with Children, Looking Ahead with the Couple, and Creating a Remarriage Ceremony.
Published in 1991 by Pilgrim Press (475 Riverside Dr., NY, NY 10115), this 127-page book sold for $14.95 (trade).
One-Parent Families by Harold Ivan Smith. This book bears the subtitle, "Healing the Hurts," and is actually a set of guidelines for those interested in caring for and ministering to one-parent families.
After making his case that there are scores of single-parent families within the church, the author then proceeds to challenge the church to become more sensitive to their special needs and to develop viable programs to help minister to both the parent as well as the children.
Published in 1981 by Beacon Hill Press, the book sold for $2.95 (trade).
Reaching Single Adults by Dennis Franck. Written by the head of singles ministry for a major denomination, this book touches all the bases on setting up a solid ministry to, for, and with single adults. He describes the diverse needs of singles and outlines how the church can meet those needs through various models of ministry. He also talks about recruiting and motivating leaders and understanding the reasons for various types of programs and activities that reach single adults and keep them.
Some of the 11 chapter titles include: Biblical Perspectives on Singleness, A Philosophy of Ministry to and with Single Adults, Designing Ministry for the Six Dimensions of Life, Primary Characteristics of a Single Adult Ministry, Beginning a Ministry from Scratch, and Forming Leadership Teams. The book also contains a helpful section dealing with Resources for Single Adult Ministry, a section on Leadership Development, and a listing of Denominational Offices for Single Adult/Young Adult Ministries.
From Baker Books (
) in 2007, this 223-page book sells for $14.99 (trade cover). Grand Rapids, MI
Reach Out to Singles: A Challenge to Ministry by Raymond Kay Brown. According to Brown, the reason singles constitute only a fraction of the church is the church itself. In his survey of over 40 pastors and 300 single adults, Brown uncovers the inadequacies of singles ministries, the pressures under which single adults live, the problems they face, and the isolation they feel when involved in a church that unconsciously ministers only to families.
Speaking directly to these problems, he deals openly with the biblical view of singleness and offers some workable "how to" options that any church can easily adapt to fit its own situation. This practical, insightful book is a challenge to every pastor and church leader to develop a more productive ministry with adults who are single.
Released in October of 1979 by Westminster, it sold for $8.95 (pb).
Saturday Night, Sunday Morning by Nicholas B. Christoff. In this book the author delineates a program of affirmative action the church can take now to incorporate all persons into the body of Christ. Christoff explodes the myth of the "swinging single" to reveal very real needs, desires, problems and vulnerabilities.
Some of the 10 chapter titles include: Singles: American's Largest Minority, Sunday Morning: Where are the Singles?, Saturday Night: Where is the Church? What Ails Singles: Seven Deadly Sins, Single Power: Seven Lively Virtues, and Affirmative Action: What can the Church do?
Published in 1978 by Harper & Row, this 143 page book sold for $4.95 (trade).
Second Class Citizens by Michael A. Braun. The pastor-author offers a new approach to the dilemma of divorced people in the church. In his five chapters he deals with such issues as: How should we incorporate people who come into the church already divorced? and Should divorce people be returned to service and leadership in the church--and if so, how?
From InterVarsity Press in 1989, this 167-page book sold for $8.95 (trade).
Separation and Divorce Ministry by Father Bill More. This is a new resource publication for anyone wishing to know more about how the Roman Catholic Church is ministering to separated and divorced persons. It also traces the history and gives the purpose of what is now called the North American Conference of Separated and Divorced Catholics which has more than 1,000 support groups across the United States and Canada.
More gives many practical guidelines for starting such support groups both on the diocesan level as well as on the parish level. He has chapters dealing with how to start a group, how the groups operate, and how to maintain a group.
This is an excellent 44 page booklet for Catholics who wish to start support groups and for the Protestants who want to know more about what the Catholics are doing in the field of ministering to divorced and separated persons.
Published by Novalis, St. Paul University, Ottawa, Canada. The booklet may be purchased for $2. Make check payable to MSDC-OTTAWA and send to MSDC-OTTAWA, 1247 Kilborn Ave., Ottawa, Canada KIH 6K9.
Single Adult Ministry by Jerry Jones (editor). This book is a collection of articles from the SAM Journal by more than 60 single adult leaders from different regions, churches, ministry models, and backgrounds. It will answer many of your questions about working with single adults at the church level.
