How do you know if you’re ready to get married? Or if this is the right person?
Once you’ve decided to marry, prepare yourselves. A premarital inventory can identify potentially troublesome issues before the wedding. Research has proven that a marriage preparation program can get your marriage off to a great start.
Marriage preparation programs come in many forms: residential weekends, a weekly series, one day programs, parish-based programs, and couple to couple meetings with a mentor couple. Here are some widely-used ones.
Your engagement is also a great time to begin to take NFP classes as you prepare to discuss the possibility of children.
Marriage Prep Programs
Individual Couple Based Programs
Agape Catholic Marriage Prep Dedicated to the building of strong Christ-centered marriages. Online, interactive, mentor-led, Pre-Cana Program since 2004. Based on the Pope John Paul II’s Theology of the Body and the Teachings of the Catholic Church.
- One-on-one personal mentoring
- Faith building
- Communication strengthening
- From anywhere, at any time
CatholicMatch Institute The CatholicMatch Institute is focused on providing dating and marriage resources for singles, couples and church leaders. We publish online daily content as well as printed resources that are especially useful in parishes and dioceses. Our resources encourage purposeful dating that helps increase the number of healthy marriages. We strive to see more engaging remote marriage preparation that promotes strong sacramental marriages. For more information and to download our resources, visit www.CatholicMatchInstitute.com or call toll free 888.267.8885 x3.
Fully Engaged A Catholic catechetical pre-marriage inventory that carries a Nihil Obstat and Imprimatur. This comprehensive, catechetical tool forms engaged couples in the riches of the Church while equipping them with the essential skills necessary for a healthy marriage. This program utilizes a catechetical workbook for the engaged couple and contains a detailed Facilitator’s Guide for the Facilitator. Follow up formation emails are sent to the Engaged Couple for one year after their marriage. Fully Engaged also contains a complete Convalidation Inventory for civilly married couples. For more information or to order a Preview Package, visit www.getfullyengaged.com or call 800-624-9019.
God’s Plan for a Joy-Filled Marriage Theology of the Body marriage preparation supplement that focuses on the sacramentality and the nature of marriage and the beauty of human sexuality. 800-376-0520
Online Marriage Prep Class An online, on-demand preparation program that is interactive, convenient, and private. Available anytime from anywhere. email@example.com or call 1-855-PRE-CANA (773-2262)
Preparing to Live in Love This program combines personal mentoring with a marriage preparation curriculum that integrates Theology of the Body and practical life skills. 877-201-2142 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Parish Based Programs
For Better and For Ever A parish based “sponsor couple” approach to marriage preparation. Married couples of the parish are trained to meet the engaged “where they are” as the starting point for dialogue about the vocation of Matrimony. The sponsor couple hosts a series of 4-6 meetings with just one engaged couple at a time in their own home; then after the wedding they “follow-up” with the newly married couple through the first year(s) of marriage. 210-534-1129, email@example.com
Marriage Prep Resources
Before “I Do” – Preparing for the Sacrament of Marriage by Anthony Garascia Before “I Do” helps engaged couples examine the thorny issues of marriage through the lens of the best of the behavioral science and Catholic sacramental theology. The workbook is designed for use in couple-to-couple or small group marriage preparation programs. Six sessions are offered with each session focusing on a particular skill set for building strong marriage relationships. Sessions conclude with compelling real-life case studies of couples with questions and activities for reflection.
Available from Ave Maria Press – firstname.lastname@example.org
A Decision to Love by John Midgley and Susan Vollmer Midgley This comprehensive program offers couples the guidance and groundwork necessary to assist them in evaluating their readiness to make a permanent life commitment. Each of the eight chapters deal with critical topics that are addressed in several ways: His and Her pages; Couple and Group discussion questions; Issues of Special focus; and more. Also comes with a complete wedding liturgy planner with Scripture readings. Available from Twenty-Third Publications.
A Marriage in the LordThe best Catholic marriage preparation workbook contains everything a couple needs to prepare for a lifelong happy, healthy, and holy marriage. This marriage preparation workbook has been used by over 600,000 couples. Exercises and information can be used alone by a couple or as part of a marriage preparation class.
Perspectives on MarriagePrepared and regularly updated through consultations with family life ministers, clergy, counselors, and married couples, Perspectives on Marriage has been used successfully by millions of engaged couples in a wide variety of marriage preparation programs. Through exercises, discussion questions, practical activities and helpful advice, this easy-to-use workbook focuses on the essential topics and issues that engaged and newlywed couples face. Communications, commitment, finances, religion, family of origin, conflict resolution, family planning, love and intimacy are just some of the vital topics considered. Available from ACTA Publications: Spanish Edition, Catholic Edition, Ecumenical Edition, FACET Edition and Leader’s Guide all available.
Spirituality and Religion in Your Marriage: A Reflective Process for Engaged Couples This booklet contains a short 20 item inventory that places the individual in one of four categories: 1) high in both Spirituality and Religion, 2) high in Spirituality and low in Religion, 3) low in both Religion and Spirituality, and 4) high in Religion and low in Spirituality. It affirms strengths and encourages growth in both the individual and the couple towards category number 1.
“When Two Become One” In this DVD engaged couples learn about the sacrament of marriage through the witness of four couples sharing their experiences, challenges and joys. Msgr. Lisante further unpacks what every engaged couple needs to know before they enter into marriage in the Catholic Church. 516-678-5800 ext. 223
CatholicWeddingPlanner.com Smart, easy way for clergy and engaged couples to plan wedding ceremonies online. Engaged couples can select their nuptial liturgy texts and create printed programs. Clergy can configure couple options and receive a complete ceremony printout.
Novena for Couples Preparing for Their Wedding or Anniversary An excellent resource for engaged or married couples, the novena helps marriages grow strong and holy with the commitment to pray together from the beginning and through their married life.
Disclaimer: Please note that the content on this page is provided solely for your information and should not be interpreted as an official endorsement of the organizations, programs, and websites listed. To the best of our knowledge, the information listed here did not conflict with Catholic teaching and was accurate at the time of posting.