Couples Getaway Weekend – Cranberry Resort – February 2018
After 28 years of marriage, 4 children and the perfect blend of joy and chaos, our first overnight getaway retreat for couples at a resort brought much anticipation. “He“ had visions of skiing, while “she“ looked forward the sheer freedom and adventure of time away. Both of us knew that the time with friends, new acquaintances, great priests and sacraments had to make all this a winning combination. But we discovered so much more was “packed in“ to just over a day stay!
First on the agenda were some hilarious ice breaker activities, assuring all of us that we would be completely “at home“ with everyone present. In a relaxed atmosphere our Legionary Fathers provided a unique combination of thought provoking talks which inspired the couples to “dig deeper“ through individual discussion aided by related questions to consider. The whole thing set the stage to enrich our time together and to motivate us to persevere in family life and to grow together even more.
We had no idea the blessing that would be shared by two couples attending, who gave striking testimonies: first on how crisis can strengthen both faith and marriage when all is surrendered to God; and then how the marriage relationship brilliantly reveals its beauty and strength through the test of time and openness to God`s graces. One couple shared their fascinating testimony of over 50 years of marriage, standing before us as an example of how prayer, self-giving, and trustingly accepting God`s challenges can bring happiness, holiness and unshakeable “togetherness“….soul mates leading each other to eternity with God!
Holy Hour with Adoration, Holy Mass and ongoing opportunity for Confession all added heavenly elements…but the highlight was the renewal of marriage vows, taking us back to that magical moment so deeply touching in that sacramental marriage is a most precious, supernatural gift made possible in Christ Jesus. How privileged we are to be chosen in the Catholic Faith!
And that is why we write – to encourage and invite all married couples to be part of the experience. Believe it or not, we haven`t given everything away (but the food was magnificent, too!!)
Chris and Mary Jean Belford