Marriage Enrichment & Resources
The Catholic Church cares about marriage. The Second Vatican Council said, “The intimate partnership of married life and love has been established by the Creator and qualified by His laws, and is rooted in the conjugal covenant of irrevocable personal consent. For, God Himself is the author of matrimony, endowed as it is with various benefits and purposes. Authentic married love is caught up into divine love and is governed and enriched by Christ’s redeeming power and the saving activity of the Church” (Gaudium et Spes, no. 48).
The Catholic Church cares about your marriage. Every marriage witnesses to God’s faithful, fruitful, and lasting love for His people. Marriage confers a myriad of benefits on a husband and wife, and on any children that they are blessed with.
Like all vocations, those called to marriage benefit from ongoing education and formation. The Diocese of Orange offers many resources for married couples to help strengthen the spouses’ love for each other. Please look through the following resources to see what is available to help enrich and strengthen your marriage.
FOR NEWLY MARRIED COUPLES
As a couple traverse the many and varied states of life they continue to learn how to be committed to each other. Here are some helpful links for those couples who are newly married (0 – 5 years) and want to take the necessary steps to keep the marriage relationship alive and growing:
For Your Marriage, an initiative of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops offers many resources. Click on the link to access the many resources available. Here are just a few of them:
- Stages of Marriage: Newly Married
- Catholic & Newly Married: 5 Challenges and 5 Opportunities
- “Just Wait”: A Letter from a Newlywed Couple
- What Makes Marriage Work
Please look below for more Marriage Enrichment Resources that are available to you.
FOR ALL MARRIAGES: MARRIAGE ENRICHMENT & RESOURCES
THRIVING MARRIAGES: A 3-PART COUPLE’S RETREAT
This 3-part mini-retreat series, developed and presented by Dr. John Yzaguirre & Claire Frazier-Yzaguirre, M.F.T., M.Div., teaches couples how to have lasting and happy marital unity. Ideal for seriously dating, engaged and married couples of all ages, this series, offered in English and Spanish, provides an exciting and effective marriage formation track for couples, which equips them with the essential skills to deepen their empathy, cope with their busy lives, and strengthen and restore their relationships. Excellent for kicking off or growing your church marriage fellowship, these retreats can be offered in 3-hr ‘mini-retreat’ format or full-day format. The Thriving Marriages books and CD’s are key companion resources to the mini-retreats to keep couples growing and as resources for couples sharing groups and other couple’s events. Thriving Marriages mini-retreats will help your couples:
- Session 1: How to enjoy a thriving marriage through a Christian vision of unity and the essential dynamics of empathy, autonomy and mutuality.
- Session 2: How to develop a resilient marriage by eliminating resentment, fear, helplessness and by becoming agents of joy.
- Session 3: How to become compassionate lovers by learning the healing and restorative power of forgiveness and reconciliation.
Based on Jesus’ prayer ‘that all may be one’, this marriage formation track gives couples a fresh vision & a practical plan to live a life of unity in their marriages and families. It equips them with the key skills to sustain and strengthen their relationship through the ups and downs of their marital journey. Ideal for offering through your RE & AFF programming for families. Please visit Thriving Families to book this series in English and/or Spanish and to see additional seminars offered on parenting, stress management, spirituality, and women’s retreats.
Worldwide Marriage Encounter is a weekend for married Christian couples who value their relationship and desire a richer, fuller life together. Couples from all over the world have experienced the beauty and the gift of the weekend. The emphasis of Worldwide Marriage Encounter is on communication between husband and wife, who spend a weekend together away from the distractions and the tensions of everyday life, to concentrate on each other. They want to share that experience with you, because they found something worth passing on. To register for a weekend retreat, click here: Weekend Application Form
Upcoming Marriage Encounter Weekend in Orange County:
February 16-18, 2018
July 21-22 (non residential, two day format)
Apply by phone: 714-873-5136
WWME® Info: 714-873-5136
Mon-Fri: 8:00 a.m.-9:00 p.m.
Sat: 8:00 a.m.-9:00 p.m.
Sun: 8:00 a.m.-9:00 p.m.
or by email
An initiative of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, you will find many resources, materials and links to help you to better understand the stages of marriage; each stage with its unique learning opportunities and blessings, along with challenges and obstacles.
The mission of the Institute for Marital Healing is to strengthen Catholic marriages and families by educating spouses, marital therapists and clergy about common causes of conflicts in marital self-giving and effective approaches to alleviating such conflicts. Through a combination of online resources, educational programs and publications, the Institute employs a time-tested approach to marital therapy that recognizes the importance of both science and faith in the process of marital healing. We provide an empirically proven approach for resolving marital anger, the most common conflict which leads couples to seek marriage counseling. We demonstrate sensitivity to the Catholic faith of couples and show how their faith can assist them in the strengthening of their marriages. For more information, call (610) 397-0950 or (610) 397-0960 or visit their website.
An initiative of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. It offers resources to assist with the education and catechesis of Catholics on why marriage is unique and why it should be promoted and protected as the union of one man and one woman.
A lifeline for marriages™ A program to help couples heal and renew their Marriages.
- Do you feel lost, alone or bored in your marriage?
- Are you frustrated, hurt or angry with your spouse?
- Are you constantly fighting? Or, do you simply shut down?
- Have you thought about separation or divorce?
- Does talking about it only make it worse?
The word Retrouvaille™ (pronounced re-tro-vi with a long i.) is a French word meaning rediscovery. The program offers tools needed to rediscover a loving marriage relationship. Thousands of couples headed for cold, unloving relationships or divorce have successfully overcome their marriage problems by attending the program. Couples will have the opportunity to rediscover each other and examine their lives in a new and positive way. Retrouvaille provides marriage help! For more information or questions about the next dates in Orange County, visit their website.
Getting married and staying married can be quite a challenge! Together for Life Online was developed as a community of engaged couples, married couples, and ministers to help build strong, life-long marriages with God. At Together for Life Online, you will find:
- Ideas and tips for planning a Catholic wedding
- Marriage advice from the TFL community
- The opportunity to connect and share ideas about building strong marriages
- Quality resources to help strengthen your marriage
You can also sign up to receive their free monthly newsletter which contains marriage advice, enrichment ideas, and tips and advice from people living their vocation in new and creative ways.
PARISH SUPPORT GROUPS IN THE DIOCESE OF ORANGE
Living Catholic Marriage
At St. Edward the Confessor Church in Dana Point, CA, a marriage enrichment experience called Living Catholic Marriage is available. This ministry is for married couples to grow closer in their marriage through improved communication, strengthened faith, and support in community with other married couples. Focus is on communicating with love and knowing God’s grace in meeting the challenges of everyday family life. Couples find that they are not alone and can find more joy and fulfillment in their marriage. Husbands and wives of all ages and years married who want to grow in their love for each other are welcome. Couples meet monthly. Materials are provided for continuing discussion at home and future use. For more information contact Bob and Mary Dausch at 949-481-1102 or by email at email@example.com. To view a descriptive pamphlet, click here.
Marriage Case Support
At St. Thomas More Church in Irvine, CA, provides resources to assist those whose marriage: 1) is in serious trouble (recommended counselors & weekend couple retreats); 2) has resulted in separation or divorce (pertinent seminars, recommended personal counselors, assistance with the Church process that enables marriage in the Church after such an event). Contact ministry leader, Mike Michalek at 949-551-2304 or via email: firstname.lastname@example.org