A Marriage-Building Parish provides ways for couples to renew their commitment and on-going enrichment and education to help them grow.
Every opportunity is given to support, enrich and educate the married couples of the Parish. While some efforts might be “stand-alone,” others could be tailored for Adult Faith Formation, Baptismal preparation, Parish Marriage Retreats, or Days of Reflection. Support for existing marriage enrichment efforts are important as well.
Of importance to this Building Block, is the realization that communication skills education is critical to the health of any marriage. This ministry provides couple communication skills education to boost and strengthen the relationships of the couples who are already married.
This Team will serve to guide, facilitate and oversee the implementation of the An There are a number of curricula with this focus. Marriage education is our best way to teach couples how to love.
An ideal way to launch your Marriage Ministry is by using a fun, easy-toimplement Marriage Enrichment program with wide appeal to many couples. This will provide an opportunity to get your church excited about enriching marriages and recruit volunteers to learn and assist in future programs.
- Church Retreats for married couples are offered annually.
- Our Resource Library includes books and media offering support and help for marriage.
- Follow-up contact is made with newly married couples.
- Childcare is provided for marriage enrichment activities.
- Marriage programs include financial well-being.
- Church offers small groups to share vision, skills and support for the married.
- Adventures in Marriage or other skills program is offered throughout the year.
- Conduct marriage enrichment and/or education opportunities as a weekly support group, a monthly day of reflection, or a yearly workshop or retreat.
- Conduct a study group on the US Bishops’ Pastoral Letter MARRIAGE: Love & Life in the Divine Plan. Study guide available as well as copy of letter through USCCB Publ.
- Actively encourage couples to participate in at least 8 hours of marriage enrichment and/or education annually.
- Include the Church’s teachings on marriage in Adult Faith Formation including RCIA.
- Offer a THIS OLD SPOUSE Day of Reflection to minister to the needs of a generation of marriages that are facing the last years of their marriage. This Retreat Day will encourage participation in small groups as a way to receive and give support to one another. Schedule through MarriageBuilding USA.
- Consider offering Catholic Dates by John Bosio, or other effort for the young marrieds of your Parish. Offer childcare.
- Review other “Out of the Box” programs, Bible studies, and retreats land utilize as a simpler and yet very effective way to offer marriage education.
- Add a new Relationship and Marriage Education Program each year to broaden, deepen, and further enrich the marriage, making ongoing Relationship and Marriage Education a regular part of their married life.
U.S. Bishops’ Pastoral Letter on Marriage
In November 2009 the U.S. Catholic Bishops approved a pastoral letter called “Marriage: Love and Life in the Divine Plan.” The letter presents the essential points of Catholic teaching on marriage as a natural gift, as a sacrament, and as a public commitment between a man and a woman. It also discusses several contemporary challenges to marriage and how the Church addresses those challenges.
Click on image for text & study guides