Nearly two-thirds of American adults believe it’s a good idea to live with one’s significant other before they get married as they see it as a rite of passage, according to a new report by The Barna Group.
The report, called Barna Trends 2017, shows that 65 percent of American adults say cohabitation is a good idea, compared to 35 percent who believe it’s not a good thing. And 57 percent say they either currently or have previously lived with their boyfriend or girlfriend.
Couples like to live together not just for convenience or cost-saving, but almost all adults see it as a rite of passage in the path to marriage, the study says. As many as 84 percent say the major reason for cohabitation is to test compatibility, while 62 percent say it did not reduce or increase the pressure to get married. Only 18 percent say it increased pressure.
The report also says that many women are leaving church due to various reasons, including competing priorities, busyness, changing family structures and a lack of emotional engagement or support.
Historically, men have been less likely to regularly attend church than women, says the report, noting that just over a decade ago, the gender gap was three unchurched men for every two unchurched women; fully 60 percent of unchurched people were men. But today, only 52 percent of the unchurched are men, it adds.
“One of the greatest challenges for the Church today is to make the gospel relevant to women,” the report quotes Christine Caine, evangelist and activist, as saying. “We are hemorrhaging a generation of women who have often been made to feel that they have a limited role to play in the Church. The landscape has changed dramatically for many women in the western world when it comes to their inclusion in and contribution to all sectors of society and decision making — but there has not necessarily been a corresponding shift in church.”
Click here to read more.
SOURCE: The Christian Post