FAQ Parishes

  • Can you briefly describe your program? Open or Close

    Since 2004, the only online interactive mentor-led pre-cana program.

    Main goals:

    • To help couples integrate St. John Paul II's Theology of the Body into their whole life.
    • They discover the dignity of each Person.
    • They form their conscience to the beauty and complementarity of their different missions as man and woman, to the nobleness and worth of their sexuality, as well as to the fruitfulness of their love.
    • They discover the incomparable value of each life.
    • They also enter deeply into the Sacrament of Matrimony, the “primordial” sacrament, as St. John Paul II called it.
      “That mystery, as God’s salvific plan in regard to humanity, is in a certain sense the central theme of all revelation, its central reality. It is the most ancient revelation (manifestation) of the plan in the created world.”TOB Sept. 8th, 1982 – p.p. 321-22

    The program helps couples pass from an intellectual understanding of the Faith to actually experience God’s love and presence in their daily lives.
    It makes them to understand that Marriage is a vocation, it is the path they choose to answer to God’s call to help each other become the Persons God created them to be.

    The program started as a live course in 1999 for the Archdiocese of Denver. It is deeply rooted in the Teachings of the Catholic Church, especially John Paul II’s Theology of the Body.
    It became the First online interactive Catholic marriage prep program in May 2004 under the name Catholic Marriage Prep.com: it is available in - English – Spanish – French
    It is under the patronage of Saints like St Joseph, St Paul, St Maximillien Kolbe and Saint John Paul II.

     

  • Highlight four major aspects of the course Open or Close

    It follows Theology of the Body (TOB)/ it is one-on-one mentor led/ it is Catholic and Christ-centered/ and it is a one stop shop

    1) Follows Theology of the Body (TOB)
    Saint John Paul II's Theology of the Body is integrated into the whole marriage preparation. The  course is built upon it.

    2) One-on-one mentor-led
    Each instructor couple know their engaged couples personally.
    They are not here to make them feel good but to help them discover the Truth.
    The Engaged couples have worksheets to fill out, they have to write down their answers, there is no multiple choice answers.
    Engaged couples work at it TOGETHER and discuss together each and every topic, even if they live miles away from each other.
    They can work via email, phone, Skype and so on.
    Couples have the options to give His and Her answer or a consolidated answer.
    Then they submit their work.
    The Instructor couple review it and answer personally to his and her questions/answers.

    We want the engaged to reflect together on the questions first BUT it doesn’t stop there.
    In the answer keys from their instructors, that include the teachings of the Catholic Church,  we challenge them to go further and make the appropriate changes in their way of life to follow Christ...

    3) A Catholic Christ-centered marriage preparation: 
    We are given here a great opportunity to evangelize!
    As we all know, evangelization is the Church’s deepest identity, her most important work, at all times and all the time.
    Christian and Christine lived fifteen years as a missionary family; they love evangelization.
    Marriage prep plays a very important role in the new evangelization.
    Society has changed, it is good to use modern technologies to be closer to the engaged couples but we also have to understand their spiritual needs.
    We speak of new evangelization because of the spiritual poverty of the couples – like sheep without shepherd. They are thirsting for the unchanging truth.
    They sense compromise immediately. If we present them watered down teachings they will not accept them, they will not make them their own and they will not apply them in their lives. They want to follow a Church that gives them the real thing.
    If we keep trying to please them and give them ‘soft’ teachings; we cheat them and they feel it.
    They deserve better, they deserve the TRUTH!

    The role of the instructor couples is vital; engaged couples need this dialog with their instructors. They will relate to them. It is a spiritual journey.

    Our Instructors are living witnesses of the Faith, they teach what they live, as Blessed Paul VI said in 1975:
    "Modern man listens more willingly to witnesses than to teachers, and if he does listen to teachers, it is because they are witnesses." Pope Paul VI, 1975 apostolic exhortation "Evangelii Nuntiandi" (On Evangelization in the Modern World).

