The LDS Church recently restructured its “singles” wards, effectively shutting them off to unmarried people who are 31 years old or above. In many ways, this move formalized even more than previously the “limbo” of sorts that unmarried but still quite young Mormons find themselves in with relation to their church. Do they best fit or will they be most edified in “family” wards or huge “mid-singles” wards that weekly draw as large a crowd as a typical stake conference? Are they to be seen and celebrated as the highly accomplished, dynamic, active creators of meaningful lives that most of them are, or are they best understood as delayed developers, people to be pitied for the spouse and family that they lack? They don’t “fit” the LDS-idealized mold, that’s for sure (even as single-in-one’s-thirties is becoming more and more typical in society in general).
What is it like to be a “mid-single” in today’s Mormonism? How does their liminal status affect their relationships with themselves, with those they date and associate with at church and in their day-to-day lives, with God? How do they negotiate the challenges of celibacy and sexual desires when most persons in their age group are having sex? How do the issues of divorce and the prospects of marrying someone who already has children come into play in their thinking? All the panelists in this podcast discuss how Mormon mid-singles are forced to confront faith and church issues that perhaps never come up for married Latter-day Saints who live more typically normative Mormon lives. Are the some advantages to facing up to faith questions when one is single? Advantages to delaying marriage until much later than what is typical in LDS culture?
In this podcast, three dynamic LDS mid-singles—Lauren Johnson, Garred Lentz, and Jenny Morrow—join Mormon Matters host Dan Wotherspoon in discussing these and other issues facing them and others in this type of LDS limbo. They offer open-hearted, insightful perspectives that will connect with others in their cohort, with those who love and associate with mid-singles, and in their humanness and connections with life journeying in general, with all of us. Another group of amazing hearts to learn from and be inspired by!
Please listen and then join in the conversation below!