The American Christian church is not very good at hospitality. What can we do with the worship service attender that does not want to be alone after a service?
Part of me says start a program: Sunday supper maybe. Church supplies the food, or it's pot luck or a combo. But then, who can come? Just singles? DINKS? Singles and DINKS? Everyone?
Another idea--self generated hospitality. Inviting people to your home or out to lunch. Couples to singles. Singles to other singles. Singles to couples. Practical issues pop up here. Going out costs money, which some don't have. Some people's living situations aren't conducive to this. Singles are reluctant to invite people with kids to their (probably non-child proofed) home. Security also. Should invites cross gender lines? And so on.
Can we also venture that those who are past the age of 30 and are still single (and when I say single, I mean unattached, not unmarried; in this day and age of "cohabitation", some people are as good as married) may be people for whom social interaction is not an easy or natural thing (Introverts, hurt in relationship and fearful, undiagnosed autism, etc.)? So to tell these people, like I've been told, to "just invite people" is to suggest something as difficult sounding to them as it would be for them to walk a tightrope over Niagara Falls?
I got no firm answers here, but if I'm ever in church leadership, I'd like to figure out something to do with this issue. How can we be a loving community when some of our members leave and feel so very alone?