    Pope Benedict said :
    Today's world needs persons who proclaim and witness that Christ teaches us the art of living, the way to true happiness, because He himself is the Way of Life; people who look steadily, first of all, at Jesus, the Son of God: The word of the proclamation must be immersed in an intense relationship with Him, in an intense life of prayer.Today's world needs persons who speak to God to be able to speak of God. Address Benedict XVI gave mid-November to participants in an event hosted by the Pontifical Council for Promoting New Evangelization, Nov. 2011.

    It is not enough to give engaged couples resources - goodness knows that there are tons of resources available to them on the internet and beyond!
    NO, we must teach the truth and make sure that they hear it.
    This is why the way we teach is so important.
    We are here to help them grasp this TRUTH, make it their own.
    We are here to answer their questions, support them, pray for them by name, correct misunderstandings about Marriage, be there for them during their engagement and beyond.
    If it was enough to give them the teachings, we could just give them a book or a DVD and voilà!

    As we all know, religious marriages are the only ones that last:
    Nominal Catholics have 5% less chances to divorce than average population.
    Sunday Mass Practicing Catholics: 31% less chances to divorce.
    Seriously Practicing Catholics, couples praying together and using NFP have a 95% less chances to divorce.

    4) One Stop Shop:
    In addition to the marriage prep course, engaged couples can also register for:

    • Pre Marital Inventory. CMP instructors get the results of the PMI and it helps them in their personal work with the engaged.

    • NFP instruction. Here again they have a work one-on-one with an experienced and certified instructor.
  • How long is the program? Open or Close

    There are 5 worksheets, 2 questionnaires, and 2 short forms total.
    The engaged couples work at their own pace, they have one week minimum to 3 months maximum to complete the course.
    First they will work together on the worksheets and submit them, one by one
    We do not give all the assignments at once because the course is a gradual process.
    Then they will read and discuss the answer keys together again.
    So roughly it takes a minimum of 20 hours of work.
    On average, couples complete the course in 6 weeks.
    They get a certificate of completion at the end of the course.

  • Can you give a % of time for different topics? Open or Close
    1. Theological 1/3
    2. Sacramental 1/3
    3. Life-skills 1/3  
  • What are some unique features of your program? Open or Close

    Theology of the Body marriage preparation

    CatholicMarriagePrep.com program is based on, follows, and is guided by St. John Paul II's Theology of the Body.
    Couples are immersed in TOB for a minimum of three (3) hours throughout the course.

    Online one-on-one mentor led:

    We try to keep the balance between technology and personal interaction.
    We have a cool name for it: HIGH TOUCH / HIGH TECH
    Each worksheet combines a mix of texts, audio and video clips.
    A live experienced and trained instructor couple is at the other end to review personally each couple’s worksheet, each couple’s answer.
    The engaged couple and their instructor build a deep relationship founded on trust.

    It’s Catholic and Christ-centered:

    God invented Marriage = it is first a spiritual adventure.
    Foundation is Christ: They are three to get married!
    There is a progression throughout the course, assuming many are not well catechized.
    We take them where they’re at and bring them up gradually.
    We continually update the course, almost on a daily basis, with new Church documents or commentaries. Our course is alive.

    One stop shop

    Couples have also the possibility to register for online NFP instruction and Pre Marital Inventory. Again they have a live instructor; it is not just an electronic gimmick

  • What is the emphasis? Open or Close

    Everything is oriented towards a Christ-centered marriage.
    Deeply anchored in the teachings of the Catholic Church and St. John Paul II Theology of the Body.

    The emphasis is also on the couple: helping them to get to know each other deeper and better. .[
    We give couples a unique opportunity to discuss each and every subjects in depth, to ask all their questions.

    The program helps couples also to discover and experience the personal love of God for them.
    The program is a window for conversion.

     

  • What is the cost involved? Open or Close

    $194.00 per couple.
    $215.00 per couple for couples who have less than three weeks to prepare for marriage (Urgent Care).
    $245.00 for Bilingual (English/Spanish or English/French)

    Military discount and scholarships are available.
    Couples can add other services separately :
    - Natural Family Planning (NFP) $99.00 for self-paced online course; $130 for live online course

    - Premarital Inventory ((PMI) $45.00 (report is sent to the parish)
                                              or $110.00 (Skype review with a trained facilitator included).

