Christian matchmaking services

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ChristianTonyB

Well-known member
Jan 27, 2022
1,133
413
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Tin Can Bay
#21
Hi Tony,

I appreciate your thoughts about what it would take to run a Christian dating service that would actually match up Christians, but I would like to share a few thoughts.

I've been single for a while now (in the decades range,) but I'm not claiming to be any kind of expert, just someone who has observed a few things in her extended time of being single. I've done a little of everything they recommend to singles, and even some things they don't, lol (meaning, a lot of Christians I've known are against online dating sites, but I've been on a few.)

I've been part of of a few dating sites, one real-life match-making service, and many, many groups at churches (some social, some for service.) Here are some major obstacles I see to the kind of service you are suggesting (and if it does exist anywhere, someone please let me know, because I'd like to see how it's done.)

1. As much as we'd love to believe that people, especially believers, will just do things out of the goodness of their heart (and for the love of Christ,) they won't or can't. I think the proof is in a lot of churches themselves -- maybe you are blessed to be part of a very different church, but every church I've been a part of has a constant cry for resources, both for money and for resources.

If people can't or won't volunteer for even the most basic of service-oriented tasks at church, I would be willing to wager that there aren't going to be enough volunteers to run any dating service, let alone one that detailed.

I have to agree with @cinder -- it would either fall apart due to lack of volunteers, or it would become a money issue in one way or the other. Either people will become sick or burned out from doing so much work for free, or someone will decide to turn it into a business, even if it starts out as just charging a fee to cover costs. And how would the intake of any fees be handled? How would it be kept accountable to protect against fraud? I've been in some churches where money was being stolen by those who were put in charge of collecting it or paying the bills.

Unfortunately, even as Christians, we have to be realistic, and anyone having access to the money coming in might be someone who is potentially tempted to "borrow" that money for their own purposes, no matter how "well-intended."


2. What kinds of guidelines would the service have as to who or who isn't allowed to post a profile? For example, if background checks are required, what if something comes up in a person's criminal history and how is that handled, or are they automatically rejected?

I'm thinking of examples such as someone who stole something from a store as a teenager and maybe even wound up in jail for the night because of it. But maybe it's been years or decades and that person has grown and changed, or maybe they weren't a Christian then but became so later in life.

Regardless of spiritual status, the black mark on their record will remain for some time, if not indefinitely. Would that exclude them from being allowed to participate? Who will judge them more -- the people deciding whether or not they're allowed to post on the site, or the people who read their post? Where is the line between the love of God and giving someone a second chance VS. "OH NO, GET THIS CRIMINAL OFF THIS SITE!!"?


3. If it's one thing I've learned in my time of growing up within Christian circles, it is that many Christians, whether we admit it or not, are judgmental and often base most judgments on first sight.

Putting up any amount of personal information is going to bring on heaps of judgment (just look at the many negative responses a lot of people get here whenever they share something others don't automatically like.) Now of course I'm not talking about blatant sin, such as being in a godless situation and bragging about it with no remorse.

But for something like divorce, there are a lot of people who will not accept any kind of answer and will only criticize, no matter what the reason. And they will all use Scripture to back their statements (for example, I'm thinking of a recent post here of a woman pouring her heart out and all some people had to say was, "God says to obey your husband.")

The thing with many people who claim to know God is that they will weaponize their alleged alliance with God in any situation -- if you don't agree with them, your battle isn't with them, "IT'S AGAINST GOD HIMSELF!!", and boy will they ever let you know it. For this reason, I have become more selective about who and what I share any personal information about my life with. Our personal lives especially often come with a lot of details you wouldn't tell anyone other than your closest friends and it would take time to get to know someone that well in order to be able to share. For as much as I write on this forum, there are a plethora of details I don't include about myself and never would on a dating site, which I'm sure would make me ineligible to either the administrators or the people on the site.

But the people here I've known for many years who have become true friends understand -- but it's taken years to be able to get to that level. There is a very fine line between sharing enough to spark a potential partner's interest vs. sharing too much that people will automatically judge or misinterpret.

3. How would general accountability be enforced on such a site? No matter how many checks there are, people will slip through the cracks. During my time on Christian Mingle, I learned that one of the hush-hush things that was whispered about regarded those who had met people on such sites and then were sexually assaulted. As far a I know, the sites not only turn a blind eye, but they will leave the perpetrator's profile up as if nothing happened (as long as they're paying, of course.) The only warnings about such people came from whispered exchanges after getting to know some of the other (in my case, female) members who had been on the site for some time.

