Can the Church Help Hurting Marriages?
y Fr. Jerry Foley
"Loved the wedding. Invite me to the marriage" - God.
This bulletin board message speaks not only to couples but to the churches.
Michael McManus of Marriage Savers calls the churches "wedding factories," noting that the silence of the churches when it comes to maintaining marriages is "scandalous."
Some years ago, the U.S. bishops asked American Catholics where they most needed help from the church. The overwhelming response was in their marriages and family life.
Could it be different? Of course. But marriage is an ideal in the church rather than a value. We believe ideals are very important but we do little to achieve them. We sacrifice to achieve values.
Greg and Kae turned to the church when they were separated and looking for help but were told that no help was available. Frustrated, Kae asserts "There's no shame in asking for help and expecting the efforts of the church to say, "We know you're struggling."
At the end of the last century, a theologian was asked what were the three most outstanding events of the 20th Century and named Alcoholics Anonymous as one of the three. In a world of diminishing neighborhoods and broken families, he said, AA has taught us again that we need each other and is spawning all kinds of peer ministries.
Retrouvaille, a ministry to hurting marriages, is one of these ministries. Retrouvaille consists of a weekend, 12 follow-up sessions, and ongoing support groups led by a priest and couples who have experienced marital difficulties themselves.
A man who participated in Retrouvaille wrote: "I'm telling you this to encourage you that people listen to suffering people, and people don't go to folks who "have it all together" when they have troubles. They go to someone who is not shocked, who has been hurt, and who will listen without passing judgment, someone who has found some answers but doesn't always have all the answers."
It's such sharing that moved Bob to say: "In Retrouvaille, we heard other couples talk about their marital problems. Hearing the team couples discuss their own relationships - the kind of pain they have experienced and the resolutions that took place through the commitment they made to each other at Retrouvaille - really moved a lot of people at that weekend."
Communication between spouses is a strong emphasis of Retrouvaille. When the Associated Press asked divorce lawyers what were the main causes of divorce, the lawyers stated that the major problem was communication difficulties and the only other major cause was couples drifting apart. No wonder. Yale University studies indicated the average American couple communicates only two minutes a day.
Here in the Twin Cities of Minnesota, over 5000 couples have participated in Retrouvaille since we begin in 1989. Unofficial studies show that most of these couples will remain married, even though some were separated or divorced when they came to Retrouvaille.
Retrouvaille is in most major cities of North America. Information is available by calling 1-800-470-2230 or on the web site at www.retrouvaille.org
Fr. Jerry Foley works as a priest in the Twin Cities of Minnesota. He currently works in hospice ministry as well as with Retrouvaille and Catholic Engaged Encounter. He is the author of five books, including Courage to Love ... When Your Marriage Hurts available from Ave Maria Press.
Fr. Jerry Foley
4736 Coffey Lane
Minneapolis, MN 55406
Retrouvaille Marriage Help
http://www.retrouvaille.org MN, US
Father Jerry Foley - Int'l Enrichment/Resource Team, 651 232-3301
hurting marriages, retrouvaille, marriage
More Catholic PRWire
Showing 1 - 50 of 4,718
A Recession Antidote
Monaco & The Vatican: Monaco's Grace Kelly Exhibit to Rome--A Review of Monegasque-Holy See Diplomatic History
Dna. Maria St. Catherine Sharpe, t.o.s.m., T.O.SS.T.
A Royal Betrayal: Catholic Monaco Liberalizes Abortion
Dna. Maria St.Catherine De Grace Sharpe, t.o.s.m., T.O.SS.T.
Embrace every moment as sacred time
Mary Regina Morrell
Letting go is simple wisdom with divine potential
Mary Regina Morrell
Father Lombardi's Address on Catholic Media
Pope's Words to Pontifical Latin American College
Prelate: Genetics Needs a Conscience
State Aid for Catholic Schools: Help or Hindrance?
Scorsese Planning Movie on Japanese Martyrs
2 Nuns Kidnapped in Kenya Set Free
Holy See-Israel Negotiation Moves Forward
Franchising to Evangelize
Catholics Decry Anti-Christianity in Israel
Pope and Gordon Brown Meet About Development Aid
Pontiff Backs Latin America's Continental Mission
Cardinal Warns Against Anti-Catholic Education
Three words to a deeper faith
Relections for Lent 2009
Wisdom lies beyond the surface of life
Mary Regina Morrell
World Food Program Director on Lent
Pope's Lenten Message for 2009
Keeping a Lid on Permissiveness
Glimpse of Me
The 3 stages of life
Sex and the Married Woman
A Catholic Woman Returns to the Church
Modernity & Morality
Just a Minute
Catholic identity ... triumphant reemergence!
Edging God Out
Burying a St. Joseph Statue
George Bush Speaks on Papal Visit
Sometimes moving forward means moving the canoe
Mary Regina Morrell
Easter... A Way of Life
Papal initiative...peace and harmony!
Proclaim the mysteries of the Resurrection!
Jerusalem Patriarch's Easter Message
Good Friday Sermon of Father Cantalamessa
Papal Address at the End of the Way of the Cross
Cardinal Zen's Meditations for Via Crucis
Interview With Vatican Aide on Jewish-Catholic Relations
Pope Benedict XVI On the Easter Triduum
by Catholic Online
- 'Living Lent': Saturday of the Third Week of Lent - Day 25
- 'Living Lent': Monday of the Fourth Week of Lent - Day 27
- St. Dismas: Saint of the Day for Saturday, March 25, 2017
- Daily Readings for Saturday, March 25, 2017
- 'Living Lent': Sunday of the Fourth Week of Lent - Day 26
- Daily Reading for Sunday, March 26th, 2017 HD Video
- Daily Reading for Tuesday, March 28th, 2017 HD Video
- Daily Reading for Monday, March 27th, 2017 HD
- Adorable girl captured stealing Pope Francis' hat in hilarious footage HD
- Cause of cancer detected from unexpected and unpreventable element HD
- Daily Reading for Saturday, March 25th, 2017 HD
Copyright 2017 Catholic Online. All materials contained on this site, whether written, audible or visual are the exclusive property of Catholic Online and are protected under U.S. and International copyright laws, © Copyright 2017 Catholic Online. Any unauthorized use, without prior written consent of Catholic Online is strictly forbidden and prohibited.