A Misguided Attempt to Empower: Deborrah Cooper’s Lonely Black Church Woman Blames Black Women for their Singleness

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wO4yZg0I_S4&feature=related

I am single black church woman. I go to church on Sunday morning because I need to hear a word from God. I need to know that there is hope in the world. I need to know that when “my body is ailing” as the old folks say and my childhood traumas—daddy beating momma—keep me awake at night that there is a contemplative word of peace, healing, stillness, redemption, and salvation is spoken to let me know that I can make it through, yet, another week. I go to church because on its most good day holding constant its homophobia, materialism, and patriarchy teaches people to be a more loving, caring, and community focused people. And of course, some churches do it better than others, but the point remains that there is an attempt to provide a collective healing space for both black men and black women.

So, when I read Deborrah Cooper’s article, The Black Church: How Black Churches Keep African American Women Single and Lonely, I was left in some ways flabbergasted by her blatant generalizations about single black church women and then equally disturbed by her many negative hackneyed expressions about the Black church which prompted me to say, “What is nuanced about her article that differentiates it from the numerous Nightline’s, CNN’s, and ABC’s news stories about the doom and gloom of being a single black woman?” What makes it stand apart from the many decades of telling single black women and unwed black mothers that they are responsible for their singleness?

And, all that I can surmise is nothing. There is nothing unique or empowering about this essay.

Of course, on the surface Cooper purports to empower black women—leave the patriarchal black church and you will find a good black man—but, she inevitability falls prey to the same paternal trappings of the Steve Harveys and Tyler Perrys of the world whereby you blame black women for their singleness and then tell them what they should be doing to get a good black man which often means playing literally by manmade rules.

Meaning, you, single church black woman, do everything and anything to gain the attention of non-church going black men.You stop going to church because men are at home watching the football game. You stop attending Bible study because all the things you need to know is found in the good book of Act like a Lady think like a Man. You stop praying to God on your knees because you realize that knee time is reserved only for swallowing his manhood (I borrowed this from my crass godmother). Ultimately, you stop seeking God who gives you strength because at the end of the day all you need is a good black man to solve all your problems. And because of this, at best, her conclusions are misguided and ill placed.

And once again, her blog is not unique or nuanced. However, what gives it its teeth—blog hits—is that it is a black woman saying what black men have been saying since Eve sinned—“Black woman, if you will only do what I say then all will be right with the world.” You see, oppression is more legitimate more palatable when you are able to get the oppressed to co-sign their oppression which Deborrah Cooper does with little equivocation.

In general, Ms. Cooper’s blog has sparked a holy uproar in cyberspace where either people are co-signing her rant or critiquing her many generalizations. One well known blogger, Boyce Watkins, wrote that, “Cooper’s article is built on a deeper resentment of both the black church and black men,” and I venture to say this is not totally true. Yes, she resents the church, and perhaps there is a level of resentment she has for black men, but her full anger (rather she knows this or not) is directed at black women.

Black women are the problem. They go to church. They allow black male ministers’ malevolency to flourish by tacit attendance. They teach Sunday school and bake pies to raise money for the children’s choir. They lay prostrate at the altar beseeching Jesus for help with their wayward sons. Yes, for Ms. Deborrah Cooper, the black woman is the problem because she comes to Sunday morning worship service, Tuesday night Bible study, Wednesday night church council meeting, and Thursday night choir rehearsal. But, they do all of this not in pursuit of a husband or because they have internalized their oppression, but in pursuit of faith that says, “Though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I shall fear no evil because God is with me.”

And perhaps, I am romanticizing black church women’s love affair with the church, but the point remains that most often black women attend church not to find a man, but to find a God. And let me say this, I agree with her belief that that we must challenge patriarchy in the church, but you don’t do that by telling black women to leave the church and go find a man in a sports bar or by caricaturing church going black men as sexual predators, luckless bastards, and ex convicts who are lucky to be non-incarcerated black men. As I stated earlier, on its most good day, the black church, holding constant its homophobia, materialism, and patriarchy teaches men to be a more loving and caring husbands, fathers, and brothers.