How would the site you're proposing deal with this? And what about instances where members come across a troublesome member but it's only word of mouth?

As another example, I liked Christian Mingle best when it had chat rooms. I don't think they do anymore and I would be uncomfortable going to a dating site without them, because it was in the chat rooms where I would hear about some members who were suspected catfishes, those who were talking to several people but would say, "You're the only one," or those who put on the most holy of holy appearances but were very different in person.

I know it's hard to judge between gossip and grudges, but I can't think of a time when I was steered wrong by listening to what the majority of longer-term members had to say in those rooms.

How would these situations be handled on such a site? Would members with bad experiences be allowed to voice them? If one member pressured or forced another into sex, how would that be handled if it was a case of one person's word against another? What about people who already had significant others (a boyfriend or girlfriend) and was technically unavailable, but wanted to "see what was out there" (which is something that wouldn't show up in a background check.) This was another type of warning I would get in those old Christian Mingle chatrooms.)

This would be another complication of such a detailed (and especially free) dating site. The other thing I found with free, nothing-to-lose dating sites is that they seemed to attract a plethora of people who already had someone, but were looking for options. Regular membership costs cut down on at least some of this behavior.

As Christians, we would want such a service to not only meet, but exceed the utmost standards of safety, dignity, and moral behavior.

But how in the world would something like that be realistically carried out?
Thank you for your detailed response. I've thought of all these things too. I have had similar experiences to you, so I am very wary. I also believe that any kind of service that is provided, should be provided as if it is being done for the Lord Himself.

It would be started slowly, and every step of the way checked to see if it matches up with what the Lord would expect of us. It would be allowed to grow only at the rate that available human resources can manage. I'm retired, I don't need or want payment for my services, the Lord provides for my needs. We'll have no buildings or wages to pay for, and Facebook charges nothing. Facebook has forums too.

Only proven, spiritually mature people will oversee the running of the service. Observation of forums and face to face events should be able to filter out undesirables that get through the initial vetting, and we can confront someone in private so they aren't unnecessarily embarrassed if their behaviour is ungodly and threatening to other members.

I have a Business Analyst background, and have a tendency to dot all Is, and cross all Ts... a bit of a perfectionist I guess. So I would be happy to help draft an organisation and procedures manual for the administration to follow. I always look for feedback, pride does not control me, doing what is right does.

Thanks again for your exhaustive response, it has provided the kind of scrutiny that is needed. 😊
 

seoulsearch

OutWrite Trouble
May 23, 2009
14,095
4,018
113
#22
Oh I don't know... There is ONE winning move.

"The only winning move is to not play."
Well, there is also the consideration that God calls us all to different things.

Some are called to be single, and some are called to be married, so I personally feel that there are some people who SHOULD be out there looking, because it's part of what God has called them to.

HOW, WHERE, WHEN, WHY, and WHAT we look for are all separate topics, but I think that whatever situation we are in, we always have to be sensitive that we all have individual callings and ways of going about them.

I used to be very desperately single -- as in, I desperately wanted to be married and was extremely distraught that I wasn't finding "HIM," that shiny polished unicorn that surely God had for me.

As more and more time goes by, the anxiety (thankfully) fades, and I don't know if I was like this all along (and needed a lot of tragedy to bring it out,) or of God has changed my heart, but I do try to keep in mind that some people are happier single and not trying, but for others, I do believe that God has it in their future to be married, and so I try to encourage their search.
 

Lynx

Folksy yet erudite
Aug 13, 2014
20,757
6,165
113
#23
Well, there is also the consideration that God calls us all to different things.

Some are called to be single, and some are called to be married, so I personally feel that there are some people who SHOULD be out there looking, because it's part of what God has called them to.

HOW, WHERE, WHEN, WHY, and WHAT we look for are all separate topics, but I think that whatever situation we are in, we always have to be sensitive that we all have individual callings and ways of going about them.

I used to be very desperately single -- as in, I desperately wanted to be married and was extremely distraught that I wasn't finding "HIM," that shiny polished unicorn that surely God had for me.

