Eparchy of Saskatoon Family and Life Office Bulletin:

November 2020

“The future of the world passes through the family”

St. John Paul II, Familiaris Consortio, 79


Marital PEACE in a time of crisis: In our last insert we reflected on family peace.  Who knew that COVID-19 would continue to put such incredible strain on our lives and relationships?  Divorce and mental health issues such as anxiety and even suicide are on the increase.  This makes working to strengthen our relationships more critical than ever.  Here is a beautiful marriage “check in” that though simple and relatively easy to do, if exercised faithfully and with love, can be a couple communication lifesaver (adapted from www.ofthehearth.com):

Weekly “check in” questions:

  1. What is something specific I did last week that made you feel loved, honored, and/or respected? If you didn’t feel this way, explain why not.
  2. What does your upcoming week entail? What is something specific I can do to help you feel loved, honored, and/or respected?
  3. How can I pray for you?
  4. What else would you like to share with me?

Semi-annual “check in” questions:[1]

  1. What progress have we made towards the goal of helping each other grow in the fullness of life and holiness? What achievable goals have we set and how are we doing on them?
  2. Does it seem that there is anything keeping one or both of us from following God’s will in our lives? What can I do to help you?
  3. Are you satisfied with the way we share responsibilities? Explain why or why not.
  4. Is there anything I do (or fail to do) that seems to indicate lack of wholehearted commitment to making Christ the center of our marriage?
  5. In what characteristic or attribute would you like to see me grow? Explain why.
  6. Are you satisfied with the frequency and quality of our physical intimacy? Is there anything that is an obstacle to our lovemaking as a total gift of self, which is also free, faithful and fruitful?

Remember to be gentle with each other …. Discuss, hold hands and look into one another’s eyes. This is “date night” material. Don’t forget to pray, thank and petition God together.  You made a public commitment (vow)of love to God and each other.  Worship together. Trust Christ to provide the grace to heal your pain, help you forgive. He has promised to be with you through all your struggles. Work at following and growing closer to Him together.  Don’t be afraid to seek spiritual direction or counsel in your relationship. For some resources…see reverse.

“Are you a ‘compatible’ couple? “Compatible” comes from the latin compati, meaning “to suffer with”.  If you are not willing to suffer with someone until death do you part, then you are not compatible.” (Jason Evert)  This is reflected in our beautiful marriage Ceremony of Crowning.  The couple is crowned both as a foreshadowing of their ‘eternal’ crowns, with the goal of helping each other to attain eternal life as the ultimate end of marriage, but also as martyrs crowns, acknowledging the sacrifice which comes with learning to love as Christ loves, as we journey through life together.

Marriage Ministry Resources:

Marriage Enrichment:
REFOCCUS: The Eparchial Family and Life Office has offered FOCCUS for engaged couples over the past few years with very good feedback.  It is now pleased to announce REFOCCUS as a marriage enrichment tool to married couples.  See:  https://www.foccusinc.com/refoccus-inventory.aspx  If you are interested in doing a REFOCCUS  as personal discussion tool and/or would like to be part of a REFOCCUS online mini retreat, please call Deb Larmour at 306-653-0138 Ext 228.  (This is not marriage counselling but rather a couple directed inventory and discussion tool with the option of having a facilitated discussion or be part of a discussion group/mini-retreat on pertinent topics that come out of the inventory subjects.)

Retrouvaille:  For confidential information about the next Retrouvaille weekend in Saskatoon call Ben & Joanne at (306) 652-7155 or email:  retrouvaille@sasktel.net  For more information see: https://rcdos.ca/ministries-services/marriage-and-family-life/retrouvaille-a-lifeline-for-troubled-marriages/

Counselling and Spiritual Direction:

Your Parish Priest:

Catholic Family Services:
Saskatoon: https://www.cfssaskatoon.sk.ca/services/counselling/counselling-team/
Regina:  https://cfsregina.ca/counselling/
Battlefords: https://www.battlefordscfs.ca/our_services/counselling.html

Vivens Counselling:
(Catholic counselling and self development teaching services offered)  https://www.vivens.org/home/counselling/; vivenscounselling@gmail.com

Detox Program:  https://www.strive21.com/

Docuseries on harmful effects of porn: https://brainheartworld.org/

[1]These discussion points should form a “check in” at least every 6 months but…quarterly, or more often might be better for some questions, depending on what is going on in your life.


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