The workbook contains 28 chapters divided into 11 parts which include: Building a Singles Ministry in the Local Church, Leadership for Your Single Adult Ministry, Suggestions for Programming Your Singles Ministry, Single Adults: The Role They Play in Today's Church, Making Small Groups Work In Your Ministry, Outreach and Evangelism, Counseling Single Adults, Divorce and Remarriage, The Single Parent Family, Contemporary Issues in Single Adult Ministry, and Budget and Promotion.
Published in 1991 by NavPress, this 377 page workbook sold for $24.99 (trade).
Single Adult Ministry for Today by Bobbie Reed. This book is an excellent one-volume manual that deals with the vast majority of the issues facing those involved in doing single adult ministry. Reed, author of numerous books dealing with ministry with single adults and single living, starts with the basics then moves along nicely to the specifics. Her charts, outlines, check lists, and task assignments make it a very easy book to read and use. Helpful for both the novice and the veteran leader alike.
Some of the 18 chapters include Know Your Single Adults, Clarify Your Reasons for Ministry, Provide Creative Bible Study, A Balanced Calendar, Include Worship and Music, Recruit Key Leaders, Empower Your Leaders, Host Special Events, Reach Single Men, Care for Single Parents and Their Children, Encourage Commitment to Missions, Consider Special Single Adults and Change as the Need Arises.
This 144-page book was published in 1996 by Concordia Publishing House and sold for $12.99 (trade). It is a revision and expansion of the author's Single on Sunday book which was published in 1979.
Single Adult Ministry in Your Church by Cliff Allbritton, Tim Cleary, Ann Gardner, and Horace Kerr, all employees with the Baptist Sunday School Board at the time of the writing. This book provides practical help in meeting the needs of all types of single adults and single parents as it equips church members and church leaders in developing and administering a comprehensive ministry with single adult persons.
The six chapter titles are: Foundations for Ministry, A Church Ministering to Single Adults, Opportunity for Ministry, A Plan for Ministry, Resources for Ministry, and Expanding the Ministry.
Published by Convention Press in 1988, this 128-page book sold for $3.95 (trade).
Single Adult Ministry Leadership Notebook by Ann Gardner Melton (compiler). This resource is a loose-leaf notebook containing some 160 pages of helpful information relative to singles ministry. It was written by a number of leading singles workers in the Southern Baptist Convention and compiled by a leadership consultant with the Single Adult Unit of the Family Ministries Department of the Baptist Sunday School Board.
The notebook contains 12 sections or chapters which include: Single Adults: Meeting Their Needs, Effective Leadership, Successful Reaching and Teaching Through Sunday School, Meaningful Discipleship Training, Single Adults and Other Church Programs, Counseling the Single Adult, Planning Special Events, and Creative Publicity and Promotion. The notebook contains charts, forms, artwork, and other pages that can be photocopied for your use in creating publicity or doing programs.
Published by Convention Press in 1991, this 159-page notebook sold for $24.95. NOTE: A companion book, which is separate but included in the Notebook packet, is entitled, Single Adult Ministry in Your Church. (See review above.)
Single Adult Ministry: The Next Step edited by Douglas L. Fagerstrom. This book contains seasoned advice from 23 leaders in the field who deal with "the next step" of growth, programming, and training. They deal practically and pointedly with some of the toughest ministry questions facing single adults.
The 22 chapters are divided into three major sections: Developing Leadership, Developing the Ministry, and Developing Significant Ministries. Some of the chapter titles include: Developing a Ministry Vision, Developing a Ministry Team, Discipling Single Adults, Teaching Single Adults, Developing Spiritual Leadership, Developing Volunteers, Dealing with Gray Areas, Dealing with Dating Realities, Dealing with Homosexuality, and Developing Ministry to Single Parents. It also includes three chapters on divorce recovery, as approached from the individual counseling, small group, and workshop methods.
This 270-page book was released in 1993 by Victor Books and sold for $17.99 (hard).
Single Adult Passages by Carolyn A. Koons and Michael J. Anthony. To gather material for this book, the authors surveyed almost 1400 singles from 40 different states and various backgrounds, ages, and occupations. From this research they have developed a valuable resource tool for both the singles themselves as well as single adult leaders.
