Today one hears of more divorce cases than in the past and it’s not very hard to see why. With instant gratification in tandem with not settling for anything but the best seeming to be the ideology of the day, people appear to be replacing their partners with the same regularity as they do their cellphones. In addition to that, social media, women empowerment, infidelity, financial disputes, infertility are just some of the issues couples have to contend with. Traditional gender roles have changed leaving us questioning what is appropriate and what isn’t. Thus to navigate these facets, the church has it made it mandatory for couples entering into the sacrament of holy matrimony to attend the ‘Marriage Preparation Course’ at least six months prior to their wedding. The concept being that couples would be able to utilise to understand whether or not they were ready to take this big step.
Hence, the Andrean Notes asked three married couples whether they found this course to be of any practical help and what aspects they liked and what they didn’t. Here are their responses.
The Marriage Preparation Course attended by us was indeed an eye-opening experience. Although we heard negative things from friends regarding the usefulness of this course in our married life, we were still excited and curious to find out what information would be shared with us during its duration of two days. It was an interactive event where we met other couples coming from different walks of life and backgrounds. During this time, it slowly sank into our minds that we were preparing ourselves to live our entirety together. The faculty spoke about the concerns expected to arise in the next five years of our marriage like finance, family planning, etc. The course was conducted in a disciplined and orderly manner, and the only drawback we felt was the large number of couples at the course. We believe that this restricted the number of group activities organized as well as the personal interactions with different couples attending the course. We think that having a smaller number of attendees would bring about more sharing and thus yield a more fruitful result.
- Jonathan & Noella D’Souza
Married on: 17th December, 2017
Our intention to attend the Marriage Preparation Course was a compelling one as we felt it would help us in understanding each other better. The course has taught us a lot about situations that would arise in our married life together like finance, romance, in-laws, children, etc. We believe that it will also help us in bringing up our newly born daughter, with whom we have been blessed, in the teachings of the Church. We attended this course before we had decided to commit ourselves in marriage, thereby enabling us to be more decisive in our decision regarding the marriage. Besides having a priest as an instructor, we were also fortunate to have a senior-citizen married couple who shared their experiences and advice about the different situations and pitfalls we may come across in our lives together and the manner in which we could solve them. To sum up, we were satisfied to attend this course as it gave us an insight into the experiences we will come across in our married life.
- Clint & Meghann Misquitta
Married on: 4th January, 2015
We enjoyed attending the Marriage Preparation Course. Since we are from two different faiths, what we especially liked was the in-depth way they explained the procedure for getting married especially for mixed marriages. Another session that was an eye-opener for us was the one on natural family planning. The course covered different aspects and gave us an understanding of what worked to create a successful marriage. However what we didn’t like was the way in which it was conveyed that sex is an act between man, woman and God; it came off as creepy. That sex is a sacred act could have been put across in a better manner. Overall, we were quite happy with our experience at the course.
- Andrew and Sanya Simoes
Married on: 28th January, 2016
By Romaine D’Souza and Wynrica Gonsalves