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Skip Navigation LinksADLA > Ministries and Departments > Family Life > Marriage Enrichment Program

 Marriage and Family Enrichment



 
 
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In Amoris Laetitia, Pope Francis tells us that a couple's wedding "...is just the beginning. By saying "I do", they embark on a journey that requires them to overcome all obstacles standing in the way of their reaching the goal. The nuptial blessing that they are receiving is a grace and and incentive for this journey. They can only benefit from sitting down and talking to one another about how, concretely, they plan to achieve their goal." 218 Furthermore, he asks us as the People of God the important question: "...who is making an effort to strenghthen marriages, to help married couples overcome their problems, to assist them in the work of raising children and, in general, to encourage the stability of the marriage bond?" (Paragraph 52)

Intro / Overview:

The following “Marriage Enrichment Program and Resources” answer Pope Francis call by providing parishes with an opportunity to journey with newlyweds and married couples and to give them the tools and support they need to survive and thrive in today’s world.  They also provide a teachable moment in which to catechize and evangelize newly married couples as they work to achieve the goal of a healthy, happy marriage and family life centered in God.  They also help to assist married couples, on all stages of their journey, to grow and enrich in their relationship and that of their family. 

(Attention All Parishes: Please help the Office of Family Life to build this resource! If you have any further parish or community programs or resources that you would like to recommend contact:
Joan Vienna, at JVienna@la-archdiocese.org) 
 
 
Marriage Enrichment Programs:

The following programs have been piloted at parishes in the Archdioceses of Los Angeles and have proved effective in helping couples in all stages of marriage.  They are also an important resource to help evangelize married couples and their families into the parish community!

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The Choice Wine: Seven Steps to an Abundant Marriage (English)

The Choice Wine is a 9 consecutive week, interactive, multimedia program that can be helpful for both newly married couples, or couples at all stages of marriage.  The Choice wine program can be used by a parish as marriage enrichment program in either a large or small group setting.  The program provides 9 DVD presentations which are facilitated by trained parish facilitator(s).  A home study version of the program is also available. 

For more information, please visit the program website at www.thechoicewine.org, call (281) 974-3541.

 


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Marriage: Living the Promise The First Five Years
(English)

 

Intended for couples in their first five years of marriage, “Marriage: Living the Promise The First Five Years” is a 6-session, 2-hour program to enhance every newlywed’s marriage.  Marriage: Living the Promise The First Five Years allows spouses to look back at their lives since childhood in order to gain a better understanding on how they and their spouse can approach life. Spouses will learn tools and techniques to continue growing in their relationship and love for each other.

 

Contact Candy Metoyer at cmetoyer@la-archdiocese.org or (213) 637-7250 to learn how to offer this program in your parish and how to train your couples.

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Beloved: Parish or Home Based Edition
(English)

Beloved is a video-based enrichment program by the Augustine Institute that explores the true meaning of the Sacrament of Marriage. Through an exploration of Scripture, Tradition, and Church teaching, God’s plan for your marriage will come alive. You’ll see firsthand the wonder, mystery, and joy behind that first “I do”—whether you said it last year or many years ago. Informative and inspirational, Beloved will help you live out the Sacrament of Marriage more profoundly, so that your love story is drawn ever more into the greatest love story of all . . . God’s own love for us. Beloved sessions are presented on a 6-DVD set, and kits come complete with Couple’s and Leader’s Guides – everything you need to experience the full power of Beloved for marriage enrichment.

For more information on pricing and groups, for more information call Colleen at: (866) 767-3155 or visit the program website at www.lighthousecatholicmedia.org/beloved.


Marriage Enrichment Inventories:

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REFFOCCUS
© Marriage Enrichment Inventory (English / Spanish)

The REFOCCUS© Marriage Enrichment Inventory is a packet of five questionnaires for couples at any stage of marriage.  It can be used as an enrichment tool for couples looking to strengthen their relationship.  REFOCCUS can be a useful resource for parishes looking to assist their married couples with marriage enrichment. The inventory can be scored by the couple themselves, as part of a weekend retreat, or in five weekly evenings in which the general topical areas are discussed with other couples.

For more information, please visit the program website at www.foccusinc.com, or call (877) 883-5422.

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PREPARE/ENRICH
(English / Spanish)    

PREPARE/ENRICH is a customized couple assessment completed online that identifies a couple's strength and growth areas. It is one of the most widely used programs for premarital counseling and premarital education. It is also used for marriage counseling, marriage enrichment, and dating couples considering engagement. Based on a couple's assessment results, a trained facilitator provides 3-4 feedback sessions in which the facilitator helps the couple discuss and understand their results as they are taught proven relationship skills.

For more information about the program, to find a facilitator in your area or how to become a facilitator, please visit the program website at www.prepare-enrich.com, or call 1-(800)-331-1661.

