The theme for this year’s Marriage Week, which runs from 13-19 May, is a ‘Recipe for a Healthy Marriage’. The emphasis is on the value of practical actions that will either help couples feed healthy marriages or to get back on track.
Established in 2012 by former family court judge, Sir Paul Coleridge, Marriage Week is run by Marriage Foundation, set up by Sir Paul to support stable marriage relationships and prevent family breakdowns. The key concept is that successful marriages make for happier grown-ups and children as well as more functional communities.
“We know it is relatively simple to buy into a vague notion of ‘investing in your relationship’ or ‘doing it for the kids’,” says Marriage Foundation. “But it is hard to know how to actually go about achieving these things – starting on a path and dealing with the difficulties that arise along the way.
“Through the initiatives of Marriage Week and the expertise of its partners we offer encouragement that you are doing the right thing by seeking to make your marriage as healthy as possible, and we provide you with the tools to do this.
“Marriage is a modern, relevant and vital commitment to your partner, your family and society more broadly.”
The key ingredients for this year’s event are commitment, forgiveness, friendship, intimacy, kindness and tolerant communication. Marriage Foundation has teamed up with several like-minded organisations to put together a series of videos that will help and inspire Marriage Week participants. These bite-sized resources are easy to digest and will leave couples feeling full and refreshed.
In order to help couples invest in their marriages this week, the foundation has come up with a number of recipes to make or eat together, as well as a host of activities that could potentially accompany a date night. For example, you and your spouse might fancy a Karmasutra Starter Spice Crumble Carpaccio followed by Pork Chops with Sage and Parma Ham, rounded off with Rhubarb and Orange Jelly and Ginger Syllabub for dessert, all washed down with a Gin-ger Tom cocktail, with complementary activities including board gaming, photo browsing and comedy. This section of the website reminds us of ways to inject a little fun and flavour into our marriages.
If you are looking for more formal support in your marriage, there are various taster courses you can access free of charge. With input from Care for the Family, Time for Marriage, The Marriage Course and various others, there are plenty of options to check out. Whether you are planning a wedding or have been hitched for many years, it’s always good to get support and advice from others who have experienced similar highlights and challenges. Why not digest some of the course material with your partner today?
Marriage Foundation has also compiled a number of relationship-focused resources for churches to use. Perhaps you’d like to get all the married couples in your church involved, or maybe you’re not married but would like to encourage those around you who are in the week ahead. The website provides access prayers and talks as well as to ‘wedding feast’ and couples nights ideas. These resources can easily be adapted to fit your congregation, helping you grow together in your relationships as couples and as members of the church.
“Marriage Week 2019 is all about the best ‘ingredients’ for a healthy relationship,” says Marriage Foundation. “We want to get people thinking about the recipe for a stable and loving marriage. And we want to get them spending fun time together by cooking. It works on two levels, which we are very pleased about!”