How about post-Cana counseling?

How about post-Cana counseling? September 8, 2015


These cats are basically compatible and have more or less the same goals, but their relationship could still use some support.
These cats take their union seriously, are basically compatible, and have more or less the same goals, but their relationship could still use some support.

For many young couples, their main problem is that they simply don’t have any Catholic friends or family, and no one will know what they’re talking about if they are struggling with family planning, or educational choices, or how to maintain a family prayer life. What’s missing is not classes or seminars or programs, but direct human contact with people who understand.

Read the rest at the Register.

photo credit: Kitty Cat via photopin (license)

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  • kmk1916


  • Jenna

    I know of a really good resource from – hear me out – the Anglican church. It’s called the alpha marriage course (they do a pre-marriage course too). It’s basically a video series with study guides for married couples, and it covers a lot of issues that couples commonly struggle with, but the real beauty of it is that it’s intended to foster mentorship between experienced couples and younger, struggling couples. It’s a lay-couple who lead the course for a parish on a volunteer basis.

    This is the type of resource that would be inexpensive to run, and many more couples could participate than would be able to do the weekend thing. A Catholic version of this would of course include family planning, etc.

    …just because I know it’s out there 🙂

  • Rae

    I just don’t get the reason. Pre-cana is so terrible. My husband and I drove a distance to go to the “best” one. It was so awful…we learned nothing…and it actually damaged our expectations. We were told that we’d fight, we’d disagree and that marriage was hard, even with ease in our relationship.

    We just celebrated our first anniversary Sunday and while we go to Mass weekly, we find ourselves moving farther and farther away from parish life and spiritual community. We just have 2 personalities that seem to work well together, and while we do fight it gets resolved. It is very frustrating to be told by “experienced” couples who’ve been married 5, 10, 20 or more years how hard marriage is, how much they fought, etc in the first year. It feels awful.

    It’s been proven that if someone is told they aren’t well over and over then they will actually start feeling ill. I feel that this is the same way for marriages…if someone is told over and over that marriage is hard it will be then it’s a self-fulfilling prophesy.

    If post-cana counseling does ever happen, it should be done by people even more carefully than pre-cana….beucase there’s alot more at stake.

    • Emily Kimmel

      Pre-Cana was poorly done in our diocese as well. I can relate with what you say here- just celebrated our first anniversary too, and while there’s been sacrifice and some adjustment, there has NOT been huge fights. I get that you need to tell people it’s not all sunshine and roses, but maybe the programs could focus on how to build relationships to be stronger without assuming that they already have problems instead of how to ‘survive’ them.

      I think that part of the problem is that so many of the programs focus on the lowest common denominator- they assume that their ‘students’ are just infatuated or naieve. The one that me and my husband attended included a session on ‘how to tell if your finance/fiancee is an abusive jerk’. There was really very little that we could use to actually build our relationship. I agree with you that Pre-Cana (and Post-Cana!) should be more than just ‘poor thing, you have no idea what you’re in for’ or ‘life is nothing but a road made of nails!’.

      What would be nice is if there could be a group of couples that got together and did something for fellowship, sort of like the singles’ groups that some parishes have- they could get together, drink beer, and talk about theology or something. That would provide a forum for Catholic couples to talk about stuff and find guidance if they need it without assuming that their marriage is in trouble, or just to find fellowship and hang out with people in a similar stage in life. I get that there needs to be programs for marriages in trouble, but does it ALL have to be for marriages in trouble?

      • Rae

        That’s scary about your pre-cana, considering of the 40 couples in ours some were only weeks away from their weddings and probably wouldn’t of called them off if the guy admitted to being an axe murder. My husband and I are well past the student age and the priest we worked with was good but it was still torture. If we weren’t both dyslexics we would of gotten perfect on the FOOCUS test. The priest, an active 75yo had never seen that happen. He had stacks of material on every topic under the sun for when things went wrong with the test but not one single shred of advice for a couple like us. And this was an deeply experienced priest who celebrated dozens of weddings a year.

    • mhardin

      Rae…As a married man of 26 years with 9 kids and the most fantastic woman on earth as my wife, I can say with all earnestness PRAY as a family and as individuals. Put the salvation and satisfaction of your spouse and children above your own and you will begin to see the magic of love. It transforms those around you because it is so obvious in all you do! The daily Rosary as a family and some time every week in Adoration will begin to really remake you into the person God created you to be…when that happens God is free to work the same miracles in the lives of your husband and children.(remember your prayers for them are their most powerful help, because you have authority as a wife and mother!) Life is good…when life is LOVE! Peace, Mike

      • Rae

        God hasn’t blessed us with children yet, but we do pray together. To us grace and other prayer (before driving, trips, big house projects, bed) seem to be us. This is why it’s really frustrating to us that things are so doom and gloom in Catholic circles. We often feel that the Church has nothing to offer us as we pile through books and devotionals by Catholics all focusing on the negative and the struggle. Life is hard but marriage doesn’t have to be. There are great protestant books/devotinals that reflect this, but they also have funky ideas about doctrine we choose to stay away from.