Marriage Preparation Steps
Congratulations on your engagement!
The Church joyfully anticipates the opportunity to assist you in preparing for the biggest commitment of your life: your marriage.
Marriage preparation is meant to help you build strong foundations to resist the storms of life, to help you know each other in a deeper way, and to learn about the beautiful vision of marital love in God's Plan.
"The whole history of mankind is the history of the need of loving and being loved. Marriage is a 'school of love'..." — Pope St. John Paul II
STEP ONE: INITIAL MEETING
With your parish priest of deacon 12 months before your wedding.
-evaluation of requirements
-completion of all forms
Make sure to check the "Steps to the Altar" for information on the different required forms.
STEP TWO: MARRIAGE PREPARATION COURSE
Either online or in a live class.
Live classes offered at Holy Apostles twice a year.
Call parish for dates: 719-597-4249
Online: at your own pace, one-on-one with a mentor couple.
STEP THREE: NATURAL FAMILY PLANNING TRAINING
(NFP). This step can be done simultaneously with steps four and five.
Natural Family Planning training providers:
-Billings Ovulation Method: 719-391-511
-CCL (Couple to Couple League): Register online: www.ccli.org
-Colorado Springs: St. Francis Medical Center: 719-571-3472
Charges may be covered by insurance.
Online Training: See https://www.catholicmarriageprep.com/course-info/nfp-training
STEP FOUR: PREMARITAL INVENTORY
- FOCCUS will provide you with a personalized profile of your relationship. Evaluation must be done with a facilitator at your parish. You will review your inventory with your facilitator over several evenings according to your needs.
- PREPARE-ENRICH: The main component of the program is an online survey you each complete in about 30-45 minutes. The items you respond to are based on research and are intended to help you identify the unique strengths and potential growth areas of your premarital relationship. You can either
- Have your report sent to your parish facilitator/priest. Or
- Go through a Skype review with a trained facilitator (up to one hour)
In both cases, you will also receive an easy-to-use relationship assessment tool.
STEP FIVE: RETREAT
You are encouraged to partake in an engaged couple’s retreat to be better prepared for your new life together.
- Engaged Encounter weekend:
All weekend retreats begin early on Saturday morning and end late Sunday afternoon.
Each weekend retreat is limited to approximately 40 couples so make your reservations as early as possible. Registration must be completed at least 14 days prior to your scheduled retreat weekend. To register please go to www.coscee.org to download a registration form and follow the directions. All retreats are held at The Ponderosa Retreat Center, Larkspur, CO.
- Equivalent Parish Based Retreat
STEP SIX: FINAL MEETING
This step must be done at least one month prior to the wedding.
All documents must be ready: Baptismal certificates, any required dispensations and permissions. In this step, you will work with members of your parish team on the preparation of your ceremony, you will discuss the details of the liturgy and your choice of readings with your priest or deacon.
Plan also to meet with your parish music director and the marriage coordinator.
The Office of Marriage and Family Life assists pastors in their service to the "domestic Church" by offering a host of educational programs, events, services and resources designed to promote an authentic Catholic vision of marriage, human sexuality and family life. These include (but are not limited to):
Marriage preparation programs
Marriage Enrichment programs
Natural Family Planning services
Saints Louis and Zelie Martin, the first couple the Church canonized as a couple, parents of St. Therese of the Child Jesus are the patron saints of the Office of Marriage and Family Life of Colorado Springs. Parents of "the Little Flower" named patrons of Office of Marriage and Family Life.