Run The Marriage Preparation Course
Why run The Marriage Preparation Course?
The Marriage Preparation Course is an easy-to-run, practical, five-session course for couples who are engaged or exploring the idea of marriage. No expertise is needed to run the course.
You may have experienced working on your own marriage or you are passionate to see marriages and family life strengthened in your community.
An individual can host a course using the DVDs, though we also recommend having a married couple on hand to offer support.
Key features of The Marriage Preparation Course:
- Easy-to-use DVD
- Leader's guide with instructions for when to pause DVD for exercises and discussion times
- Effective whether held in a home or larger venue
- Practical material presented in a fun and interesting way
- Welcoming and accessible content for any couple
As part of The Marriage Preparation Course, couples may be asked to complete a Couple Survey online. The survey is not a test of compatibility; it is designed to help couples highlight issues that are important to discuss before getting married. It also affirms areas of strength in their relationship.
How to run The Marriage Preparation Course
1. PURCHASE the course materials
You need The Marriage Preparation Course DVD with Leaders’ Guide and two guest manuals per couple. You can purchase these at the Alpha Store.
2. PLAN your course
- Find a venue
- Ask people to help you run the course
- Decide what/if to charge guests
- Budget for food and/or drinks and promotion
- Use The Marriage Preparation Course leaders’ Resources for support to run your course. For example, training includes instructions on how to incorporate the Couple Survey as well as guidance for Support Couples.
- Think of ways to make your course feel like a fun 'date night' for your couples
5. FIND support in advance
Find a counselor in your area to whom you can refer couples if they need professional help.
Contact Us for advice and support.
Who should I invite?
The Marriage Preparation Course is for any couple who wants to give their marriage the best possible start or who are exploring the idea of getting married.
Think about inviting:
- Friends, family, neighbors and work colleagues
- Current and previous wedding and baptism candidates
- Community groups such as gym classes or mother & toddler groups
- If your church is running Alpha and/or The Parenting Courses, invite current and past guests
How do I invite guests?
The most effective way to encourage guests to come on your course is to personally invite them.
Promotional materials such as postcard invitations and banners are easy to use and generate interest from those outside your personal network.
Customizable promotional materials including posters and postcard invites are available on the Alpha Print Shop.
How to reach couples in your community:
- Promote your course at your church with a fun video or by sharing feedback from previous guests
- Hand out invites and encourage everyone to invite one couple
- Place posters and postcards in strategic locations such as coffee shops, gyms, day care centers, libraries, etc
- Advertise the event on your church website and social media
- Make sure the date, time, venue and contact information are clear on your communication
- Make a final push the week before your course as many decide to enroll at the last minute