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Catholic Weddings

God's Plan for a Joy-Filled Marriage Seminar

I just went to "God's Plan for a Joy-Filled Marriage Seminar" sponsored by the Theology of the Body Institute.  I was lucky because there's a facility that opened near where I live so I didn't have to go to Lancaster where the Institute is to attend.  I absolutely recommend it!  It's not a class that was required by our Archdiocese but it was very informative as to how I can live a free, total, faithful, and fruitful marriage.  I dare say that it's preparing me more for marriage than Pre-Cana did.

If there's no seminar near you, you can get a book called The Good News about Sex and Marriage by Christopher West.  That's a good resource in your marriage prep, too.
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Re: God's Plan for a Joy-Filled Marriage Seminar

  • agapecarrieagapecarrie member
    Knottie Warrior 1000 Comments 100 Love Its Combo Breaker
    edited December 2011
    You can also buy the program yourself, or ask your parish church to buy it to keep in their library for their use.

    Clearheavens, who led it? you said it was by the institute...which usually they train other people to lead it.

    The institute certification program is week long classes held in quarryville (near lancaster) at a menonite retreat center. Going to those classes have been by far the best weeks of my life. It's much broader than marriage prep, as it helps to understand the broader scope of TOB--- as well as the fact that you can't really understand Christian marriage without undertsanding celibacy.


  • clearheavensclearheavens member
    Knottie Warrior 1000 Comments Name Dropper 5 Love Its
    edited December 2011
    I agree with you, agapecarrie!

    For your question, my teacher was Courtney and he was trained at the Institute.  He works for Ruah Woods, which is a retreat center in Cincinnati.
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  • agapecarrieagapecarrie member
    Knottie Warrior 1000 Comments 100 Love Its Combo Breaker
    edited December 2011
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/cultural-wedding-boards_catholic-weddings_gods-plan-joy-filled-marriage-seminar?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Cultural%20Wedding%20BoardsForum:615Discussion:eb131c4d-3761-47fd-92d2-66b65c378902Post:d0f806ba-c598-4672-8270-1412920abdb7">Re: God's Plan for a Joy-Filled Marriage Seminar</a>:
    [QUOTE]I agree with you,  agapecarrie ! For your question, my teacher was Courtney and he was trained at the Institute.  He works for Ruah Woods, which is a retreat center in Cincinnati.
    Posted by clearheavens[/QUOTE]


    Yes, I know ruah. They (she-the head of ruah I guess)was at the congress last week-- won an award. She's been on some of my classes.
  • edited December 2011
    This is the workbook we used for our first marriage preparation class and I LOVED it.  It has a lot of great information as well as a lot of reflection exercises for you and your fiancée or husband.
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  • Theresa626Theresa626 member
    1000 Comments
    edited December 2011
    Can you summarize exactly what they teach you at this seminar?  Is it for NFP? budgeting? communication?  What do they talk about? 
  • edited December 2011
    I may just have to check out that book. I have never heard of this before.
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  • clearheavensclearheavens member
    Knottie Warrior 1000 Comments Name Dropper 5 Love Its
    edited December 2011
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/cultural-wedding-boards_catholic-weddings_gods-plan-joy-filled-marriage-seminar?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Cultural%20Wedding%20BoardsForum:615Discussion:eb131c4d-3761-47fd-92d2-66b65c378902Post:05e827a7-5927-4e28-b3ef-50a50293d613">Re: God's Plan for a Joy-Filled Marriage Seminar</a>:
    [QUOTE]I may just have to check out that book. I have never heard of this before.
    Posted by MissySue20[/QUOTE]

