Why run?

The Marriage Course is an easy-to-run, practical seven-session course designed to support couples looking for practical support to strengthen their relationship. No expertise is needed to run the course. You may have experience working on your own marriage, or you are passionate to see marriages and family life strengthened in your community. You don’t need to be married to run The Marriage Course, but we do recommend having a married couple on hand for support.

Key features of The Marriage Course:

  • Easy-to-use DVD, with designated breaks for discussion
  • Leader's guide with clear instructions on how to host your course
  • The format and material works well in a home or larger venue
  • Each session is presented in an engaging and accessible way
  • Inclusive and relevant content for any couple

How to run...

The Marriage Course has been developed so that it is easy to run anywhere and by anyone. Here is a step by step 'to do' list if you want to get started. 

Step 1.

Plan your course

  • Plan the dates and find a venue to run your course.
  • Purchase course materials: You’ll need The Marriage Course DVD with Leaders’ Guide and two guest manuals per couple.

  • Decide what/if to charge guests attending your course and create a budget.

Step 2.

Register your course

  • Create an Alpha account with us and add your course details. Once you have done this, you can download extra resources and promotional materials.
  • You can choose whether or not to promote your course on our website. If you do promote it, when couples are looking for a course running near them, your course will appear on the searchable map.


Step 3.

Prepare

  • Watch the training videos below.
  • You can buy personalised promotional materials here

  • Think of ways to make your course feel like a fun 'date night' for your couples.

Step 4.

Invite Guests

Think of who you can invite and ways to publicise your course in your community. See below for some ideas of who to invite and how to invite them.

Sometimes couples need more help. Do a little information gathering ahead of time to find a counsellor in your area to whom you will you feel comfortable referring couples to if they need more specific professional help. We have some organisations that we recommend here.


Training

Watch the videos below to find out the 5 essential ingredients for running a good course. 


Who should I invite?

The Marriage Course is for any couple wanting to strengthen their relationship. It doesn’t matter if they have a strong relationship or are struggling or if they are married or cohabiting.

Think about inviting:

  • Friends, family, neighbours 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, consider inviting current and past guests. 

Join two families who show you how they run The Marriage Course and The Marriage Preparation Course in their homes.


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 can help and are easy to use - they can help generate interest and spread the word about your course to those outside your personal network.

Customisable promotional materials including posters and postcard invites are available on the Alpha Print Shop.

How to reach couples in your community:

  • Promote your course from the front of church with a fun video or by sharing feedback from previous guests. 
  • Give out invites and encourage everyone to invite one couple.
  • Place posters and postcards in strategic locations such as coffee shops, gyms, crèches and 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.
  • Give the course a final push the week before it starts, as many couples decide to book on at the last minute. 


Endorsements

‘Long-term initiatives like The Marriage Course, devised by HTB Church, are a much better use of the church’s time, money and effort...
It’s an eight-week course that covers everything from ‘The Art of Communication’ to ‘Good Sex’ delivered in a non-preachy way, which can be accessed equally by people of faith and none.’ view original article
 
 
 
'I have seen how The Marriage Course is a beautiful ecumenical resource that helps couples invest afresh in their marriage in a real and practical way for the challenges of modern life.'  
Archbishop Vincenzo Paglia
- President of the Pontifical Council for the Family