The way you challenge patriarchy in the black church is how you challenge it in other environments (i.e. Political Arena, in Relationships, on the Job, and at Home) by being critical women of faith who like Queen Vashti refuse to acquiesce . . . to bow . . . to submit to violence simply because her husband commanded her to do so. You challenge patriarchy in the church and other environments by telling women to pursue and to listen to “something within,” that strengthens their ability speak out. You challenge patriarchy in the church and other environments by working to educate both men and women on how male privilege works. This is how you challenge patriarchy . . . you change albeit raise people’s consciousness about  gender and oppression.

But, what I find interesting about this “new round” of media attention on black women being single is that it is non-discriminatory in the length it will go to paint single and unwed black women as desperate and incomplete women. Meaning, even my attendance at church is prefaced on my desire to find a man. As I’ve said in a previous blog there is a political project a foot to make single and unwed black women feel woefully inadequate without a man and Deborrah Cooper’s article is yet another demonstration of this open season on single and unwed black women.

Let the church say, Amen.

  • I am shocked at your blatant misrepresentation of what is the most revealing and honest portrayal of the Institutional Black Church that I’ve ever read! Everything about that article is different, including the fact that she does not BLAME Black women for their singleness, she blames their pastors and ministers the guys she feels are manipulating their minds and behaviors using “scripture”. You are very young and have not spent a decade or more of your life waiting for God to send you a husband. Others of us have.

    And I found the article to be 100% on point from the types of men in black churches to the high numbers of single black women sitting in the pews every week praying for love to come and on to the total lack of heterosexual black males in churches for us to date and marry.

    It was not until I got outside of the church that I found my husband. A man that had been asking me out for 11 years, but I would never say “yes” just because he didn’t go to church. To me that meant he was not walking with the Lord and I was told to seek a man that was. My husband and I have been married for 2 years now and I hate that I wasted more than a decade of my life on my knees for no reason. He has a potty mouth sometimes, he refuses to go to church, and on Sundays he watches sports. But I have never ever even dreamed of having someone that loves me so tenderly, so thoroughly and who treats me like a queen every single day. I am truly blessed.

    I suggest that mature adults read the article for themselves and keep in mind the age group of this reviewer. She is not of the age group affected by a decade or more in church, having family and friends ask you when you are going to get married, and crying of loneliness trying to fill that void with church. Baby girl, you ain’t been in it so you can’t speak on it. I have and I know Ms. Cooper is right on time.

  • I am shocked at your blatant misrepresentation of what is the most revealing and honest portrayal of the Institutional Black Church that I’ve ever read! Everything about that article is different, including the fact that she does not BLAME Black women for their singleness, she blames their pastors and ministers the guys she feels are manipulating their minds and behaviors using “scripture”. You are very young and have not spent a decade or more of your life waiting for God to send you a husband. Others of us have.

    And I found the article to be 100% on point from the types of men in black churches to the high numbers of single black women sitting in the pews every week praying for love to come and on to the total lack of heterosexual black males in churches for us to date and marry.

    It was not until I got outside of the church that I found my husband. A man that had been asking me out for 11 years, but I would never say “yes” just because he didn’t go to church. To me that meant he was not walking with the Lord and I was told to seek a man that was. My husband and I have been married for 2 years now and I hate that I wasted more than a decade of my life on my knees for no reason. He has a potty mouth sometimes, he refuses to go to church, and on Sundays he watches sports. But I have never ever even dreamed of having someone that loves me so tenderly, so thoroughly and who treats me like a queen every single day. I am truly blessed.

    I suggest that mature adults read the article for themselves and keep in mind the age group of this reviewer. She is not of the age group affected by a decade or more in church, having family and friends ask you when you are going to get married, and crying of loneliness trying to fill that void with church. Baby girl, you ain’t been in it so you can’t speak on it. I have and I know Ms. Cooper is right on time.

  • Corey Jeffers

    I read Deborah Cooper’s article and I think you were dead on in your assessment. I think Ms. Cooper has a problem with God and his church. The Black Church is not perfect, but many of those single sister’s in church kept it all together because of church. They should be applauded. God Bless you!

    Corey Jeffers

  • Corey Jeffers

    I read Deborah Cooper’s article and I think you were dead on in your assessment. I think Ms. Cooper has a problem with God and his church. The Black Church is not perfect, but many of those single sister’s in church kept it all together because of church. They should be applauded. God Bless you!

    Corey Jeffers

  • Cassie

    “I am single black church woman. I go to church on Sunday morning because I need to hear a word from God.but the point remains that most often black women attend church not to find a man, but to find a God.”