    <div>That makes me very happy to hear!  I want everyone to experience the greatness I learned through that book.  Christopher West, the author of that book, is the one who created the Theology of the Body Institute.</div>
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  • clearheavensclearheavens member
    Knottie Warrior 1000 Comments Name Dropper 5 Love Its
    edited December 2011
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/cultural-wedding-boards_catholic-weddings_gods-plan-joy-filled-marriage-seminar?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Cultural%20Wedding%20BoardsForum:615Discussion:eb131c4d-3761-47fd-92d2-66b65c378902Post:5d6e0485-c19c-4218-9311-450820ef68a7">Re: God's Plan for a Joy-Filled Marriage Seminar</a>:
    [QUOTE]Can you summarize exactly what they teach you at this seminar?  Is it for NFP? budgeting? communication?  What do they talk about? 
    Posted by Theresa626[/QUOTE]<div>
    </div><div><div><span style="color:#000000;font-family:Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif;font-size:12px;line-height:18px;border-collapse:collapse;" class="Apple-style-span">We didn't talk about budgeting and communication but here were the chapters in the workbook:</span></div><div><span style="color:#000000;font-family:Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif;font-size:12px;line-height:18px;border-collapse:collapse;" class="Apple-style-span">
    </span></div><div><span style="color:#000000;font-family:Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif;font-size:12px;line-height:18px;border-collapse:collapse;" class="Apple-style-span">PART I. Catholic Faith & Your Marriage</span></div><div><span style="color:#000000;font-family:Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif;font-size:12px;line-height:18px;border-collapse:collapse;" class="Apple-style-span">1. God's Plan for Marriage: "in the beginning:" Male and Female He Created Them</span></div><div><span style="color:#000000;font-family:Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif;font-size:12px;line-height:18px;border-collapse:collapse;" class="Apple-style-span">2. Christ Restores God's Plan for Marriage: Male & Female He Redeemed Them</span></div><div><span style="color:#000000;font-family:Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif;font-size:12px;line-height:18px;border-collapse:collapse;" class="Apple-style-span">3. What Are You Saying "I Do" to? The Basics of Marriage in the Church</span></div><div><span style="color:#000000;font-family:Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif;line-height:18px;font-size:12px;border-collapse:collapse;" class="Apple-style-span">
    </span></div><div><span style="color:#000000;font-family:Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif;line-height:18px;font-size:12px;border-collapse:collapse;" class="Apple-style-span">PART II. Sacramental Sexuality</span></div><div><span style="color:#000000;font-family:Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif;line-height:18px;font-size:12px;border-collapse:collapse;" class="Apple-style-span">1. The Joy of Sexual Honesty before Marriage</span></div><div><span style="color:#000000;font-family:Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif;line-height:18px;font-size:12px;border-collapse:collapse;" class="Apple-style-span">2. The Joy of Sexual Honesty within Marriage</span></div><div><span style="color:#000000;font-family:Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif;line-height:18px;font-size:12px;border-collapse:collapse;" class="Apple-style-span">3. Some Practical Benefits of Natural Family Planning</span></div>
    <div><span style="color:#000000;font-family:Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif;font-size:12px;line-height:18px;border-collapse:collapse;" class="Apple-style-span"><span style="border-style:initial;border-color:initial;font-size:12px;font-family:inherit;vertical-align:baseline;border-width:0px;padding:0px;margin:0px;">I'm not articulate at these things so I copied straight from their website:</span></span></div><div><span style="color:#000000;font-family:Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif;font-size:12px;line-height:18px;border-collapse:collapse;" class="Apple-style-span"><em style="border-style:initial;border-color:initial;font-weight:inherit;font-style:italic;font-size:12px;font-family:inherit;vertical-align:baseline;border-width:0px;padding:0px;margin:0px;">
    </em></span></div><div><span style="color:#000000;font-family:Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif;font-size:12px;line-height:18px;border-collapse:collapse;" class="Apple-style-span"><em style="border-style:initial;border-color:initial;font-weight:inherit;font-style:italic;font-size:12px;font-family:inherit;vertical-align:baseline;border-width:0px;padding:0px;margin:0px;">"God's Plan for a Joy-Filled Marriage</em> is a marriage preparation supplement that offers engaged couples a more complete understanding of God's glorious plan for marriage and human sexuality than perhaps any program available in the Church today. Based on Pope John Paul II's Theology of the Body, this program is intended to provide a key component of marriage preparation—catechesis in the theology of marriage and the gift of human sexuality."</span></div></div>
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  • clearheavensclearheavens member
    Knottie Warrior 1000 Comments Name Dropper 5 Love Its
    edited December 2011
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/cultural-wedding-boards_catholic-weddings_gods-plan-joy-filled-marriage-seminar?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Cultural%20Wedding%20BoardsForum:615Discussion:eb131c4d-3761-47fd-92d2-66b65c378902Post:4b6508e7-e67b-4641-b404-e5ecd489574a">Re: God's Plan for a Joy-Filled Marriage Seminar</a>:
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re: God's Plan for a Joy-Filled Marriage Seminar : Yes, I know ruah. They (she-the head of ruah I guess)was at the congress last week-- won an award. She's been on some of my classes.
    Posted by agapecarrie[/QUOTE]