As more and more time goes by, the anxiety (thankfully) fades, and I don't know if I was like this all along (and needed a lot of tragedy to bring it out,) or of God has changed my heart, but I do try to keep in mind that some people are happier single and not trying, but for others, I do believe that God has it in their future to be married, and so I try to encourage their search.
Yes, well... it's not the winning move for everyone. It's the winning move for a whole lot of people who don't see it as a viable move though. They just don't know it.

And unicorns are overrated. One thing nobody ever talks about is unicorn droppings. They stink something terrible. o_O
 

seoulsearch

OutWrite Trouble
May 23, 2009
14,095
4,018
113
#24
Thank you for your detailed response. I've thought of all these things too. I have had similar experiences to you, so I am very wary. I also believe that any kind of service that is provided, should be provided as if it is being done for the Lord Himself.

It would be started slowly, and every step of the way checked to see if it matches up with what the Lord would expect of us. It would be allowed to grow only at the rate that available human resources can manage. I'm retired, I don't need or want payment for my services, the Lord provides for my needs. We'll have no buildings or wages to pay for, and Facebook charges nothing. Facebook has forums too.

Only proven, spiritually mature people will oversee the running of the service. Observation of forums and face to face events should be able to filter out undesirables that get through the initial vetting, and we can confront someone in private so they aren't unnecessarily embarrassed if their behaviour is ungodly and threatening to other members.

I have a Business Analyst background, and have a tendency to dot all Is, and cross all Ts... a bit of a perfectionist I guess. So I would be happy to help draft an organisation and procedures manual for the administration to follow. I always look for feedback, pride does not control me, doing what is right does.

Thanks again for your exhaustive response, it has provided the kind of scrutiny that is needed. 😊
Hi Tony,

Thanks for your gracious response. I don't have a business background, but I have grown up around many people who started out at the very bottom and worked their way up to the top ranks in businesses themselves. Because of this (and an admitted somewhat stubborn streak of pessimism,) I tend to try to troubleshoot nearly every situation I see because the one thing I've learned is that people are always caught off guard by something they didn't anticipate about human nature.

When you talk about "spiritually mature" individuals, the problem with that is what it really means is a group of people who think exactly alike, and so anyone who thinks differently will be excluded.

For example, I was part of a church with some high-ranking elders who believed in miracle healings. They taught classes on the subject and believed it was the key to bringing revival on the church. In order to fit their definition of "spiritually mature," one would have to not only believe in healings, but also have a track record of allegedly praying for people and getting miraculous results.

If you did not meet these standards, surely your faith was too weak and you were most certainly a lesser Christian.

I could go on and on all day about these sorts of things, but I'll spare everyone the grief. :)

As far as confronting people in private -- if Member X claims that Member Y raped her or him, how exactly does that get carried out privately? And will Member Y be allowed to remain on the site while the investigation is under way?

It doesn't even have to go so far as rape -- what if Member Y was stopped after an attempt of appropriate touch that was rebuffed? Or what if it was just a verbal suggestion? What if a member met someone in person and expressed homosexual or BDSM interests, just as suggestive conversation? I'm asking these things because these were the kinds of issues whispered about on an actual Christian dating site I was on.

How would you confront people privately about those events while protecting other members who might be about to go out with them in real life in the meantime, especially if it was all verbal and with no proof either way?
 

Lanolin

Well-known member
Dec 15, 2018
17,162
5,782
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#25
@ChristianTonyB if it helps any
I remember coming across a website kind of like what you mentioned and I recall attempting to sign up but the processs was so complicated I gave up.

I cant remember the name of what it was now. I just remember that although it was Christian it seemed like only pastors and missionaries ...people who were super involved with their church or maybe had degrees from Bible college were eligble. Or catholics. Im not catholic and sorry to say I really dont want to marry into the catholic church.

Im not that desperate plus all the people I meet in my church circles were EX- catholics and they had plenty of horror stories of what that church had everyone believe and do for religious reasons. I think they have a strict rule about marriage in that church as its big on 'holy matrimony' ok if you want that sort of thing but obviously not a match if you not.

btw nothing against catholics as people just that institution.
 

Lynx

Folksy yet erudite
Aug 13, 2014
20,757
6,165
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#26
Seems like EVERY church group has ex-members with horror stories... o_O
 

cinder

Senior Member
Mar 26, 2014
4,197
2,220
113
#27
Thank you for your detailed response. I've thought of all these things too. I have had similar experiences to you, so I am very wary. I also believe that any kind of service that is provided, should be provided as if it is being done for the Lord Himself.