    This sounds like someone who has drank/swallowed the poison of the religious institution of the ‘Church’ but has totally no idea about spirituality or even the God she talks so passionately about. “God is a spirit” Why do so many folks who claim to believe in God, praise him, worship him, tend to forget that? God is not confined in the 4 walls of a building and no man/woman/or child has the exclusive access to the word of God. If nothing else, Ms. Cooper has gotten folks to evaluate what they are doing in the church? Many go, but few understand why they go. They say all the ‘canned responses’ but when it boils down to it, they don’t really know why they go to church other than it is what they’re used to doing. It’s a ritual. Because if they truly had a ‘spiritual relationship with God’ they would know, that he is not confined in a building. They would know that religion is not Godly, but actually ‘man-made’ So when I read this, I just have to dismiss everything else this woman has said, because she has lost sight of what spirituality and God relationship is about. She’s about conforming the religious structure of the church. People like her, won’t ever ‘get it’. They’re like those Pharasees who didn’t get Jesus, because they were mired down in the ‘religious structure, couldn’t see the forest for the trees. All I can say is ‘them that have ears let them hear.

  • Cassie

    “I am single black church woman. I go to church on Sunday morning because I need to hear a word from God.but the point remains that most often black women attend church not to find a man, but to find a God.”

    This sounds like someone who has drank/swallowed the poison of the religious institution of the ‘Church’ but has totally no idea about spirituality or even the God she talks so passionately about. “God is a spirit” Why do so many folks who claim to believe in God, praise him, worship him, tend to forget that? God is not confined in the 4 walls of a building and no man/woman/or child has the exclusive access to the word of God. If nothing else, Ms. Cooper has gotten folks to evaluate what they are doing in the church? Many go, but few understand why they go. They say all the ‘canned responses’ but when it boils down to it, they don’t really know why they go to church other than it is what they’re used to doing. It’s a ritual. Because if they truly had a ‘spiritual relationship with God’ they would know, that he is not confined in a building. They would know that religion is not Godly, but actually ‘man-made’ So when I read this, I just have to dismiss everything else this woman has said, because she has lost sight of what spirituality and God relationship is about. She’s about conforming the religious structure of the church. People like her, won’t ever ‘get it’. They’re like those Pharasees who didn’t get Jesus, because they were mired down in the ‘religious structure, couldn’t see the forest for the trees. All I can say is ‘them that have ears let them hear.

  • Shakti

    Interesting article…fascninating rebut. I tend to agree with some of the indictments of the Black Church. I hope we can all admit that there is dysfunction in the structure and content of church so that it stifles people in some aspects of their lives if they don’t have a consciousness to rise above it. But the church isn’t THAT bad (I hope.), and black women are not “to blame”, but are responsible – as we all are – for their state. The church didn’t cause that necessarily.

  • Shakti

    Interesting article…fascninating rebut. I tend to agree with some of the indictments of the Black Church. I hope we can all admit that there is dysfunction in the structure and content of church so that it stifles people in some aspects of their lives if they don’t have a consciousness to rise above it. But the church isn’t THAT bad (I hope.), and black women are not “to blame”, but are responsible – as we all are – for their state. The church didn’t cause that necessarily.

  • Joe

    Fallon thanks for posting this, i read Deborah’s article and was appalled at the amount of assumptions and flawed logic in this article. Especially about the kind of men who attend black churches. I have attended church most of my life and do not fall into any of those categories, some of the strongest and most courageous men i have ever met have … been men i met at church. I really believed that this lady is scarred from her past and is both mad at God and men in general, that’s just my take ….

  • Joe

    Fallon thanks for posting this, i read Deborah’s article and was appalled at the amount of assumptions and flawed logic in this article. Especially about the kind of men who attend black churches. I have attended church most of my life and do not fall into any of those categories, some of the strongest and most courageous men i have ever met have … been men i met at church. I really believed that this lady is scarred from her past and is both mad at God and men in general, that’s just my take ….

  • Monica

    Amen Fallon! Amen!

  • Monica

    Amen Fallon! Amen!

