Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Church seal of approval

Josh and I finished our pre-marriage counseling yesterday.

We were able to do one session a week. We used the book The Marriage Journey by Linda Grenz and Dilbert Glover. We choose the four topics that we found most interesting and read the topics and discussed them with our Priest.

Our sessions were light, fun, and open. We really enjoyed spending some one on one time with Reverend Fortner and really found that we are very much on the same page when it comes to our marriage, friends, fighting, and children.

Marian was very pleased with us and told us on several occasions that she was very excited for us to embark on our married lives together.

Pre-Marriage counseling days always means a lunch date with Josh and coffee before or after our session. It was nice just to spend some quality time with Josh away from work, school, and life in general. We both feel that we really need that time with one another to keep up going as strong as we are.

We now have less than 3 months until our wedding day and we are getting close to sending out our invitations.

We really fell in love with these invitations because they wouldn't cause us to have to use envelopes.

These invitations just fold up and seal with a sticker. The response cards are perforated and mail just like postcards.

We loved the idea of saving paper and not needing to stuff invitations.

We are going against etiquette and are using printed mailing labels instead of hand writing addresses. It's just easier for us as neither one of us are proud of our penmanship. These will go out within the next 3 weeks. I just need to find the time to get them taken care of!

Other projects that I'm working on include our center pieces and favors. Tracy, my MOH, is coming over on Friday to help me trim the stems off of the artificial calla lilies we are using in the center pieces. Once that job is done putting them together will be effortless!

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Pre-marital counseling

Josh and I are confirmed Episcopalians. We were confirmed and became members of All Saints in May 2007.

Even before we became engaged we knew that we would get married in our church in front of our family and friends by our favorite Priest, Reverend Marian Fortner.

As required by our church we must have pre-marital counseling prior to the ceremony. We will have four sessions on the following topics:

The Sacrament of Marriage

- A review of marriage in the Christian Church and in the Episcopal tradition from the Book of Common Prayer. Consider scripture selections.

Being with Others

- Dealing with differences in needs for other friendships and relationships; balancing time with spouse and others; healthy and unhealthy boundaries.

Fighting Fair

- Unfair fights; good fights; identifying abuse; distinguishing between complaints, criticism and contempt; understanding differences, stress and traditions.

The Gift of Children

- To have or not to have; children from previous relationships; maintaining balance; raising children.

We had our first session last week and we covered the sacrament of marriage. We discussed what type of ceremony we would have and what that would entail and what kinds of reading we would have.

It was very exciting to talk about. We decided we would have a traditional service which includes a Eucharist.

Josh will walk down the isle with Rev. Fortner and then the bridal party will descend and then I will follow being escorted by my father.

It will begin with "Dearly beloved;" and then the declaration of consent. The ministry of the word will take place. We will have readings from the old testament, new testament and a Gospel. We chose Tobit 8: 6-8, 1 Corinthians 13:1-13 and John 15:9-12. After the readings will be the marriage and prayers then the blessing of the marriage and the peace, where Josh will be able to kiss his bride. To bring the ceremony to an end there will be a Eucharist and a post communion prayer. Afterwards the wedding party will leave and their will be a receiving line.

It seems like a lot, but it will only be about an hour long. Having a Eucharist is very important to the both of us. No one is required to partake in the Eucharist, but everyone is welcomed to. There are no rules like in the Catholic church.

Being able to talk about the ceremony and knowing what will happen is so exciting.

Tomorrow we meet again with Rev. Fortner to talk about being with others. We want to be able to have strong connections with friends while still respecting our marriage together. We'll also be able to set up appointments for the final two meetings where we will talk about fair fighting and children.

Neither one of us are anxious about the topics because we hardly argue as it is and we both want children, but not sure how many. Being able to talk about it will be good for us.