In our official communication channels, such as bulletin or website, we don’t introduce house church as being divided into single house church and married couple house church. However, in our conversations, I’ve often noticed people saying “single house church,” and I have unintentionally used it as well. So, I would like to ask everyone to avoid using the term “single house church” from now on. Instead, all house churches will be called based on their house church name. Here are a few reasons why we are doing this.
First of all, House Church is not grouped with the same demographics.. Unlike churches that do cell group or small group, we don’t group people into similar demographic and create a house church. Instead, we ask people to “choose” their house church. It is because we see that churches in the New Testament gathered at homes, not based on their demographics but based on their choice. The reason why there are house churches that are predominantly made up of singles or married couples is that most people join a house church that has members in similar demographic. But it happened because of their choice, not because it was forced. It makes sense to distinguish Adult House Church from Youth House Church for obvious reasons. But creating further demographic segregation in house church is not aligned with what we are trying to do.
Secondly, we consider all those who are in college/university as “adults”. In a traditional church, church often groups college students into a separate group, treating them as a “not a youth but not yet an adult.” However, in house church ministry, we do not divide single adults from married adults in their membership or status. That is why we allow singles to serve as a leader in team ministry or become part of the leadership team.
Thirdly, by doing this, we can avoid potential confusion that could come from married couple choosing to stay in their house church that is predominantly made up of singles. Many of our singles have graduated from university. Some of them might get married in a few years. If we keep using the term “single house church,” we could end up having a few married couples in “single” house church. Either they will feel out of place, or they will feel forced to move to a “married couple” house church against their choice.
We will continue to have events or ministry that primarily ministers to “singles” but not to “single house church.” Though this won’t have any drastic and immediate change now, this will prevent unwanted confusion in the future.