 

Marriage and Family Movements:

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          Christian Family Movement
 
 
Christian Family Movement (CFM) helps establish and support small discipleship groups for couples and families. Discipleship is accomplished through teaching one to use the methodology of observe, judge, act in their daily lives - observing the situations around us, judging them in the light of Christ's teaching and acting to make a difference. CFM is a life-charging ministry for families of all shapes, sizes and stages. #CFMACT

For more information on how to become a member and CFM groups in your area, please contact Lauri Przybysz ((800) 581 - 9824, director@cfm.org) or visit the organization website at www.cfm.org​.

Active Chapter Locations:

Our Lady of Guadalupe, Hermosa Beach  
Contact Person: John and Mary Poprac – (310) 375-9242

St. Lawrence Martyr Redondo Beach
Contact Person: John and Mary Poprac – (310) 375-9242, Denise Geltz (310) 375-7931

St. John Fisher, Rancho Palos Verdes
Contact Person: Frank and Joan Lee – (310) 373-1783​


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World Wide Marriage Encounter (English & Spanish)


A weekend retreat for couples with presentations, and experiences focused on improving communication between couples and strengthening marriages. Marriage encounter weekends are facilitated by a presenting team of 3 married couples and 1 priest and Weekends are typically held at area hotels in the LAX-El Segundo, Norwalk and South Bay/Torrance areas.  Supplemental functions and meetings are held throughout the year to support couple’s progress. Commuting Parish-based Weekends are also available on selected weekends on Saturday and Sunday only. 

For more information about cost and program specifics, please visit the program website at www.wwme.org.  To find an upcoming Marriage Encounter weekend in your area, or to find out more information on parish based encounter weekends, please visit the “Find a weekend”

section of the website at
www.wwme.org/find-a-weekend, and contact the organizing couple for your region.

Organizing Couples:
George and Ginny Hazboun: (562) 861-7562
 Hector and Gloria Reyes: (562) 832-0460 (Lakewood, Cerritos, Whittier, Santa Fe Springs, Downey)
Louis and Jennifer Paredes: (626) 334-3318 (San Gabriel Region)
Tony and Lynn Fernandez: (818) 383-6399 (San Fernando)
Anthony and Val Mena: (310) 515 -3522 (San Pedro)
Call any couple on the list, they will be glad to help or direct you to the correct organizing couple

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Marriage Encounter and Family Life Movement of California (English)


The Marriage Encounter and Family Movement of California (MEFM), previously known as the Marriage Encounter in the Filipino Perspective (MEFP), is a spiritual movement dedicated to promote, support and strengthen the Sacrament of Marriage.  The weekends start on Friday evening and conclude Sunday evening.  Weekends are facilitated by trained team of married couples and 4 deacons, with presentations focused on improving communication and examination of the relationship.  Supplemental functions and meetings are held throughout the year to support couple’s progress.

Contact couple:
  

Tony and Guing Ramos  (818) 956-3327;
Tony Cell (818) 568-4719;
Guing Cell: (818) 568-4720
Guing Ramos – Work  (213) 637-7330;
Guing Email- MMRamos@la-archdiocese.org
MEFM website:  www.mefmonline.org

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         Couples for Christ


CFC provides a continuing program of pastoral and spiritual formation which includes Church teachings, Scriptures, Christian relationships, recollections and retreats. We are one with the Church and regularly seek her guidance through our Spiritual Director. Its members support their parish priests and are available for parish services. CFC is a working model for the development of Basic Ecclesial Communities and can hasten the formation of a strong and vibrant parish community. 

For more information, please visit the organization website at couplesforchristusa.org.


Online Marriage Support:

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For your Marriage​​​​​: USCCB Marriage and Family Life Website ​                                        (English & Spanish)


 
The "For Your Marriage" website offers practical help and advice whether you're seriously dating, engaged, or at any stage of married life. On the homepage check out the Daily Marriage Tips, book reviews, and blogs by engaged and married couples. www.foryourmarriage.org

 
 Marriage Enrichment Speakers:

    

Dr. John Yzaguirre, Ph.D (English / Spanish)

Claire Frazier - Yzaguirre. MFT, M.Div. (English)
Dr. John Yzaguirre, Ph.D. and Claire Frazier - Yzaguirre, M. Div., MFT, are licensed Psychologist and Marriage and Family therapist consultants and speakers to the churches for 30+ years. They specialize in premartial preparation and maritial enrichment, anxiety reduction and stess management. They are the co-directors of their Irvine couseling practice and their Thriving Marriages program at www.ThrivingFamilies.com. They offer inspirational talks and a growing line of helpful resources, in both English and Spanish (Dr. John) on multiple topics to strenghten marriages and family life and couples of all ages and stages. Ideal for offering through Faith formation programs and as church-wide talks on Advent, Lent, Pentecost  and summer programs.
 
Dr. John is a regular speaker at the Archdiocese of Los Angeles Religious Education Congress and for the Office of Family Life and Claire is a regular speaker at the Southern California Renewal Community Conferences (SCRC) and they present annually to 50+ churches/ conferences in our Southland CA area. Churches and marriage groups all over are using their Thriving Marriage talks and resources to grow their marriage and faith ministries. 
 
