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After graduating with a theology degree from Fordham University in 2012, Stephanie Pennacchia, 24, joined the Jesuit Volunteer Corps in Los Angeles, where she worked at a drop-in center for teens experiencing homelessness.

Today she is as a social worker who assists chronically homeless adults and says she is looking for someone with whom she can discuss her work and her spirituality.

“It’s hard to express skepticism about that without sounding overly negative, because I’d like to get married, but it’s not a guarantee.” She says that when she’s able to ignore her friends’ Facebook status updates about relationships, marriages, and children, she recognizes the fullness of her life, as is, and tries not to worry too much about the future. “Just being open to people and experiences and meeting friends of friends makes sense to me.” As young adults move further from their college days, the natural social circles within which they may meet new people become less obvious.

Many seek out young adult events sponsored by Catholic groups, parishes, or dioceses in an effort to broaden their circle of friends.

“She need not be Catholic, but it helps.” His models for good relationships come, in part, from two unique sources: “I think the perfect Catholic relationship is George and Mary Bailey [from the film ].

She went for the speakers, the fellowship, and the info on theology of the body, but not necessarily to meet someone, she says. No matter what, she says, “I pray for myself and for my future spouse as we both are on our path to grow closer to the Lord, and if it is God’s will, we will meet when we are both ready.” Yet for other young adults, dating events geared specifically toward Catholics—or even general Catholic events—are less-than-ideal places to find a mate.And while many acknowledge that such venues might improve their chances of meeting a like-minded mate, most also say they’re not arriving with a game plan for spotting a spouse.“In a way, I am always looking,” says Rebecca Kania, 28.Upon my arrival at the bar, I immediately regretted it. “Huh, that’s sexy,” he said, taking another sip of his beer.The man who would be my date for the evening was already two drinks in, and he greeted me with an awkward hug. This particular gentleman didn’t turn out to be my soul mate.’ The community had some social capital, and it allowed you to be comfortable knowing what you would and wouldn’t have to make decisions about.My mother told me that her biggest worry on a date was what meal she could order so that she still looked pretty eating it.” Today, she says, young adults are bombarded with hyperromantic moments—like viral videos of proposals and over-the-top invitations to the prom—or hypersexualized culture, but there is not much in between.“Catholic events are not necessarily the best place to find potential Catholic dating partners,” says Christopher Jolly Hale, 25.“In fact, it can be a downright awkward experience.“I think what’s missing for young adults is the comfort of knowing what comes next,” Cronin says.“Years ago you didn’t have to think, ‘Do I need to make a sexual decision at the end of this date?