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The San Francisco Bay Area is widely considered one of the most desirable places for single professionals to live. It is a place where people come to better their careers, pursue new opportunities, and connect relationally with others. 

Unfortunately, the pandemic put a halt to quite a few of those things, and as a result it took a particularly strong emotional toll on the lives of singles worldwide.

TIME magazine article by Belinda Luscombe from April 2021 explains how the pandemic amplified loneliness and stress for singles and curbed the fun aspects of single life. Loneliness affects us emotionally, physically, and spiritually. As Luscombe writes in the article, “Loneliness has long been believed to increase people’s vulnerability to such mental disorders as depression, anxiety, chronic stress, insomnia and even dementia.”

Much-needed time together for Bay Area singles

I yearn to come and be face-to-face with you and get to know you. For I long to impart to you the gift of the Spirit that will empower you to stand strong in your faith.  Now, this means that when we come together and are side by side, something wonderful will be released. We can expect to be co-encouraged and co-comforted by each other’s faith!

– Romans 1:11-12 TPT

The Bible makes it clear in this passage that we need face-to-face and mutually encouraging relationships to keep us strong in our faith. The more lonely we are, the weaker we become, which can lead to compromise and looking for love in the wrong places.

That’s why we are very grateful to have a church that is so diverse and able to meet the needs of various life stage groups, and why we were so happy to be able to encourage Bay Area singles with an event called “Saturday Night Vibes” this past weekend! 

For the first time in over two years, our single professionals ministry came together from all parts of the Bay Area. Over 250 men and women met up at the Santa Clara Convention Center to enjoy great music, an arcade, board games, art activities, and the NCAA March Madness basketball frenzy. 

After a couple of hours spent together at the Convention Center, people went in smaller groups to enjoy the rest of the evening nearby at places like San Pedro Square, Big Al’s, and San Pedro Social. 

In addition to all the fun and memorable activities, many people expressed that the most meaningful part of the night was reconnecting with old relationships and building new friendships. The event gave everyone involved a platform to connect with others in their life stage and enjoy the inspiration and encouragement that relationships can bring us.

Looking ahead

We are excited about having more times together similar to this with our Campus Field Day on April 30th, the return of our annual Shoreline Service on May 22nd, and our Y Camps in June, all of which will strengthen and encourage our faith.

Looking forward to seeing you all as we come together again this summer!

Till next time,

Sam & Tenea Manuel

Sam Manuel

Sam is a former outside linebacker for the San Francisco 49ers. Since retiring from the NFL, Sam has worked in the ministry serving communities in the Bay Area.

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