What is a Marriage Encounter Weekend?
The weekend experience is designed to help married couples communicate more intimately with one another in order to deepen and enrich their relationship.
The emphasis is on communication between husband and wife. In a private, comfortable environment away from the distractions and responsibilities of everyday life, you are given the opportunity to look at yourself and your relationship with each other and with God.
You will learn a special communication technique that you can take home with you and to continue to grow in love and appreciation of each other.
Marriage Encounter is a positive, building experience. More than a weekend away, it's a weekend of discovery that will rejuvenate your marriage.
Although there are group sessions where presenting couples talk about their own experience in a growing relationship, you will never be asked to talk about yourself or your marriage in front of other couples.
The Marriage Encounter weekend is not a workshop or sensitivity group. There are no counseling sessions or therapy, nor is there an attempt to solve problems. It is NOT a group-oriented weekend.
You are not encouraged to come because you need a weekend, but because you deserve a chance to grow in your love for one another.
It is a full weekend, so you are encouraged to come well rested. However the weekend is well worth the work you expend.
The aim of Marriage Encounter is to make the weekend available to all couples regardless of their ability to pay. The cost per couple is shared at the end of the weekend. Some couples give more than the cost to help those who can't afford the full amount. The associated cost to host a couple for the weekend is approximately $450.00 however no one is ever refused attendance due to lack of funds. Fundraisers are also held annually to help make up for any short-fall. Alumni, thankful for what Marriage Encounter has done for their relationship also often make donations over the years as well. By these methods, God has been faithful in making it possible for this ministry to continue.
What Happens on a Weekend?
The weekend begins on Friday night and continues until Sunday late afternoon.
- During the weekend, a team of trained volunteer couples and a pastor couple present a series of sharing times centered around their own real life experiences. The purpose of each sharing is to inspire couples to come to understand their own feelings about various aspects of their marriage.
- The second step, sharing these feeling with each other, is accomplished through a method called dialogue. Dialogue gives husband and wife a time for personal reflection and exchange. Exchanges between spouses are conducted away from the group, in the privacy of their own room.
- At the end of the weekend, couples have experience in using the tools that will continue to enhance their relationship and communications when they return to their daily routines. Provision is made for ongoing contact with Marriage Encounter in order to renew incentive to keep maintaining the marriage.