Marriage is a wonderful thing! At St Alfred's we work hard to support and grow strong marriages. Our marriage preparation course is a part of this ministry. We require that all couples to be married at St Alfred's or by a staff member undertake this course.
What is the course?
The Marriage Preparation Course has five sessions and is set in a fantastic atmosphere. You will be served with coffee, tea and dessert in a romantic setting while listening to practical talks that are informative and fun, either given live or played on DVD.
There is never any group work and you will never be asked to share anything about your relationship with anyone other than your partner.
The Marriage Preparation Course was developed by Nicky and Sila Lee, co-authors of The Marriage Book and The Parenting Book. They have been married for over thirty years, have four children and are on the staff at Holy Trinity Brompton, London. They started The Marriage Preparation Course in 1985 and The Marriage Course in 1996. Both have spread with thousands of courses now running around the world.
They are also the co-authors of The Marriage Book which has sold over 150,000 copies since it was published in 2000.
The Marriage Preparation Course talks are presented through DVD talks featuring Nicky and Sila. Talks are interspersed with filmed clips of couples talking about their experiences of marriage and street interviews.
Over five sessions of the course you will discover practical tools to help you build the foundations for a lasting marriage. You will look at:
- the importance of commitment
- how to recognise and appreciate your differences
- the art of communication
- resolving conflict
- the importance of spending time together and nurturing your friendship
- making each other feel loved
- developing a good sexual relationship
- the importance of talking about your goals, values and dreams
For further information go to Relationship Central Australia at www.relationshipcentral.org.au
- Communication. This session helps couples see how important effective communication is for a strong marriage and how communication is affected by personality, family background and circumstances. Couples look at what it means to talk about their feelings and they practise listening to each other.
- Commitment. Commitment lies at the heart of the marriage covenant and is reflected in the marriage service vows. In this session couples consider the meaning of these vows and then look at how to live out this commitment through making quality time for each other on a regular basis and separating appropriately from their parents.
- Resolving Conflict. Conflict can either destroy a marriage or, if handled well, strengthen it. Couples consider how to handle anger, appreciate their differences, look for solutions together and practice forgiveness. Organising finances, a primary cause of conflict in marriage is also addressed.
- Keeping Love Alive. This session looks at how love must be deliberately nurtured in a marriage through couples nurturing their friendship, discovering how the other feels loved and developing their sexual relationship
- Shared Goals and Values. While appreciating their differences, couples need to agree on their goals and core values. In this session couples have the opportunity to discuss their priorities for the future, the roles they expect to fulfill and the building of spiritual togetherness.
Before the course starts you will be asked to complete a questionnaire This questionnaire will ask about different aspects of your relationship. It is not a test nor is it a predictor of whether your marriage will succeed or fail. It is a tool to help highlight any important issues that you would benefit from discussing before you get married.
It is by no means compulsory to complete the questionnaire but most couples find it very useful. Once you have completed it you will have the opportunity to discuss the results with a support couple.