    <div>Yeah, that's why Ruah Woods was closed that entire week!  My class was held immediately after they came back.</div>
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  • agapecarrieagapecarrie member
    Knottie Warrior 1000 Comments 100 Love Its Combo Breaker
    edited December 2011
    God's plan actually teaches what the sacrament of marriage is all about. It teaches the theology and purpose of it in the church. Most Catholics don't even know WHY they are married--- in the truest sense. (hint: so they can get each other to heaven, and get their kids there). They don't undersatnd the incarnation of Christ on the cross in their very bedroom--- giving of one's own body, to manifest a third person (trinity) that makes their love incarnate that you have to give it a name. The fact that earthly marriage only makes sense in light of celibacy.

    It pains me that general marriage prep is so dreadfully inadequate...
  • clearheavensclearheavens member
    Knottie Warrior 1000 Comments Name Dropper 5 Love Its
    edited December 2011
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/cultural-wedding-boards_catholic-weddings_gods-plan-joy-filled-marriage-seminar?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Cultural%20Wedding%20BoardsForum:615Discussion:eb131c4d-3761-47fd-92d2-66b65c378902Post:f9047f91-f745-4a6c-a4f8-70190dff6b6c">Re: God's Plan for a Joy-Filled Marriage Seminar</a>:
    [QUOTE]God's plan actually teaches what the sacrament of marriage is all about. It teaches the theology and purpose of it in the church. Most Catholics don't even know WHY they are married--- in the truest sense. (hint: so they can get each other to heaven, and get their kids there). They don't undersatnd the incarnation of Christ on the cross in their very bedroom--- giving of one's own body, to manifest a third person (trinity) that makes their love incarnate that you have to give it a name. The fact that earthly marriage only makes sense in light of celibacy. It pains me that general marriage prep is so dreadfully inadequate...
    Posted by agapecarrie[/QUOTE]

    <div>Exactly.</div><div>
    </div><div>God is an eternal exchange of love and he has destined us to share in that exchange forever.  Some couples don't see marriage as a way to help each other and their future children get to heaven.  To love as God loves us means to love your spouse freely (with no coersion, no shot gun wedding), totally (no reservation, no "ifs"), faithfully (will never leave, marriage is permanent), and fruitfully/life-givingly (be open to children).</div><div>
    </div><div>There's also a misunderstanding that if religious life is good, then sex is bad.  Definitely not!  Those who chose the celibate life share the same vocation to love as those who marry, but they manifest this love in a different way.  When they say "I do" to their religious vows, they're not saying "no" to sex but they're saying "there's something better" because they're devoting themselves entirely to the marriage of Christ and the Church.  They're forgoing earthly marriage for heavenly marriage.  They're proclaiming with their very lives that "the kingdom of God is real."  Their celibacy is living out the deepest meaning of sexuality, which is union with Christ and his Church.</div><div>
    </div><div>These are just some of the points that a short study about Theology of the Body will cover.</div>
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  • edited December 2011
    The one-day seminar is a required part of Marriage Preparation for the Diocese of Phoenix.  Since it is a new requirement as of 2010, I haven't heard much about it yet from other couples, so I'm really glad to hear such great things about it from you guys! 
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  • edited December 2011
    It is teaching you how to bring God into your marriage. It also discusses what the vows actually mean and how to create a loving, sexual relationship between you and your husband.
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  • edited December 2011
    This sounds like it would be a great book to get. Thanks for the info!
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