It would be started slowly, and every step of the way checked to see if it matches up with what the Lord would expect of us. It would be allowed to grow only at the rate that available human resources can manage. I'm retired, I don't need or want payment for my services, the Lord provides for my needs. We'll have no buildings or wages to pay for, and Facebook charges nothing. Facebook has forums too.
Well that's kind of the problem. Who's doing the checking? Who gets to speak for God and determine what the Lord would expect of us? At the end of the day no matter how wonderful and idealistic the plans are; they have to be implemented by fallible people.

Only proven, spiritually mature people will oversee the running of the service. Observation of forums and face to face events should be able to filter out undesirables that get through the initial vetting, and we can confront someone in private so they aren't unnecessarily embarrassed if their behaviour is ungodly and threatening to other members.

I have a Business Analyst background, and have a tendency to dot all Is, and cross all Ts... a bit of a perfectionist I guess. So I would be happy to help draft an organisation and procedures manual for the administration to follow. I always look for feedback, pride does not control me, doing what is right does.

Thanks again for your exhaustive response, it has provided the kind of scrutiny that is needed. 😊
Who decides who is proven and spiritually mature enough to run the service? And while a well designed manual is good; who is in charge of making sure people follow it properly (something I don't think I've ever seen done in any ministry I've ever been in)? Pretty much every organization I've been involved with, what's on paper is much harsher and more defined than actual real life practice. And it also seems that people who are good on both the people and admin sides of running an organization are few and far between. Administratively gifted people tend to not be quite so good at the softer side of managing people in the organization and if you don't have both types you either won't be able to get people into the service in a timely manner or you won't have the advertising and connections to bring enough people in to the organization for people to have a good selection (the biggest problem with finding someone to date at church, there may only be 2 or 3 prospects at any particular church and they may be highly incompatible).

So yeah this sounds good on paper, but those of us who've had a lifetime of interacting with other Christians at church just don't see how this is going to work out when it's translated off paper and into the real world.
 

Lanolin

Well-known member
Dec 15, 2018
17,162
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#28
hmm

well if someone has a great idea for a matchmaking service and wants to do it themselves and run a website then go for it.
I dont work in HR or a recruitment agency but just sounds kinda the same.

The only thing Ive done that ever worked was suggest to teachers that they do buddy reading in their classes (with another class) whereby, both teachers came with their classes to the library. The older class selected books to read with the younger class.

Then the teachers selected the buddy for the older child. Sometimes because of numbers the older child had two buddies.

then they introduced themselves to each other all sat in pairs or groups and read books together.

Im not saying this is matchmaking like the OP is after but its where the teachers got together and wanted a good outcome for their children and they got the benefit. Because children just dont naturally go up to someone in their peer group and say do you want to read with me. But when its directed or facilitated by teachers they lose that shyness. Also the older ones have something to teach or model, and the younger have someone to look up to and care for them...they arent going to be bullied.
 

ChristianTonyB

Well-known member
Jan 27, 2022
1,133
413
83
Tin Can Bay
#29
Thank you for the responses guys. I got what I wanted. I've thought of everything that's been said, before you've said it, and I suspect that is of the Lord's doing. You've given me plenty of reasons to see why it wouldn't work for you. I won't be responding to any further comment regarding my post.
 

tourist

Senior Member
Mar 13, 2014
38,911
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Tennessee
#30
I do not know of such a site. I can only think of Christian Mingle but I think the site is open to everyone.

As a female, I would not be comfortable providing proof of identity, photo ID, or post code on/to the website, much less this information being viewable to strangers on the site. I think this is just something you have to find out in the first couple of dates in person. I would be cautious with post code until later.
I fully agree with your estimation.
 

Lynx

Folksy yet erudite
Aug 13, 2014
20,757
6,165
113
#31
Thank you for the responses guys. I got what I wanted. I've thought of everything that's been said, before you've said it, and I suspect that is of the Lord's doing. You've given me plenty of reasons to see why it wouldn't work for you. I won't be responding to any further comment regarding my post.
What I been tellin you from the git-go, dawg, but you kept brushin me off. It took other people breakin it down real small and makin long essays to get through to ya.
 

cinder

Senior Member
Mar 26, 2014
4,197
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#32
What I been tellin you from the git-go, dawg, but you kept brushin me off. It took other people breakin it down real small and makin long essays to get through to ya.
I'm not sure we actually convinced him it was a bad idea, just that this was the wrong group to keep pitching it to. We're probably just not spiritual enough to qualify for membership in that theoretical community.
 