  • Cassie

    Joe, if you don’t fall into any of those categories, why are you posting. You fall in the 2% Deborrah did say 98% of men fall into 4 categories. Just because you don’t fall in line with the 98% doesn’t negate the fact that by and large others do. The fact remains that this is true, and it’s amazing to me, how people give all the dysfunction/corruption that goes on in the church a pass. Yeah this goes on but…. it ain’t that bad soo let’s just act like it doesn’t happen and keep on going. Huh? Would you be tolerant of this type of ‘ish’ on your job? Then why accept it when it comes to your soul which is far more important. Wow, people have lost the way.
    Joe you’re just appalled because the author had the audacity to criticize the church practices (something that should have been done long ago. Shouldn’t you be more appalled at the corruption and hypocrisy and everything that is NOT Godly that goes on in the church, rather than being appalled at someone who has the guts to stand up and say something about it? Why are folks so blind and complicit?

  • Cassie

    Joe, if you don’t fall into any of those categories, why are you posting. You fall in the 2% Deborrah did say 98% of men fall into 4 categories. Just because you don’t fall in line with the 98% doesn’t negate the fact that by and large others do. The fact remains that this is true, and it’s amazing to me, how people give all the dysfunction/corruption that goes on in the church a pass. Yeah this goes on but…. it ain’t that bad soo let’s just act like it doesn’t happen and keep on going. Huh? Would you be tolerant of this type of ‘ish’ on your job? Then why accept it when it comes to your soul which is far more important. Wow, people have lost the way.
    Joe you’re just appalled because the author had the audacity to criticize the church practices (something that should have been done long ago. Shouldn’t you be more appalled at the corruption and hypocrisy and everything that is NOT Godly that goes on in the church, rather than being appalled at someone who has the guts to stand up and say something about it? Why are folks so blind and complicit?

  • Cassie

    Shakti “I hope we can all admit that there is dysfunction in the structure and content of church so that it stifles people in some aspects of their lives if they don’t have a consciousness to rise above it.”

    Looks like this is a dream that won’t happen as a whole Shakti, people are so entrenched in the institution of religion that they can’t see the forest for the trees. Folks were raised to ‘not spute the Biblical teaching’ so they blindly follow, never once questioning Why they weren’t allowed to ask questions. SMH.

    Shakti” But the church isn’t THAT bad (I hope.), and black women are not “to blame”, but are responsible – as we all are – for their state. The church didn’t cause that necessarily.”

    How well do you know historically how the establishment of “The church” has negatively impacted this world? Did you know the Biblical teachings were used to endorse slavery, deny women’s rights, denounce black folks as humans and that’s just three things. This is why folks are told not to ‘question’ because if people start asking questions instead of blindly following, if enough people did it, there would be a revolution of enlightment. And yes, the church is THAT BAD… I grew up in a southern Baptist church, and got to see how churches operated on a local/district/state/national level by going to many conferences and conventions. The church needs to be overhauled and the moneychangers, chased out. It’s 2010 and all these traditional ideas where women are under men’s thumbs is antiquated. Women listen and trust their pastor to interpret the scripture for them, and when that pastor is telling women to do something not for the woman’s personal benefit but for the benefit of the church, then it’s the church’s fault. Which is why women should read and interpret the bible for themselves and stop acting as though they have no discernament and can’t read the scripture without a minister telling them what to do how to think. Shoot, anybody can be a minister that doesn’t mean anythinig. Rev Ron is a minister. lol.

  • Cassie

    Shakti “I hope we can all admit that there is dysfunction in the structure and content of church so that it stifles people in some aspects of their lives if they don’t have a consciousness to rise above it.”

    Looks like this is a dream that won’t happen as a whole Shakti, people are so entrenched in the institution of religion that they can’t see the forest for the trees. Folks were raised to ‘not spute the Biblical teaching’ so they blindly follow, never once questioning Why they weren’t allowed to ask questions. SMH.

    Shakti” But the church isn’t THAT bad (I hope.), and black women are not “to blame”, but are responsible – as we all are – for their state. The church didn’t cause that necessarily.”

