What is the Marriage Course?
The Marriage Course is a seven-session course set in a fantastic atmosphere at the Jubilee Community Centre, East Grinstead. You will be served with a candlelit meal and/or coffee, tea and dessert at a romantic table for two while listening to practical talks that are informative and fun, either given live or played on DVD. The course begins on Wednesday 13 May at 7.30 pm until 10.00 pm and will continue on six further Wednesdays: 20 May, 3 June, 10 June, 17 June, 24 June and 1 July 2015. Each evening begins at 7.30 pm and finishes at 10.00 pm.
There is never any group work and you will never be asked to share anything about your relationship with anyone other than your partner.
Why do the Marriage Course?
Regular check-ups help a car run smoothly and reduce the risk of breakdown. The best sports professionals spend hours being coached and perfecting their technique. The greatest achievements in life take practice, training and dedication.
It is the same with marriage. A strong, loving and lifelong relationship doesn’t happen by chance. It takes effort and dedication to keep the fun and romance alive. We can all learn how to make even the happiest marriage better.
When and Where?
The next East Grinstead Marriage Course begins on Wednesday May 13, 2015 at the Jubilee Community Centre at 7.30 pm and finishes at 10.00 pm. The course will last for 7 weeks and the last meeting will be on 1 July.
We begin with a romantic two course meal followed by coffee/tea while listening to practical talks that are informative and fun, given live or played on DVD.
The course fee, which includes dinner for two at each of the seven meetings and two course manuals is payable before the first meeting and is £84.00 per couple. Cheques should be made payable to Jubilee Community Church. Bursaries are available: please ask for further information.
Don’t worry: You will never be asked to share anything about your relationship with anyone other than your partner.
The course takes place over seven evenings. We start at 7.30 pm and finish by 10.00 pm. Each session includes:
- Fantastic atmosphere that many say feels like a date night. A great atmosphere and a friendly welcome.
- A meal at a romantic table for two giving you space to relax and chat. You will be served with a candlelit dinner and/or coffee, tea and dessert.
- Practical talks that are informative and fun, either given live or played on DVD. They include filmed clips of couples sharing their own experiences and street interviews from around the world.
- Coffee and private discussion time as a couple. You will be given topics to discuss (sometimes with the help of an exercise). Music is played so you can’t hear couples on other tables and they can’t hear you!
- No group work, so relax – you will not have to share anything about your relationship with anyone else.
- Homework – at the end of each session you are given some homework to do together. This will help you to build on what you have learnt and give you the opportunity to apply it to your relationship. Don’t worry – it won’t be marked! It isn’t looked at by anyone else and is just for your own benefit.
What Can I Expect?
David and Lise’s Story
First impressions for David and Lise were not positive. Lise was over from Australia for a wedding and thought David was ‘all the things about British bankers that were bad’. Meanwhile, he found Lise ‘a loud, annoying Aussie’! But several months in the UK changed their opinion of one another; they began dating and when Lise returned to Australia, David followed her out there. After a four month engagement they were married in Adelaide, Australia, and now live in London with their two children, Amelia and Eloise. Lise recalls an early adjustment she had to make: ‘David asked me not to cook so many roast dinners. I was averaging three a week trying to impress him!’
David’s parents had divorced when he was young. He said, ‘Reading The Marriage Book and spending time with Lise’s family and others who were still together really helped give me a picture of what it could be like and that it could be good’.
Their marriage got off to a challenging start: Lise contracted chronic fatigue (ME) from a virus and spent her days battling headaches and exhaustion. They decided to do The Marriage Course. Lise said, ‘Our marriage was ok- but it was during the time I had ME which put quite a strain on our relationship. I remember sitting on the floor for most of the course as I didn’t have the energy to sit in a chair and David sat with me. There were lots of tears and hugs as it was such a gloomy time, but it really helped us to see past our situation and focus on each other, which was what we needed.
‘It was great being there. We totally blocked everyone out and amazingly, although we were surrounded by a lot of people, we got lost in our own world. We were almost surprised at the end of the evening to find other couples sitting a few metres away. We particularly valued the sessions on communication and resolving conflict and have found ourselves adopting many of the practical tips modelled on the course. For example, we really notice the difference it makes when we have a date night, one of the course’s very practical suggestions.
‘We are chalk and cheese in terms of our personalities. But, taking part in The Marriage Course has given us the confidence that, even though we are very different and often don’t agree on many things, our marriage is and will be strong. We have learnt the skills to understand our differences and keep our communication clear. Of course, it’s not always easy and we don’t always do it right, but we now know how to work at clearing up a mess when just get into one!’
Who is it for?
Are you married or in a long-term cohabiting relationship? Have you been together for over a year? Would you like your relationship to be the best it can be?
If you answered ‘yes’ to any of those questions then this course is for you!
- The Marriage Course is for any couple, whether you have been together for one year or 61 years and whether you feel you have a strong relationship or are struggling.
- If you have a strong marriage this course will help you make it even better and will reinforce your good habits.
- If on the other hand your marriage is in difficulty, the course will help provide you with very practical tools to help you work through the issues. Some couples who are separated have used the course as a way of trying to get back together.
While The Marriage Course is based on Christian principles, it is designed for couples with or without a Christian faith. Many couples who are not churchgoers have commented that the Christian content was presented in a way that did not make them uncomfortable at all.
Find out more
The Marriage Course was developed by Nicky and Sila Lee, co-authors of The Marriage Book and The Parenting Book. They have been married for over thirty years, have four children and are on the staff at Holy Trinity, Brompton – the London church that started the Alpha course. They have spoken to thousands on the subject of marriage and are the co-authors of The Marriage Book which has sold over 210,000 copies since it was published in 2000.
Over seven sessions of the course you will discover practical tools to help you:
- Understand each other’s needs
- Communicate more effectively
- Grow closer through resolving conflict
- Heal the ways you’ve hurt each other
- Recognise how your upbringing affects your relationship
- Improve relationships with parents and in-laws
- Develop greater sexual intimacy
- Discover each other’s love languages and much, much more!
The course fee, which includes dinner for two at each of the seven meetings and two course manuals is payable before the first meeting and is £84.00 per couple. Cheques should be made payable to Jubilee Community Church. Bursaries are available: please ask for further information. Reserve your place today by contacting Adam@jcceg.co.uk. Places are limited. (Please let Adam know if you are a vegetarian).