Is there an ideal time to attend?
We recommend the using the “earlier the better” policy. Many parishes require you to start marriage prep at least 6 months in advance. As soon as you are engaged, or even considering engagement, it is the right time to attend a retreat. By attending early, you can discover areas of growth necessary in your relationship, determine if engagement and marriage is right for you and avoid the last-minute hassles of attending a retreat while trying to do everything else your wedding day entails.
Do we have to be Catholic?
Catholic Engaged Encounter is designed to provide couples getting married the tools needed for a successful marriage. The retreat is open to any engaged couple wanting to prepare for a deeper, more meaningful life together in a marriage recognized by the Catholic Church according to it’s Church law.
What does the weekend cost?
Weekends are $250 per couple.
What happens on the weekend?
The retreat is not group therapy, instead, it provides private one-on-one time for the couple to learn about each other and marriage based on 5 major themes: The Family we Grew Up In, Sacramental Marriage, Communications, Intimacy – more than just sex, and Values. Couples learn about these 5 major themes through a series of presentations given by married couples. After each presentation, both fiancé’s are given time to individually reflect and write on the topic covered. Couples then are given time to privately reflect as a couple. Couples are never required to share with the group.
What should we bring to the weekend?
We suggest you bring the following items with you:
- Wear comfortable casual clothing;
- Bring a snack to place on the shared snack table which will be available in the conference room (water, tea, and coffee will be provided);
- A six pack of our favorite soda, energy or sports drink;
- A reusable cup to enjoy coffee and water during the retreat;
- Any snack or drink items for your own personal consumption
What time should we arrive?
Weekends start Friday at 6:30pm, so plan to arrive between 5:30 – 6:15pm.
What time does the weekend end?
Weekends end Sunday at 12:15pm.
Can I get a copy of the schedule?
Each couple will receive two workbooks to use throughout the retreat. These are yours to keep. The workbook provides an outline of the retreat and topics covered. Due to varying factors, such as meal times, slight differences in presenter’s length on topics, we are unable to provide exact timing of each presentation. Most presentations, individual reflection and couple reflection time total about 60-90 minutes.
Do we have to stay for the entire weekend?
YES, it is very important that you stay for the entire retreat. If you arrive late or leave early, you will miss important parts of the retreat experience, and we will not be able to give you your certificate of completion of the retreat.
Are there any ground rules for the weekend?
Yes, we do ask that you observe a few basic rules.
- Please refrain from the use of alcohol and illegal drugs.
- Please respect this is a Catholic retreat – we ask that you dress appropriately. Gentlemen, please no hats.
- Please remember the weekend is presented at a Catholic facility and be respectful of your surroundings.
Please do not leave the weekend, for any reason, unless an emergency arises. If you need to leave, please speak to one of the team members.
What should I wear?
Dress for the entire weekend is casual. Please dress comfortably. We will attend mass during the weekend, however casual attire is acceptable.
Where can I smoke?
Catholic Engaged Encounter is a smoke free environment, and due to state law all of our facilities prohibit smoking, including the use of e-cigarettes. If you do smoke, each facility has designated smoking areas outside of the building. Additionally, as a sign of respect, we ask that you please refrain from using e-cigarettes or vaping inside the facilities as well.
Will we have much free time this weekend?
Planning a wedding can be a fun and exciting time. It can also be stressful. Catholic Engaged Encounter offers a weekend-long retreat away from the hustle and bustle of life, where you can focus on each other, your relationship, and what it means to become a sacrament. While couples spend the majority of the retreat together – there is not much free time. Couples should plan to start their day a little earlier and work a little later than they typically would on an average weekend at home.
Is there WiFi available on the weekend?
Catholic Engaged Encounter offers a weekend-long retreat away from the hustle and bustle of life, where you can focus on each other, your relationship, and what it means to become a sacrament. As such we ask that couples refrain from using electronic devices as much as possible – including cell phones.
I live nearby, can I just stay at home?
You will be staying at a local hotel in order to free you from the tensions, pressures, and interruptions of daily living. We insist on this for all couples, regardless of where you may live. We want this to be a weekend away to focus solely on your relationship. There is also great benefit to staying separate from each other for the weekend, as many couples now live together before they are married. If you have further questions, please contact us by email.