    How well do you know historically how the establishment of “The church” has negatively impacted this world? Did you know the Biblical teachings were used to endorse slavery, deny women’s rights, denounce black folks as humans and that’s just three things. This is why folks are told not to ‘question’ because if people start asking questions instead of blindly following, if enough people did it, there would be a revolution of enlightment. And yes, the church is THAT BAD… I grew up in a southern Baptist church, and got to see how churches operated on a local/district/state/national level by going to many conferences and conventions. The church needs to be overhauled and the moneychangers, chased out. It’s 2010 and all these traditional ideas where women are under men’s thumbs is antiquated. Women listen and trust their pastor to interpret the scripture for them, and when that pastor is telling women to do something not for the woman’s personal benefit but for the benefit of the church, then it’s the church’s fault. Which is why women should read and interpret the bible for themselves and stop acting as though they have no discernament and can’t read the scripture without a minister telling them what to do how to think. Shoot, anybody can be a minister that doesn’t mean anythinig. Rev Ron is a minister. lol.

  • You might not always like Deborrah’s frankness, but much of what she said was true. Here’s the problem with the Black Community hearing truth: The Black Community et al. does not like to air its dirty laundry, because they don’t want to have to CLEAN it. I interviewed Deborrah about this subject the same day she released the essay. You can hear more of her here: http://beyondblackwhite.wordpress.com/2010/06/13/is-there-a-conspiracy-in-the-traditional-black-church-to-keep-black-women-single-and-lonely/

  • You might not always like Deborrah’s frankness, but much of what she said was true. Here’s the problem with the Black Community hearing truth: The Black Community et al. does not like to air its dirty laundry, because they don’t want to have to CLEAN it. I interviewed Deborrah about this subject the same day she released the essay. You can hear more of her here: http://beyondblackwhite.wordpress.com/2010/06/13/is-there-a-conspiracy-in-the-traditional-black-church-to-keep-black-women-single-and-lonely/

  • “The way you challenge patriarchy in the black church is how you challenge it in other environments (i.e. Political Arena, in Relationships, on the Job, and at Home) by being critical women of faith who like Queen Vashti refuse to acquiesce . . . to bow . . . to submit to violence simply because her husband commanded her to do so. You challenge patriarchy in the church and other environments by telling women to pursue and to listen to “something within,” that strengthens their ability speak out. You challenge patriarchy in the church and other environments by working to educate both men and women on how male privilege works. This is how you challenge patriarchy . . . you change albeit raise people’s consciousness about gender and oppression.”

    Here, Here, Fallon! Thanks so much for this analysis! Anyone who follows your writing knows that you have no qualms about critiquing the black church, the bible or black ministers–particularly the role all three have in further entrenching gender oppression. The issue is not that Cooper is critiquing the church; it’s how she does it: using the same tired rules of patriarchy that she claims to critique in the article. Evidently, instead of following the rules of patriarchy in the church, I’m instead supposed to go the Sports Bar on Sundays and follow the rules of patriarchy there. So, the cure from being birthed and bred on patriarchy is to eat that mess from a different plate? Nope. I ain’t buying it. Thankfully, I know a good many thinking women of faith who aren’t buying it either.

    Even at the risk of being considered a tooth-and-nail defender of the church (which, I am not), I could go on an on about the faulty premise on which Cooper’s article is based: that all black women go to church to find a man. That the depth of the spirituality of those of us in the church goes only as deep as our desperation for a man. It’s when I read claims like this that I wish my grandmother (yes, a full fledged mama of the church) used the computer. For only she would have the words to reign down hell on anyone who called themselves having the tits to reduce her leadership in the church down to a ploy to get a man. In the words and lip smack of Sarah Davenport, “Chile, please.”

  • “The way you challenge patriarchy in the black church is how you challenge it in other environments (i.e. Political Arena, in Relationships, on the Job, and at Home) by being critical women of faith who like Queen Vashti refuse to acquiesce . . . to bow . . . to submit to violence simply because her husband commanded her to do so. You challenge patriarchy in the church and other environments by telling women to pursue and to listen to “something within,” that strengthens their ability speak out. You challenge patriarchy in the church and other environments by working to educate both men and women on how male privilege works. This is how you challenge patriarchy . . . you change albeit raise people’s consciousness about gender and oppression.”

    Here, Here, Fallon! Thanks so much for this analysis! Anyone who follows your writing knows that you have no qualms about critiquing the black church, the bible or black ministers–particularly the role all three have in further entrenching gender oppression. The issue is not that Cooper is critiquing the church; it’s how she does it: using the same tired rules of patriarchy that she claims to critique in the article. Evidently, instead of following the rules of patriarchy in the church, I’m instead supposed to go the Sports Bar on Sundays and follow the rules of patriarchy there. So, the cure from being birthed and bred on patriarchy is to eat that mess from a different plate? Nope. I ain’t buying it. Thankfully, I know a good many thinking women of faith who aren’t buying it either.

