UNITED STATES, Aug. 9 ( – In view of the pessimism American children have towards marriage, churches should exercise greater responsibility in teaching and preaching about it, says a recent article published in the Southern Baptist Convention’s Baptist Press. The comments come “in response to the recent annual report from the National Marriage Project, an initiative of Rutgers University and several private organizations,” writes Baptist Press in an article reprinted by the Conservative News Service.

“The desire of teenagers for a long-term marriage is greater than ever, but girls,  especially, have become more pessimistic about ever being able to have such a marriage, and both boys and girls have become much more accepting of alternatives to marriage’ such as cohabitation and single parenthood,” says Baptist Press. Explaining that modeling is the key to giving teenagers hope for marriage, Jon Walker, editor of HomeLife magazine, says that the church has set a pathetic example in recent years, allowing divorce to become as prevalent among Christians as it is outside the church. “Even ministers’ marriages are failing at an alarming rate,” protested Southern Bapist Barbara O’Chester, director of The Great Hills Retreat Ministry in Texas.