It is commonly thought that the rate of divorce in the church is the same as the rate of divorce among those outside the church, supposedly a whopping 50 percent. According to Harvard-trained researcher Shaunti Feldhahn, though, the rate of divorce among church attenders is “maybe 15 percent, maybe 20 percent for all marriages.”
Feldhahn could find no actual evidence that the divorce rate in society at large and the church was an abysmal 50 percent. She spent eight years seeking the truth in this matter, and she came to dramatically different conclusions from what “common knowledge” describes. Feldhahn produced a book called The Good News About Marriage to debunk the discouraging notion that divorce in the church is around 50 percent.
Feldhahn describes the discouraged attitude many in the church had because of the false statistic:
For the average person in the congregation, there’s this subtle feeling like, ‘If that’s true: if on something as important as marriage, doing what the Bible says doesn’t change anything; what does that mean about the Bible?
Her husband, Jeff, describes the response of people once they hear the truth about the divorce statistic:
They go, ‘I can’t believe I believed this all these years. And I’ve heard it so many times. And I’ve heard it from the pulpit so many times.
Another encouraging statistic Shaunti Feldhahn shares is that eighty percent of marriages are happy, not 30 percent.
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These statistics show that the truth is radically different from what people have been hearing these years–and gives real hope to the married within the church.