The seventeen chapters are subdivided into five parts. Part one gives an overview of the growing singles population and its quest for identity. Part two discusses "The History of Singles in America" and "Variables in the Singles Lifestyle." The third section looks at characteristics and needs for each type of unmarried adult. Part four discusses how leaders and care-givers can provide direction and support for singles. The final section examines "The Future of Singles in America."
From Baker Book House in 1991, this 230-page book sold for $17.95 (hard), $12.99 (trade).
Single Adults: Resource and Recipients for Revival by Dan R. Crawford. (compiler). This is a book of plans, of designs, of ideas. It was written "to motivate singles in evangelism and to encourage those who work with singles to view them not only as recipients of the good news, but also as resource for revival."
This book is a compilation of some 37 essays written by 37 different authors, 22 of whom work with singles while the others include pastors, educators, and other religious workers. Each of the essays make for a different chapter dealing with singles and single ministry. The chapters are divided into the following five sections: Roles of Single Adults, Groupings of Single Adults, Locations of Single Adults, Avenues to Single Adults for Revival, and Challenge for Revival Among Single Adults.
Published in 1985 by Broadman Press, this 182 page book sold for $4.95 (trade).
Single Adults Want to Be the Church, Too by Britton Wood. This book provides a solid basis for understanding who singles are and what they need. It also contains many valuable insights and approaches to ministry with single adults. While the author admittedly draws heavily upon his highly successful experiences at one local church (Park Cities Baptist, Dallas), the basic ideas and concepts are universal in their application.
Some of the ten chapter titles are: Stretch the Vision of the Church to Include Singles, Single by Choice, Single After Marriage, Single but not Single, A Growing Single Adult Ministry Thrives on Flexibility, A Growing Single Adult Ministry Responds to Good Biblical Content, A Growing Single Adult Ministry Respects a Caring Leadership, and Insights and Ideas for Programming Effectively for Single Adults.
This 177-page book was published by Broadman Press in 1977 and sold for $11.99 (hard).
Single in the Church by Kay Collier-Slone. This book is aptly subtitled, "New Ways to Minister with 52% of God's People," which is the anticipated population of single adults by the year 2000. The author provides practical ways of building singles programs and reveals case stories on how five particular churches developed successful programs for single adults.
The five chapter titles are: Singles Speak: Who Are We?; Build It, and They Will Come; Doing the Church, Being the Church; What Does Singles' Ministry Look Like?; and Into the New Century: Implications for the Future. In addition, the book also has five appendices that offer help and guidance to any church establishing a singles program. They are: Defusing Stereotypes, A Rationale for Single Adult Ministry, Program Planning Overview and Process, The DISCOVERY Program, and Special Liturgies for Use with Single Populations.
From The Alban Institute (Washington, D.C.) in 1992, this 164-page book sold for $15.95 (trade).
Single on Sunday (also see under revised title: Single Adult Ministry for Today) by Bobbie Reed. The subtitle describes the purpose for this book: "A Manual for Successful Single Adult Ministries." With about one-third of most congregations being comprised of single adults and their families, this book offers programs that offer spiritual growth, emotional support, social interaction, and educational development to meet the needs of the single adult. The author writes from years of research and practical experience. She stresses the importance of singles accepting themselves, adjusting to single lifestyles, and building self-esteem and friendships within the singles group.
The manual contains 10 chapters on building and improving your single adult ministry, sample job descriptions for officers, sample discussion guides, publicity information plus a bibliography.
From Concordia Publishing (St. Louis) in 1979, this manual sold for $5.95 (trade).
Single Parent Family Ministry Kit by the Mobilized to Serve organization. They have produced a comprehensive guide to help local churches develop a well-rounded ministry with single parents and their children. The kit consists of an audio cassette tape, a 3-ring binder, and a book entitled, Children of Divorce by Jim and Barbara Dycus. The information for this material is an outgrowth of the MTS program called C.H.I.P.S., Christ's Helpers in Parental Strife.
The thick binder is nicely indexed and well organized. It includes material on the following chapters: Getting to Know Single Parents Families, Roles (of Pastor, Single Parent Director, etc), Helper Program (complete with various forms and releases), Ministry Helps (including reproducible cartoons, letters), and so much more.
For more information, contact: C.H.I.P.S., Elim Fellowship, 7245 College St., Lima, NY 14485. Telephone: (716) 582-2790. Each kit sold for $34.95 plus $1.50 for shipping.