    Even at the risk of being considered a tooth-and-nail defender of the church (which, I am not), I could go on an on about the faulty premise on which Cooper’s article is based: that all black women go to church to find a man. That the depth of the spirituality of those of us in the church goes only as deep as our desperation for a man. It’s when I read claims like this that I wish my grandmother (yes, a full fledged mama of the church) used the computer. For only she would have the words to reign down hell on anyone who called themselves having the tits to reduce her leadership in the church down to a ploy to get a man. In the words and lip smack of Sarah Davenport, “Chile, please.”

  • Fallon W.

    Hello Deborrah Cooper aka Cimone Humphries and fellow Deborrah Cooper Cronies,

    Firstly, if you consider your blog the most “honest portrayal of the Institutional Black Church,” then I would sincerely suggest that you widen your reading and perhaps take a look at works by Katie Cannon, Renita Weems, Pauli Murray, and Kelly Brown Douglass because their work detail the intricacies of patriarchy and homophobia in the Black Church.

    Secondly, throughout your comment, you consistently state that you are not blaming black women for their singleness, but are holding accountable black male pastors for their “scriptural” manipulation. However, you literally fall upon your own sword when you begin to tell single church black women what they need to be doing to get a good black man. The same mental manipulation and paternalism you charge black male ministers with is the exact same thing you are guilty of in your blog. But, you are doubly guilty because you pander the concept of empowerment.

    And, thirdly, let me say this so that there is no confusion or misunderstanding on your part, my age has nothing to do with my critique of your incendiary blog that generalizes single black church women and churching going black men. It is not difficult to render charges against your blog because it smells of simplicity beginning with your generalizations and ending with your kindergarten understanding of patriarchy.

    And let me co-sign, Jessica’s grandmother, “Chile, please.”

  • Fallon W.

    Hello Deborrah Cooper aka Cimone Humphries and fellow Deborrah Cooper Cronies,

    Firstly, if you consider your blog the most “honest portrayal of the Institutional Black Church,” then I would sincerely suggest that you widen your reading and perhaps take a look at works by Katie Cannon, Renita Weems, Pauli Murray, and Kelly Brown Douglass because their work detail the intricacies of patriarchy and homophobia in the Black Church.

    Secondly, throughout your comment, you consistently state that you are not blaming black women for their singleness, but are holding accountable black male pastors for their “scriptural” manipulation. However, you literally fall upon your own sword when you begin to tell single church black women what they need to be doing to get a good black man. The same mental manipulation and paternalism you charge black male ministers with is the exact same thing you are guilty of in your blog. But, you are doubly guilty because you pander the concept of empowerment.

    And, thirdly, let me say this so that there is no confusion or misunderstanding on your part, my age has nothing to do with my critique of your incendiary blog that generalizes single black church women and churching going black men. It is not difficult to render charges against your blog because it smells of simplicity beginning with your generalizations and ending with your kindergarten understanding of patriarchy.

    And let me co-sign, Jessica’s grandmother, “Chile, please.”

  • Marsha G.

    Fallon W–your comments are so well said, all I can do is say “Amen!”

  • Marsha G.

    Fallon W–your comments are so well said, all I can do is say “Amen!”

  • Traci R.

    Wow you were able to articulate fully my own frustrations with that article. It had be eating at me for awhile and now I’m satisfied that I can make sense of what I was feeling about it. Well said!

  • Traci R.

    Wow you were able to articulate fully my own frustrations with that article. It had be eating at me for awhile and now I’m satisfied that I can make sense of what I was feeling about it. Well said!

  • Marc V.

    “Meaning, you, single church black woman, do everything and anything to gain the attention of non-church going black men.You stop going to church because men are at home watching the football game. You stop attending Bible study because all the things you need to know is found in the good book of Act like a Lady think like a Man. You stop praying to God on your knees because you realize that knee time is reserved only for swallowing his manhood (I borrowed this from my crass godmother). Ultimately, you stop seeking God who gives you strength because at the end of the day all you need is a good black man to solve all your problems. And because of this, at best, her conclusions are misguided and ill placed.”

