Five-Part Video Enrichment Course Highlights Research and Biblical Perspectives
by – Jo Kadlecek
Sometimes even the best marriages need a little help. Whether they’ve celebrated their first or their 25th wedding anniversary, many couples today live very busy lives and time to connect and talk openly and honestly can be missing.
To that end, Anglican Deaconess Ministries has created a new marriage enrichment course called, Building a Safe & Strong Marriage, to be launched on 28 February and available for purchase through ADM’s BuildingMarriage.com.au. Drawn from the work of Sarah and Rev Dr Keith Condie—who have spent the past 15 years facilitating marriage workshops in churches, theological colleges and small groups—Building a Safe & Strong Marriage is a five-part video course for couples in church or group settings or at home and includes accompanying workbooks and resources.
“Building a Safe & Strong Marriage is a unique approach in that it draws on biblical truths and wisdom, as well as leading marriage research,” said Dr Condie. “We’ve brought these elements together for couples to strengthen and develop their relationships, but we’ve done it through an Australian lens and a Christian perspective.” The course encourages couples to do “little things every day” to keep them well connected.
ADM’s Mental Health and Pastoral Care Institute developed the course in response to increasing challenges for today’s marriages. Statistics show that approximately one in three Australian marriages end in divorce.
“There has never been a more crucial time for Christians to lead the way in helping to build healthy marriages, both within our churches and in our communities,” said Dr Kate Harrison Brennan, ADM’s CEO.
The video course is designed for flexible use in small or large groups. Facilitators are provided with a comprehensive manual for hosting a course in their local church or community setting. During the course, couples have time to talk together on their own in response to the video content. Topics explored include: God’s design for marriage, what damages connectedness, building the positives of friendship, communication, sex, spirituality, and managing conflict gently.
Responses to the content in Building a Safe & Strong Marriage have already been positive. One couple said that though they have been married twenty years, the course “gave us a chance to set aside a night for five weeks to focus on ‘us’ and talk about things we don’t normally talk about. Our marriage was going well, but this course helped us not to take that for granted, to value doing the daily things that keep us connected.”
“The legacy of strong, healthy marriages will benefit children, church communities and the wider society,” said Sarah Condie. “We know from our own experience that building a strong marriage is not easy but with the right tools and support, it’s not only possible, it’s worth every effort.”
Word is getting out about the course! Read the Eternity News article and watch their interview with Keith and Sarah.