Lynx

Folksy yet erudite
Aug 13, 2014
20,757
6,165
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#33
I'm not sure we actually convinced him it was a bad idea, just that this was the wrong group to keep pitching it to. We're probably just not spiritual enough to qualify for membership in that theoretical community.
My relief is immeasurable.
 

Butterflyyy

Well-known member
Oct 31, 2019
1,547
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#34
Thank you for the responses guys. I got what I wanted. I've thought of everything that's been said, before you've said it, and I suspect that is of the Lord's doing. You've given me plenty of reasons to see why it wouldn't work for you. I won't be responding to any further comment regarding my post.
In the UK there is a very professional organisation like you described called Friends First, I’m unsure how many members there are and also there are cost implications but it is of course better than typical dating sites in many respects.
I have to say, aswell, that I know of some amazing testimonies where God has brought 2 people together in truly phenomenal ways, and if He wants to do that then nothing can stop or hinder Him. It’s a difficult thing to wait or to feel lonely, but I do think the Lord is at work in our character through all of this. It’s good to focus on Him and to seek Him for other solutions to these problems like making more Christian friends, serving Him more, etc. Thank you for this post; it’s good for me to remind myself of this right now, as I regularly feel very alone. 🙂
 

Lanolin

Well-known member
Dec 15, 2018
17,162
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#35
The book I read 138 dates (lady went on 138 dates before finding the ONE) used e-harmoney, tinder, and match.com

I dont think she was a christian though, the most famous of those would be christian cafe or christian mingle. A movie was actually made of Christian Mingle starring Jennifer Love Hewitt.

If you are dealing with hundreds if not thousands of applicants, then running a matchmaking website service would take a LOT of time.

I know with job hunting, that also takes time. Sometimes you apply and never hear anything back, or only receive replies months later. Job Recruitment agencies can be hit and miss. sometimes leads never go anywhere. Its actually worse than looking for a missing person, because you dont even KNOW where that person is but worse, you dont even know what this person really looks like or what their name is.
 

Butterflyyy

Well-known member
Oct 31, 2019
1,547
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#36
I was thinking last night🤔...the late Derek Prince had awesome testimonies of how God brought marriage about for him, not once but twice after his first, dear wife Lydia went to be with the Lord.
The book is called, ‘ God Is A Matchmaker.’
I’m so blessed by this thread lol it’s made me want to order the book, and I really need to get back into reading! 🤗
I read a wonderful book by Lydia Prince called,’ Appointment In Jerusalem.’ It was such a blessing.
I’m looking forward to reading Derek’s book now...🦋
 

Lanolin

Well-known member
Dec 15, 2018
17,162
5,782
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#37
I was thinking last night🤔...the late Derek Prince had awesome testimonies of how God brought marriage about for him, not once but twice after his first, dear wife Lydia went to be with the Lord.
The book is called, ‘ God Is A Matchmaker.’
I’m so blessed by this thread lol it’s made me want to order the book, and I really need to get back into reading! 🤗
I read a wonderful book by Lydia Prince called,’ Appointment In Jerusalem.’ It was such a blessing.
I’m looking forward to reading Derek’s book now...🦋
i remember reading that book
I think that Dereks need for a wife was incidental to Gods need for him to have a ministry partner to do Gods work. I think Lydia's ministry was just the right match for Derek's.

Even if they didnt get married they might have worked together anyway.
 

Lanolin

Well-known member
Dec 15, 2018
17,162
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#38
I recall another couple, the Garetts. God bought them together to do a music ministry. They were both equal partners in it.
 

Magenta

Senior Member
Jul 3, 2015
43,328
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#39
the late Derek Prince had awesome testimonies of how God brought marriage about
for him, not once but twice after his first, dear wife Lydia went to be with the Lord.
The same was true for Elizabeth Elliot also :)
 

Lanolin

Well-known member
Dec 15, 2018
17,162
5,782
113
#40
The Garetts met at a Youth for Christ rally

By the time I became a christian, I was to old for Youth for Christ and all those events where young people go. So I guess when you are older you just go to whatever other events churches put on if you want to meet others your own age. One of the annoying things is a lot of churches only put on separate events for women cos they assume that women are all married when they are older and already have husbands.

https://www.scriptureinsong.org/our-story