    WOW!! Although this IS what D. Cooper meant, I don’t think it has to be that way. Is there some reason women cant find a good man out of church and still believe in God/go to church? I have mixed feelings on this whole subject. I live a very christian lifestyle.(Mom is a pianist and G-mother was a minister)I choose to live that way purposefully.

    I do NOT attend church anymore but have been eliminated from some of the best women I have ever known dating pool because I don’t like the way the church(not the religion)portrays itself to be the MOST important ideal in most black women’s lives(this is not saying that I want to be, either). I rarely drink, have my own small business, no children and really want to date a good christian, church-going woman, but it seems that because I don’t go to church I am a pariah to them!

    Are there any of you out there that can temper your church with your life? I guess what I am trying to say is that while D.Cooper goes too far, so does the church….

    I will wait in patience for one who can have a relationship with me AND her church. Hope you are out there…

  • Marc V.

    “Meaning, you, single church black woman, do everything and anything to gain the attention of non-church going black men.You stop going to church because men are at home watching the football game. You stop attending Bible study because all the things you need to know is found in the good book of Act like a Lady think like a Man. You stop praying to God on your knees because you realize that knee time is reserved only for swallowing his manhood (I borrowed this from my crass godmother). Ultimately, you stop seeking God who gives you strength because at the end of the day all you need is a good black man to solve all your problems. And because of this, at best, her conclusions are misguided and ill placed.”

    WOW!! Although this IS what D. Cooper meant, I don’t think it has to be that way. Is there some reason women cant find a good man out of church and still believe in God/go to church? I have mixed feelings on this whole subject. I live a very christian lifestyle.(Mom is a pianist and G-mother was a minister)I choose to live that way purposefully.

    I do NOT attend church anymore but have been eliminated from some of the best women I have ever known dating pool because I don’t like the way the church(not the religion)portrays itself to be the MOST important ideal in most black women’s lives(this is not saying that I want to be, either). I rarely drink, have my own small business, no children and really want to date a good christian, church-going woman, but it seems that because I don’t go to church I am a pariah to them!

    Are there any of you out there that can temper your church with your life? I guess what I am trying to say is that while D.Cooper goes too far, so does the church….

    I will wait in patience for one who can have a relationship with me AND her church. Hope you are out there…

  • Mark V. in response to your question regarding being with a woman: I think women do a terrible job at relaying to a man what church represents to them. For me its not about just “going to church” its more about your character, how you treat a woman, how much of a leader you are, how you treat your family and children, how you go about doing things within your community. I learned about all these things in the church and I don’t find too many man that embodies EVERY single quality without having there been some direct correlation to being in church or have been raised. Do you even read your bible? basically how am I to be sure that you are the type of man that I should be with if I can’t be sure where your influence from? How do I know the minute times get heard you won’t look to your worldly friends for advice only to hear them say “leave her” How do I know that, I am protected?? again I will admit I could do a better job at explaining why church is important to me and for the person I date, this is the best I could explain it.

    I agree that the church lives in us and that the 4 walls should not define who we are as individuals. To me church is where I go to have corporate prayer and worship, the word says when 3 or more gather there is power. Prayer is powerful and yes I can pray by myself but there are times I don’t even have it in me to pray then what? Church is where I go to be uplifted, prayed for and encouraged. Where does my future husband go for encouragement when times get hard? the club??

  • Mark V. in response to your question regarding being with a woman: I think women do a terrible job at relaying to a man what church represents to them. For me its not about just “going to church” its more about your character, how you treat a woman, how much of a leader you are, how you treat your family and children, how you go about doing things within your community. I learned about all these things in the church and I don’t find too many man that embodies EVERY single quality without having there been some direct correlation to being in church or have been raised. Do you even read your bible? basically how am I to be sure that you are the type of man that I should be with if I can’t be sure where your influence from? How do I know the minute times get heard you won’t look to your worldly friends for advice only to hear them say “leave her” How do I know that, I am protected?? again I will admit I could do a better job at explaining why church is important to me and for the person I date, this is the best I could explain it.

    I agree that the church lives in us and that the 4 walls should not define who we are as individuals. To me church is where I go to have corporate prayer and worship, the word says when 3 or more gather there is power. Prayer is powerful and yes I can pray by myself but there are times I don’t even have it in me to pray then what? Church is where I go to be uplifted, prayed for and encouraged. Where does my future husband go for encouragement when times get hard? the club??

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