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How To Plan a Christain Marriage Retreat

by Kristen May

Many churches and other Christian organizations hold marriage retreats as a way for couples to get away for a weekend and work on strengthening their marriage. The goal of the retreat is to equip couples to have a more Godly, loving and healthy marriage. Organizing a marriage retreat requires planning and attention to detail, but even people who have never organized a retreat before can plan a successful Christian marriage retreat.

Select a date on which to hold the retreat. Most marriage retreats last at least 24 hours and have one overnight stay, although some even take the whole weekend and include two nights. When picking the date for the marriage retreat, it is important that it does not conflict with any other major church events or holidays.

Book a venue for the retreat. Sometimes this will have to be done in conjunction with choosing the date because many retreat centers have limited availability. The venue can be a church, a hotel, a retreat center or some other location with space for the group. Ideally, it should have enough overnight accommodations for each couple to have a private room, meeting rooms for daytime activities, and space in which to eat.

Design a theme for the marriage retreat. There are many different areas of marriage that can be focused on during a retreat, including communication, physical intimacy, the five love languages, practicing spiritual disciplines as a couple and achieving harmony in dealing with finances.

Book the speakers for the marriage retreat. If a pastor at the church is qualified to teach an in-depth weekend on marriage, he could be a simple and inexpensive option. There are also many speakers who travel around the country and teach at marriage retreats.

Make a schedule for the retreat. Include worship times, games and activities, meal times, speakers, prayer, fellowship and some free time for couples to spend on their own.

Organize transportation and food for the marriage retreat. If the retreat location is at least a 30 minute drive from where most people live, it could be beneficial to carpool from church or rent a bus to take couples to the retreat. Food may be provided by the retreat center, or you may need to bring in outside food.

Set the price for the retreat. The cost should include overnight accommodations, rental of any additional rooms or facilities for the retreat, food, transportation, teaching materials and outside speakers brought in for the event.

Advertise the retreat and have couples sign up to attend. It is important to set a deadline for signing up and paying so you can have an accurate count for the number of rooms you need at the retreat center, how many copies of materials and handouts will be required and how much food is needed.

Photo Credits

  • cake topper bride groom marriage wedding image by Paul Retherford from Fotolia.com