To contact them, please visit www.ThrivingFamilies.com

John Yzaguirre, Ph.D, can be contacted at john@thrivingfamilies.com and Claire Frazier-Yzaguirre, MFT, M.Div. can be contacted at claire@thrivingfamilies.com or can call (949) 851-1572.

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         Judith McCord, LMFT (English)


Judith McCord is a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and has been in practice for over twenty years. She conducts parenting workshops, is a speaker at family-centered conferences. She holds degrees and certificates in Early Childhood Education, Family Therapy and Adult Education.  Ms. McCord is a professor at Pasadena Community College, serving as adjunct faculty. She has taught classes in the Parent Education Department for 40 years, specializing in child development and parent child relationships.
Ms. McCord has been active in a variety of ministries and is currently a member of a Women’s Ministry team giving retreats and workshops.  She also gives presentations on issues of grief, couple relationships, spiritual development, and family faith enrichment.

Ms. McCord can be contacted at: (626)798-2332 and judithbmerry@hotmail.com.

Marriage Enrichment Books and Publications:

 
THE FIVE LOVE LANGUAGES
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​Dr. Gary Chapman identifies five basic languages of love and then guides couples towards a better understanding of their unique languages of love. Learn to speak and understand your mate's love language, and in no time you will be able to effectively love and truly feel loved in return. Skillful communication is within your grasp!

http://www.5lovelanguages.com/
 
MARRIAGE:
IT'S A GOD THING
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​A much richer understanding of the meaning of Christian marriage as a sacrament has evolved. This book…in concrete, practical ways tries to show how that can make a difference in the day-to-day lives of the couple striving for a happier, more fulfilling and holier marriage." —From the Foreword

http://shop.franciscanmedia.org/products/marriage-its-a-god-thing-its-a-god-thing
THE FOUR KEYS TO EVERLASTING LOVE
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​Drawing on real-life stories, scriptural principles, and the timeless wisdom of St. John Paul II to help you celebrate the sacrament of Marriage without downplaying the difficulties of married life. In doing so, they will inspire you to stay in love with each other, Christ, and the wisdom of the Church.
                                                                                                                         
https://www.avemariapress.com/product/1-59471-603-X/The-Four-Keys-to-Everlasting-Love (Ave Maria Press)
 
PROJECT HOLINESS
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Project Holiness: Marriage as a Workshop for Everyday Saints celebrates the holiness of the ordinary and the goodness of married discipleship. Vatican II'sLumen Gentium reminds Catholics of the universal call to holiness. Each person-lay and ordained alike-shares this vocation to holiness, this call to sainthood. For most adult Catholics, it is within the context of vowed, married life that the joyful and challenging path to sainthood is traveled.                                                                                                                             

https://www.litpress.org/Products/3704/Project-Holiness (Liturgical Press)
A GUIDE TO
CATHOLIC WEDDINGS
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​A Guide to Catholic Weddings: Q&A for Couples provides the answers to common questions engaged couples have about the Catholic Church and the wedding ceremony.  It is the perfect resource to use together and will help answer questions related to:


•  Where and when a wedding can be scheduled
•  Responsibilities for wedding preparations
•  Church rules and requirements
•  How to prepare the ceremony
•  Scripture and Holy Communion
•  Involvement of family, friends, and the wedding party
•  Cultural customs and traditions
• Music, flowers, photography, and
dress                                                                                                               
UNITED IN CHRIST
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​United in Christ: Preparing the Liturgy of the Word at Catholic Weddings is perfect for parish staffs to provide couples with a high quality and pastoral resource for preparing all aspects of the Liturgy of the Word for their wedding. This includes:


•  Full texts of the readings from The Order of Celebrating Matrimony in sense line format
•  Pastoral Scripture commentary written by married Catholic scholars and liturgical ministers
•  Reading suggestions for a cohesive and unified Liturgy of the Word
•  Reasons a couple might select a particular reading
•  Guidance for writing the Prayer of the Faithful with sample texts
•  Full texts of the consent, blessing and exchange of rings, and the Nuptial Blessing
•  Selection form to turn in to the pastor, deacon, or liturgist                                                                                                             

https://www.ltp.org/p-2923-united-in-christ-preparing-the-liturgy-of-the-word-at-catholic-weddings.aspx
 
 
THRIVING MARRIAGES / CASADOS Y FELICES
 
 
A must read for every couple, dating, engaged or married of any age, and for the every faith & marriage leader! In this inspirational book, Dr. John and Claire Yzaguirre share a beautiful model of Christian marital unity and a practical roadmap of skills to achieve joyful and lasting unity. With helpful questionnaires and easy to apply "try this" exercises, along with inspiring "soul chapters" that integrate our faith seamlessly, this book helps couples (even those with little or no faith background) learn how to prepare for their marriage and grow their marital unity at every age and stage of their journey. Ideal for faith formation and for marriage ministries and couples small group discussion.
 

 
Books and CD's on helpful topics are available in English and Spanish at: https://www.thrivingfamilies.com/
 
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