Shane Claiborne on Singleness, Marriage, and Community

By | February 28, 2013

…our deepest longing is not for sex but for love and that what we really long for is community. You can live without sex, but you can’t live without love

I still believe there is tons of work to do in the Church—and the world in general—to support celibate singles. So many champions of our faith have been able to live extraordinary lives, in part because of the freedom that singleness afforded them. No one says: Wow, wouldn’t Mother Teresa’s life have been more complete if she’d found a husband?! So I still believe passionately that we need to celebrate singleness, as well as marriage, and I suppose that, especially now, I don’t see those things as being at all mutually exclusive. In our community, we’re trying to do both—to support singles and married couples, to support gay and lesbian folks too, so that they find a community where they feel loved.

…I still believe there’s a lot of work to do, especially when the Church tends to place a disproportionate emphasis on marriage and families. I mean, you go to some of these Christian festivals and they have speed dating on the schedule! And I remember a pastor giving a sermon once in which he held up a picture of a mom and dad and two kids and prayed that everyone in his congregation would find that for themselves. That’s hogwash! It’s too much pressure, and it’s skewed theology… (emphasis mine)

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