     

  • How would a couple know if your program is accepted in their parish or diocese? Open or Close

    At the very begining of the program, before they register, couples are invited to meet first with their priest first and check with him.
    If he is not familiar with CMP/Catholic Marriage Prep the couple can give him the website’s address, show him what’s covered and so on.
    The final decision is always up to their priest!
    Many dioceses support the program openly;
     see list.
    Catholic Marriage Prep is also listed by the USCCB (for Your Marriage) as a valuable resource.

  • Are there circumstances where an online program would not be appropriate? Open or Close

    NO!
    At first, years ago, priests and deacons only sent their problem couples: separated by distance, older couples, couples with difficult schedules.
    Many now see the benefit of the online program for all couples versus live classes.
    It gives couples more time and intimacy to discuss and process each topic.
    It also allows for more resources via the Internet.
    The program is not about knowledge. It's a process, a path towards conversion, and it requires time.


    Because we have live instructors and therefore customize, we can deal and adapt to all kinds of people: convalidations, remarriages; we have handicapped couples, blind, autistic, special need couples.
    We have more and more Inter faith couples (Protestants/Catholic, Jewish/Catholic or Muslim Catholic)
    But we also have ‘specialized’ instructors couples:
    - Several of our instructor couples are themselves in the military, they understand military life.
    - Christian was born and raised in Africa, in a Muslim country with a large Jewish community, he understands both religions. He worked fifteen years in Africa and the Middle East too, it helps a lot.
    - Rudy and Carmen are Hispanics; they take care of the Hispanic and the Spanish speaking couples.
    We have instructor couples of different ages and background, it is easy to direct the engaged couples to them.
    For example, Christian and Christine are ‘seasoned’, they like to work with older couples and convalidation.
    Parishes don’t need to burn out their resources: they can send us their overflow or their difficult cases and we take good care of each couple.

  • How would I go about partnering with you to offer your program in my parish or diocese? Open or Close

    Contact us!
    It is very easy, the parish or diocese can check out the whole program online.
    Just call 866-425-7193 or send us an email: info@catholicmarriageprep.com.
    We also offer the formation of instructor couples to teach live classes matching the online course in their own parish and diocese.
    Instructors’ formation is done online, in English, Spanish, and French.

  • How do you keep clergy in the loop? Open or Close

    . At the beginning of the course, couples can share their username and password with their priest or deacon so they can follow-up all their work.
    . Couples can also print their answer keys and review them with their priest/deacon.
    . At the end, instructors share the couples feedback with their priest or deacon.
    The feedback is very complete and will give the priest/deacon a very good picture of where the couple stands regarding their willingness to follow the Catholic Church teachings, and their desire to participate ini parish life.

  • Is there any follow-up? Open or Close

    After the marriage prep, we have several ways to stay in contact with the couples
    Parishes:
    During the course we challenge the couples to practice the Sacraments and to connect to a parish.
    We want them to check out what they can expect and what they can bring to a parish.
    How important it is to belong to a parish and not remain isolated.
    We also send an electronic newsletter to our alumni:
    It includes life and faith tips.
    It talks about parenting, spiritual formation, it answers questions from the couples, it gives news.
    Instructors:
    Since the engaged couples develop a great relationship with their instructors, they can come back to them at any time in their life.
    Several of these relationships last for years.

  • What do couples say? Open or Close

    Make sure to read some of the numerous testimonials we receive by clicking here.

     



     

     



 

A Division of
Agapè Catholic Ministries

CONTACT DETAILS

Contact us:

Connect with Us


Follow Me on Pinterest

Copyright and Credits

Articles and content Copyright © 2012-2015
Agapè Catholic Ministries.
All rights reserved.

Privacy Policy

Graphics design by Olivier Heitz.

Site design by CatchLight Professional.

You are here: Home Dioceses & Parishes FAQ - Parishes