Marriage Preparation Tools

wed-5.gif · 1) Give couples an outstanding "marriage prep packet".
· 2) Set out a table with additional resources.
· 3) Build a powerful Marriage Preparation Curriculum.
· 4) Create a library for couples, presenters, and mentors.
· 5) Provide resources for Hispanic couples as needed.


There is now an online marriage preparation service that works with local Marriage support personal and allows couples in unusual situations (such as one partner being overseas for the time being) to complete a full featured marriage preparation program.


Why Marriage Preparation Matters

The goal of Marriage Preparation is to bring about superb marriages, the kind of marriages where people say, "Aren’t they a wonderful couple!" and mean it. The realities of our culture make this extremely challenging. Nearly all of the couples who come to the Church for marriage are already sexually active with one another; nearly all of them are using contraceptives* to avoid pregnancy before marriage, and half to three quarters of them are already living together. By their lifestyle choices, they have already convinced themselves that the Church has nothing to tell them about male-female relationships or fertility management, and certainly nothing worthwhile to say about sexuality.

So why do they come? Plainly they are looking for something more than they can get from cohabitation. They know from observation of other couples (and possibly their own bitter experience) just how fragile sexual relationships outside of marriage can be. They want something better for themselves and hope that a gorgeous public ceremony or maybe some mysterious "blessing" from the Church can give them that extra something.

So what can the Church do for them? Well, Jesus gave us the best teaching on marriage and relationships ever delivered, and John Paul II has taken that teaching and packaged it so well that we now know more about what makes a marriage work (and what doesn’t) than ever before, and this knowledge is mostly available only through the Catholic Church.

Marriage is a fine-tuned, extremely powerful biological/psychological/spiritual package. Marriage moves couples to create the very best setting for bringing up resourceful, contributing members of society.
That setting is the human family with two highly involved parents. The family, however, revolves around the wholehearted sexual donation of each spouse to the other. Anything that attacks that relationship is highly destructive to marriage and the family. Pornography, for example, involves the husband with imaginary sexual images instead of his wife. Both partners are clearly aware of this disconnection, and sexual activity becomes divisive instead of unitive, with typically disastrous consequences. Birth control is even worse. Contracepted sex is the individual pursuit of physical/emotional gratification instead of a mutual pursuit of greater love and family involvement. This self-centered sex, unlike family-oriented sex, has devastating effects, for example, the huge increase in divorce that has come about as our culture has become saturated with birth control.

Marriage preparation programs can now clearly teach what factors, such as birth control, attack the marriage bond and what factors, such as accepting children, support and enhance it. We owe a great debt to John Paul II, because now we can tell couples not only what to do (and avoid) for a life-long, excellent relationship, but we can also tell them why these practices make such a remarkable difference. Effective marriage preparation, however, calls for a thorough re-education of the trainers as well as the trainees, since all of us are immersed in a culture where sexual values are highly distorted.

This is absolutely worth the effort. Healthy marriages lead to loving families. Loving families lead to functional, productive communities—a culture of life, a Civilization of Love. Anything we can do to foster this society will have an enormous payoff!

Four steps to take:



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A Catholic perspective on how and why God makes babies. Ages 9 & up. It was given the Nihil Obstat from Msgr Brian Branford and the Imprimatur from Most Rev. Charles Chaput OFM, Cap

Christopher West digs deep into Pope John Paul II's Theology of the Body and into the connection between marriage and the Eucharist.

Christopher West explores the "whys" of the Church's teaching on human sexuality, focusing on the true nature of human love as a reflection of God's love. Sexual Honesty explains the critical difference between contraception and Natural Family Planning and shows how couples can live "sexual honesty."
Wonderfully Made! Babies
CODE: BWMB
And the Two Become One
CODE: CTBO
Sexual Honesty
CODE: CSHY
Price: $9.00


Price: $9.95


Price: $9.95



 The Theology of the Body is a Biblical message that is intended for all Christians. This teaching, originally presented by John Paul II, draws on over 1000 scripture versus concerning God’s original plan for marriage & sexuality, and how an understanding of this plan gives meaning to our lives. In this talk given at an Evangelical church, Theology of the Body expert Christopher West delivers this life-changing message to an enthusiastic Protestant audience. Catholics and Protestants alike will benefit from this teaching as we strive to live out God’s plan for our lives

A wonderful compilation of St Josemaria Escriva's teaching on the glory and holiness of marriage,

Discusses the harm that has come to the Church due to family limitation.
Theology of the Body: A Bold, biblical response to the Sexual Revolution (CD
CODE: CTOP
Sexuality and Sanctity, The Christian Doctrine on Sex
CODE: BCSS
A Full Quiver
CODE: BAFQ
Price: $9.95


Price: $9.95


Price: $10.00



This book shows that if you want to maximize your chances of marital fulfillment, you absolutely must avoid using contraception.

Testimonies from a group of clergy who have preached on contraception and Natural Family Planning, with a number of added resources: sample homilies, Scripture texts from various Sundays that readily lead to these topics, and more.

A companion volume for The Princess and the Kiss.
Who's at the Centre of YOUR Marriage...The Pill or Jesus Christ?
CODE: BPJC
A Preachable Message
CODE: CAPM
Life Lessons from "The Princess and the Kiss"
CODE: BLLP
Price: $10.00


Price: $10.00


Price: $10.49



Courtship, sexuality, child-rearing, and a wide range of possible marriage problems

Reflections on the spirituality and practice of breastfeeding.

This wonderful biography on St Gianna tells her life's story, from her childhood, through her professional and family life, and up until the giving of her life for her child. Much of the book is in the form of an interview with Gianna's husband Pietro, and it also includes a section entitled "Gianna's Virtues," the testimony of Pietro for the process of his wife's beatification.
Marriage, a Path To Sanctity
CODE: BMPS
Breastfeeding and Catholic Motherhood
CODE: BBCM
Saint Gianna Molla
CODE: BSGM
Price: $10.95


Price: $10.95


Price: $11.95



Teaching of the Church in light of our culture regarding sexual behavior.

20 couples, who chose sterilization, tell how they received the grace to get sterilization reversals.

Humanae Vitae proclaimed the beauty of marital sex unburdened by obstacles opposing fertility. This book explains and defends that teaching.
Humanae Vitae On the Regulation of Birth Pope Paul Vl
CODE: CHVB
Sterilization Reversal - A Generous Act of Love
CODE: BSRA
Sex Au Naturel
CODE: BSAN
Price: $12.00


Price: $12.00


Price: $12.95



Navigating through the "desert" of infertility is an especially painful experience. It can lead to a sense of failure and a feeling of hopelessness. This spiritual companion and resource offers the direction, nourishment, and faith to find the way out of the "desert." Infertile Catholic couples, family members, friends, family life offices, and support groups will find this book to be both informative and comforting.

This book will tug at your heart strings and lift the fog that surrounds imperfection according to today’s standards. We all are imperfect and no one has the right to label, neglect, or dictate who is “compatible or incompatible with life”. This book is inspirational and is an eloquent picture of the love a family shares in response to life.

Pope John Paul II's awesome Theology of the Body, in an easier package.
Facing Infertility A Catholic Approach
CODE: BFIA
I Am Not a Syndrome – My Name is Simon
CODE: BINS
Theology of the Body for Beginners
CODE: BTBB
Price: $12.95


Price: $12.97


Price: $12.99


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