But anyway, I was looking up a perfectly innocent colloquialism – I don't remember what it was exactly – when I stumbled across an ad for the online dating site, ChristianMingle.com. I had seen the ad before, and rolled my eyes at the ludicrousness of it all. But upon seeing it again today, it got me thinking. If this one website is using ads like this to "reel in" lonely Christian singles, what other kinds of ads might be out there?
While I didn't actually visit any of these dating sites – after all, I am a happily married man – I was able to Google my way to locating a few more of these suspect web ads. Here are a few examples of what I found.
DISCLAIMER: I have a lot more commentary for these in my brain than I will put in print here. Most of them speak for themselves, so I'll reserve judgment. But just know – in my mind, I'm not reserving judgment. I'm judging pretty harshly actually. Also, this post is not intended to bash Christian dating websites as a whole. I'm sure there are some truly good ones out there that go about it all the right way. And I do have friends and family who have used sites like these and met their spouses. So I'm not hating on the sites so much as I am their marketing campaigns.
OK, so check out that last line again: "We screen for: married, felons, & atheists". Well, it is a Christian website, so you can't blame 'em for excluding atheists. Since the point of the site is to connect singles, it makes sense to screen out the already-married folks. Of course, not many people would want to knowingly date a felon, but let's say their crime was years ago, maybe even before they became a Christian. They've repented of their sin, it's completely in their past. So, now they're not allowed to date because of it? They're denied future happiness because of past mistakes, True.com? Unforgiveness much? Incidentally, I wonder if they've ever caught any wanted felons in their screenings. If you believe any of those "Dumbest Criminals" TV shows, it might not be too hard to fathom a wanted criminal registering on an online dating site.
This is the site for Christian guy who really wants to date Paris Hilton, but would prefer that she were a little more Christian. Let's see: Bleached-blonde hair, a little too much makeup, puckered-up "kiss me" lips, looks kinda drunk – yeah, that's about right.
Nothing overtly off with this ad, other than the wonky syntax."Like-minded Christians that are also single!" Wouldn't it read SO much better if they just said: "Like-minded Christian singles"? But that's just the hypersensitive grammarian in me rearing its ugly head again.
There's nothing really wrong with this ad, either, it's just a weird name for the site. Growing up, I always thought of "Big Church" as where you go when you're too old for Junior Church. My childhood church didn't have a youth program to speak of, so that was how it worked. Apparently, "Big Church" is now where you go for a "Christian relationship".
I'm shaking my head on this one, because I can't figure out what it is they're really "selling" here: Is it "true love through matchmaking", or white tank tops, or the girl wearing the tank top? It's just a little unsettling to me. That's all I'll say about this one.
7) Unknown Site:
Well, allrighty then! I guess if you're a flaming eyebrow/goth makeup/tongue stud kinda guy or girl, then this is the perfect Christian dating site for you! Gotta love how they completely took the Biblical reference out of context. The mixed-up theology throughout the ad is just mind-boggling.
8) Christian Mingle.com:
OK, so this site was by far the biggest "offender". I can't get inside the minds of these marketing people, so I'll just let the ads do the talking, with minimal commentary. At least I'll try to keep it minimal...
These two look like they're about to suck face while enthralled in a passionate embrace. I'm betting they're not planning on "waiting till marriage" judging by this picture.
Buxom female in low-cut tank top and cowgirl hat with a "come-hither" look in her eyes. Yeah, that just screams "take me to church", doesn't it? But, just to remind you that this is a Christian website, please note the "Jesus Christ is Lord" slogan at the top of the ad.
This blonde "beauty" looks like she might be more likely to be found on a street corner than a Sunday school class. Do they seriously think that this is the kind of girl that most Christian guys are looking for? Um, not really. And again with the "Jesus Christ Is Lord" banner. Really, people!
The first girl looks like she's seen better days. Showing every bit of thigh she has, wearing a low-cut top, and looking more than a little stoned. "Looking for Christian girls like her?" Again - um, not really. The other girl is about to bust out of her blouse, and looks like she might belong on an entirely different kind of website altogether. Just saying.
I think this one kinda speaks for itself. "Taking it slow" or "one step at a time" are apparently not the ultimate goal here. The goal is to "get loving"!
So, apparently this guy (or this lady) found the love of their life, but if they had seen you first, "Oh boy!" how things would have been different! Where were you when he (or she) was looking? Apparently, you weren't on ChristianCafe.com. But...you know...if things don't work out between these two...you might still have a chance. Lucky you!
Not to be outdone in the realm of – for lack of a better term – "religious dating websites", the Jewish and Muslim communities also have their own sites, as seen below:
That's good to know. Because, from what I hear, Jewish dating had become so difficult here lately.
The "matrimonial site" for shy Muslims. Marriage proposals by e-mail? Now that's what's up! Who you calling old-fashioned?