Singles at the Crossroadsby Albert Y. Hsu. As the subtitle says, this book offers "A Fresh Perspective on Christian Singleness." Here Hsu searches for a "biblical, theological and historical context in which to understand being Christian and being single." He demonstrates why singleness must be honored as a status equal to marriage. He also offers tips on making the church singles-friendly and ideas on how singles can be mobilized for ministry.
Some of the chapter titles include: A Brief History of Singleness, The Myth of the Gift, Freedom and Opportunity, The Issue of God's Will, From Loneliness to Solitude, From Aloneness to Community, Rethinking Romance, and Temptations Singles Face. The study questions at the end of each chapter provide opportunity for further reflection and discussion. The book concludes with an exclusive interview with the Rev. Dr. John R. Stott, a lifelong single person.
From InterVarsity Press (Downer's Grove, IL) in 1997, this 194-page book sold for $10.99 (trade).
Singles Care One for Another by Karen Greenwaldt. This book is really a manual intended to give the reader a number of choices for providing care for single adults. The first part of the book provides stories of singles in different phases of life: single parents, singles in crisis, singles who are bereaved, singles who are young, singles at retirement age, etc. Each of those chapters concludes with suggestions on how those single can be helped, both by an individual care-giver as well as by a singles group.
The second part of the book deals with various leadership issues, such as beginning a single adult ministry, programs, expanding a program, and a chapter on the recruitment and care for leaders. This section also has a number of worksheets and charts that provides further help for the leader as they do their planning, analyze their needs, and develop lay leaders. There is also a chapter that deals with such questions as: Can you mix the ages within a single adult program? and How necessary is child care?
This 112 page book was published in 1989 by Discipleship Resources (United Methodist) and sold for $6.95 (trade).
Starting A Single Adult Ministry by Sue Nilson and Andy Morgan. This oversized (7x10) book is a helpful guide for those starting a singles ministry. In addition to the various topics discussed and how-to information provided, it also contains lots of interactive charts and worksheets that can be photocopied and used in a local singles ministry. It offers lots of helpful ideas for those just embarking on doing singles ministry.
Some of the 12 chapter titles include: Does your Church Really Need a Singles Ministry?, Creating Quality Events, All About Follow-up, Helping Single Adults Move toward Greater Commitment, Especially for Small Churches, and Why Singles Ministries Fail and What to Do about It.
Published in 1994 by David C Cook Publishing Co., this 200-page book sold for $16.95 (trade).
Successful Single Adult Ministry by Krista Swan Welsh (editor). This book contains many helpful things a person needs to know about starting or reviving a single adult ministry. Each chapter is written by a person with some experience in the area of this ministry. Those who contributed chapters are: Dennis Chamberlain, Terry Fisher, Krista Swan Welsh, Gerald Denny and Linda M. Cahill.
Some of the chapter titles are: Let's Start at the Beginning, Starting or Reviving a Single Adult Ministry, Let's Get Organized, What Single Adults Like to Study, and Activities for Singles.
This 126 page book, published in 1987 by Standard Publishing, sold for $6.95 (trade).
Young Adult Ministry by Terry Hershey. The author says this book "is designed to be a catalyst for discussion, a challenge to the status quo, an encouragement for the discouraged, and a stimulus for churches to dream bigger dreams for ministry with young adults."
The 276-page book and 17 chapters are divided into three sections: Young Adults and the Church, Creating an Effective Model of Ministry with Young Adults, and Effective Programs. In these pages Hershey attempts to answer the following questions: How to I minister to both marrieds and singles, How can I reach the unchurched young adults, In what ways should my congregation be involved, How do I revive a struggling young adult ministry, What programming works, How you can plan and create programs, What to do if you are from a small church, and What helpful resources are available.
From Group Books, this book was published in 1986 and sold for $12.95 (trade).
The Vital Singles Ministry by Harry Odum. The author offers a number of practical ideas and insights into doing singles ministry at the local church level, whatever the size. One of the main features of the book is a week-by-week plan for the first six months. This plan not only talks about how to get organized but also suggests some activities to do during the course of the first six months. Another strength is the final chapter that offers a suggested set of by-laws and a description of the duties of the officers and committee directors.
The six chapter titles are: Why a Singles Ministry, Six Months Schedule, Class Organization and Leadership, Activities, Special Forms, and By-Laws.
This 143 page book is part of the Effective Church Series and was published in 1992 by Abingdon Press and sold for $10.95 (trade).
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